TULSA, okla. (NewsNation Now) – The coronavirus pandemic saw executives at many companies announce that employees will continue to work from home this year. Technology has made it possible for many people to work almost anywhere, and now Tulsa, Oklahoma city guides are trying to capitalize on that trend.
City guides are offering people $ 10,000 to move to Tulsa.
Tulsa lies between the Osage Hills and the Ozark Mountains, about 100 miles northeast of Oklahoma City. It is the second largest city in the state and has a long history, from the settlement of Native Americans to the Tulsa Race Massacre in 1921 to the drilling boom that made it the “Oil Capital of the World”.
It’s a utopia for those torn between the desire for big city grandeur and the charm of small town life.
“We have a top 10 opera in the nation, we have beautiful ballet, we have museums,” said Grant Bumgarner, community manager for Tulsa Remote. “We have incredible amenities; The only difference is that they are cheaper, easier to reach, and that a stronger community is built around them.
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In the language of the Creek Tribe, Tulsa means “old town”. To bring new life, diversity and perspective to the city in the energy sector, Tulsa visionaries created Tulsa Remote.
“We’re basically paying people $ 10,000 for the work they’ve been doing from Tulsa for a year,” Bumgarner said.
Right, Tulsa Remote is paying $ 10,000 to move into town and continue working remotely. The program quickly became attractive to candidates such as Obum Ukabam and Bobby Reyes.
“It seemed too good to be true and one day when I was going to work on the bus it was about six o’clock, I thought why not. So I filled in the application, did everything and sent it off, ”Reyes said.
“It was fate, I was meant to find it – because I found it on a Facebook post that I could have just missed,” Obum said.
Both men were accepted. Ukabam moved from California two years ago; He is one of the original Tulsa Remote members. He worked on his remote gig for about a year before getting a job at Tulsa’s Holberton School for budding software engineers who dream of making it big in Silicon Valley.
“I remember looking over at my wife and saying, ‘This town looks pretty cool, this program looks pretty cool. If I walk in, would you consider uprooting our lives and moving to Oklahoma? Is that in order?’ and she was like ‘yes’ ”said Ukabam.
Reyes is a new member and software designer. He and his partner relocated in November and uprooted a comfortable life in Chicago for a chance at Tulsa. He says he’s pleasantly surprised with the people, options, and food scene of Tulsa.
“Aside from one deep dish (pizza), that’s a really big deal for me. I had to deliver Lou Malnati here, so that’s exactly what we’re doing for Pizza Friday, ”Reyes said.
Reyes and Ukabam are two of more than 400 Tulsa remotes. Bumgarner helps with the selection of applicants; He says the program exploded.
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“We were surprised, we thought we might hire 20-25 people in the first year. In the first year we hired 70 out of 10,000 applicants, and in the second year we hired over 350 people out of those 25,000, ”said Bumgarner.
In its third year, Tulsa Remote now has a lower acceptance rate than any college in the country, with less than 2% of applicants being accepted.
“We have people from bankers to software engineers to opera singers from Japan,” said Bumgarner.
Although there have been restrictions due to the COVID1-19 pandemic, Ukabam and Reyes are finding new and individual ways to get involved and broaden Tulsa’s horizons. In return, they use everything that is available to them.
“The things that you think you would miss in other cities are here, that’s the misunderstanding. We went to concerts, sporting events, ballet, and things we didn’t even have to do in California because of the cost of living, ”said Ukabam.
Both are now planting new roots in Oklahoma soil.
“Yeah, I think it’s home, you know, and I think home will always be where you create it, right,” Reyes said.
All from an online ad that they randomly scrolled through – a payday with an even sweeter adventure.
“I feel like myself; I can explode into what I’m meant to be, said Ukabam. “I feel like I am really here to meet my destiny. This is the place I need to be, so I am here to stay.”
Both men say that $ 10,000 was a great incentive, but that their desire to start over was greater.
Tulsa Remote is currently accepting applications for those interested in 2021. Click here to apply.
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