Rogers State University Alumnus Wins 2023 Griffin Spirit Award

Matt Rahn

Every year, Oklahoma-based Griffin Media recognizes an individual that embodies the spirit of its culture – someone who is a team player, someone who is humble, positive, smart, passionate, and hungry for more.

This year, that individual was Rogers State University alumnus Matt Rahn.

Rahn, a multi-media journalist at KOTV Channel 6 in Tulsa, was named the 2023 Griffin Media Spirit Award honoree at the station’s Christmas party in December.

“That was a complete surprise – to get an award like that and to be recognized by my peers as someone who encapsulates the spirit of my company – humble, positive, smart. That was quite an honor,” Rahn said. “So many other people who have won the award are people that I respect and look up to, so to have been named the winner of something that special really meant a lot. There are so many people deserving of that award. I’m in good company.”

After graduating from Claremore High School in 2013, Rahn enrolled at RSU, where he entered the communications program.

“Before I came to RSU, there had been a campus newspaper, but by the time I was here, it had dissolved and my initial plans were to get my degree and get into working as a newspaper reporter,” he said. “Because of that, I became more interested in the video aspect of storytelling, working at the university TV station, and learning about working in that medium. If you’re going into television or news broadcasting, there’s no better experience than to work at a TV station, and northeast Oklahoma is fortunate to have a fully functioning collegiate television station in RSU Public TV.

“I got a lot of experience and important real-world preparation at RSU. I had several good mentors,” he continued. “By the time I was a senior, I entered an internship program led by (the late) Cathy Coomer, which opened the door for me to intern at Channel 6.”

Transitioning from working at the college station to a news station was not without its challenges, Rahn said, but he felt that his time at RSU prepared him for the next chapter of his career.

“Going from RSU’s TV station to interning at Channel 6, I felt ready to tackle any kind of tests that the ‘news world’ threw at me,” he said. “The internship itself was very interesting, just to be able to see how that world works and to know that, because of my training and education at RSU, I was ready to move into that kind of work environment. I think RSU prepared me well.”

So well did Rogers State University prepare Rahn, after he graduated from RSU, he went to work full-time at Channel 6 in August 2017.

Since that time, Rahn has held several roles at the news station, moving from social media/website production to helicopter cameraman to on-air reporter.

“It’s been a cool company to learn from and grow through. There’s always a lot going on at a news station, and I’ve had the chance to learn a lot,” he said.

Although Rahn was contemplative about his future career plans, he said the training and education he received while at Rogers State University helped to provide him with a foundation upon which to build his future successes.

“Where I’m at now is a good place, and I feel like the education and mentorship I received at RSU were a huge factor in helping me get here,” he said. “I took advantage of the resources available at Rogers State – the classes, the mentors, the practical training – and what I’ve achieved since graduation has been a reflection of that investment.”

Rahn currently resides in Tulsa.

Rogers State University’s Department of Communications offers the Bachelor of Arts in communications with emphasis available in broadcasting and news media, communication arts, and strategic communications.

For more information about RSU’s Department of Communications, visit