The year 2012 has little chance of being mundane and every opportunity to influence Oklahoma not only short-term, but also in the long-term of education, politics, business, culture, sports, entertainment and so much more.
In 2012, not only Oklahoma students, but the public schools they attend will receive a letter grade. And, there will be a new evaluation system for their teachers.
At the higher education level, a national effort called Complete College America will be pushed on the state level, seeking to help Oklahomans earn 1,700 more college degrees and certifications each year for the next 12 years.
Great scrutiny is anticipated on the issue of how to allocate money for the Defense Department. A congressman from Oklahoma, on the subcommittee that oversees military spending, will approach this issue with the nation's security in mind, but also will be remembering Oklahoma's two largest military installations.
At the state level, Oklahoma's first female governor hopes to reduce and build in her second year.
In Oklahoma City, the mayor believes more jobs will be relocating to or created in Oklahoma City. Challenges remain. National food donations are down. But last year offers not only history, but hope as many needs were met. For example, the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma distributed a record-setting 46.2 million pounds of food to charitable feeding programs and elementary schools.
And while national and state efforts cling to hope, individuals will embrace it as well. Some hope for calmer days instead of the many disasters of 2011, including the 118 tornadoes. But just in case, there are those individuals who will take precautionary steps they haven't in the past, such as adding an above- or below-ground shelter.
What other changes will we see in 2012? Will a promising new talent from Bixby be able to build a sizable hip-hop audience? Will Oklahoma teams and individuals claim national champion and world champion titles?
Will lawmakers and private donors come through with remaining funds needed for the unfinished American Indian Cultural Center and Museum?
Again, 2012 will be interesting and history-making but, most likely, not mundane.