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OSU dedicates memorial to ‘Remember the 4’
Family, friends and members of the Oklahoma State University community came together to dedicate a permanent memorial to honor the lives of former Cowgirl basketball coach Kurt Budke, assistant coach Miranda Serna and OSU supporters Olin and Paula Branstetter.  “I am so pleased today we are honoring Coach Budke, Coach Serna and the Branstetters. Although they left us much too soon the lives they each lived made a lasting mark on Oklahoma State University,” said OSU President Burns Hargis. "I also want to give special recognition to Don Beck and his team at Beck Design and Jeff Claxton and the team at Naboltz Construction for donating their talents and resources to create such a beautiful and touching memorial. This is such special gift to the OSU family."  The dedication took place just a day before the six-year anniversary of the Nov. 17, 2011 plane crash in northern Arkansas that killed Budke, Serna and the Branstetters. “It's fitting that this memorial, in essence, will serve as a gateway to Gallagher-Iba Arena, a place that meant so much to all four of those we are remembering,” said Mike Holder, Vice President and Director of Athletic.  The memorial is located on the northeast side of Gallagher-Iba Arena and features four forms arranged in a perfect square symbolizing the completion of four unique lives. The forms also include illuminated images of the individuals and each lighted panel features in memoriam script provided by their families.   There are also stone benches alongside each of the four panels and an inward-looking space to allow for an area of quiet reflection.   PHOTOS:
Fri, 17 Nov 2017 09:25:13 -0600
OSU wins national community engagement honor  
The Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) announced at its annual meeting in Washington, D.C., Sunday night that Oklahoma State University is the winner of its national community outreach award for 2017. The C. Peter Magrath Community Engagement Scholarship recognizes how colleges have redesigned their learning, discovery and engagement missions to become even more involved with their communities.   “This is a wonderful honor and exciting national recognition of Oklahoma State’s health initiative with the Chickasaw Nation,” said OSU President Burns Hargis. “It’s a humbling acknowledgement of our founding commitment to serve and engage in our communities. I want to thank and congratulate the many OSU employees and students who carry out our land-grant mission in countless ways.”    “Public universities have an unmatched capacity to make cultural, civic, and economic contributions to their communities,” said APLU President Peter McPherson. “That’s why public institutions feel compelled to address the greatest challenges facing their communities. Oklahoma State has done exactly that through an exceptional partnership with the Chickasaw Nation to improve child nutrition and public health.”  OSU’s health collaborative with the Chickasaw Nation includes the Eagle Adventure program for children in the first through third grades. The program embraces the Native American tribe’s storytelling tradition to educate participants on practices that prevent Type 2 diabetes through dietary and physical activity.  A recent survey showed 67 percent of the parents whose children are involved in the program, report that it has helped their youngsters be more active after school, eat more vegetables at dinner (49 percent), and reach more often for fruits as snacks (55 percent).   Known formally as OSU’s Solutions-based Health Innovations and Nutrition Excellence (SHINE) program, the initiative was chosen for national recognition by a team of community engagement professionals over the other three regional winners, Purdue University, East Carolina University and the University of New Hampshire.    Since 2006, APLU and the Engagement Scholarship Consortium, with support from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, have partnered to honor the engagement, scholarship, and partnerships of four-year public universities. Named in honor of one of APLU’s past presidents, the C. Peter Magrath Community Engagement Scholarship award includes a sculpture and a $20,000 prize. The award funds will be used to expand and strengthen programs, activities, and training events that enhance OSU’s partnerships with the sovereign tribal nations and other communities. APLU is a research, policy, and advocacy organization dedicated to strengthening and advancing the work of public universities in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. With a membership of 237 public research universities, land-grant institutions, state university systems, and affiliated organizations, APLU's agenda is built on the three pillars of increasing degree completion and academic success, advancing scientific research, and expanding engagement. Annually, member campuses enroll 4.9 million undergraduates and 1.3 million graduate students, award 1.2 million degrees, employ 1.2 million faculty and staff, and conduct $43.9 billion in university-based research.
Tue, 14 Nov 2017 10:23:26 -0600
OSU To Unveil Memorial To ‘Remember The 4’
Oklahoma State University has announced plans to unveil a memorial in remembrance of former Cowgirl basketball coach Kurt Budke, assistant coach Miranda Serna, and OSU supporters Olin and Paula Branstetter. The public is welcome to attend the dedication ceremony of the ‘Remember the 4' memorial on Thursday, Nov. 16 at 3 p.m.  The four died in a plane crash on Nov. 17, 2011 in Arkansas while on a recruiting trip. “This memorial will be a lasting tribute to four wonderful individuals who touched the lives of so many. OSU will always ‘Remember the 4’ and extends its support and thoughts to the families and friends of Kurt Budke, Miranda Serna, and Olin and Paula Branstetter,” OSU President Burns Hargis said. The memorial, on the northeast side of the OSU Athletics Center, is highlighted by illuminated images of the four individuals. The forms are arranged in a perfect square, symbolizing the completion of four unique lives. In addition to an image of the individual, each lighted panel features an in memoriam script provided by the respective families. An inward-looking space with stone benches along each of the four will allow for an area of quiet reflection. As a whole, the memorial will serve to honor the memory of the four and exemplify their commitment to OSU.
Thu, 16 Nov 2017 15:03:54 -0600
OSU receives regional award as inclusive workplace  
Jeromie Tucker (center), associate director of development at the OSU Foundation, accepts this year’s inclusive workplace award from Marilyn Ihloff, Mosaic chair, and Michael S. Neal, Tulsa Regional Chamber president and CEO. Oklahoma State University has been named among the region’s  2017 Top Inclusive Workplace Cultures based on a survey by Mosaic, the Tulsa Regional Chamber of Commerce’s diversity business council.     OSU was ranked among the top tier of employers receiving the Five-Star Inclusive Workplace Award for its programs that strengthen diversity and inclusion in the workplace.   “OSU is honored to again be recognized with this award as an inclusive workplace,” said Jason Kirksey, vice president and chief diversity officer for the OSU Division of Institutional Diversity. “While there is work to do, the university is committed to enrich and fortify its efforts to promote a culture of inclusion within the campus community.”  Jeromie Tucker, associate director of development for the OSU Foundation, accepted this year’s award from Mosaic officials during the council’s annual Economic Inclusion Forum held recently at the BOK Center in Tulsa.  OSU was among 24 five-star recipients this year, which also included 5 four-star winners, and 14 three-star recipients. Twelve companies were designated as “rising stars,” meaning they’re demonstrating an increased commitment to diversity and inclusion but in need of additional work in certain areas.   The primary focus of Mosaic is to create awareness about the competitive advantage of having a diverse and inclusive business climate in the region. For more information, go to or phone (918) 560-0276.
Fri, 10 Nov 2017 09:35:48 -0600
Oklahoma Economic Outlook Conference to discuss future Amazon production center
The impact Amazon’s new sorting center in Oklahoma City will have on the state will be one of the topics addressed during the 2018 Oklahoma Economic Outlook Conference on Dec. 6 from 8:30 a.m.-noon at the Metro Technology Centers at the Springlake Campus in Oklahoma City. The conference is hosted annually by the Oklahoma State University Center for Applied Economic Research in the Spears School of Business. Excerpts from the Oklahoma Department of Commerce will be on the future the Amazon production center and how it will affect the economic dynamic for Oklahoma and its importance to the state. In addition, participants will have the opportunity for a question-and-answer session after each presenter. “We are excited to be able to host such an informative conference here in Oklahoma City,” OSU professor of economics Dan Rickman said. “It is crucial that participants understand where Oklahoma’s economy stands at a national level in order for us to grow and prosper as a state.” Ken Eastman, dean of the Spears School, and Marcie Mack, state director of the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education, will give the opening statements. Charles Kimbrough, director of the Business Development Group for the Oklahoma Department of Commerce, will review the economic impact of the Amazon production center and bring to light some of the benefits and challenges of winning or losing this deal of the century. Jim Huntzinger, executive vice president and chief investment officer for Bank of Oklahoma Financial Corporation, will present forecasts of national economic topics. The presentation will focus on labor, gross domesticated products, consumer reactions and more. Participants will also hear Rickman’s forecast for 2018, focusing on the expected trajectory of Oklahoma’s energy industry and he will present on forecasts of major economic variables for Oklahoma. These variables will include employment, unemployment, income, output and population. Director at the Center for Applied Economic Research Hongbo “Betty” Wang will be speaking on the performance of the Oklahoma economy over the recent energy boom. The roles of state taxes and education funding will be presented in terms of their potential influence on the connection between the energy sector and the overall economy. Registration is $60 per person if participants register before Nov. 30 and $75 per person if they register after that date. Fee includes conference materials and food. Sponsorships are also available for $275 and includes two registrations, an opportunity to place materials in provided packets as well as placing the sponsor’s name on conference materials and the CEPD website. Booth sponsorships are also available for $150 and includes one registration and an opportunity to place materials in provided packets. For additional information, please contact Kelle Scott at or call 405.744.8679.
Tue, 07 Nov 2017 12:35:12 -0600
New OSU Center for Wellness and Recovery Addresses Mounting Opioid Addiction Epidemic and Novel Ways to Manage Pain
The OSU Center for Health Sciences today announced the establishment of the OSU Center for Wellness and Recovery to combat the impact of opioid addiction in Oklahoma. Drug overdose is the leading cause of accidental death in the U.S., and now prescription drug abuse or opioid addiction is sweeping to epidemic proportion across Oklahoma. OSU Center for Health Sciences has been a leader in addressing the opioid addiction epidemic engulfing Oklahoma. The new OSU Center for Wellness and Recovery will enable OSU Center for Health Sciences to play an even larger role in combatting the opioid crisis in Oklahoma. “As an academic health center, OSU Center for Health Sciences is committed to taking a leading role in battling the opioid addiction epidemic afflicting Oklahomans and their families. We have assets such as clinical expertise, research capability and educational resources that can be deployed to help curtail the misuse and abuse of opioids,” said Kayse Shrum, D.O., President, OSU Center for Health Sciences and Dean, OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine. “The state of Oklahoma, like much of the nation, is in a crisis because of the opioid epidemic,” said Attorney General Mike Hunter. “I applaud the OSU Center for Health Sciences for being a leader in helping us find a solution by investing in new research and strategies for prevention and treatment.” In 2014, OSU-CHS was one of the first few medical schools nationwide to add an Addiction Medicine course to its medical school curriculum. In 2016, mandated clinical rotations at partnering agency 12&12, Inc. were embedded into the medical school curriculum. Most recently, OSU-CHS launched Project ECHO Addiction Clinic to push addiction treatment knowledge and pain management therapies out to rural areas. “Our Project ECHO Addiction Clinic is uniquely positioned to reach into the rural areas hit hardest by opioid dependency. Through ECHO, OSU-CHS is using videoconferencing technology to equip rural primary care providers with the knowledge and the skills they need to help their patients manage pain and to overcome opioid addiction. This will go a long way with increasing patient access in rural Oklahoma to addiction treatment and pain management services,” said Jason Beaman, D.O., Chair, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at OSUCHS. Most patients become unexpectedly addicted to opioids as pain management tools for conditions such as chronic back pain or for recovery from a routine surgical procedure such as knee or shoulder surgery. Prolonged prescription use can then lead to opioid abuse and addiction. Research is needed to understand the underlying causes that lead to addiction and to develop better guidelines for pain management. The OSU Center for Wellness and Recovery will focus research projects on critical areas such as addiction psychology, the role of the brain in perceiving and managing pain, opioid-related public policy, and alternative modalities for treating chronic pain. The establishment of the OSU Center for Wellness and Recovery comes at a critical time for Oklahoma as more and more Oklahomans are suffering from this terrible disease and struggling with pain. “It is imperative that we understand how the brain processes pain and identify evidence-based, non-narcotic alternatives for managing chronic pain. Osteopathic manipulative treatment, acupuncture, meditation and augmented reality are just a few examples of possible alternative therapies for pain management,” said Shrum. The mission of the OSU Center for Wellness and Recovery is to champion a comprehensive and multidisciplinary approach to addiction and pain management through research, education and clinical care. The Center will be Oklahoma’s most comprehensive treatment and research center for understanding and treating pain and addiction. As part of the overall strategic goals for the OSU Center for Wellness and Recovery, OSU Center for Health Sciences plans to open an addiction clinic in Tulsa in 2018, to establish an Addiction Medicine Fellowship for the training of future addiction specialists, and to conduct groundbreaking research in all aspects of pain management and addiction. Opioid Facts Oklahoma is 1st in the nation for non-medical use of prescription drugs. In 2015, enough opioids were prescribed in Oklahoma for every adult to have 100 pills More Oklahoma adults age 25-64 die of unintentional prescription opioid overdoses than motor vehicle crashes. Oklahoma has the 18th highest drug overdose death rate in the nation in 2015. About the Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences educates osteopathic physicians, scientists, allied health professionals and health care administrators for Oklahoma with an emphasis on serving rural and underserved Oklahoma. OSU-CHS offers graduate and professional degrees with over 1,000 students enrolled in academic programs in the College of Osteopathic Medicine, the School of Allied Health, the School of Health Care Administration, the School of Biomedical Sciences, and the School of Forensic Sciences. OSU-CHS operates a network of clinics in the Tulsa area offering a multitude of specialty services including cardiology, family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, psychiatry and women’s health.
Wed, 08 Nov 2017 09:25:30 -0600
Student wins contest with judges and audience 
In only three minutes, Mackenzie Landis convinced judges and an audience that the way she explained her topic was so award-winning she received both the first place award from judges and the People’s Choice Award from the audience in the Oklahoma State University Graduate College’s 2017 Three Minute Presentation (3MP) finals. Landis, a master’s degree student in the communication sciences and disorders program, took on nine other finalists and fellow students from the graduate college, to win its third annual contest with her talk titled “Speech-Language Pathologists: Building Communication.” For Landis, winning feels great but she said the biggest benefits are the skills she’ll be able to apply in her professional career.  “As you start editing for a three-minute presentation, you realize some things are not at the core and you have to find it,” Landis said. “As a speech pathologist, talking to parents or someone who was recently diagnosed, and being able to identify the core (challenge) and share that with them is a huge skill this competition helped me define.”  The second and third place finishers were both graduate students in business analytics who talked about artificial intelligence and data analytics for optimization. Ankita Khurana placed second with her presentation, “Why UPS Drivers Don’t Turn Left,” while Shikha Prasad was third with her presentation, “Artificial Intelligence.”  All winners received cash prizes. Landis won $1,000 for her first-place finish and $1,000 for the People’s Choice Award. Khurana earned $750, and Prasad received $500.  The 3MP finals were judged by a diverse group of community members and OSU representatives, while the event emcee was Kelly Burley, director of public radio station KOSU. The 3MP winners will join the winners of the Three Minute Thesis® finals, which will take place on Nov. 15, and in the spring the President's Fellows' Three Minute Challenge, which brings together all 3MP and 3MT winners to select the top graduate student presenters.  The 3MP competition, based on the 3MT®, was created three years ago to teach students the crucial skill of explaining what they do, especially to people outside their field of expertise. OSU’s Graduate College is the first institution to establish this type of competition for non-thesis master’s, education specialist and graduate certificate students who cannot participate in the Three Minute Thesis competition.  The 3MT®, which was developed by the University of Queensland in Australia, gives graduate students in research-based degrees such as thesis master’s or Ph.D. degrees the chance to present their research and win prizes.  For more information about the 3MP and 3MT competitions, visit  Story by Marcia Guevara Valor  PHOTOS:
Mon, 06 Nov 2017 16:27:57 -0600
OSU competing for national community engagement honor 
Oklahoma State University is a partner in an innovative health initiative that is in the running for a national community outreach award from the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU), which is expected to be announced sometime next week. The initiative, a collaboration with the Chickasaw Nation, includes the Eagle Adventure program for children in the first through third grades, which combines the tribe’s cultural, historical and programming capabilities with nutrition and public health expertise. It embraces the Native American storytelling tradition to educate participants on practices that prevent Type 2 diabetes through dietary and physical activity. Known formally as OSU’s Solutions-based Health Innovations and Nutrition Excellence (SHINE), the initiative resulted in the university being chosen as one of four regional winners of the 2017 W.K. Kellogg Foundation Community Engagement Scholarship award in July. The APLU honor recognizes programs that demonstrate how colleges have redesigned their learning, discovery and engagement missions to become even more involved with their communities. The winner of the national version of the award, called the C. Peter Magrath Community Engagement Scholarship, will be announced during the APLU annual meeting set for Nov. 12-14 in Washington D.C. The award includes a sculpture and a $20,000 prize. The OSU project is competing with three other regional winners for the national honor, East Carolina University, the University of New Hampshire and Purdue University. “This year’s regional winners have demonstrated exceptional cultural, civic and economic contributions to their communities, states and regions,” said APLU President Peter McPherson. “They’re tackling some of the most urgent challenges facing our country by elevating the importance of student and faculty service, deepening connections to their communities, and reorienting their engagement work to ensure it employs a comprehensive approach that addresses every angle of these challenges.” A team of community engagement professionals judged the regional round of the award. A second team is picking the national winner following presentations from each university at the 2017 National Engagement Scholarship Conference in September.
Thu, 09 Nov 2017 11:26:19 -0600
OSU Facilities Management promotes camaraderie at second Facilities Challenge
Oklahoma State University Facilities Management and OSU Long Range Facilities Planning met for the second annual Facilities Challenge at the Colvin Center Annex on Oct. 27. This year’s Facilities Challenge involved carnival-themed games representing different building’s trades while incorporating safety and wellness. Concluding the event was a raffle including free massage certificates, dinner gift cards, potted trees, gift baskets and OSU merchandise.  “We were hoping to promote camaraderie and fun while relating the event to safety and work,” said Ron Tarbutton, chief facilities officer at facilities management. One of the games, Pallet Puzzle, applied proper lifting techniques to safely arrange forklift pallets with a partner. While being timed, two participants had to solve the puzzle of Pistol Pete’s head.  Other games included a safety-gear relay, tossing a can into a recycling bin, golfing with a shovel and throwing a ring onto a plunger to represent different departments. “Everyone seemed to enjoy this event whether they were participating in the games or catching up with one another,” said Mike Buchert, director, long range facilities planning. To add to the carnival environment, participants enjoyed popcorn along with cookies and fruit. The names of all employees were entered in the raffle, regardless of whether they attended the event, except for event coordinators and upper management. After raffle prizes were rewarded, the winners of each game were recognized. Story by Michaela Gleason PHOTOS:
Wed, 08 Nov 2017 09:21:11 -0600
OSU encourages students to study beyond Stillwater
From Iceland to the Virgin Islands, Oklahoma State University offers students several options for personal and professional growth as they live and study across the U.S. and around the world. OSU students can participate in long and short-term study abroad experiences. Opportunities include faculty-led programs, internships, summer courses, self-service learning projects and semester and academic year programs. “We have options all over the world and in the U.S. through our National Student Exchange (NSE) program,” said Marissa Hernandez, OSU student exchange coordinator. “We have an agreement with over 190 universities across the country, including Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.” OSU has 74 university partners across the world available to students who wish to go abroad for as long as a semester or an academic year. Students pay most tuition and fees to OSU, but housing, meals, and other costs are paid in the host countries. Most of these partner universities also offer their courses in English so you don’t have to learn the language in order to do the work. “The majority of students obtain academic credit while abroad to fulfill a requirement toward their degree,” said Hernandez. “There are several opportunities that students in engineering, business, animal science, agriculture, and the arts and humanities can pursue.” Environmental sciences student Emily Hyde completed a semester in Reykjavik, Iceland, through OSU’s reciprocal exchange program. She took courses on climate change and the ecology of Iceland. She also had the opportunity to attend an international arctic research conference. “Iceland allowed me to round out my degree with its unique courses,” Hyde said. “My dream career is to do research within the field of freshwater ecology or pursue a career in water conservation for a nonprofit.” Hyde’s study abroad experience gave her new friends and a broader perspective about a different culture. “Iceland has a very special place in my heart,” Hyde said. “I never expected the impact it would have on me.” Students can start the study abroad process by attending a study abroad information session. Sessions are hosted at 5 p.m. every Tuesday in Classroom Building 313 and at 12 p.m. every Wednesday in Human Sciences 236. “It is never too early to start looking into studying abroad,” Hernandez said. “Start now. The sooner students have the conversation with us about studying abroad the better.” Students who intend to go abroad for a semester or academic year should start the planning process at least a year in advance. All prospective students can schedule an advising appointment to discuss options with a peer adviser. “Our peer advisers in the office are current students who have previously completed a program abroad,” Hernandez said. “It's a great opportunity for students to get some insight from other students, who can easily relate their personal experiences.” The Study Abroad office also discusses opportunities for scholarship but some of the study abroad options can cost the same or even lower than attending OSU due to the lower cost of living while abroad. “In our reciprocal exchange program, students pay OSU tuition and their scholarships still apply,” Hernandez said. OSU donors provided more than $900,000 in study abroad scholarships for the 2016 - 2017 academic year and more than 1,000 students participated in the program. “There is typically an incredible transformation that students can see in themselves after they have been abroad,” Hernandez said. “An experience abroad teaches you resourcefulness, creativity, flexibility and how to problem solve. The qualities that students gain can be very attractive to employers.” OSU is the only campus in Oklahoma that offers the National Student Exchange program. For more information, visit Story by Hayley Bondank
Thu, 09 Nov 2017 11:20:51 -0600