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Oklahoma State University - News and Communications

Higher Learning Commission gives OSU continued accreditation
Stillwater, Ok. --Thanks to improvements in a variety of areas and a thorough self study, Oklahoma State University has received notification from The Higher Learning Commission that its accreditation has been continued for an additional 10 years following the vote of the commission. The next comprehensive evaluation is scheduled for 2015-16. The Higher Learning Commission, formerly referred to as the North Central Association, is one of six U.S. regional institutional accrediting associations. It offers the highest form of accreditation that is available to universities. “We are pleased that the efforts of so many faculty, staff and students have resulted in a positive visit and the university has received continued full accreditation,” said OSU System CEO and President David J. Schmidly. “Going forward, we will work hard to improve every aspect of an OSU education.” Marlene Strathe, OSU Provost and Senior Vice President, said, “A 10-year re-accreditation approval is the most positive outcome from this process.  The campus visit by the evaluator team is the culmination of a several-year process of institutional self analysis resulting in the self-study report.  It is important to note that the OSU self study and web components have been cited by the Higher Learning Commission as a model for other institutions.” The Higher Learning Commission’s response to the university’s self-study report should be received soon, according to Dr. Brenda Masters, associate professor of statistics and director of the self-study. At that time, it will be posted on the OSU accreditation website. Significant achievements cited at OSU between 1995 and 2005 included increased graduation and retention rates; national recognition as a high-quality, but affordable, university; national rankings for numerous academic and research programs; development of a nationally recognized scholars’ program; improved evaluation and assessment processes; and development of the university’s system-wide strategic plans. To prepare for the 10-year accreditation review, the university, led by committees, conducted a thorough institutional analysis, called a self-study, and prepared a self-study report that demonstrated how OSU satisfied the accreditation criteria and formally requested continued accreditation from the commission. A team representing the Higher Learning Commission visited the campus last September. The team reviewed the university’s ability to meet the institutional requirements and all criteria for continued accreditation. During the visit, the evaluation team met with constituent groups to discuss the criterion on which the self-study was written, which included mission and integrity; preparing for the future; student learning and effective teaching; acquisition, discovery and application of knowledge; and engagement and service. “Institutional improvement is a major goal of our accreditation self-study, which we were involved in for three years,” said Masters. “This self-study involved not only faculty and administrators, but students and staff members. Accreditation is important for OSU in maintaining the eligibility of its students for federal grants and loans and for the university’s continued recognition by employers, governmental agencies, professional licensing boards, and other institutions of higher learning as an outstanding university that provides excellent educational opportunities. The commission has requested that OSU submit two progress reports, one in January 2007 addressing the responsibility and authority of the Office of Affirmative Action, and the other in January 2011, addressing institutional diversity.
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OSU's Center for Veterinary Health Sciences Awards $195,800
STILLWATER, OK –The Center for Veterinary Health Sciences (CVHS) hosted its annual awards banquet giving $195,800 in scholarships and awards, an increase of $31,900 over last year. “We are delighted to award many first time scholarships this year,” says Dr. Michael Lorenz, Dean of the CVHS.  “It is through the generosity of our donors that we are able to grow our program and make these awards available to deserving students, staff and faculty.  We are truly grateful to our donors.” Among the many awards announced was the McElroy Award, the highest honor a veterinary student can receive.  This year’s recipient was Aaron Hofmeister, Class of 2006.  He is the son of Norman and Rebecca Hofmeister of Monongahela, Penn. The first recipient of the “Above and Beyond Award” was William Carter, Class of 2006.  This $250 award and trophy are the result of grateful clients Jeff and Cathy Shaffer, who wanted to recognize fourth-year students who demonstrate going above and beyond what would normally be expected.  The recipient is selected by faculty, staff or students. Dr. and Mrs. Michael Lorenz and their daughter, Rebecca Slaton, presented the first Lorenz Family Scholarships to Rebecca Funk, Class of 2006, and Gwen Jankowski, Class of 2008.  This new scholarship recognizes students in good academic standing who demonstrate involvement in college life through dedication, perseverance and participation in student organizations and activities.  Each student received $1,000. The Kitao Family International Externship $2,000 Award was given to Brian Loveless, Class of 2007.  Satoski and Yoko Kitao established this endowed scholarship to provide an opportunity for a fourth-year veterinary student to study small animal medicine in an international externship of up to six weeks. Alice J. Levin Endowment Fund Scholarships were awarded to Ricky Couch, Oliver Engle, Kimberly Ferguson and Stacey Swain.  Each of these Class of 2007 members intends to practice small animal medicine and received $11,445. The Dean Harry W. Orr Award was presented to Ryan Royse, Class of 2007.  Established in honor of the second dean of the OSU College of Veterinary Medicine, this award recognizes high academic achievement and is given to a third-year student based on academic performance during the first two years of the professional curriculum.  Royse received $2,000. In addition to the student scholarships, the Stratton Staff Award was presented to Kelly McCracken in recognition of her service and contributions to the College of Veterinary Medicine.  Nominations are accepted from any College employee and selected by an Ad Hoc Staff Committee.  McCracken received a plaque and $700. The Pfizer Animal Health Award for Research Excellence was given to Dr. Richard Eberle.  Recipients receive $1,000 and a plaque.  Faculties nominate their peers and the recipient is selected by the College Research Advisory Committee.  Selection is based upon the publication record of the nominees, their ability to obtain external support for their research, presentation of their research data at scientific meetings, their involvement in scientific organizations and training of graduate students and/or residents. The Carl J. Norden Teaching Award was presented to Dr. Sandra Morgan.  This $1,000 award recognizing an outstanding faculty member is voted on by students and peers. The Class Teaching Awards were established as a means for instructors to be honored by their students.  Selection of the recipients is unique in that the winner is determined by votes of members of each class.  Each recipient receives $500.  This year’s recipients are Dr. Jim Lish, Class of 2009 for outstanding instruction during the first year of the veterinary medicine curriculum; Dr. Mason Reichard, Class of 2008 for outstanding instruction during the second year; Dr. Sandra Morgan, Class of 2007 for outstanding instruction during the third year; and Dr. Johanna Heseltine, Class of 2006 for outstanding instruction during the fourth year of the veterinary medicine curriculum. The awards banquet was sponsored by Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedia, Inc., Fort Dodge Animal Health, Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Nestle Purina Company and Novartis.
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Segall Writes Book on School Reform
After spending 42 years as a teacher – 37 of them at Oklahoma State University – William Segall knew he had to write a book on a trend that troubled him about our nation’s schools. Segall’s book, “School Reform in a Global Society,” was published this spring by Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.         According to Segall, an elite upper class in the U. S. waited until the end of the 20th century to transform American education. They wanted schools to reflect the economic and social values of the Victorian Age – that is, the time in our history when capitalism was unregulated.         “The major reason I wrote this book is today’s schools are being forced to change dramatically. And the more they change, the more they are removed from the influence of parents and taxpayers,” said Segall, a professor of teaching and curriculum leadership in the OSU College of Education. “Schools are being treated as if they are private corporations or businesses.”         Today, students are continually tested to see if they are learning what the business world wants them to know. All businesses want schools to do is teach students to become good workers, he said, and schools are supposed to supply corporations the workers they need.         But it is not just American schools that are being reformed. “Corporate and government policies, in the name of globalization, are forcing even developing countries to accept this form of schooling,” Segall said. “There is a total disregard for cultures, whether in the U.S. or abroad.”         This social history of schools, corporations, and colonialism shows how the powerful are willing to gamble away the lives of American youth in order to satisfy their dreams of economic glory, Segall said.         “The reason parents send their children to school is they want them to have better lives,” Segall said. “Today’s corporations are not interested in how parents and young people value their education. They just want better workers.”         According to Segall, the underlying purpose of the No Child Left Behind Act is to pressure schools to teach students that corporate success, not personal success, should be their only value.         “We should not confuse what corporations want schools to teach with vocational education,” he said. “Vocational education, as most teachers know, is opposed to creating docile workers who do not think or create.”         In his book, he has outlined what has happened, why it is happening, and to whom it is happening from an educational, economic, and historical perspective.         “I remember President Kamm’s final speech to the OSU faculty prior to his retirement. He spoke at length about how, in the future, universities and schools could lose their independence. He foresaw a time when schools would become responsible to forces beyond the campus and not to the students they serve,” he said.         Change has crept up, he noted. “President Kamm was right,” Segall said.  “The future he recognized decades ago is the today in which we live.”         This is Segall’s fourth book. It was introduced at the American Educational Research Association in San Francisco this month, and is now available in bookstores throughout the country.
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OSU Senior Caps Off Undergraduate Career with USA Today honor
STILLWATER, OKLA. – Oklahoma State University senior Kyle Jones, has been named honorable mention to USA Today’s All-USA College Academic Team, a group which includes the nation’s outstanding undergraduates. The honor was awarded to Jones for his achievements in the classroom and contributions to his community. “I’m honored to just be considered for this award,” Jones said. “It’s a great way for OSU to receive the recognition it deserves.” Jones, a political science/economics double major from Norman, based his candidacy on a project with the OSU Student Affairs office to promote Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training in Stillwater and on the OSU campus. Over a period of five months, 83 people were certified in the training preparation for large-scale disasters. While Stillwater may not be considered a prime target for disasters of terrorist scale, Jones said it is important for people to be armed with practical knowledge. “When you think of Boone Pickens Stadium holding 60,000 people or Gallagher Iba holding 13,000 there’s a definite potential to be a target, and people need to be prepared,” Jones said. “We taught them how to appropriately suppress fires, understand basic search and rescue techniques, distribute first aid and handle the psychological aftermath involved in large-scale disasters. “It was a rewarding experience because how often do you get to teach people how to respond to things of this nature, that affects so many people?”             This USA Today honor caps off Jones’ stellar career at OSU. Last year, he was the first OSU recipient of the U.S. State Department’s Pickering Fellowship and most recently he was named by the College of Arts and Sciences as a top 10 senior, and by the OSU Alumni Association as one of their Outstanding Seniors. He plans to use the Pickering Fellowship next fall to pursue graduate studies in public policy at Harvard. Dr. Robert Graalman, director of OSU’s office of Scholar Development and Recognition, said the USA Today honor is a suitable way for Jones to close his undergraduate collegiate career. “Kyle has proven to be one of OSU’s most versatile and accomplished students, proving to be well-rounded both academically and in travel,” Graalman said. “USA Today’s recognition is a good way to honor his success.”
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OSU students win big with "Cold Bottle Designs"
Oklahoma State University seniors Joseph Pruitt and Blake Ferrell have won big, earning the $20,000 top prize at the statewide Governor’s Cup competition for a business plan that could help change the way cold drinks are bottled.
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Paul to be inducted into Hall of Fame
Ramona Ware Paul, assistant state superintendent for professional services for the Oklahoma State Department of Education, will be inducted into the College of Human Environmental Sciences Hall of Fame Friday at the college’s annual Celebration of Excellence. The ceremony will start at 6 p.m. in the Wes Watkins Center in Stillwater, Okla.       As the daughter of educators, Paul attended the child development laboratory at OSU, where her parents were on the faculty. She graduated with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in child development from OSU, and earned her doctorate from Purdue University.       Paul, who has served as assistant state superintendent since 1991, designed a pre-kindergarten program that is still recognized as the number one model in the nation.  Because of her efforts, Oklahoma is a leader in early childhood education nationwide.       For more details, go to
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Health Notice to OSU Students, Faculty and Staff regarding Mumps
The Oklahoma State Department of Health is recommending that students, faculty, and staff of Oklahoma colleges and universities review their immune status for mumps, and if they are not fully immune that they be vaccinated against mumps. Though mumps is a generally mild viral infection of the salivary glands, it can occasionally lead to serious complications such as encephalitis, meningitis, inflammation of the testicles or ovaries, and deafness. Up-to-date vaccination is the best protection. You should review your immunization records and consider being vaccinated if the following criteria apply to you: If you were born after 1957 and do NOT have: A record of 2 (two) MMR or live mumps vaccine received on or after the first birthday, Laboratory evidence of mumps immunity, such as a blood test, or Documentation of a physician’s diagnosis of mumps If you do not have these, you may be at risk. Please contact your health care provider, the Payne County Health Department or University Health Services to arrange for an MMR vaccination.  If you were born before 1957, there is no recommendation for vaccination.   If you have received two vaccinations, there is no recommendation to obtain a third.  MMR vaccine supplies are limited and priority will be given to those who are either non-immunized or have only had one vaccination.
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Congrats to wheelchair basketball team
Congratulations to OSU’s wheelchair basketball team, which ended the season in first place in the Arkansas Valley Conference and seventh place in the College Intercollegiate Division. OSU has individuals on the All America teams for both divisions.
Mon, 06 Oct 2014 11:20:55 -0500
Students need your help in the fight against cancer
STILLWATER, Oklahoma) — Oklahoma State University walkers go around-the-clock to fight cancer during the American Cancer Society Relay For Life. This celebration of life brings numerous groups and individuals concerned about cancer together for a unified effort to fight back. This year’s fundraising goal is $40,000.             Nikki Kerber and Justin Estus are just two great examples of students joining in the fight against cancer. Nikki is the 2006 event chair and got involved last year because she lost her sister to cancer. She simply saw a notice for a meeting and decided to attend. After helping with team recruitment in 2005, she was asked to be the chairman for the 2006 event. “I was just in the right place at the right time,” said Kerber. “Sometimes you just run into those once in a lifetime opportunities. Without Relay For Life, I wouldn’t be where I am today.”             Justin is a cancer survivor, who participated in an ice cream social before the 2005 event. He had always been involved in the Stillwater community, but had not been involved in the campus event until last year. He just came to participate in the opening lap, but ended up staying all night to help the committee. Because of his enthusiasm, he was asked to chair the 2006 survivor committee. “Justin has been a tremendous inspiration to the entire committee. His dedication and passion have inspired all of us,” said Lauren Hall, American Cancer Society staff partner.             Teams for enthusiastic citizens will gather at Droke Track for an overnight Relay against cancer from 7 p.m. on April 28 until 7 a.m. on April 29.             Relay For Life is a unique fundraising event that allows participants from all walks of life – including patients, medical support staff, corporations, civic organizations, churches, and community volunteers – to join together to fight cancer. Relay For Life reminds us that progress has been made in the fight against cancer and that everyone who participates is making a difference.             Relay For Life opens as cancer survivors (anyone who has ever been diagnosed with cancer) walk or use a wheelchair to complete the first lap. This is an emotional time that sets the stage of the importance of each participant’s contribution. A festive atmosphere develops around the track. As walkers make new friends and spend time with old ones, the Relay heats up and the camp-out begins. An atmosphere of camaraderie is created with team members entertaining each other:  eating, playing games, and, of course, walking for a great cause.  Highlighting the evening is the luminaria ceremony held after dark to honor cancer survivors and to remember those we have lost.             “Relay For Life is as much an awareness raiser about the progress against cancer as it is a fundraiser,” said Kerber. “Many of the participants have dealt with cancer themselves. Their involvement is proof of the progress that has been made in improving cancer survival rates and the quality of life following cancer treatment.”             “The funds raised will enable us to continue our investment in the fight against cancer through educational programs, research, and services to patients,” said Justin Estus. “Due to the generosity of corporate sponsors like Benchmark Construction and Honda of Stillwater the money raised comes back to our community by directly benefiting all of the American Cancer Society’s lifesaving programs.” Information about how to form a team or become involved in Relay For Life is available by contacting Kerber at (405)322-5076 or  For more information about cancer, call the American Cancer Society’s 24-hour help-line at 1-800-ACS-2345 or visit All cancer survivors and caregivers are invited to walk in the opening lap. This year’s event has 29 teams from different student groups and organizations. The event is still accepting teams. To form a team or donate to the event, visit
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Professional Education Forum Set
The Professional Education Council of Oklahoma State University will hold its annual public forum and spring meeting at 4 p.m., Wednesday, April 26 in the Willard Living Room on the OSU-Stillwater campus. The forum is an opportunity for alumni, students and other members of the public to provide comments and suggestions about OSU Professional Education programs. Any interested parties are invited to attend. For more information about the forum, contact Dr. Leah Engelhardt, associate director of Professional Education, Office of Professional Education, 325 Willard, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078. She also can be reached at (405) 744-9506 or by e-mail at
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