Southeastern News

Oklahoma Teacher of the Year Jon Hazell named speaker for Fall Commencement

DURANT, Okla. – It’s only fitting that a renowned educator would be the commencement speaker at Southeastern Oklahoma State University – a school with a proud tradition of educating teachers.

That will be the case this fall as Jon Hazell, a science teacher at Durant High School and Oklahoma’s 2017 Teacher of the Year, will be the commencement speaker at Southeastern on Saturday, December 16.

Two commencement ceremonies will be held in Bloomer Sullivan Arena, beginning at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

The schedule for Commencement ceremonies is as follows:

 

10 a.m.

School of Arts & Sciences

Master of Technology

Master of Music Education

Master of Science (Native American Leadership)

2 p.m.

School of Education & Behavioral Sciences

John Massey School of Business

Master of Business Administration

Master of Science (Aerospace Administration and Logistics)

Master of Arts (Clinical Mental Health Counseling)

Master of Education

Master of Arts (Teaching)

Master of Science (Safety)

Master of Science (Sports Studies and Athletic Administration)

Hazell has taught Anatomy & Physiology, Biology, and Environmental Science at Durant High School for 34 years. His wife, Jeanie, has taught 2nd grade in Durant for 32 years.

They have done missionary work with churches and schools in various parts of Africa and Mexico, and Jon serves on the Treasure of Life Board, an organization dedicated to promoting social justice in Ghana; is a founding board member of J 127 ministries, an organization dedicated to helping children who have aged out of Foster Care in obtaining housing and furthering their education; and serves on the board of Families Feeding Families, a local food kitchen that serves food daily to those unable to provide adequate food for their families.

Hazell has also been active in jail and prison ministry for 20 years. He serves on the Bio-med educational advisory board for the Kiamichi Technology Center, and he is the Student Council Advisor and the FCA huddle leader for Durant High School.

He is also the pastor of the Community Christian Church in Durant.

During his teaching career, Hazell has received several awards and honors:  During the past year, he was awarded the Professional Oklahoma Educators award as the outstanding high school teacher in Oklahoma; he was presented the Diamond Book Award by the Teachers Appreciation Foundation for 2017;  he was recently presented the Award for Teaching Excellence by the OEA; and he was named the 2017-2018 Teacher of the Year for the State of Oklahoma.

Hazell holds bachelor (‘82) and master’s (’88) degrees from Southeastern.

He  said he was inspired to teach by his father, Dr. Don Hazell, who taught biological sciences at Southeastern Oklahoma State University for 32 years.
“I grew up with constant reminders and affirmation of the respect afforded to the teaching profession. That created a spark in me,” he said. “It showed the influence a teacher could have not only on students, but also on all the people those students influenced.”

Hazell assumed his full-time Teacher of the Year duties on July 1, 2017, which includes speaking engagements and serving as Oklahoma’s teacher ambassador, encouraging others to enter or remain in the profession.

Sights and Sounds of the Holiday season at Southeastern

DURANT, Okla. – Southeastern Oklahoma State University celebrated the holiday season Monday with a variety of events, including a community and faculty-staff  open house, visit from Santa Claus, music, and the the traditional Candlelighting ceremony in Montgomery Auditorium.

 

 

 

 

Southeastern partners to mentor kids in OJA program

Southeastern football player Shane Dixon is participating in the mentoring program.

Southeastern football player Shane Dixon is participating in the mentoring program.

DURANT, Okla. – Mentoring comes in many forms, but all with the same goal — investing in someone and doing all that is possible to ensure they reach their maximum potential. While most people can recall a mentor in their past who has encouraged them to keep going, work harder or simply to believe in themselves, not all take the time to give back by mentoring others.

Through a partnership with Southeastern Oklahoma State University, youth who are involved with the Oklahoma Office of Juvenile Affairs (OJA) in Bryan County will be paired with student athletes serving as mentors for a semester. The program

launched October 31 and already includes four mentors and five kids.

The OJA provides intake, supervision, probation, custody, parole and reintegration services to at-risk youth in the State of Oklahoma.

Kheri Smith is a Juvenile Justice Specialist in Bryan County and she is a tireless advocate for guiding youth through the continuum of care with OJA. She sees mentorship as a catalyst for positive change.

“The program will provide encouragement and support for at-risk youth in the community by offering positive role models,” said Smith. “I hope our kids will be inspired to finish school, pursue postsecondary education and start thinking about their future.”

Kids will gain insight and perspective from mentors who are close in age but whose experience in working toward their vision and achieving their goals offers examples for a path forward.

“The mentoring program is the most rewarding thing I’ve ever participated in,” said Shane Dixon, a Southeastern football player participating in the program. “Everyone involved goes above and beyond for these kids, and I enjoy seeing them grow. I hope I can impact these kids’ lives as much as they have mine.”

 

Southeastern football coach Bo Atterberry has championed the idea from the beginning, and sees it as beneficial for everyone involved. “We stress to our student athletes the importance of being a role model in the community,’’ said Atterberry. “They need to understand that they can make a positive difference in a young person’s life. This program is a great example of a win-win partnership – our student athletes also benefit from this type of one-on-one interaction.’’

 

The partnership provides an opportunity for bringing together members of the community in support of something greater than themselves. It generates an investment of time and energy that produces real and immediate benefits.

“Community service is a point of emphasis at the University,’’ said Southeastern president Sean Burrage. “Every year, when I speak to students at freshman orientation, I encourage them to get involved in activities outside the classroom, not only on campus, but in the community. I am very pleased to see our student athletes partnering with the Office of Juvenile Affairs. We think this is a program that has tremendous potential for growth in the future and are glad to be involved.’’

For more information on the mentorship program, please contact Kheri Smith at 580-924-8432 or Kheri.Smith@oja.ok.gov.

 

About Oklahoma Office of Juvenile Affairs  

The Office of Juvenile Affairs is a state agency entrusted by the people of Oklahoma to provide professional prevention, education, and treatment services as well as secure facilities for juveniles in order to promote public safety and reduce juvenile delinquency.

Alpha Chi inducts new members

The Alpha Chi inductees were recognized at a recent ceremony.

The Alpha Chi inductees were recognized at a recent ceremony.

DURANT, Okla. – Southeastern Oklahoma State University’s Oklahoma Theta Chapter of the Alpha Chi national honor society has inducted 55 students into lifetime membership.

An induction ceremony was held recently in the Fine Arts Recital Hall.

Alpha Chi was founded in 1922 and has more than 400,000 members from more than 300 college and university chapters in 45 states and Puerto Rico.

Members of Alpha Chi, identified and elected by the faculty of their schools as ranking in the top 10 percent of juniors and seniors, represent the best

undergraduate scholarship in all academic fields at their institutions.

Following are this year’s inductees, with permanent hometown (Oklahoma, unless otherwise noted):

Michael Baker (Sherman, Texas), Taylor Barrick (Duncan), Alissa Benson (Edmond), Rebecca Braden (Sherman, Texas), Nadiya Bradley (Kingston), Reid Buchanan (Silo), Stephanie Canaday (Denison, Texas), Dylan Candelora (Reno, Texas), Erika Costain (Fort Worth, Texas), Emilie Cox (Wister), Chance Curry (Ravenna, Texas), Cannon Davis (Moore), Kameron Dunn (Calera).

Elizabeth Fentem (Kingston), Gabrielle Ford (Durant), Alexis Gabbart (Caddo), Austin Gilliam (Greenville, Texas), Brooke Hockersmith (Overbrook), Paige Hutchings (Hendrix), Michael Kellner (Tishomingo), Jayson King (Aledo, Texas), Timothy Knight (Sherman, Texas) Philip Leake (Durant), Elijah Marshall (Durant), Maria Martinez (Venezuela), Brandon McNeely (Cleburne, Texas).

Courtney Miles (Oklahoma City), Jesse Palacios II (Wylie, Texas), Abby Percell (Bennington), Russell Pritchett (Denison, Texas), Kameron Raper (Hugo), Katheren Rawls (Tuskahoma), Alexandra Ray (Blanchard), Destiny Riddle (Muskogee), Alix Robinson (Piedmont), Allison Robinson (Durant), Alyssa Robinson (Durant), Riggin Rogers (Calera), Jacob Shiver (Neptune Beach, Florida), Stephen Shropshire (McAlester).

Stormie Siron (Atoka), Matthew Slaten (Calera), Macy Smith (Finley), Reid St.  John (Mesquite, Texas), James Sutton (Durant), Crystal Tate (Boswell), Meagan Tharpe (Durant), Russell Tolbert (Pottsboro, Texas), Bernie Underwood (Savanna), Jacqueline Washer (Durant), Katherine Webb (Denison, Texas), Payton Whitehead (Colbert), Cara Worsham (Healdton), Alexis Wright (Ardmore), Heather Wyrick (Atoka).

Poetry reading

Southeastern adjunct professor Ron Wallace held a poetry reading and book signing recently in the Henry G. Bennett Memorial Library. Wallace read from his latest book, ‘Renegade and Other Poems.”

Three Occupational Safety & Health students receive scholarships

DURANT, Okla. – Three students from Southeastern Oklahoma State University have received the Raymond L. Critchfield Scholarship – Evan Fincher, Sierra Downs, and Ryan Lester.

Fincher is a senior from Fort Smith, Arkansas; Downs is a senior from Durant; and Lester is a junior from Ringling.

The scholarships are presented annually by TEXO: The Construction Association,  to undergraduate students pursuing a degree in the field of Occupational Safety and Health or Industrial Hygiene.

Critchfield was a dedicated safety professional who impacted the construction industry through his passion and love of people, family and friends.

Dr. Chris Bradshaw, chair of the Occupational Safety & Health Department at Southeastern, presents the Critchfield Scholarship to Ryan Lester of Ringling.

Dr. Chris Bradshaw, chair of the Occupational Safety & Health Department at Southeastern, presents the Critchfield Scholarship to Ryan Lester of Ringling.

Dr. Chris Bradshaw, chair of the Occupational Safety & Health Department at Southeastern, presents the Critchfield Scholarship to Sierra Downs of Durant.

Dr. Chris Bradshaw, chair of the Occupational Safety & Health Department at Southeastern, presents the Critchfield Scholarship to Sierra Downs of Durant.

Dr. Chris Bradshaw, chair of the Occupational Safety & Health Department at Southeastern, presents the Critchfield Scholarship to Evan Fincher of Fort Smith.

Dr. Chris Bradshaw, chair of the Occupational Safety & Health Department at Southeastern, presents the Critchfield Scholarship to Evan Fincher of Fort Smith.

President’s statement on Tudor v. Southeastern Oklahoma State University and the Regional University System of Oklahoma

Re:  Tudor v. Southeastern Oklahoma State University and the Regional University System of Oklahoma

Earlier today, in U.S. District Court in Oklahoma City, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the plaintiff (Dr. Rachel Tudor).

Southeastern president Sean Burrage has released the following statement:

“Southeastern Oklahoma State University places great trust in the judicial system and respects the verdict rendered today by the jury.  It has been our position throughout this process that the legal system would handle this matter, while the University continues to focus its time and energy on educating students. All legal questions should be directed to the Oklahoma Office of the Attorney General.”

Traditional Candlelighting event set for Dec. 4 at Southeastern

DURANT, Okla. – Southeastern Oklahoma State University will host a number of holiday events on Monday, December 4.

Santa Claus and entertainment will be featured from 6-6:30 p.m. on the Magnolia House front lawn. Highlights will include a performance by the Chorvettes Stageworks Company, an appearance by Santa, and the reading of the Christmas Story by Dell McLain.

The Christmas Tree lighting is scheduled for 6:35 p.m. on the front lawn of campus with the Southeastern Brass Ensemble performing.

The traditional Candlelighting ceremony is set for 7:30 p.m. in Montgomery Auditorium.

The Southeastern Symphonic Chorus, consisting of students, faculty, staff and members of the Durant community, anchors the concert. The Chorus will perform an advent cantata by Johann Sebastian Bach with text by Martin Luther.

Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland (Come, O Savior of the Nations) features the chorus, chamber orchestra and baritone soloist Dr. Jeremy Blackwood, director of voice and opera at Southeastern.

The performers will also present Antonio Vivaldi’s Gloria, featuring Dr. Jourdan Laine Howell, a new voice instructor at Southeastern, and music majors Grace Haynes, Haley Moore and Allyson Thomas as soloists. The guests for the chamber orchestra are supported by a grant from the Cultural and Scholastic Lectureship Fund.

Many traditional elements of the concert will continue: the lighting of candles by members of the Cardinal Key Honor Society, a prelude sung by the SHARE Children’s Chorus conducted by Dr. Jeri Walker,  and a Christmas carol singalong, giving the audience a chance to sing sacred and secular favorites with the chorus.

The Symphonic Chorus is a college/community partnership, providing a crucial aspect in the education of Southeastern music majors, a chance to participate in campus events for students of all majors, and a musical experience for members of the community.

The Chorus is conducted by Dr. Joshua Nannestad, Assistant Professor of Choral Music Education, and accompanied by Dr. Stephanie Emberley, instructor of piano.

Southeastern observes Thanksgiving holiday on Nov. 22-23-24

DURANT, Okla. – Southeastern Oklahoma State University will be closed Nov. 22-23-24 in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday. Classes will resume on Monday, Nov. 27.

Southeastern recognizes Top 10 Freshmen

Gathering at the Top 10 Freshman event Thursday were, back row, left to right, Dr. Tim Boatmun, Luana Antuono (SGA president), Nate Hodson, Tyler Shade, Symphoni Shomo, Sarah Winnett, Brooklyn Daniel, and president Sean Burrage. Front row, Olivia Voss, Brianna Pierce, Shalee Buzan, Blakelyn Daniel, and Katelynn Hester.

Gathering at the Top 10 Freshman event Thursday were, back row, left to right, Dr. Tim Boatmun, Luana Antuono (SGA president), Nate Hodson, Tyler Shade, Symphoni Shomo, Sarah Winnett, Brooklyn Daniel, and president Sean Burrage. Front row, Olivia Voss, Brianna Pierce, Shalee Buzan, Blakelyn Daniel, and Katelynn Hester.

DURANT, Okla. – Southeastern Oklahoma State University recognized the 2016-17 Top Ten Freshmen during a ceremony Thursday in the Glen D. Johnson Student Union Auditorium.

The honorees were selected by a committee consisting of representatives from faculty, student government and University administration. The Top 10 Freshmen have a collective 3.84 grade-point average and are involved in numerous campus and community activities.

The 2016-17 Top 10 Freshmen are:

Shalee Buzan, communication major from Idabel; twins Blakelyn Daniel, biology/chemistry, and Brooklyn Daniel, graphic design, Atoka; Katelynn Hester, history with social studies certification, Broken Bow; Nate Hodson, finance, Durant;

Brianna Pierce, biology, Kingston; Tyler Shade, communication, Durant; Symphoni Shomo, psychology, Tahlequah; Olivia Voss, English Education, Idabel; and Sarah Winnett, Elementary Education, Colbert.

Southeastern president Sean Burrage congratulated each recipient.