College of Education and Professional Studies

Did You Know?

Taniqua Ward's abstract submission, "Body Composition of Older Adults: Muscular Power," was approved for presentation for National Conference for Undergraduate Research on March 29-31, 2012 at Weber State University in Ogden, Utah. Taniqua is an Exercise & Fitness Management major. The National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR) promotes undergraduate research, scholarship, and creative activity in all fields of study. The annual conference gives undergraduate scholars in all fields and from all types of institutions of higher learning a forum to share the results of their work through posters, presentations, performances and works of art.

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Alumni & News

The Tower

The TowerThe College of Education and Professional Studies Newsletter, produced by CEPS Office of Development, is proudly presented for alumni, friends, students, faculty, and staff of the College. To view or download back issues of the college Newsletter, see our archive section on the left side of the screen.

We want to hear news about the milestones in your life (promotions, new business ventures, marriage, new family members, honors and awards) to include in the Alumni and Students section of the College of Education and Professional Studies newsletter and future magazine. We hope to produce and deliver an annual magazines starting this fall.

Submit your news via email to


Best Wishes, and Thank You, Ryan

Ryan Russell

The College of Education and Professional Studies would like to honor 2nd Lt. Ryan Russell.  Russell graduated from UCO in May 2013 with a Bachelor of Science in industrial safety.  Now, 2nd Lt. Russell is branching into the Ordnance Corps and has been assigned to 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division,  in Fort Drum, N.Y.  We wish you well with your future and thank you for your service to our country, Ryan!

UCO's First Forensic Psychology Graduate

Erin McReynolds

Congratulations to Erin McReynolds, who graduated in May 2013.  She is the first to graduate from UCO with a Master of Arts in forensic psychology. 

Congratulations, Nicole!

Nicole Marler

UCO graduate and psychologist at John Ross Elementary School, Nicole Marler, has been named school psychologist of the year by the Oklahoma Psychological Association. Marler received a master’s degree from Central in school psychology.  Read The Oklahoman’s article in brief on her received honor.

Congratulations, Scott!

Congratulations to Scott Burger, who was recently named the new head football coach at Edmond North High School.  Burger was a 1981 graduate from Central with a Bachelor of Science in education.  Read the Edmond Sun’s announcement of his new position. 

Congratulations to Courtney Keck - Teacher of the Year for PCW

Courtney Keck Teacher of the Year for Putnam City West High School

Congratulations to Courtney Keck for being selected Teacher of the Year for Putnam City West High School!  She is a Graduate of the UCO Master’s Degree program in Bilingual/TESL program. We are proud of you!

CEPS Faculty Member Awarded by The DaVinci Institute of Oklahoma

Sunshine Cowen

Dr. Sunshine Cowan (Kinesiology & Health Studies) was recently recognized by The DaVinci Institute of Oklahoma as a 2013 DaVinci Institute Fellow.  The prestigious award recognizes higher-education faculty who creative, innovative accomplishments have made a significant contribution to their academic disciplines.  She is one of five individuals across the state to receive the award.  Read more here.

UCO and Linwood Elementary School Establish Classroom Partnership

Teachers at Linwood











Dr. Regenia James (Educational Sciences, Foundations & Research) establishes a new partnership with Oklahoma City Public Schools that allows her students real-world experience and training while assisting with the academic needs of elementary school students.  Read the full story in The Oklahoman here.

Jesse Hilley, Safety Manager - OKC Utilities Dept.

Jesse Hilley
Jesse has been a safety professional for 10 years. He received his B.S. in Industrial Safety from UCO, and started his career as an Asbestos Compliance Inspector at the OK Dept. of Labor. His current responsibilities at the City of OKC Utilities Department include seven lines of business that involve Water, Waste-water, and Solid Waste. Read more

Congratulations, Genny Stidham!

Genny Stidham
Veteran Central softball coach Genny Stidham was recently named NCAA Division II South Central Region Coach of the Year by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association. Stidham is the winningest softball coach in school history with a 424-278-2 record in 15 years at the helm. An All-American for the Bronchos during her playing days and a member of the school's Athletic Hall of Fame, she's led the Bronchos to six national tournament appearances, and has had a record five winning seasons. Read more

Congratulations, Billy McBride!

Billy McBride
"Billy took over a very badly failing safety program and turned it into the best in the state. That speaks volumes to his professionalism and devotion," Benson said. "Clearly, it takes all hands, it’s an all-employee effort. But if I had to cite one person for success, it’s clearly Billy McBride." Read more

UCO recognized for outstanding child abuse prevention program

The Oklahoma State Department of Health named the University of Central Oklahoma’s family life education — child development program an Outstanding Child Abuse Prevention Program award winner at its annual Child Abuse Prevention Day at the Capitol in late April. Read more

UCO Honors Top Academic Achievers as Spring 2012 Class Marshals

Sarah De ToyThe University of Central Oklahoma has named five students as Class Marshals of their respective colleges, recognizing their academic excellence during Central’s Spring 2012 Commencement ceremonies May 4-5 at the university’s Hamilton Field House.

Class Marshals are recognized for achieving the highest academic records within their colleges during their time at Central.

Sarah Tehga De Toy, a native of Luther, is an elementary education major. De Toy will represent the College of Education and Professional Studies with a 4.0 GPA. She plans to pursue a master’s degree in elementary education and begin teaching upon graduation.

“My goal is to be my best for my students by being open to new ideas and learning opportunities,” De Toy said. Read more

Presidential Partners 2012 Leadership Awards

The college is pleased to congratulate the following students who received Presidential Partners Scholarships at the annual luncheon, April 19th. Read more

American Democracy Project Conference Awards

The following posters were awarded $300, $200, and $100 for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place at the ADP Conference:


  • 1st Place: The Wayward Ways of Campus Politics by Cody Brown, CEPS (Psychology Department)
  • 2nd Place: Know2Grow by Lauren Craig, Jenna Sinclair, Mamie Ball, and Deni Napier, CEPS (Psychology Department)
  • 3rd Place: Spreading Critical Thinking via Peaceful Protesting by Arpana Dalaya, Matt Korstjens, Casey Wilmot, Kyle Brower, Dale Newby, Weston Dattilo, and Jacoba Biggers (Interdisciplinary)

Annual Fish Fry

Fish Fry Picture
The Industrial Safety Majors wish to thank all who joined the students at the annual fish fry Tuesday, April 17th .  It is always exciting to have industry professionals, campus leaders, and friends of the program join the students for an informal gathering.  Dr. Robin Lacy extends his appreciation to all for their support of the students and program.  A special thank you to Keeton Hill and Environmental Management Inc. for sponsoring the event and providing the gift baskets as door prizes and Mr. Carl Breazeale who serves on the College's Advocacy Council for providing and cooking the fish.

Congratulations, Jason Burkhart!

Jason Burkhart
Educational Leadership candidate Jason Burkhart was named Mid-Del Teacher of the Year!

Congratulations, Miles Flusche!

Miles Flusche
Miles Flusche, Industrial Safety senior, was presented with a $1000 scholarship from the Oklahoma City chapter of The American Society of Safety Engineers at the Professional Development Conference on Friday, April 13.

Congratulations, Sarah DeToy!

Dr. Kathy Brown, Sarah DeToy, Dean Machell, and Dr. Susan Scott
Sarah DeToy was a recipient of the DaVinci Scholar Award which provides her with a $3000 check during her first year of teaching in an Oklahoma school.

International Visitors

On April 2, 2012, the College of Education and Professional Studies hosted five international guests as part of the American Language: Connecting English Teachers to U. S. Society and Culture program... Read more

Congratulations, Dr. Laressa Beliele!

The entire College of Education and Professional Studies congratulates Dr. Laressa Beliele, program coordinator of the Guidance and Counseling program in the Department of Advanced Professional and Special Services, for the successful defense of her dissertation which completes the requirements for her doctoral degree. Congratulations, Dr. Beliele.

Congratulations, Dr. Donna Kearns!

Dr. Donna Kearns has received a $4,200 award from for a grant she submitted in December entitled “UCO Peer-Directed Support Group for Young Adults with Autistic Spectrum Disorders”.

Congratulations, Dr. Terry Spigner!

We are proud to announce that Dr. Terry Spigner has been asked to serve on the Future of the Professoriate panel.