Many people oversimplify the concept of geography, thinking of it as memorizing maps. Speak with Alyson Greiner, head of the Department of Geography, and she will explain how much more interesting it is than that.

For example, as a cultural historical geographer, she specializes in the similarities and differences between America and Australia. She is fascinated by the ways Oklahoma’s landscape changed as a part of the New Deal projects during the Great Depression, including eradicating malaria. She even explains the northward migration of the sweet-tea line – the prevalence of that drink has historically been one way to differentiate the South from its neighboring regions, but that boundary is moving, or at least blurring, of late.

As a young undergraduate student, Dr. Ramesh Kaipa had a very different plan for his life. “I had intended on becoming a medical doctor,” Kaipa said, “but I’m glad that I chose this profession.”

According to Kaipa, one of the great challenges in speech/language pathology and audiology is that it is largely seen as a female-oriented profession. His graduating class, he explains, was nearly 90-percent female.

An Oklahoma State University music professor is offering a non-credit piano class for Stillwater-area adults. Aimed at beginners and those who wish to brush up on their skills, Introduction to Piano will meet from 5:30-6:20 p.m. inside OSU’s Seretean Center for the Performing Arts on Tuesday and Thursday evenings between Aug. 20 and Dec. 7.

While sitting in her high-school philosophy class in Germany, Luise Schoenknecht couldn’t help but be intrigued despite the language barrier. A few years later, when she had to choose a major at Oklahoma State University, she felt naturally drawn to philosophy. But she couldn’t help but wonder what she would do with that degree. Over three semesters, Schoenknecht changed her major from architecture to philosophy, to psychology, to philosophy again, and then to graphic design, before landing back on philosophy for good.

Laura Belmonte calls herself an “odd duck” because of how much she loved the often-thankless role of department head. It inspired her to pursue the next logical career step: becoming the College of Arts and Sciences’ associate dean for instruction and personnel.

Among the many responsibilities of this position are ensuring quality instruction, handling student and faculty complaints, and overseeing faculty hiring and promotion.

Oklahoma State University has firmly established itself as a powerhouse at the National Trumpet Competition, winning at least one division in each of the past five years. On June 2, the program reached an even higher level by claiming both competition trophies at the International Trumpet Guild Conference in San Antonio, Texas.

Noah Mennenga won the ITG Solo Competition, in which he was the only American among the three finalists. Meanwhile, Ian Mertes claimed the ITG Orchestral Excerpts Competition. He was joined in the finals by Nick Nusser, who placed third.

All three won at the National Trumpet Competition in Denton, Texas, on March 10. Mennenga was the top soloist in the undergraduate division, while Mertes and Nusser were among the seven members of OSU’s title-winning large ensemble.

The new Center for Pediatric Psychology at Oklahoma State University is a logical extension of the status of OSU and the state of Oklahoma as national leaders in the field of children’s health. Its mission is “to engage in cutting-edge scientific discovery related to all aspects of children’s health, as well as their families, and to foster integrated research, training and clinical service delivery.”

Larry Mullins, the Vaughn Vennerberg II Chair of Psychology, is the inaugural director. He said the CPPOSU will be an excellent tool for recruiting outstanding faculty and graduate students.

Amal Yayah’s journey from her hometown of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to OSU began when she was recruited by Prince Sattam Bin Abdulaziz University. “They recruited me to work for them, and one of the requirements for my sponsorship was that I had to study abroad for both my master’s and my Ph.D.” 

It was quite the challenge that Yayah faced, and quite the time commitment.