Maggie Chamberlain, a Ph.D. student and Oklahoma State University’s first recipient of the William Averette Anderson Fund Fellowship, plans to dedicate her career to her passion for environmental disaster relief through working at a nonprofit or governmental organization that directly benefits communities impacted by disasters.

The native of Austin, Texas, received her bachelor’s and master’s degree in sociology with a concentration on diversity and gender studies from Texas State University in San Marcos. She chose this path due to her interest in the environmental interaction between social and natural settings. 

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Savannah Martin has achieved a lot in her four years at Oklahoma State University, from receiving the Women for OSU scholarship her freshman year to being one of the 16 College of Arts and Sciences students named Seniors of Significance this year. Her passion for service and research has allowed her to experience all that OSU has to offer.

“One thing that I think is so cool about OSU is that there is always an avenue to pursue your passions,” Martin said.

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Kathryn Biehl experienced so many emotions as she walked into the College of Arts and Sciences Commencement Ceremony on Dec. 15, 2018. Like her peers, she was proud of her accomplishments, excited to start a new chapter in her life and sad about the end of her undergraduate experience. She was also in the unique position of being terrified of tripping while carrying a banner she described as “a giant sail and the air conditioning was on full blast.”

Biehl was chosen as the CAS Orange Gown Graduate. She led the students into Gallagher-Iba Arena while wearing an orange cap and gown and carrying the ceremonial banner representing the college.

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Madeline McClaran is a political science senior minoring in religion and sociology – but she’s doing much more than that.

McClaran represents both the university and specifically the College of Arts and Sciences as this year’s Oklahoma State University Spirit Rider.

After getting involved with OSU Rodeo early on, she was selected for this honor following last year’s rider, Elise Wade.

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Zachary Kensinger of Enid, Oklahoma, really pushed himself to get involved on campus from day one. He started with the Arts and Sciences Freshman Forum, which is now called Freshman Student Council, before joining a plethora of other organizations.

“I have actually learned that I do better academically being busy,” Kensinger said. “I think a lot of people actually learn that because if you have a lot of free time, you probably aren't doing anything productive.”

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Sarah Winburn of Tahlequah, Oklahoma, earned a prestigious Gates Millennium Scholarship, which is awarded to 1,000 of the most brilliant minority students across America each year. The Gates Foundation-funded program covers all expenses, from tuition to room and board. Winburn utilized the scholarship to attend New York University, choosing to return to the city where she was born and raised, before tragedy brought her back to Oklahoma.

Her brother, Jerry, was a year older than Winburn. He had been a student at Oklahoma State University for two short weeks before a fatal car accident. The proud member of the U.S. Army died at 19.

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Josie Akosa grew up more than 6,000 miles from Oklahoma State University in the West African nation of Ghana. Her father—a civil engineer—and her mother—the head of the equivalent of a community college—pushed their five children to aim high, which is how Akosa wound up in OSU’s Department of Statistics as a Ph.D. candidate.

“My dad always said, ‘I know I can give you money to do whatever you want, but I would rather invest in your education,’” said Akosa, who graduated Dec. 14. “I think he has done that pretty well.”

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Shanley Wells-Rau, a non-traditional student in the Oklahoma State University master of fine arts poetry program, applied to graduate school after a 20-year corporate career.

“This is the degree I have always wanted,” she said. “When I was younger, I could not figure out a pathway to poetry. It did not fit with a viable career plan.” 

Wells-Rau has always been a poet, and writing has been an integral part of her life.

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It was a cool, quiet day across Paris on July 15, 2018, as Ana Solis sat on the edge of her seat staring at the TV. The whole city was silent even with the windows open. Then, France scored the final goal to win the 2018 World Cup. The city erupted.

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