Steve and Susan Burgess had never been to Stillwater, Oklahoma, before they made the roughly one-hour drive from their new home in Shawnee on Aug. 9. They discovered Oklahoma State University has a beautiful campus and expert faculty, and most importantly, a community fulfilling the modern land-grant mission.

The Burgesses, who have been married 46 years, were among more than 50 participants at a three-day Parkinson’s disease (PD) boot camp funded by a College of Arts and Sciences Community Engagement Grant. The couple recently moved from Oregon to Oklahoma to live closer to their children and grandchildren following Steve being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease – a progressive nervous system disorder that affects movements, speech and cognitive skills – about 18 months ago.

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A few common threads run among three members of the College of Arts and Sciences family: They all love OSU, attended Harvard Law School, and remember professors who helped them get there. 

Craig Grounds (English 2014), Travis Leverett (political science ’14) and Jeffrey Roderick (political science/economics ’13) all graduated from Oklahoma State University with their sights set on law school.

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The “Student First Aid Station” in Dana Hatter’s office in Life Sciences East is stocked not only with band-aids and ibuprofen, but also with boxes marked “Popcorn” and “Hot Chocolate.” 

“I call all of the students I advise my kids,” Hatter joked, “and I basically am a mom 24/7, both at home and here.” 

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A Boone Pickens School of Geology faculty member is hosting a national workshop at OSU this weekend.

Priyank Jaiswal is hosting A Forum on Infrastructure, sponsored by the Society of Exploration Geophysicists and the National Science Foundation. The forum will concentrate on unique challenges to geotechnical and civil engineering and geoscience and geophysics in the Central USA. 

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Josh Cox followed in his father’s footsteps in choosing Oklahoma State University, and it was his mother’s example that led to his choice of major and future career.

Cox is from Saginaw, Texas, a suburb of Fort Worth. His mother, Angela, is a primary-school intervention specialist there, focusing mainly on children with dyslexia. She has also taught fifth grade, specializing in mathematics and science.

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Abigail Ferrell was in her Edmond North High School government class when a life-changing text message arrived. It linked to a video of OSU President Burns and First Cowgirl Ann Hargis congratulating her. She had to watch it 10 times until she comprehended the message: She was named a fellow of the Oklahoma State Scholars Society, the university’s premier scholar-development program for the best in-state students. Ferrell is one of four recipients in its inaugural year.

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The skate park might not be the first place you think of when you hear terms like physics and STEM learning. Thanks to a CAS community engagement project, the Stillwater Skate Park on Main Street became a place of informal science learning and elevated skate athletes into flying physicists. Dr. Nicole Colston, assistant research faculty in the School of Teaching, Learning and Educational Sciences, and Dr. Bobbi Kay Lewis, assistant dean of outreach and communications for the College of Arts and Sciences, hosted Push Forward, a one-day event and skate contest for Stillwater youth aged 13-25 at Strickland Park.

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School wasn’t always a welcoming, homelike place for Logan Evans. The recent OSU graduate was born deaf, and grew up learning oralism, a process which involves lip reading. Oralism was difficult for Evans, and he didn’t have an interpreter until ninth grade. His grades suffered before he started learning American Sign Language.

“I fell in love with ASL. There were deaf people in my high school, and they taught me about their culture, and that helped me pick it up quickly.”

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