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The OPSU campus will be closed on Thursday, June 20th, due to the widespread flooding. Campus will reopen on Monday, June 24th. If you live on campus and experience issues from the flooding, please enter a help ticket. The Physical Plant will not be able to address any issues quickly, but will work to assess and make repairs as they are able.
Future Educators Day

May 23, 2024

Natasha Eidson

Future Educators Day Showcases Teaching Pathways at OPSU

The College of Arts and Education at OPSU recently hosted Future Educators Day, an event bringing together current students and aspiring educators from different high schools. Dr. Kimberly Conyers and Mrs. Amber Hollis-Fesmire led the event, which aimed to provide students with insight into the world of education, especially at OPSU, and the opportunities available within the field.


Students learned about practical advice on residential life, admissions procedures, and scholarship opportunities. Among the scholarships, the highlighted OPSU Scholarship was the Panhandle Promise Scholarship. The Panhandle Promise Scholarship, a gap funding scholarship for aspiring teachers, removes the financial barrier and incentivizes students to pursue classroom teacher degrees in exchange for a two-year commitment to teach in an Oklahoma Panhandle public school. The Inspired to Teach scholarship, an initiative by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education (OSRHE) designed to support aspiring teachers in their academic pursuits, was also highlighted.


“Our first Panhandle Promise scholarships were offered to five students in 2019-2020. Since then, the scholarship has been awarded to 14 other OPSU education majors—many of whom are still teaching in the Panhandle,” stated Dr. Charla Lewis, Dean of the College of Arts and Education. “Inspired to Teach has been available to education majors since fall 2022. While the commitment for graduates to teach in Oklahoma is five years for this scholarship (three years more than the Panhandle Promise), awardees will get paid an employment incentive for those five years. We’re very lucky to be able to offer these two scholarships to our education students.”


Throughout the event, education staff from diverse disciplines such as agriculture, mathematics, English, health and physical education, and elementary education were on hand to engage with students and shed light on the distinct pathways within the education sector. This multidisciplinary approach ensured that students gained a comprehensive understanding of the educational landscape and the various specializations available to them. They also experienced hands-on learning with technology and engaging in craft activities. These interactive sessions showcased the innovative tools and resources available to students at OPSU.


OPSU elementary education student Ceely Jones shared her experiences and insights, offering a glimpse into the realities of pursuing an education degree at OPSU. Her firsthand accounts gave aspiring educators valuable perspective and inspiration, reaffirming their passion for the profession.


Dr. Conyers emphasized the importance of providing prospective students with opportunities to experience firsthand the dynamic learning environment at OPSU. “It’s important to have days like these where we can showcase our degrees,” she remarked. “The Future Educators Day was the first of what I hope to be many opportunities that we give interested students to let them experience what ‘a day in the life’ of a teaching major would be like at OPSU. We want to make sure students know what we have to offer and that we are the Path to Anywhere.”


With the Panhandle Promise scholarship deadline nearing on June 1st, the event served as a timely reminder for aspiring teachers to explore the scholarship opportunities available to them as they pursue their academic and professional aspirations. OPSU remains steadfast in its commitment to nurturing the next generation of educators and empowering them to make a meaningful difference in the lives of others. For more information about the Panhandle Promise Scholarship, check out the website at https://opsu.edu/arts-education/education/panhandle-promise-scholarship/.

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