It's been 35 years since some of them were on the USAO campus and then the university was the Oklahoma College of Liberal Arts.

Now, nine OCLA faculty members and former OCLA President Robert L. Martin are returning to Chickasha during the OCLA Reunion June 25 and June 26.

Nine members of the group are scheduled to be part of a panel discussion -- OCLA: The Dream Fulfilled? -- at 3:15 p.m. in the Davis Hall Amphitheater. The presentation is free and open to the public and current USAO students.

In addition to Martin, the panel discussion will feature OCLA faculty members Richard Massa, Teresa Ramirez Massa, Art Scott, J. Dexter Marble, Frank Dorman, Stuart Meltzer, Ingrid Shafer and Dorothy Marotte. The group will discuss the mission, goals and comparative success of the ten-year existence of OCLA.

Jerry Holt, an OCLA professor who is now with Purdue University, also will be a part of the reunion as the keynote speaker for the Give Peas a Chance banquet in the Student Center Ballroom on June 26 at 7 p.m.

"Although it has been 35 years since some of the faculty and students were on campus, recognition of their efforts to create Oklahoma's only public liberal arts college and mandate a new educational approach for higher learning has been sustained," said Kay Meadows Stockbridge, a 1971 graduate of OCLA and chair of the reunion planning committee.

"Many OCLA graduates have attained advanced degrees and gone on to distinguished careers in public and private service. Higher education research and reporting continues to advocate the necessity and importance of a liberal arts curriculum.

"As the bridge between Oklahoma College for Women and the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma, OCLA played a unique role in bringing new ideas and concepts to the academic tradition and experience," Stockbridge said.

"Many of the faculty at OCLA were just out of graduate school when they began teaching.  Their enthusiasm and fresh thinking were essential to devise and develop the curriculum needed for the strong liberal arts influence.

"Many of the materials, including the preparation for the core humanities courses, required significant research and effort on their part -- in addition to teaching loads that did not have the benefit of graduate assistants or supply instructors.  Many were sponsors for student organizations to develop interpersonal and leadership skills."

In addition to the panel discussion, several other events are scheduled as part of the OCLA Reunion.

Registration for the reunion is $50 per person. Registration forms and a complete schedule are available online at www.usao.edu/alumni. For more information, contact Julie Bohannon at 405-574-1320.

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