Q&A - January 20, 2017

Many times, I have said “one of the secrets of our success at OSUIT is that we hire the right faculty members.” They are not just “professional teachers,” they are “professionals who teach.” In response to this week’s question, allow me to tell you about our two most recent “Regents Distinguished Faculty Award” recipients and then about the two most recent “Outstanding Faculty Member” honorees. Each exemplify the finest tradition of teaching excellence at OSUIT.

Q:Who are some of your top faculty members at OSUIT?

Pete Brown has served as a natural gas compression faculty member for six years. He holds a bachelor’s degree in general psychology from the University of Central Oklahoma and a master’s degree in career and technical education from Concordia University. He is currently working on a doctorate in educational leadership. He brought over 30 years of industry experience to his role at OSUIT and numerous professional certifications, including ASE certifications as a Master Automotive Technician and as a Master Truck Technician. He delivered Caterpillar training throughout the world as a Certified Natural Gas Engine Instructor prior to joining our faculty and continues to work with the Gas Producers Association as an industry trainer.

Dr. Regina Foster holds a Ph.D. in professional science education and a master’s degree in secondary science education from Oklahoma State University, as well as a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Central Oklahoma. She has worked at OSUIT for the past 11 years and served as a science faculty member since 2009. Dr. Foster has been active in the National Science Teachers Association and National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development. She has served as a Phi Theta Kappa sponsor, played a key role in the development of the university’s assessment instruments for the science area, and has twice received the national NISOD Teaching Excellence Award.

Robert Avakian holds a bachelor’s degree in earth sciences from Penn State University and a master’s degree in geophysics from Stanford University. After 18 years in the oil industry, he taught science and math in Midland Texas, as well as geology at the college level before coming to OSUIT. He presently teaches various mathematic classes and earth science. He is a member of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and is the immediate past president of the OSUIT Faculty/Staff Council. Mr. Avakian is also a previous recipient of the NISOD Teaching Excellence Award.

Thomas Holman has been teaching for OSUIT in the School of Arts and Sciences since 2004. His courses include American government, American history, Oklahoma history, geography, and humanities. He taught at the University of Central Oklahoma and at Rose State College prior to becoming a faculty member here. After leaving the U. S. Air Force, he attended the University of Central Oklahoma, where he earned master’s degrees in history and in English. While attending the university, he discovered his true calling to be a teacher, and our students have greatly benefited from his unwavering dedication to the classroom for many years.

Please keep submitting your wonderful questions to osuit-president@okstate.edu.