NORMAN — The University of Oklahoma will honor the class of 2012 and Sul Lee, dean of University Libraries for more than 30 years, during its annual ring ceremony, scheduled for 3 p.m. Oct. 21 in the Oklahoma Memorial Union courtyard, 900 Asp Ave.
Lee also was selected to serve as grand marshal for OU’s homecoming parade on Oct. 22. The university’s Campus Activities Council will release the homecoming schedule soon.
The OU ring was adopted as a student initiative to honor graduating seniors and alumni from all classes and recognize the heritage of the OU community.
Lee began his tenure as dean in 1978 and plans to retire June 30, 2012.
“Sul Lee is the right person to be honored at the ring ceremony,” OU President David L. Boren said. “It will give the entire university an opportunity to thank him for his outstanding leadership of the library system for more than 30 years.”
During Lee’s tenure, OU Libraries’ collections — including those in the architecture, engineering, fine arts, and physics and astronomy branches and the Laurence S. Youngblood Energy Library — have grown from 1.7 million to 5.5 million volumes and from more than 14,000 to 70,000 serials.
The library’s endowment also achieved significant growth, from less than $300,000 to more than $25 million. The library also has experienced significant physical growth, including the addition of the Doris W. Neustadt Wing to Bizzell Memorial Library, for which Lee was instrumental in planning and raising funds.
The wing opened to the public in May 1982 and added more than 92,000 square feet of space to the main library.
OU Libraries’ expenditures for materials have grown from just a little more than $1 million to $15 million, while the number of professional staff rose from 46 to 61, support staff from 84 to 96, and the number of student assistants almost doubled.