The Norman Transcript

April 12, 2012

OU Academic Achievers


The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — • Otis Sullivant award:

Assistant dean of students and director of OU Student Life Kristen Partridge has been named the recipient of the $20,000 Otis Sullivant Award for Perceptivity.

Partridge was selected for this award by the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation and a selection committee comprised of faculty, staff, students and alumni.

According to the late Edith Kinney Gaylord, whose endowment established this award, the Sullivant award should be given to someone who exhibits “keen perceptivity,” who “manifests intuitiveness, instant comprehension, empathy, observation and interpretation from experience.”

As a leader and mentor to staff and students at OU, Partridge manages a diverse staff and plays a key role in advising OU’s top student leaders while inspiring her staff to serve the student body through her personality and passion.

Gaylord boasted an impressive resumé in journalism, as the first woman reporter to join the New York bureau of the Associated Press and the second president and founding member of the Women’s National Press Club in Washington, D.C.

• Researchers get grant:

Researchers at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center received a $490,000 grant to conduct a study on improving counterterrorism efforts within the United States earlier this month.

The grant was awarded by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security so OUHSC researchers may collaborate with the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism at the University of Maryland to evaluate and improve the ways law enforcement may use awareness of surroundings to evaluate potential terrorist threats.

In addition to the collaboration between OUHSC and the University of Maryland, the research team will include leading experts in intelligence gathering and analysis such as David Edger, a former CIA senior operations officer who has led more than $35 million in federally funded research.



• Big on campus:

Twenty OU seniors and juniors, including a Norman resident, received “Big Men/Women on Campus” awards at a ceremony March 30.

Recognizing students for outstanding leadership, service, honors and academics, the annual award is given to students selected by a committee of faculty, staff and students.

Folasade O. Akande, of Norman, was among the juniors selected for the honor. Akande is a psychology/pre-med major who will graduate from OU in 2013.



• Truman scholarship:

OU junior Evan DeFilippis learned earlier this month that he is the sixth OU student to receive the prestigious Truman Scholarship, awarded based on his leadership potential, intellectual ability and likelihood of making a difference.

Called an “outstanding leader” by OU President David Boren, DeFilippis is a triple major studying economics, political science and psychology with minors in African-American studies and mathematics.

Truman scholars are committed to careers in government or the nonprofit sector and receive $30,000 for graduate study.

DeFilippis has listed Harvard University and Princeton University as his top picks and plans to pursue a master’s degree in public administration and international development.



• Udall scholar:

OU student Becky Wood was named a 2012 Udall Scholar this week by the Morris K. Udall Foundation, based upon academic and leadership excellence and her commitment to a future career in environmental issues, Native American public policy or health care.

The $5,000 scholarship is awarded to only 80 students across the nation to be applied to tuition, fees and other academic expenses.

Originally from Albuquerque, N.M., Wood is a junior at OU, pursuing degrees in interdisciplinary perspectives on the environment and English while serving as an Earth ambassador for NASA’s Earth Sciences Division.

She plans to pursue a law degree and a master’s of law degree in environmental policy and work as a public policy analyst for a geosciences organization.



— Transcript Staff