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Letter From the President: VP of Operations

Jan. 30, 2019

For the first time in nearly a decade, undergraduate fees will remain flat at the University of Oklahoma for the 2019-2020 academic year. Additionally, graduate student fees at the Norman campus will be reduced by $675 per student, resulting in $1,100 in cuts over the past two years. These changes are another step in OU President James L. Gallogly’s goal of making an education from the university affordable to all.

 

“We continue working diligently towards keeping expenses down for our undergraduate and graduate students, so that everyone who wants to attend OU can afford it,” said OU President Gallogly.

 

Randall Hewes, dean of the Graduate College and interim vice president for research, shared that his college worked to create a budget-neutral plan to decrease fees for graduate student assistants, in line with the president’s goal to attract more graduate students and be more competitive for research grants and awards.  

 

Other items presented at the OU Board of Regents’ January meeting included an update on the university’s actions in light of a recent racist incident, a 25 percent growth in research awards and the approval of executive hires. Also announced at the meeting, Clayton Bennett will step down as chair of the OU Board of Regents for health reasons effective immediately. Per bylaws, Vice Chair Leslie Rainbolt-Forbes, M.D., presided over the meeting. The board will formally elect officers at its next meeting. 

 

The president announced the formation of the Student Code of Conduct Review Committee to address best practices from across the country in student affairs as well as legal developments that can inform updates to the university’s code in response to the recent racist event. Heading this committee will be David Surratt, the newly appointed vice president for student affairs and dean of students. Additionally, the Campus Conversation event sponsored by the Office of University Community will be held monthly to continue positive steps in changing the campus culture.

 

New executive hires for OU were approved by the regents. Jacquelyn Wolf, Ph.D., was named senior vice president and chief human resources officer, David Surratt, Ph.D., was named vice president for student affairs and dean of students and Eric Conrad was named vice president of operations.

 

A property deal with the City of Norman also was approved at the meeting. The land, located next to the Cleveland County YMCA, was approved for sale to the Norman Forward project for $2.4 million, allowing the City of Norman to complete the senior center, indoor aquatic center and multi-sport facility.

 

The next meeting of the OU Board of Regents is currently scheduled for March 12-13.