October 14, 2022

Oakwood University Hosts "Historic" Oakwood Live! 

""Historic" is the word that is being used to describe Oakwood Live! 2022. Over 800 high school juniors and seniors and their chaperones visited the campus of Oakwood University October 5 to 8, for Oakwood Live! – an annual, four-day immersion in “the Oakwood experience.”


President Pollard observed, "Never have I seen the excitement about being on campus at such a high level as I am seeing with our visitors this year. From Bermuda to Canada to England, to the Dominican Republic and all 50 states -- all across the North American Division, high school seniors have descended on our campus."


The Office of Enrollment Services and Retention reports that over 200 young people have been accepted for the Fall 2023 semester, representing over $7 million in scholarships. Over 50 academies and over 140 public high schools were represented.


Our guests visited academic departments, attended career and financial workshops, and experienced tours of the campus and residence halls. Several students excitedly picked out what will be their rooms when they enroll next year. There were soccer, volleyball and basketball games, a block party, a community service activity, and a highly anticipated Oakwood Live! concert.


Many prospective students brought their transcripts with them, and were accepted on the spot.

A special "thank you" is extended to all employees and student navigators who helped serve our guests, especially the Division of Enrollment Services & Retention, Admissions, the Media Center staff, the OU Police Department, Transportation, and Physical Plant.

Gov. Ivey Declares October as HBCU Month in Alabama

MONTGOMERY, Ala. - Gov. Kay Ivey has signed a proclamation declaring October as HBCU Month in Alabama.

Ivey signed the proclamation on Oct. 3 with presidents and representatives of Alabama’s historically Black colleges and Universities presidents and Alabama Office of Minority Affairs (AOMA) Director Nichelle Williams Nix in attendance.

Alabama has the largest number of HBCUs in the nation, with a total of 14 institutions.

“I am gratified that AOMA continues to launch initiatives designed to enrich our state’s progress,” said Leslie Pollard, President of Oakwood University in Huntsville. “Our Governor’s vision for this office signifies her commitment to the advancement of all people.”   MORE   

Oakwood Alum Named 2023 Nevada Teacher of the Year

by Friexys Casado - KOLO 8 News Now

RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - The last couple of years have been difficult for teachers but on Tuesday, October 11,  one local educator got a surprise that should make the tough days a little easier.

The surprise celebration took place at Lloyd Diedrichsen Elementary in Sparks, where Governor Steve Sisolak joined State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jhone Ebert to announce that Oakwood alumna Mrs. Connie (Smith) Hall was named the 2023 Nevada Teacher of the Year.

“I think one of her biggest traits is the relationship she builds with students and the community,” said Ryan Doetch, principal at Lloyd Diedrichsen Elementary School.

Mrs. Hall, from the class of 1994, has been teaching in Nevada’s public schools for 14 years. As an elementary teacher, she has always taken pride in helping students take the first steps on their educational journey and preparing them for mastery and fluency of complex concepts.

“I have a small family so, my family is at Diedrichsen, and other students that I taught have become my family,” she said. Mrs. Hall was picked from five finalists who were selected from a list of just 20 across the state. “Teachers in Las Vegas, teachers here in Washoe, Carson City and it is difficult to choose just one,” said Jhone M. Ebert, Superintendent of Public Instruction.

The teacher of the year will be spending a week in Washington D.C with other educators from around the nation. She told KOL8 News Now this is an opportunity to be an advocate.

“I want to be able to hear the teachers and some of the concerns and I know one of them is the class sizes and what can we do, because we want to make the best impact in our students and be able to have numbers that we can work with,” said Hall, referring to the teacher shortage and bigger class size.  MORE

OU Changemaker: Today in Annual Fund

A mini-series by Esther Smith, Development Officer

Passionate about telling the Oakwood story, this series will highlight the tories of those who run parallel to us, supporting the Oakwood Mission.

Rosenia Bailey, a member of the class of 1986, has a laugh that comes easily and a heart that shines brightly. This is Rosenia’s story on why she gives.

Rosenia Bailey was from South Carolina at the time she attended Oakwood College. Beneath the oaks, she majored in Accounting, with a minor in Computer Science. Since graduating, she says she’s lived many places and has been able to accomplish things she’s proud of, but it all began at Oakwood. When asked why she gives back, she responds that she was inspired to give because she feels a responsibility in returning an offering as well as being a routine ‘tither.’ Surprised by her answer, I asked her to elaborate.  Click here to read the rest of Rosenia's story.

...Depart to Serve: Alumni News

Battle of the Reunion Honor Classes

of Alumni Homecoming 2023

By Emile D. Parker, MBA - Director of Alumni Relations

Calling all Oakwood alumni from classes of the 3s and 8s -- it's your turn to be celebrated during our In-person & LIVE Streamed Alumni Homecoming 2023 with our theme "Ambassadors of the Experience." 


We ask our Reunion Honor Classes to engage with their alma mater Oakwood in 4 different ways. 

  • Engagement through Volunteering
  • Engagement through Giving
  • Engagement through Memories
  • Engagement through having Fun Fellowship

For the last 3 years, the Oakwood University Office of Alumni Relations and the Alumni Council Network of Alums have been acknowledging the TOP 3 Reunion Honor Classes for their ENGAGEMENT THROUGH GIVING during their class reunion year. We've done that acknowledgment just before offering during our Sabbath Divine Worship Service at the Von Braun. 


At our Alumni Homecoming 2021, the Reunion Honor Classes of the 1s and 6s gave over $140,000 with over 200 donors participating. It was RECORD BREAKING! AMAZING! 


The GIVING CLOCK for the Reunion Honor Classes of the 3s and 8s  started the day after our last Alumni Homecoming on April 18th, 2022. We are excited to report that 60 alums have already started their ENGAGEMENT THROUGH GIVING by giving over $22,000!!


Here's how the top 10 BATTLE OF THE REUNION HONOR CLASSES for Homecoming 2023 stacks up as of 10/12/22:

  1. Celebrating 35 years since Oakwood, 8 from the Class of 1988 have given $6,548.29
  2. Celebrating 50 years since Oakwood, 8 from the Class of 1973 have given $4,035.00
  3. Celebrating 40 years since Oakwood, 11 from the Class of 1983 have given $3,573.33
  4. Celebrating 55 years since Oakwood, 4 from the Class of 1968 have given $3,081.00
  5. Celebrating 45 years since Oakwood, 6 from the Class of 1978 have given $1,270.00
  6. Celebrating 30 years since Oakwood, 5 from the Class of 1993 have given $1,015.22
  7. Celebrating 25 years since Oakwood, 6 from the Class of 1998 have given  $755.33
  8. Celebrating 20 years since Oakwood, 3 from the Class of 2003 have given $735.33
  9. Celebrating 15 years since Oakwood, 2 from the Class of 2008 have given $640.00
  10. Celebrating 10 years since Oakwood, 2 from the Class of 2013 have given  $420.00


​As with most HBCUs, in years past we encouraged Reunion Honor Classes to include those classmates from their Freshman year who may not have finished with their graduating class, and reach out to them and embrace them to join you in your class reunion CELEBRATION in ALL 4 WAYS OF ENGAGEMENT. When giving they simply have to place in comments their Freshman year and their affinity Class year. 


By simply clicking give.oakwood.edu, with the magic of technology, all our Reunion Honor Classes have the freedom of selecting any Oakwood cause, campaign, scholarship, or fund they desire to give, and just know your class will grow its giving total by your gift to your alma mater Oakwood. 


Now the table is set!! Which of these amazing 15 Reunion Honor Classes will be our TOP 3 classes in their ENGAGEMENT THROUGH GIVING at our Alumni Homecoming 2023? 


Our prayers are with each of our 15 classes as they celebrate how GOD HAS BLESSED THEM and their families over the years since Oakwood


Emile D. Parker, MBA

OU Alumni Homecoming Reunion Class Toolbox for Success

To all Oakwood alums!

Your Oakwood University Office of Alumni Relations and the OU Alumni Council NETWORK OF ALUMS are EXCITED to announce our first ever OAKWOOD’S 40 UNDER 40 of 2023!! We are now open for nominations. Who do you know should be part of the FIRST OAKWOOD’S 40 UNDER 40 of 2023 winners? The winners will be revealed in the Spring 2023 edition of the OAKWOOD MAGAZINE.

The nominee must be an Oakwood graduate and 30 years old but younger than 39 years old on April 10th, 2023, to be eligible. With this initiative, we acknowledge and celebrate the achievements of our YOUNG ALUMNI.  


Our Oakwood’s best, brightest, and the University's engaged young alumni who are accomplishing incredible things in their careers while serving their community.

DEADLINE TO SUBMIT A 40 Under 40 of 2023 NOMINATION ends NOVEMBER 15th to be considered.


Please SPREAD THE NEWS by SHARING this post to all Oakwood alums you know. Simply click the OAKWOOD’S 40 UNDER 40 of 2023 Nomination LINK to submit your nominee TODAY.



To all Oakwood alums! Your Oakwood University Office of Alumni Relations and the OU Alumni Council NETWORK OF ALUMS are EXCITED to announce OAKWOOD’S 30 UNDER 30 of 2023!!

With this initiative, we acknowledge and celebrate the achievements of our YOUNG ALUMNI, or as we call them our GOLD Society (Graduates of the Last Decade) - Oakwood’s best, brightest, and the University's engaged young alumni who are accomplishing incredible things in their careers while serving their community.

We are now receiving nominations. Who do you know should be part of this year's OAKWOOD’S 30 UNDER 30 of 2023 winners? The winners will be revealed in the Oakwood Alumni Homecoming 2023 edition of the OAKWOOD MAGAZINE.

To be eligible, the nominee must be an Oakwood graduate and 29 years old or younger on April 10th, 2023.

DEADLINE TO SUBMIT A 30 Under 30 of 2023 NOMINATION ends NOVEMBER 15 to be considered.

Please SPREAD THE NEWS by SHARING this message to all Oakwood alums you know. Simply click the OAKWOOD’S 30 UNDER 30 of 2023 Nomination LINK to submit your nominee TODAY.

Register for PELC 2022 by midnight, Sunday, October 16, to get your discount price. Register at pelcpower.com

Leave a Legacy at "the Oaks"
Pave the way into the next 125 years of success by purchasing a personalized brick on the Legacy Walkway, that leads from Ford Hall and the Peters Media Center to the rest of the campus.

The Legacy Walkway Brick Campaign provides an opportunity to leave a legacy and support campus improvement at the same time. Our Legacy Walkway features names of donors, loved ones, special remembrances, and favorite sayings. Bricks are a great opportunity to congratulate a graduate, celebrate an advanced degree or accomplishment, or honor your loved ones.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to leave more than a memory at Oakwood University. You can leave your own legacy as we continue our mission – to transform the lives of our students.
Give back year-round to Oakwood University
while shopping online with AmazonSmile.
The AmazonSmile Foundation will send OU .5% of eligible purchases when you choose Oakwood University.
It's simple:

  • You can use your current Amazon account.
  • Just click https://smile.amazon.com.
  • When prompted, select Oakwood University as your charitable organization, and then
  • Shop as you normally do.
Donations are made by the AmazonSmile Foundation and are not tax deductible by you.
Your Oakwood University family thanks you for all you continue to do for
"our dear Oakwood."
Show yOUr Pride in Alabama!
Purchasing an Alabama “Oakwood University License Plate” is a simple way to contribute to scholarships for Oakwood students who are Alabama residents.

Request your Oakwood University collegiate plate when you normally register your car in Alabama so you don’t have to double pay.  Contact Debbe Millet in IMPR if you have any questions.
The mission of Oakwood University, a historically black, Seventh-day Adventist institution, is to transform students through biblically-based education for service to God and humanity.
InsideOakwood is published by the
Office of Integrated Marketing & Public Relations at Oakwood University.
Editor: Debbe Millet | Graphic Designer: Ron J. Pride
pr@oakwood.edu | (256) 726-7202