The GREATNESS of an institution ALWAYS begins with PEOPLE
-Jim Collins

By Jeff Dunn, Regent Chair

Last spring RUSO Regents Connie Reilly, Mark Stansberry and I joined more than 1,000  higher education leaders to attend the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges National Conference. The keynote speaker author Jim Collins   presented his monograph " Good To Great and the Social Sectors -- Why Business Thinking Is Not The Answer. "  

Collins explained that while business and social sectors have different missions, they are identical in  exhibiting the qualities of a great organization. "A great organization is one that delivers superior performance while  making a distinctive impact over a long period of time." 

For a business, financial returns are a legitimate measure of performance. For a public university, however, performance must be assessed relative to mission--not financial returns. The critical question is not how much money was earned per dollar of invested capital, but the effectiveness of delivering our mission and making a distinctive impact relative to our resources. We were inspired by Collins' presentation and decided to apply his philosophy to our six regional universities.  Read More
               Share Your Great Ideas
The path to making a good to great organization is lit by the multitude of bright ideas. We want to hear what you consider to be great ideas, suggestions, potential collaborations and opportunities for efficiency. Submit your ideas online to RUSO.
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Six Questions
An interview with Regent Connie Reilly, Okemah. A RUSO regent since 2007.

1)  What is something outstanding 
during  your tenure as regent?

know it may sound cliché
but I truly believe that it is the quality of RUSO graduates. It is rewarding to hear the phenomenal achievements of our graduates and know that part of their success came from the outstanding job our six regional universities do in preparing and retaining Oklahoma's graduates. More than 80 percent of RUSO graduates remain in Oklahoma and contribute to the state's economic success.

2)  How have things changed since you worked in secondary school education

One of the most noticeable changes is the quantity and quality of technology that is available to public schools today. Technology, and the needs of its users, evolves so rapidly that it is often challenging to adapt at the same pace.

3)  A RUSO regent is a voluntary position appointed by the governor. What motivated you to accept the position? 

I accepted the nine year appointment because I have a keen interest in expanding the dialogue between secondary and higher education. For example, getting feedback from experienced teachers about what they want our universities to teach for teacher preparation and implementing curriculum based on professor feedback for preparing students for college.
4) What is one thing on your bucket list?

Speak French fluently.

5)   Do you have a favorite quote? 

"We are made wise not by the recollection of our past, but by the responsibility for our future." George Bernard Shaw.
Every graduate should be proud of getting a college degree, not only for personal achievement, but also for the opportunities it opens up. One of the responsibilities
of getting a college degree is giving back and paying it forward.

6)  Any memorable K12 moment? 

It is more a period of time than a moment. At one point I supervised and taught an alternative education night class to students who were unable to attend traditional classes. Initially I was not excited about the position. But as the year progressed I realized that these kids were kindhearted and eager to learn, just like their peers in traditional classrooms; they just had other personal challenges that often interfered with their education. I found a whole new person in me by being a part of alternative education. 

Learn more about Regent Reilly

Reg ent Updates
Two new regents joined the RUSO board in 2015.
Gary Parker and Mark Stansberry were recently appointed by Gov. Mary Fallin to serve on the RUSO board.
Parker (Tahlequah) is president of the accounting firm Moffitt, Parker and Company, Inc, A graduate of Northeastern State University, Parker is active in several professional organizations including serving in numerous leadership roles for the Oklahoma Society of Certified Public Accountants and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

Stansberry (Oklahoma City) is chairman of The GTD Group. He previously served on the board of regents of RUSO from 2001 to 2010. He has served on numerous public and private boards including the Board of Trustees of Oklahoma Christian University and UCO Foundation,
Dunn Becomes Regent Chair
Business owner and community leader Jeff Dunn (Tulsa) became chair of the Regional University System of Oklahoma Board of Regents beginning with their new term on July 1. He is president and CEO of Mill Creek Lumber & Supply Company.
Great Happenings at Your Regional University
For inspiration and collaboration learn more about 
what is happening  at regional universities.

Stacey Bolin, director of East Central University's Wilburn L. Smith Center for Entrepreneurship and assistant professor of business administration, was one of five faculty from across the state who was presented with the prestigious DaVinci Award. Bolin was recognized for her creative, and unconventional, classroom approach. Learn More.

Kevin Wang is leading a research team to develop a medication aimed at significantly increasing the chances of fully rehabilitating from a stroke. Wang developed the process behind the team's current experiments that involve saliva from vampire bats and tobacco plants. The new solution could significantly increase the chances of someone fully rehabilitating from a stroke. Learn More (page 22)
The third annual volume of "Civitas: Journal of Citizenship Studies" is available. Civitas is an interdisciplinary, peer-reviewed publishing venue aimed at promoting scholarship concerning the Humanities and Social Sciences as they relate to citizenship matters.It welcomes both qualitative and quantitative submissions by faculty and advanced undergraduate and graduate students from Oklahoma's regional universities, two-year community colleges, and other institutions of higher education and beyond.  Read more .
SOSU and the Durant Independent School District are  partnering to provide digital literal courses at no charge to housing urban development (HUD) residents in the Choctaw Tribal Nation. The partnership is part of President Obama's initiative ConnectHome, to expand high speed broadband to more families across the country and ensure K12 students have access at home. Learn More  

SWOSU students have an additional chance to win scholarships made possible by local businesses. More than 30 businesses contribute annually to the Parent's Day Scholarship fund. Students or family members register for the scholarship drawing at the participating businesses. T he winners are announced at halftime of the SWOSU football game during Parent's Day.This marks the 20th year for the town to gown event. Learn More
UCO received six Student Support Services grants from the U.S. Department of Education. The university is the only institution of higher education in the nation to receive funding for each of the six distinctive Federal Student Support Services programs in the current award period. The grants will be overseen by Victoria Arnold, director of UCO's Student Support Services.  Learn more about the

Regional University System of Oklahoma
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