Secretary and Executive Director of the Oklahoma Department of Commerce Larry V. Parman will give the keynote address to OSU Institute of Technology’s 199th graduating class.
The commencement ceremony is Friday, Dec. 12, at 2 p.m., in Covelle Hall on the OSUIT campus, 1801 E. 4th St., in Okmulgee.
Parman was appointed commerce secretary in November 2013 by Gov. Mary Fallin while serving as Oklahoma’s Secretary of State. He serves as a senior adviser to Fallin on policy, economic, and legislative issues.
Parman visited OSUIT for the first time in June 2014 after repeatedly hearing about the university’s applied learning model and its strong partnerships with industry.
“OSUIT knows how to train people, how to prepare people, how to combine soft skills and hard skills. There is a great job being done right here, we just need more people in the pipeline,” he said. “This campus sits at the center of what Oklahoma can uniquely offer to the world, not just the state.”
OSUIT President Bill R. Path said after one visit, Parman was ready to celebrate and congratulate OSUIT’s graduates.
“This says a lot about his support of the university,” Path said.
“Government leaders are beginning to recognize what industry leaders have known for years, the OSU Institute of Technology is where students go when they want a high-demand career as well as a quality education,” Path said. “Secretary Parman knows the importance institutions of higher education need to place on both those elements.”
OSUIT’s unique learning model and program offerings are a draw for students looking to excel in one-of-a-kind industries. The university’s School of Watchmaking will graduate six students, a relatively large class for the rigorous and exclusive program that emphasizes microtechnology. The High Voltage Lineman program, another profession that is unlike any other, will graduate 15 students who aren’t afraid to make the climb for their careers.
Adrienne Kayla Michelle Luster has been chosen as this trimester’s student respondent, and will graduate with an Associate in Applied Science in Information Technology. Luster plans to continue her education at OSUIT and work toward a Bachelor of Technology in Information Technology.
Luster also works in OSUIT’s Veteran Service Office.
“I truly enjoy helping the veterans. Being one myself I understand what they are going through when they come in to apply and turn in their paperwork,” she said. “I am able to answer questions that some others are not able to, and this helps relieve some of the stress that is put on veterans when they come in needing assistance.”
Luster said she chose OSUIT because it was the quickest and smartest way for her to earn a bachelor’s degree and get hands-on training at the same time.
“I love that I’m able to work and have hands-on learning in all of my IT classes. This makes it easier when it comes to getting a job,” she said. “OSUIT is the best route to go. We have small class sizes so we are comfortable with our instructors and can ask more in-depth questions.”