Inside OSUIT: Dean Lisa Weis

Inside OSUIT: Dean Lisa Weis

I’m speaking to you from the OSUIT Nursing Building. This is a beautiful and modern facility in the interior part of our campus—close to the Student Union. And I’m here to interview Dr. Lisa Weis, who has recently been hired as the Dean of the new School of Arts, Sciences & Health.  

For those who may not be familiar, this School of Arts, Sciences & Health is responsible for providing all of the essential academic coursework for every technical program of study that we have on campus. It doesn’t matter what the major is, they get all of their academic coursework from this school.

This school represents a new alignment of academic programs, but will still be responsible for awarding five of the Associate in Science degrees we offer on campus

  • Allied Health Sciences (AS)
  • Business (AS)
  • Enterprise Development (AS)
  • Pre-Education (AS)
  • Pre-Professional Studies (AS)

This newly aligned School will also be responsible for three of our Associate in Applied Science degrees

  • Culinary Arts (AAS)
  • Nursing (AAS)
  • Orthotic & Prosthetic Technologies (AAS)

And I’m really excited to tell you that this new school will become the home for our newest bachelor’s degree—the Bachelor of Technology in Applied Technical Leadership.

Dr. Weis, thank you for joining me for this video installment of Inside OSUIT and welcome to our campus.

“Thank you, I’m excited to be here.”

From that list that I went through, it sounds like you’re going to have a lot of responsibilities as you start out, but I for one, am very grateful to have you on our administrative team, our leadership team, and I’m sure everyone out there is anxious to get to know more about you. Could you tell us a little bit about yourself and your professional background?

“Professionally, I have been an educator for 25 years. Ten years in public school classroom as a teacher and as an administrator and 15 years in higher education.

Most recently, I was the Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs. One of the passions I also have is accreditation. I serve as a peer core member for the higher learning commission.”

I need to congratulate you on the way that you did the interviews, you did a remarkable job there.

I had a question about what sparked your interest in this particular offering?

“There were two big factors in considering this position, one personally, one professionally.

Personally, I lived in Okmulgee in the 90’s. My husband and I were educators here and we absolutely loved it. We’re looking forward to the opportunity to return to Okmulgee.

Professionally, the reorganization and strategic plan really caught my interest. I am fascinated and excited about the opportunities that faculty and staff will have to contribute to new policies and procedures, and I am just excited to be a part of that.” 

Tell me, what are some of your goals and ideas for the new school?

“Cross-curricular opportunities for dialogue and collaboration is a primary goal. We want to make sure that with all of us coming together as one school, that we can in fact, do that. So, the more opportunities that have to spend together, the stronger we will be as a school. 

Also, increasing student enrollment, looking at really marketing ourselves to diverse students, to adult students, to adult students and to females and letting them know what OSUIT has to offer them.”

Well those are great goals and really align well with the institutional goals. What are you looking forward to the most with this new position?

“Well, I have been on campus since July 1 and I’ve had incredibly opportunities to meet faculty and staff. So, what I am looking forward to most right now is engaging with students and industry partners. Looking at what their experiences have been here, what are some of the things they really brag about related to OSUIT and what are some of the suggestions they have with us all coming together as one school.”

That’s great. What’s the one thing you would like members of your school or people across campus to know about you?

“Well, I’d really like them to know two things. One, is that I love learning. I am open to formalized instruction to non-formal instruction and I love hearing varying perspectives. So, any ideas, any recommendations that they have, my door is open. I only know what I know, so the more voices I am able to hear, the broader my understanding will be and I think the more effective I can be.

And then the second thing I would like people to know is that education is tough. It’s hard, we face obstacles, but there are ways around those obstacles. For example, I am a first-generation college student and I wasn’t sure how I was going to pay for school. One way I did that was joining the Navy reserves. So, I was a Navy reservist for 8 years, that helped me get through my undergraduate. I think the more we are able to engage with one another and recognize what obstacles might be in our way and the more voices we have at the table, the more ways around those obstacles we can find so that people can pursue and achieve their degree.”

Dr. Weis, thank you for taking time to visit with me today, and sharing all of this information about yourself, welcome to campus.

It was a real privilege to introduce all of you to Dean Weis, from the School of Arts, Sciences & Health. And I hope you will continue watching as I interview more of the very talented people across this campus, as we continue to take a much closer look Inside OSUIT.