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The Student News Site of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

The Trend

The Student News Site of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

The Trend

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Dr. Steele Serves as Interim Dean of Social Sciences and Business

Gary Jackson
Dr. Steele, associate professor of psychology, was recently appointed interim dean of Social Sciences and Business.

Dr. Misty Steele, associate professor of psychology, was recently announced as the interim dean of Social Sciences and Business. She will begin Aug. 1 and bring a wealth of knowledge to the position as she has 15 years of experience in various roles at the university.  

Dr. Steele talked about how she felt prepared for this opportunity after working closely with Dr. James Vaughn, professor of psychology, as well as being an integral part of creating the Student Success Center. As she has been engaged in the promotion of student success for the last decade, Steele said she felt she had more to offer to the faculty.  

“I think turning my attention to faculty support and success has an immediate impact on student success, so I see this role as an extension of my previous responsibilities,” Dr. Steele said.  

In her role as dean, Dr. Steele will oversee six different majors including business, psychology, sociology, political science, economics, and history. Although she will not begin this position until later this year, Dr. Steele has already begun brainstorming ideas for each major she is now leading. She stated her initial priority would be discussing with faculty in the department about the strengths and opportunities within each program. One program that she is invested in looking into is the Business Department. 

“There is going to be a strong focus on business as we will look into the full picture of that program and make any updates that can improve the overall experience of those majors, such as the student learning outcomes, course structures, and the hiring and securing of some full-time faculty members,” Dr. Steele said. 

Over the last few months, the Business Department has seen a lot of changes. Holden Pate, a senior business major, said he expects Dr. Steele to excel in her new position as he knows her from a teaching perspective. Within this new position, Pate spoke on how he would like to see Dr. Steele present more information to the student body among their majors.  

Another student who is ecstatic about Dr. Steele’s new position is Elyanne Kenney, a junior psychology major, who said she is excited to have the new dean come from her major and looks forward to seeing how she will perform. Kenney explained that she thinks Dr. Steele will do great in this role because of her understanding of other majors within her assignments. 

“A lot of the classes she does expands psychology across other fields as well. One of her classes this summer is Psychology Movement, which has physical activity paired with psychology. She is expanding psychology across other disciplines so I think she can perform well across other majors as she has already done that in her classes,” Kenney said.  

It’s common to see concerns among college students within their majors, but Dr. Steele is hoping to combat that during her time as the dean. She said her overall goal is to provide support to students and faculty in these majors. Dr. Steele wants to provide transparent communication toward both groups and learn more about the academic experiences of the students as well.  

As she has been presented as the interim dean, it is unclear how long she will stay in this role. However, she said she is committed to serving the students, faculty, and administration of USAO as long as she is in this position. 


Gary Jackson is a fourth-year communication major at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma.

Ray Thomas-Lapham
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About the Contributor
Gary Jackson
Gary Jackson, Managing Editor
Gary is a fourth-year communication major from Kingston. He works as a resident assistant (RA). Gary began writing for The Trend in January 2022, and has interned with the Madill Record and Marietta Monitor newspapers. When Gary isn’t attending class and working, you can watch him making the game-winning catch at the ultimate frisbee game, hanging out with friends, or visiting with his family. Experience with The Trend: Managing Editor: May 2024 - present Sports Editor: Nov. 2023 - Apr. 2024 Senior Writer: Dec. 2022 - Nov. 2023 Contributing Writer: Jan. 2022 - Dec. 2022