From the dean’s desk: A&S, February 2024 - The University of Tulsa
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From the dean’s desk: A&S, February 2024

Photograph of Kirsten Olds
Kirsten Olds, Interim Dean

The University of Tulsa has offered graduate education since 1933, when master’s programs in education, biology, English, mathematics, and psychology were approved. Today, the Kendall College of Arts & Sciences in partnership with the Graduate School offers graduate degrees in anthropology (master’s), English (master’s and doctorate), museum science and management (master’s), and two areas of psychology – clinical (master’s and doctorate) and industrial/organizational (master’s and doctorate). These programs are integral to fulfilling our college mission: to disseminate knowledge at the highest levels, deepen students’ expertise in their chosen fields, and prepare our graduates for professional and personal advancement.

And the data indicate that we are successful in doing so. We currently have about 108 graduate students, and we have a 100% career placement rate for master’s and doctoral graduates in arts and sciences across all our programs. Employers for our 2022 graduates include Drake University, Missouri State University, Tulsa Historical Society and Museum, Advanced Strides Inc. (a fundraising/marketing company), Infoscitex (an aerospace and defense company), and the Osage Nation.

Our excellent outcomes are due to the quality of the students we enroll, the dedication and mentorship of our faculty, and the resources and opportunities we provide. For example, graduate students in our clinical psychology program train under licensed psychologists in our True Blue Neighbors Behavioral Health Clinic, where they provide pro bono therapy and psychological assessments for all ages. Based on the estimated need from the federal Health Resources and Service Administration, the number of psychologists currently practicing in Oklahoma only meets 37% of the state’s mental health needs. Our clinic helps address this gap by serving clients in Tulsa and rural Oklahoma with free services and  by training the next generation of psychologists.

Similarly, graduate students in our English master’s and doctoral programs work on academic journals issued by the college, such as James Joyce Quarterly and Tulsa Studies in Women’s Literature. In assistantships under the supervision of managing and faculty editors, they gain hands-on experience learning the processes of soliciting and reviewing manuscript submissions, editing and proofreading, compiling essays for print, determining themed issues, and so much more about the business of publishing. In our museum science and management program, students also apply what they gain from the classroom into projects for museums, zoos, historical societies, and other related organizations, such as in a course where they are paired with a local organization for which they write a grant. I could share similar stories of the combination of theory and praxis in our I/O psychology and anthropology programs with equally successful outcomes.

As with our broad disciplinary ranges in Kendall College, here, too, we exemplify the ampersand: excellence in undergraduate & graduate education, broad & deep, theoretical & applied, strength in our academic fields & community focused. We’ve maintained these traditions for 90 years and look ahead to another 90.

Embrace the ampersand,

Kirsten Olds
Interim Dean

Kendall College of Arts & Sciences