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Officials at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College (NEO) announced Mr. Orland Aldridge as the recipient of this year’s Outstanding Retired Faculty award. Traditionally recognized in coordination with NEO Football Homecoming, NEO is planning to recognize this year’s honorees during a spring 2021 ceremony. Mr. Aldridge began teaching mathematics at NEO in 1982 as the culmination of a career in higher education teaching and coaching. Moving to NEO to be closer to family, Aldridge found an environment of academic excellence that engaged both students and faculty on campus.

While at NEO, he formed a close working relationship with the Division Chairman Eugene Prevett. While at NEO, Aldridge took an active role in student recruitment, often traveling to area schools to encourage potential students to apply and identifying potential scholarship recipients. Outside of the classroom, Aldridge served on the Faculty Senate and as the chair of the United Way Committee. His service allowed him to become familiar with most instructors on campus and develop campus camaraderie.

Aldridge had the unique experience of welcoming his son as a colleague in 1991, when current instructor Jeff Aldridge joined the mathematics faculty at NEO. The pair would continue to teach alongside one another until the elder Aldridge retired in 2001. Aldridge and others on campus established the Darlene Aldridge Pre-Engineering Scholarship after the passing of his wife in 2014. The scholarship continues to support mathematics and pre-engineering students from the Chouteau area, where both Orland and Jeff still live. “It is truly an honor to recognize Mr. Orland Aldridge as this year’s recipient of the Outstanding Retired faculty award,” said Jennifer Walker, executive director of the NEO Development Foundation.  “Mr. Aldridge positively impacted the lives of countless students during his tenure at NEO and took great pride in the success of his students.” For more information, contact Jordan Adams at Jordan.m.adams@neo.edu.

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