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Officials at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College (NEO) are announcing that Mrs. Lou Watkins, chairwoman of the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical Colleges Board of Regents, will deliver the keynote address at this year’s commencement. The event is set for Thurs. May 11, at 7 p.m. at Red Robertson Field. In the event of rain, the ceremony will relocate to the Student Activity Center. Mrs. Watkins is the chair of the Board of Regents for the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical Colleges.

While raising three children in Ada, Watkins taught Political Science at East Central University for 14 years, and she Chaired that department her last 5 years at ECU. As a professor, she championed hands-on learning and teaching with newspapers as well as with the textbook. She taught leadership courses, sponsored five departmental student organizations, and raised the money to take seven classes to Washington, D.C., and two classes to New York City. She was named Oklahoma’s Outstanding Political Scientist in 1990 and three years ago, OSU’s Political Science Department recognized her as its 50th Anniversary Class “Distinguished Graduate.” She has served on the OSU/A&M Board for 20 years, having been appointed by three governors from both political parties.

She and her husband Wes, a retired 20-year Congressman, live in Stillwater, and all of their children and their four grandchildren live within a few miles. “Regent Watkins has dedicated her entire adult life to help others succeed through education,” said Dr. Jeff Hale, NEO president. “She has used her platforms as a college professor, political strategist, and university regent to help make Oklahoma a state where our people could have access to an affordable, high-quality education. We are excited and honored to have the Chair of the OSU-A and M Regents, Mrs. Lou Watkins, address the NEO faculty and 2017 graduates of Northeastern Oklahoma A and M College.”

The following list includes time and dates for NEO’s commencement activities: Thursday, May 4 • Medical Lab Technician and Physical Therapist Assistant Pinning Ceremony – 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. in the Calcagno Family Ballroom Wednesday, May 10, 2017 • American Indian Center for Excellence (AICE) Pinning Ceremony – 4:00 -5:00 p.m. in Kah-Ne Hall Thursday, May 11, 2017 • Nurses Pinning Ceremony from 2-3:30 p.m. in the Fine Arts Auditorium • NEO Commencement starts at 7 p.m. at Red Robertson Field

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