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MSC Speakers Bureau

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Murray State College is pleased to offer a speakers bureau as a way to provide local nonprofit groups, civic organizations, schools and churches with interesting speakers and top-quality programs.   The MSC Speakers Bureau is a public service provided at no charge. 

Speakers are employees or retirees of Murray State College and come from departments and disciplines across the college.  Speakers are available to discuss a wide variety of topics.  Additional topics and/or speakers may also be requested on an individual basis.

To request a speaker for your organization, please contact Communications Director Cheryl Phelps at 580-387-7123 or cphelps@mscok.edu.  At least two weeks’ notice is preferred, but all requests will be considered.

Departmental/Professional Expertise - Speakers also can discuss specialty areas related to their departments and professional expertise.



Speakers and Topics

Alan Burris, Arts and Humanities
aburris@mscok.edu

  • General Art Appreciation: How to look at art (and not say, “My kid could do that!”). 
  • Role of the Arts Community in Economic Development: How important are the arts in the community, economy, and education? Very! 
  • The Local/Regional Arts Scene: Be amazed at the number and variety of nationally and internationally known artists from the Southern Oklahoma area. 
  • Exhibits and Collection of the Goddard Center: Arrange for a walking tour explaining the changing current exhibit at the Charles B. Goddard Center galleries.

Sharon Burris, Language Arts
sburris@mscok.edu

  • Tapping Those Creative Juices: How to help make the writing muses strike! 
  • Reading and Writing Poetry: Why is it hard to read, and how can I make my own poetry fresh and new? 
  • Let’s Write a Novel! Getting started, fleshing out the story with characters and plot, and when to end it all. 
  • Basic Grammar for Business: Who or Whom? Which or that? And when do you use those pesky commas?

Cecil Carter, Economic Development
ccarter@mscok.edu

  • Community and Economic Development
  • Management for Non-Profit Organizations
  • Landscaping with native plants to attract birds


Ronnie Coppedge, Director of Media Center Operations 
rscoppedge@mscok.edu

  • History of the Freemasons: Interesting information on this fascinating group from the Middle Ages to the American Revolution. 

Derek Dodson, Behavioral Science 
ddodson@mscok.edu

  • The Fiction of Memory: Why memory is nothing like what we think it is, and how our brains fool us all the time.
  • The Truth About What Motivates People: Motivation is a multimillion dollar business. So, why are so many people doing it wrong?

Machelle Ellis, Director Financial Aid & Academic Support Services
mellis@mscok.edu

  • Federal Financial Aid and FAFSA Workshops

Dr. Yoon Kim, Humanities 
ykim@mscok.edu

  • Sustainable Beekeeping in Oklahoma: Learn about sustainable, global, chemical-free beekeeping from an experienced, award-winning beekeeper who resides in Oklahoma with millions of honey bees

Don Loving, Science 
dloving@mscok.edu

  • Oklahoma’s Environmental Riches: Why Oklahoma’s Wildlife Diversity is among the Richest of the states and is Known among Ecologists Worldwide.
  • We Dance When Sun Is in the Bear's Cave:  Listen to some of the sky-watching tales of the Lakota Sioux and learn how those stories affected their daily lives. 

Amy McCain, Education and Behavioral Sciences
amccain@mscok.edu

  • Leadership, child development and children's issues, stress management, positive guidance and other topics on request.


Dr. Rebecca Jacobs-Pollez, History 
rjacobspollez@mscok.edu

  • Medieval Women and Education: Have we come a long way, baby? Medieval European History: Fun and educational tidbits about an often misunderstood period. 
  • The Renaissance: Interesting info on this period - but how enlightened were they? 
  • Ancient Roman History: A fascinating glimpse into the past time of Roman glory…and infamy. 
  • NASA Astronaut Training and Procedures: Behind the scenes look at what it takes to have “the right stuff,” from a NASA insider. 
  • Aspects of American History: Just how well do we know our own past, really?

Don Mercer, Chief Information Officer/Executive Director for Instructional Technology
dmercer@mscok.edu

  • Starting My Own Business: The biz tips every entrepreneur should know to succeed. 
  • Investing in the Stock Markets: Where to start and how to work a stock market portfolio. 
  • What Do “Computer Guys” Really Do? An inside look at what the IT industry and professionals are all about. 
  • Various military-related topics: “So There I Was…” Stories and information about the daily workings of life in the military. 
  • Finding that Perfect Job: Individuals in today's job market will find themselves looking for new jobs many times over the course of their careers.

Dr. Philip Morton, Science 
pmorton@mscok.edu

  • Bugs, Bugs, All Around! Insects are the most diverse and abundant group of organisms on the planet! We can discuss the biodiversity and impact insects have on our world around us. 
  • The Edible Insect! As our planet grows our protein sources must diversify! We will explore what insects are edible and how delicious and nutritious they can be. 
  • Harmful and Helpful Arthropods: Insects and other arthropod relatives (such as spiders, scorpions, & ticks) are all around. Some are helpful, and some are harmful. Find out which ones are which, and how some are both!

Dr. Robbie Pearson, Business 
rpearson@mscok.edu

  • Getting to Know the Professions: This presentation introduces a corporate ladder, the job descriptions and salaries to students. (For middle and high school students.)
  • Job Seeking from the Recruiter's Perspective: This provides a recruiters perspective of what the job seeker is or is not doing correct. Discussion includes resumes, networking, and interviewing.

Kirk Rodden, Social Science 
krodden@mscok.edu

  • General Oklahoma History: Everything you wanted to know about the Sooner State, but were afraid to ask! 
  • Governor William H. Murray--”The Sage of Tishomingo”: Learn about this fascinating and colorful Oklahoma character who helped shape the Sooner State. 
  • The KKK in 1920s Oklahoma: Yes, at one point, the KKK was an important influence in Oklahoma. 
  • The New Deal, Great Depression, and the Dust Bowl in Oklahoma: Three events that would forever change the course of Oklahoma’s history. 
  • History of Murray State College: How this 100-plus-year-old college has changed Southern Oklahoma since beginning as an agricultural high school.

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Student Learning, Personal Growth, Professional Success, and Community Enhancement.