From the Chancellor
Summer 2018

Dear Friends:

This letter is written to you in mid-summer, just after finishing our most recent fiscal year.  Long gone (if they ever existed) are the days when most folks at universities relaxed and took it easy until the students returned in the fall. For those of us at OU, the last year ended and the new one has opened with a crescendo of events and activities. OU has been a year-round educational institution for decades, so this is not exactly new here.
 
While our audit work is just beginning, it appears that we will have completed the 2017-2018 year with a new record in total revenues, eclipsing the $52 million mark for the first time in our history—nearly 40% above the prior year. This was driven by significant growth in our total student enrollments, particularly at our campus in Kansas and in Arizona with the launch of our OUAZ Surprise site.
 
Another major factor contributing to this growth was the best year in our history for donations, including in any capital campaign year. Friends like you contributed over $10 million, quite a remarkable sum for an institution that just ten years ago had seen only two gifts in its history over a million dollars.
 
As you might imagine, results like these buoy the spirit and lift our people. More importantly, they make an enormous difference in the lives of our students as they enhance talent, programs and facilities and the quality of the student experience.  We are grateful for this on many levels.
 
We are also grateful that we have completed our search for a new president for our Ottawa campus location. Dr. Reggies Wenyika began his work on July 16 to help lead our 153-year-old original campus to new heights and new outcomes. You can read about him and his family extensively in this issue of Spirit Magazine, but I will just say that myself and our team here, as well as the Board, feel very blessed to be welcoming someone of his stature and capability to our leadership team. He will be a game changer and most capable of continuing to build on the tremendous work done by his predecessors, Dr. Dennis Tyner and Dr. Terry Haines, both of whom have contributed mightily to bringing our home campus to outcomes not enjoyed since the early 1970s.
 
You will enjoy Reggies and his equally impressive spouse Bongi, and will appreciate their intellect, energy, creativity, and heart. I am already enjoying the process of introducing him to this wonderful institution that is Ottawa University and the broader Ottawa constituencies and look forward to welcoming him as a key member of our leadership team for years to come.
 
There is great energy and excitement about this new year on so many fronts: academically, in the athletic world, in the development of some wonderful new facilities, and so much more.  You, our friends and alumni, are central to making that happen as you always have. Thank you for that and so much more.

In the OU Spirit,

Kevin C. Eichner
’73, MBA, LLD ’08
 

 



Ottawa University Graduates First Engineering Class

Posted by Janae Melvin on August 6, 2018 in

During the 153rd Commencement ceremony at Fredrikson Chapel, the first engineering majors at Ottawa University graduated. At the start of Fall 2017, there were 34 engineering students.

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OUAZ Introduces Club Team Activities

Posted by Janae Melvin on August 6, 2018 in

Ottawa University Arizona is offering four new club team activities beginning in the 2018-2019 school year. The club teams are part of OUAZ’s unique education model that allows students to pursue their academic and career goals while participating in new and exciting activities.

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Wisconsin receives SEVIS Approval

Posted by Janae Melvin on August 6, 2018 in

The International Executive MBA program is expanding at Ottawa University with the recent announcement that the Brookfield campus had received approval as a SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System) location.

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Make Your Paths Straight: Onisim Matei

Posted by Janae Melvin on August 6, 2018 in

Onisim Matei stands out for several reasons. He’s the ninth of 12 children born to Romanian immigrants who came to America to escape communism. He is male in a female-dominated profession. Most importantly, Onisim Matei is different because when faced with the realization he was in the wrong...

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A Breath of Fresh Air: Mike Douglas

Posted by Janae Melvin on August 6, 2018 in

We all say it, “God has a plan for my life.” It rolls off the tongue nicely, doesn’t it? But what if you were born with a lung disease so severe that doctors announced you’d never attend school and your only hope was a lung transplant? What if you endured five surgeries by the time you were...

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