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Around the College

Retirement Celebration - Barbi DeLong

On Monday, May 8, current and former Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education faculty and staff gathered at Oklahoma Memorial Union to celebrate the retirement of Barbi DeLong after 36 years of service to the college and OU.

DeLong has held numerous roles in the college over the last nearly four decades. She has been a recruiter, an event organizer, building manager, scholarship organizer and so much more.  Collings Hall has a beautiful courtyard because of the work DeLong puts in from ordering furniture to working with landscaping.

Problem with the heat or AC in your office or classroom? DeLong takes that call and gets it fixed. Need a room? She books that. Scholarships? The tireless amount of work that goes into awarding more than $500,000 in scholarships to our students begins and ends with DeLong. She has had a lasting impact on this college and her absence will be noticed.

Boomer mascot standing with woman who is holding a football
Man in black shirt, woman in black and white dress, woman in white sweater sitting at table
Boomer mascot standing with two women who are holding food
A man and three women standing together and smiling
Boomer mascot sitting at a table full of people
Boomer mascot sitting with feet on table next to a woman in a black and white dress
woman in black and white dress standing with woman in white shirt as they smile for a picture
Boomer mascot standing with woman in black and white dress

Graduate Student Symposium

On Friday, March 3, the annual JRCoE Graduate Student Symposium took place in Collings Hall. Organized by the Center for Educational Development and Research, this one-day event offers graduate students the chance to share their work and collaborate with other students.

Man in a red shirt sitting at table speaking to a group
Picture of a classroom with students sitting at tables in a square
Woman in green coat sitting next to a woman in a white sweatshirt talking to people
Row of students sitting at a table in a classroom looking at pieces of paper

2023 Big Event

Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education students, faculty and staff gathered on Saturday, April 1, to take part in OU's annual Big Event.

The Big Event is the University of Oklahoma's official day of community service. Volunteers participate in this event to show their appreciation to the surrounding community by completing service projects such as painting, yard work and visiting with the elderly.


What makes The Big Event so big? Every spring for the last 20 years, over 6,000 students, faculty, and staff have volunteered at over 200 jobsites in a 40-mile radius that encompasses Norman and the Greater Oklahoma City metro area.

The JRCoE crew was assigned the Institute of Child Development as its job site. Here, everyone worked to beautify the outdoor space at the center, as well as fix up the inside. Trees and plants were planted; grass was rolled out in the playground area and inside spaces were cleaned and readied for expanded offerings.

Four students standing in the grass with shovels
A woman in a white shirt outside taking a selfie with students planting in the background
Students in the grass smiling for the camera as they roll out sod
Two women standing outside with their arms around each other smiling
Four students sitting at a table and smiling as they eat lunch
Three students outside holding a trash bag as they put leaves in it
Two students sitting behind a chainlink fence digging in the dirt
A group of people outside planting trees and plants

An Evening with Sherri Coale

Former Oklahoma women's basketball coach Sherri Coale led "An Evening with Sherri Coale" book discussion on Thursday, March 30, in the Sandy Bell Gallery at the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art.

A former teacher, Coale read excerpts from her latest book Rooted to Rise: The Redwood Legacies of Life-Anchoring. The book shares the indelible truths she's learned from the people she's crossed paths with in her life. From Coale's small-town roots to her award-winning courtside career, her life has been littered with remarkable connections. Each connection, small or large, is a vital part of Coale's journey.

As a coach, as a mother, as a daughter, and as a friend, she shares insight from those responsible for teaching her, as well as those she has been responsible for teaching.

After reading a passage about an impactful experience with her son and his kindergarten teacher, Coale answered questions from the audience and spoke about the importance of education in our communities now more than ever.

Woman in blue shirt shaking hands with woman in teal shirt as another woman and man look on
Woman in blue shirt facing the camera as she talks to two women
woman in blue shirt sitting at table signing books as she hands one to women in black top
Woman in blue shirt standing at podium talking as a crowd looks on