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Faculty Mentors

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First-Year Student Mentoring Program

The First-Year Student Mentoring Program connects first-year students and faculty mentors in a dynamic mentoring relationship.

Students and faculty mentors meet in small groups outside of the class to discuss all aspects of life. Whether the discussion involves current events, how to be successful academically, scholarships, or where to find Norman's best pizza, students develop an important connection outside of class to faculty. 

Hugh Benson meets with students.

Learn More About The First-Year Student Mentoring Program

To sign-up for this program, students should discuss enrolling in UNIV 1210: Freshman Mentoring with their advisor. The program is offered at no cost to the student. UNIV 1210 is a non-credit, non-graded course.

Learn more!

Mentor Profiles


Dr. Boris Apanasov

Students interested in Math & All students

Dr. Boris Apanasov: Boris Apanasov joined OU as a full professor of Math in 1991. He is internationally known for his research in different areas of Mathematics, and has over 46 years of experience of Math research and teaching in Math Sci Res Institute in Berkeley/CA, Ohio State University, Royal Swedish, Finish and Russian Academies of Sciences, the most known European universities including Paris/France, Novosibirsk and Moscow /Russia, Barcelona/Spain, Berlin, Bielefeld and Bonn/Germany, Masaryk/Czech Republic; in Asia he held distinguished positions in the most established scientific centers in India, Japan, China and Korea; in Latin America he used Brazil, Chile and Mexico government’s grants for collaborative research and international conferences. His international engagement is always with students: through the OU Study Abroad and College of Intern Studies where he is an affiliated professor, through his Math books published around the world. He is author/editor of 12 books and over 120 articles. He is a part of mentoring program since its establishment in 2003.

Fredd Carr

Dr. Fredrick Carr

Out of state student & Students interested in Meteorology

Dr. Fredrick Carr: Known as Professor Emeritus within the School of Meteorology here at the  University of Oklahoma. Dr. Carr has won numerous awards for his work in Meteorology and his research interests are in synoptic, tropical and mesoscale meteorology, numerical weather prediction, data assimilation, and the use of new observing systems in diagnostic and numerical weather prediction. Dr. Carr has been a very committed professor to the mentoring program for many years. Highlights of his time with the program includes many trips to the National Weather Center and the Wichita Mountain with her mentoring students. 

Michelle Grunsted

Michelle Grunsted J.D.

Students interested in Business, Students interested in Law & First-year students

Michelle Grunsted, J.D. : Michelle “Shelly” Grunsted is the Executive Director for the Center for Student Success. Dr. Grunsted is an Associate Professor and teaches in the areas of undergraduate Legal Environment of Business, Real Property Law, Law of Business Organizations along with International Business Law at the graduate and undergraduate level. Dr. Grunsted also teaches Employment Law for the graduate programs.

Jenel Cavazos

Dr. Jenel Cavazos

First generation students, Small town students & Students interested in Psychology

Dr. Jenel Cavazos: Dr. Jenel Cavazos is an Associate Professor and Master Teacher in the Department of Psychology at the University of Oklahoma. As the Introductory Psychology Program Coordinator, she teaches an average of 1500 students per year, supervises sections of PSY1113 taught by graduate students, and conducts a graduate mentor program for teaching. Her emphasis areas include curriculum development, the implementation of technology in the classroom, and program assessment. Her research focuses on the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in Introductory Psychology. She has received several university teaching awards and was named a College of Teaching Excellence Faculty Fellow for 2017-18.

 Dr. Jenel Cavazos is an Associate Professor and Master Teacher in the Department of Psychology at the University of Oklahoma. As the Introductory Psychology Program Coordinator, she teaches an average of 1500 students per year, supervises sections of PSY1113 taught by graduate students, and conducts a graduate mentor program for teaching.

Dr. Robert Con Davis-Undiano

Dr. Robert Con Davis-Undiano

Latino students, Chicano students & All students

Dr. Robert Con Davis-Undiano: Robert Con Davis-Undiano is Executive Director of World Literature Today organization and is also the director of the Latinx Studies Program at OU. He is dedicated to innovative, interdisciplinary teaching and is a mentor and role model to Chicano and other minority students and faculty. Students credit him with changing their thinking, their attitudes, and their lives. Publishing in Chicano and American studies and literary criticism and theory, he is author, co-author, or editor of 12 books, including a textbook now in its fourth edition, and over 60 articles. He received the Rufus G. Hall Faculty Achievement Award in 1993 and the Kenneth E. Crook Annual Faculty Award in 1994, and The Sullivant Award for perceptivity in 2004. He has been faculty of the year several times for his work with the Latino fraternity and sorority on campus. He served as Dean of the OU Honor’s College from 2005-2009, and his most recent book Mestizos Come Home! Making and Claiming Mexican American Identity won the International Latino Book Award in 2018. In 2018, he was inducted into the Oklahoma Higher Education Hall of Fame.Robert Con Davis-Undiano is Executive Director of World Literature Today organization and is also the director of the Latinx Studies Program at OU. He is dedicated to innovative, interdisciplinary teaching and is a mentor and role model to Chicano and other minority students and faculty. Students credit him with changing their thinking, their attitudes, and their lives. Publishing in Chicano and American studies and literary criticism and theory, he is author, co-author, or editor of 12 books, including a textbook now in its fourth edition, and over 60 articles.

Dr. Eric Day

Dr. Eric Day

All students

Dr. Eric Day: Eric Day is a Professor of Psychology at the University of Oklahoma where he is part of the doctoral program in Industrial/Organizational (I/O) Psychology. His research interests span both personnel psychology and organizational behavior, including topics in personnel assessment, selection, training and development, leadership, and group dynamics.

Dr. Deborah Moore-Russo

Dr. Deborah Moore-Russo

Female students in STEM & All students

Dr. Deborah Moore-Russo: Dr. Moore-Russo works for Department of Mathematics and teaches a variety of mathematics courses. Her interests include Wrestling, ice hockey, any sport her kids are playing, any Buffalo professional team – no matter how bad their record,and all OU Sooner sports.

Dr. Christopher Hill

Dr. Christopher Hill

Students interested in Sociology/Criminology

Dr. Christopher Hill: I have been an Assistant Professor of Sociology since August 16, 2013. I currently teach Criminology, The System of Criminal Justice, and Juvenile Justice. For 11 years prior to my appointment at the University of Oklahoma, I served in several research and administrative positions in all three branches of state government. From April 2001 through December 2005, I worked as a Court Operations Consultant for the Florida Supreme Court’s Office of the State Courts Administrator.

Dr. Catherine Mintlet

Dr. Catherine Mintlet

Students who are working to pay for school and students interested in the Humanities or Gender Studies

Dr. Catherine Mintler: Dr. Catherine R. Mintler earned her PhD in English and Women’s and Gender Studies from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her scholarship in literary modernism explores connections between sartorial culture and formal innovation in the novel. She is the recipient of an NEH fellowship, an Annette Kolodny Award, and a Smith Reynolds Founders Fellowship from the Ernest Hemingway Foundation.

Since 2008, she has taught first year writing in the Expository Writing Program: Fashion & Identity, What Is Work?, American Gangster, Seeing Is Believing, Citizens, and Doppelgängers & Doubles. Her social justice work includes mentoring Veteran student writers at OU and incarcerated writers in the state of Oklahoma prison system.

Dr. Shad Satterhwaite

Dr. Shad Satterthwaite

Student Veterans

Dr. Shad Satterhwaite: My wife Valerie and I are the proud parents of three children, an awesome son-in-law and daughter-in-law, and a wonderful 2-year old grandson!  I teach courses in political science and in national security for the College of Professional and Continuing Studies where I also serve as associate dean.  I’ve been in the military for 31 years as a reservist and am currently assigned to the U.S. Army War College.

Dr. Oluwatobi Odeleye

Dr. Oluwatobi Odeleye

Students interested in chemistry or biochemistry

Dr. Oluwatobi Odeleye: My name is Oluwatobi (Tobi for short) and I am from Nigeria. I have a PhD in Chemistry (research area – Chemical Education) and I have been teaching at the University of Oklahoma for about 2 years now. Currently, the only course I teach is first semester general chemistry, but I will be teaching a graduate course in the fall focusing on pedagogical methods for teaching assistants. I love playing and watching tennis, and generally being active. I also enjoy reading.