In the Fall of 1966 as a sophomore music major I transferred from Southwestern State University in my home town of Weatherford, Oklahoma to then Oklahoma Christian College. During pre-enrollment the following spring, I happened to be sitting in the student center snack bar when Dr. Darvin Keck* came by. (There was no faculty lounge in those days, and students would often visit with faculty members who had gathered there for coffee, conversation, and occasional competition at the newly installed and somewhat controversial pool tables.)
Dr. Keck, who had suffered me as one of his fall General Biology students, saw me and casually asked what courses I would be taking the next year. Now at that time OC had only a two year program in music, and although I knew I couldn’t complete my degree at Oklahoma Christian, I had made no real plans for the coming year. So, in the long standing tradition of sophomores everywhere, I had avoided the dilemma, and I confessed to Dr. Keck that while I supposed I could return to Southwestern, I didn’t really know what I was going to do!
Dr. Keck, paused, looked me in the eye and exclaimed the widely recognized word he specifically directed at those who were slow to catch on, generally uninformed, or just plain wrong. “Donk!” he cried, with a tone of voice indicating the solution to my problem should be obvious to me and was already solved in his own mind. He explained that I could take all of my upper level music classes at Central State College (now UCO) while I continued to live at OC and finished my general courses—an idea that had never occurred to me. How simple!
Those two minutes changed the course of my life. I would never have been able to join the OC faculty, would not have married my beautiful wife Lindy, would not have had Harold Fletcher as my life long mentor, nor would I have lived the great life I've had at OCwithout Darvin Keck’s genuine interest in me—a new student whom he had known briefly in only one course—and my future.
I know my story is not unique. Throughout OC’s history, caring actions like Darvin’s by many faculty and staff have been of great benefit to countless students. May it always remain so!
Professor of Music, retired
* Darvin Keck, Professor of Biology, came to OC in 1956 and taught science for 32 years. He was the recipient of the Gaylord Chair of Distinguished Teaching in 1976, and upon his retirement in 1988 was honored with the Distinguished Service Award. In 2003 he was named to the Oklahoma Christian University Master Teacher Hall of Fame.
My name is Jennifer Le. I was born and raised in Oklahoma City. During my senior year of high school, I committed to play tennis at Oklahoma Christian University. What I thought was an opportunity to continue my athletic career, God transformed into a lifechanging time of my life. I did not grow up going to church; however, went to a small Christian school from pre-school to 8th grade, then went to a public school for high school. Deciding to go to OC was tough decision for me because I wasn't sure if I wanted to go to college that was smaller than my high school. During my time at OC, I was able to thrive on and off the tennis court and get one of the best education. Not only did attending OC helped me athletically and academically, but it really helped me be intentional about my core values. OC helped me gain a foundation for my faith and my character. God has done amazing things through my time at OC that have prepared me to be successful in life. In so many ways, OC has helped me develop as a leader in my community, job and church. I could not be more thankful for all the coaches, professors and staff that supported me during my 4 years at OC. I have so many great memories and friendships born out of those special years of my life that I will cherish forever. Thank you for making OC such a special place.