This fall, two new professors joined the science department at Oklahoma Christian University, Jarred Kelsey and Kate Walker. Kelsey is teaching organic chemistry and physical science and Walker is teaching anatomy, medical terminology and principles of biology.
Walker talked about the path that led her to this position.
“I worked as a physical therapist for a few years, but I knew my heart was in education,” Walker said. “God was leading me here. I don’t feel I have the credentials, but God placed me on this path to be more present with my family and work with a Christian community.”
As an alumni of Oklahoma Christian, Kelsey explained how grateful he was to be back.
“I was a student here from 2004 to 2008 and loved it,” Kelsey said. “When I got the call to come here and interview for an open position, I knew I had to come back to this great school.”
Due to its size, Oklahoma Christian allowed Walker to teach classes she connects with.
“I applied for some biology jobs at Oklahoma State University and the University of Central Oklahoma, but they didn’t give me the opportunity to teach topics I really wanted to and had real world experience with,” Walker said. “Because this place is small, everyone packs a punch. It’s beautiful.”
When asked what his favorite part of the job was, Kelsey said the community.
“The support of the other faculty in this department has really impressed me,” Kelsey said. “There is a spirit of wanting to see everyone succeed, and I have never seen that in a graduate school or at Cameron University.”
Walker shared the best part of teaching at Oklahoma Christian.
“The enthusiasm the students bring is one of the most rejuvenating things I see day in and day out,” Walker said. “Coming from a medical field where everyone is heavy-hearted, it’s so refreshing to see kids with happy hearts and excitement about their future. It helps me want to teach them better and really pour into them.”
Walker said her experience sets her apart from other professors at Oklahoma Christian.
“I feel like I bring an aspect to my teachings that a lot of other teachers can not,” Walker said. “I worked as a physical therapist for years and have seen and done many things in my practice. I have real world, hands-on experience and can teach my classes things they really need to know based on what I wish I had known for the workplace.”
Kelsey discussed one of his goals for the school year.
“I’m doing research work with biodegradable or biocompatible materials,” Kelsey said. “I hope to be able to present at the Celebration of Excellence that is held here in the spring with my students. Within the next year or so, I hope to get that ready to go.”
While the campus has evolved since attending here, Kelsey said the changes have created a greater sense of unity.
“Things have changed, but for the better,” Kelsey said. “All jobs have their problems, but it’s a different type of sensation working here. I believe with the spirit of cooperation that this place has, it makes it a more genuine workplace, and I will enjoy my time here.”
Kelsey shared a message to his current students.
“When I was a student here at Oklahoma Christian, a lot of people, teachers, staff and students impacted me,” Kelsey said. “I hope I can contribute to that for my students here. I want to help them in any way I possibly can.”