Christa Evans, a 2006 graduate of OBU, recently was awarded the Outstanding Law Student award from the Oklahoma Bar Association. Originally from Cherokee, Okla., Evans is a third-year student at the University of Oklahoma, where she serves as president of the OU Student Bar Association.
Each law school in the state chooses an outstanding graduate to be recognized by the Oklahoma Bar Association. This award is given for academics, community service and leadership. At the annual bar convention, an OBA representative presents the award to the selected student. The selected student's biography is published in the bar journal.
After graduating from OBU, Evans studied Spanish at La Universidad Autónoma de Guadalajara. She served two terms as president for the class of 2011. She volunteers as a certified mediator for the Oklahoma Supreme Court Early Settlement Program and sits on the Provost's Integrity Council. She has also made the Dean's Honor Roll and received the Cheadle Scholarship for leadership and community service.
After the OBA ceremony at which she received the award, Evans said she ran into John Raley Jr., whose father was president of OBU and for whom Raley Chapel is named. She had the opportunity to speak with him about his time at OBU. The connection that she felt to OBU during her time speaking with him brought back memories that she says will be with her forever. Evans said she is proud to represent OBU and is excited that the university is still changing lives.
During her time at OBU, Evans served as a resident assistant in Kerr dormitory. She also served as an officer in Phi Alpha Delta pre-law student organization and Sigma Tau Delta English honor society. Evans studied abroad while at OBU as a student in Oxford, England.
Evans said she looks back fondly at her time on Bison Hill, remembering the professors who left a lasting impression on her.
"Attending OBU was one of the best decisions I ever made," she said. "I grew up in a town of a thousand people, so I really appreciated the small class size and tight-knit campus community. I never felt like a number. The faculty members genuinely appreciate and value their students.
"Dr. Sidney Watson, Dr. Karen Youmans and Dr. John Powell especially made an impact on me. They always encouraged, challenged and supported me. I couldn't ask for better mentors or role models. I still have my Youmans-Powell shirt our Civ class made my sophomore year."
Evans said the liberal arts education she received on Bison Hill helped prepare her for continuing her education.
"The Socratic method used in Civ definitely prepared me for law school," Evans said. "OBU students have a better foundation than most other first year law students because they are accustomed to thinking critically on their feet, writing essay exams and handling large reading loads. This class widened my worldview. Instead of teaching me what to think, it taught me how to think. I changed my major mid-semester to English with a minor in history. Civ made me not just a better lawyer, but a better person."