OBU is pleased to welcome Melissa Hayt as director of student success. She assumed her duties effective Sept. 14.
The director of student success oversees the operation of the Milburn Student Success Center, including programs related to at-risk students, general academic support, student-athlete academic support, retention counseling and retention initiatives. The Milburn success center assists students of all majors, classifications and academic needs with comprehension of course material and development of study, research, analytical, reading, writing and critical thinking skills.
The Milburn Student Success Center offers help with writing assignments and academic support in core subjects as well as mathematics, chemistry, physics, accounting and economics. The center's staff also provides aid in research, organizing study groups and academic feedback. In addition, the center provides academic advising to those undeclared or in the process of changing majors.
Hayt completed a Bachelor of Arts in Corporate Communication from the University of Central Oklahoma. She then completed a Master of Education in Adult Education, Training and Development, also from UCO. She is currently working on a Doctor of Philosophy in Higher Education, Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from Oklahoma State University.
Prior to joining the staff at OBU, she served as the manager of transfer student support at UCO. She previously served in other positions at UCO, including coordinator of academic programs, coordinator for student leadership development and graduate assistant for student leadership programs.
Hayt says she was drawn to OBU because of the environment on campus. "I wanted to be a part of Christian higher education and encouraging students not only in academics but in their spiritual lives as well. I am excited to meet all of the great students at OBU and find ways to encourage and support them throughout their time here on campus. Each of these students comes to the success center looking for something different and I look forward to helping them find the support they need, be it academic, social or spiritual."
"The most significant aspect of my job as director of student success is working with the students who are employed by the success center as well as the students who visit the center. It is such a valuable resource to OBU and I feel that my primary role is to continually evaluate and improve the services provided here," she said.
Hayt sees a bright future for the impact the success center makes on campus, and she has a vision to see that impact grow. "I see the potential for growth within the center as we increase usage for students by providing expanded opportunities for them to get support in all of their subjects here at OBU. I am grateful for the strong foundation that was laid by my predecessor, and I look forward to building upon the strong program that is already in place."
Bruce Perkins, associate vice president for enrollment management, is thrilled to have Hayt on campus. "We are pleased to welcome Melissa Hayt to the OBU staff. Her skills, experience and attitude will encourage and guide our students both academically and personally. We look forward to witnessing the positive impact she will make in their lives."
Hayt grew up in Midwest City, Oklahoma, where she and her husband, Dusty, currently reside. He is a recent graduate of the OBU MBA program. Her hobbies include hanging out with students from the college and career Sunday School class that she and her husband teach. She also enjoys playing with her two dogs, working on her dissertation and attending Broadway musicals as often as she can.