Dr. Doug Melton, pastor of Southern Hills Baptist Church in Oklahoma City, and Kim Swyden, executive director of ministries of Jesus in Edmond, will serve as guest speakers during Spring Commencement ceremonies at Oklahoma Baptist University. The ceremonies will take place May 14 and 15 on the OBU campus in Shawnee.
The University divided Spring Commencement into five separate ceremonies, in order to hold the events inside Raley Chapel’s Potter Auditorium, maintain physical distancing, and allow students to each invite up to five guests each for the ceremonies.
Swyden will speak Friday, May 14, at 2 p.m. during the ceremony for the College of Nursing. Melton will speak during all four ceremonies held Saturday, May 15. Those ceremonies include the Divisions of Teacher Education, Behavioral and Social Sciences, and Language and Literature, at 8:30 a.m.; the Hurley College of Science and Mathematics and the Division of Health and Human Performance and Exercise Science, Sports and Recreation, at 12 p.m.; the College of Business and the Hobbs College of Theology and Ministry, as well as interdisciplinary degree candidates, at 2 p.m.; and The Angell College of Fine Arts at 4 p.m.
Melton has served as pastor of Southern Hills Baptist Church since 2000. He previously served at OBU for 14 years, with the final seven years of his tenure being in the role of dean of students. He earned a bachelor’s degree from OBU in 1983. He then earned both a Master of Science and Ph.D. in higher education from the University of North Texas. He has served as president of the Oklahoma Pastors Conference and the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma (now Oklahoma Baptists). He has also served on the board of directors for Oklahoma Baptists, the Southern Baptist Convention executive committee, and the International Mission Board board of trustees.
Swyden serves as executive director of Ministries of Jesus, a 501c3 charitable ministry healing spirit, soul and body, located in Edmond. He previously served as executive pastor at Henderson Hills Baptist Church. Prior to joining Henderson Hills in 2002, he spent 27 years in the oil and gas industry, serving in several positions with various companies, including his own consulting business. He earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Oklahoma in 1972. Following college, he served in the United States armed forces, before transferring to the army reserve where he served until 1979. He currently serves on the boards of both Integris Health Edmond and Christ Community Health Coalition. He also serves on the advisory board for the OBU College of Nursing and consults with non-profits on board governance.
Face coverings will be required for all in attendance and temperature screenings will take place at chapel entrances for all attendees. Doors will open for guests approximately 30 minutes prior to each ceremony, following sanitization from the previous ceremony. Guests with accessibility needs may contact the Student Life office at 405-585-5250.