Conover Sisters Scholarship

The Conover Sisters Scholarship was established in 2010 by Mildred Conover Watson and Una Conover Teter in honor of all four Conover sisters -- Mildred, Una, Shirley and Mary -- that altogether attended OCW for a decade (from 1946 to 1956). Preference is given to USAO students who are female American Indian, preferably an enrolled member of a federally recognized tribe.

Mildred graduated in 1950 with a degree in biology. She was a member of Hypatia, the Science Club and Who’s Who in American Universities and Colleges. She served as Student Government president in 1950, Seals president in 1949, and as sophomore class president. She was the editor of The Argus in 1949. After OCW, Mildred received a M.S. in Zoology from Tulane University in Louisiana (which was then an all men’s college, except for the graduate school). In this field, she worked in hematology at the University of Oklahoma Medical School and then helped develop the electron microscope lab at Tulane Medical School in New Orleans. Later, Mildred moved to Lexington, Kentucky, with her husband and served as president in organizations such as the Girl Scouts, the PTA, and the International Book Project. Mildred is still an active volunteer in her community.

Una Jo graduated in 1952 with a degree in art and was highly praised by OCW’s esteemed artist and long-time professor, Derald Swineford. She was a member of Sigma Delta, the Art Club, Seals, Chi Delta Phi and Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities. She served as Student Government president in 1952, associate editor of The Argus in 1951 and junior class president in 1951. She was named the Aquatic Queen in 1950. After OCW, Una developed maps for an oil company and was a layout artist for a Tulsa printing business. As a military wife, Una served as a perennial volunteer for the Girl Scouts, assisted her spouse with Cub Scout training, and remains one of a few women to receive the Boy Scout Silver Fawn award. She also organized trips for a travel club and eventually retired from the Indian Nations Boy Scout Council. She still resides in Tulsa.

Shirley Conover Weiss received her degree in English in 1954. She served as the treasurer of the Seals, vice president of Sigma Delta and Editor of The Argus. She was a member of the Literatae and the Inter-Club Council. After OCW, Shirley moved around frequently, living in Oklahoma City, Lawton, St. Louis, Missouri, and Newburyport, Massachusetts, where she and her husband restored a historic New England home built in the 1700’s.  Shirley held a variety of jobs, working for a bookstore, a telephone company, and a stock broker. In addition, she served as a social director at Ft. Sill for a time and later as a teacher who developed curriculum for her school. Like her sisters, she was an avid volunteer for the Girls Scouts and PTA and was also a member of the Historical Society. Shirley was known for her needlepoint creations and quilts.

Mary Conover graduated in 1957 with a degree in physical education. She was a member of the Seals and the Inter-Club Council. She served as vice president and treasurer of Sigma Delta, Junior Class treasurer and PEM Club vice president.  After OCW, Mary spent 35 years as a radiology technician for McBride’s Bone and Joint in Oklahoma City. She upheld the family tradition of volunteer work, serving on the board of directors for the Redlands Council Girl Scouts and receiving the Thanks Badge (the highest award given to Girl Scouts volunteers). Mary also loved to travel and was an officer of a large travel club. Some of her other hobbies included sewing, woodcarving, and continuing education classes in a variety of subjects.

The Conover girls were all raised mainly in Bartlesville, Oklahoma. However, their parents were from Anadarko so they were very familiar with the Chickasha area. Also, the girls had an aunt who graduated from OCW in 1935, so they followed in her footsteps and, according to Mildred, had some of the same professors. Mildred said that she was attracted to OCW because it was a small, liberal arts school and she liked it so much her sisters all followed. Furthermore, she adds that since her parents had relocated to Oklahoma City, they became friends and square-dancing partners with several faculty members and always had their doors open to the OCW family.

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