Nancy Hector -- 100 Alumni You Should Know

Nancy Hector

Nancy Hector -- 100 Alumni You Should Know


When Nancy Hector was in junior high, graduates from the Oklahoma College for Women would visit her school, and she recalls being impressed that there were women from all 50 states attending OCW. Now, 45 years after graduating from the Oklahoma College of Liberal Arts, she gets the privilege of teaching students from all over the world at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma.

After graduating from OCLA, Hector went on to earn her master’s from Phillips University and a doctorate in education from Nova Southeastern University. She is currently a professor of education and coordinator of field-based experiences at USAO.

“My two greatest career accomplishments are receiving my doctorate and teaching at USAO for 20 years,” she said. “I love teaching at USAO. I love helping them (students) grow on a personal level, and it’s such a joy to see their growth over the semester and help them if they need it.”

Hector spends a lot of time trying to figure out how to help the students struggling in her classes, and the small sizes of the USAO classrooms allow her to do just that. She also enjoys the team teaching at USAO. In 2013 she, along with other teacher education faculty, initiated co-teaching in the education and speech-language pathology division at USAO.

“I believe that learning there is more than one way of thinking is important for students to become well-developed individuals,” she said.

Hector cares deeply for her student’s success. During her classes, she spends time trying to learn about her students and their strengths and weaknesses so she can place them with a compatible teacher when they go student teach.

“Student teaching should be an enjoyable experience, and I want to place them with a teacher who will help them grow in the right ways,” she said.

When Hector attended OCLA, there were classes similar to the current IDS courses, called core classes. She enjoyed the diverse learning that came with the core classes and feels that those courses broadened her mind. She now tries to translate that into her classes to hopefully have a similar effect on her students.

Many of the courses that Hector took were discussion-based and as she learned to speak in front of her peers she became more confident. Of all her classes at OCLA, public speaking helped her the most. Taught by an English professor Hector referred to as “Hal,” she was initially terrified of speaking in front of others.

“He made such a comfortable learning environment that I ended up adding English as a minor because I enjoyed [the course] so much,” she said.

During the OLCA days, the university hosted concerts and speakers that the students could attend. Hector readily says that this is what prepared her be more opened minded and subsequently a better citizen.

“When I was here, I was taught to be open minded; to always learn; to keep thinking, looking and researching. USAO really is the college for the curious mind.”

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