Speech and communications professor Julie Corff said she is surprised and delighted to receive the Elven Gray Award.
“As I read about what type of man Elven Gray was, I am humbled anyone would perceive that I emulate his character traits,” Corff said.
Those eligible to receive the award must have served at least five years at OCCC and be nominated by a peer.
Human Resources Representative Elaine Svec said an Elven Gray recipient must embody the devotion and spirit that gained him recognition.
All who met him recognized Gray’s total devotion to the institution. The criteria says:
“The recipient has displayed the spirit of Elven Gray by: Consistently going the extra mile; Displaying a friendly, positive attitude; Exhibiting devotion to the College; Becoming an inspiration to others.”
Corff is OCCC alumna. She graduated with an associate degree in broadcasting and later received a bachelor’s degree in public relations from the University of Central Oklahoma. She continued her education at Oklahoma State University where she earned a master’s degree in Speech Communication Consulting.
Corff got her start as an educator at UCO when someone she worked with suggested she look into teaching.
“I immediately researched the different universities and programs offered, and applied at OSU,” Corff said. “I was offered the speech teaching assistant job for two years while I was in the program. I fell in love with teaching and being with my students.”
One thing Corff said she loves is her communication classes. Recently, she designed a new technology using her iPad, and she’s using that technology in her public speaking courses.
“The Interpersonal Communication class is near and dear to me because it changes lives for the better,” Corff said.
Later this year, Corff will share her ideas and technology at the NISOD Conference, The National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development, an organization with a membership of more than 700 community colleges around the world.
Attending classes here, and meeting her husband of 22 years in an OCCC summer theater production inspired her to teach here.
“I have always desired to teach at OCCC so that I could give back what so many professors poured into my life,” Corff said, “Especially Dr. Linda Thornton, Professor Gwin Faulconer-Lippert, and Professor Sue Hinton.”
The veteran educator has taught for more than 22 years. She taught as an adjunct professor for 14 of those years, and is going on her sixth year as full-time faculty.
“[Winning this award means] that my motto in life proves true: “If it is in your power to do good to someone, always choose to be good. People are important and we should treat them as such.”
To contact Priscilla Colley, email firstname.lastname@example.org.