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Kesha Keith named as new director of communications for OU Division of Student Affairs

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The OU Division of Student Affairs welcomes Kesha Keith.

The OU Division of Student Affairs welcomed Kesha Keith as the director of communications for the university’s three campuses June 8, effective July 6. 

According to a tweet from David Surratt, the OU vice president for Student Affairs and dean of students, Keith will consult, plan and evaluate strategic planning, along with internal and external student affairs’ activities “to support media outreach and response” and student-centered programs housed in Student Affairs.

Keith, who has served as the OU’s director of media relations since July 15, 2019, said her vision in the new role is to effectively advance the important work, already being done, in the Division of Student Affairs. 

“The role will give me the ability to highlight programs and services offered across all three campuses,” Keith said. “Promoting all factors tied to a rewarding student experience will subsequently enhance it.”

As OU transitions into “normal operations” following the pandemic, Keith said she felt it was a good time to apply for a new role that directly promotes student-focused services, activities, departments and experiences through OU Student Affairs. 

Keith has 20 years of experience in the fields of television news, corporate and strategic communications, journalism, media and public relations and marketing, which she said she will use — along with experience in leadership skills, established partnerships and institutional knowledge — to showcase the Student Affairs’ departments, services and collegiate experiences. 

“Student Affairs offers a multitude of programs and services all aimed at improving student success and experience,” Keith said. “I want to educate the OU community and inform the public of the specialized services areas, such as career services, leadership and volunteerism activities, student life activities, student conduct, housing, and health amenities available.”

Keith — a National Emmy award winner for spot news coverage — said she believes in the importance of public relations to reinforce community relations while allowing organizations and their audiences to establish “trust and credibility” in their relationships. 

“In general, having an appointed communicator allows the sharing of information, building of brand reputation, creation of effective marketing and crisis mitigation,” Keith said. “There are hundreds of programs and services across all three campuses, and this role aims to support initiatives and effectively communicate the concepts created by Student Affairs.”

Marien López-Medina is an international student and United World Colleges alumna from Nicaragua. She is majoring in journalism and nonprofit organizational studies and works as summer news managing editor and fall assistant news editor.

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