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IN MEMORIAM

LONGTIME SOUTHWEST CENTER FOR HUMAN RELATIONS STUDIES MEMBER RICHARD HILBERT

Richard HilbertRichard Hilbert, professor emeritus of sociology and longtime member of the Southwest Center for Human Relations Studies Executive Committee at the University of Oklahoma, died Sunday, Aug. 22, at his home in Norman. He was 97.

Hilbert was born Dec. 19, 1923, in Reading, Pennsylvania, to Dorothy Heber Hilbert and Arthur Hilbert. He graduated from Reading High School in 1941. He spent time as a jazz musician before being drafted into the armed forces in 1943. He spent three years as a non-commissioned officer in the Army Medical Corps and began playing drums regularly.

In 1946, after leaving the Army, he moved to New York City, where he continued playing drums in jazz bands, including the Red Rodney combo. In 1949, he began taking college courses that eventually led to a doctorate degree and life as a sociology professor.

Hilbert joined the OU faculty in 1964 as chairman of the sociology department. His subject areas were deviance and social control, the criminal justice system, the sociology of religion and general theory. Before coming to OU, he taught at Allegheny College in Meadville, Pennsylvania.

He was involved with the Southwest Center for Human Relations Studies, a program of OU Outreach, serving as a member of the executive committee from 1964 until his death. For 30 of those years, he was chairman.

In addition to sociology and human relations, he regularly gigged in Oklahoma as a jazz musician, and after retirement in New Orleans. He monitored two elections, in Nicaragua in 1990 and in El Salvador in 1995. His involvement in Central American politics stemmed from his interest in Liberation Theology and the part it played in various revolutions here.

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NEW PROGRAM

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UNIVERSITY PARTNERSHIP TO FILL SKILLS GAP IN CYBERSECURITY, CODING

The bioscience, aviation, aerospace and energy industries have a large presence in Oklahoma, causing highly sensitive information to exchange hands every day and creating a need for highly skilled cybersecurity and coding professionals. The University of Oklahoma, in partnership with Fullstack Academy, is working to fill the state’s skills gap in these areas through a series of online bootcamps offered through OU Outreach/College of Continuing Education.

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