Clayton Smith

Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence
Oklahoma Mentor Day

Clayton Smith

Dean's Leadership Council, Gallogly College of Engineering, University of Oklahoma, Norman

Recent OU engineering graduate Clayton Smith, a structural analysis engineer at Boeing in Oklahoma City, has been honored by the Gallogly College of Engineering as the outstanding mentor in their Dean’s Leadership Council. The program matches outstanding engineering students with incoming freshmen and transfer students to provide guidance and academic support.

“Clayton is a prime example of what we envision our Dean’s Leadership Council Mentors to be,” said Julie Dahlgren, assistant to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Engineering. “He has built lasting relationships with his mentees and went above and beyond his recommended duties as a mentor. He also provided guidance and input during our Dean’s Leadership Council training sessions and led by example.”

One of Smith’s mentees, Dustin Arellano, said Smith was a tremendous help during his freshman year, providing advice on time management, how to handle stress, how to appeal to businesses with a proper resume and how to prepare for a career fair. Smith gave a tutorial to Arellano’s group in preparation for a final project and even assisted Arellano when he needed help understanding college finances.

When Arellano was sent to the hospital with a collapsed lung, Smith contacted the engineering college to help Arellano stay on course with his course requirements.

“With his help then and even now, I am still on track to start Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering classes next semester and will not fall behind,” Arellano said. “Without him I'd honestly would've been lost last semester and even more this semester considering the events I have gone through. … He helped one kid stick with engineering, OU, and even college in general.”

Smith said mentoring has taught him to listen more meaningfully, be a better friend, and dedicate his efforts to doing good things and inspiring others through long-lasting mentoring relationships.

“Mentoring changed my life,” Smith said. “Helping others is always a meaningful way to participate in the human experience, but to me, mentorship has been a great way to pass on insight from lessons I have learned and help someone with their future.”

About the Program:
The Dean’s Leadership Council in OU’s Gallogly College of Engineering consists of engineering students with excellent academic credentials, leadership and communication skills. They serve as mentors to freshmen and transfer engineering students, tutors for courses in engineering curricula, and student recruiters for engineering majors.