Wayne W. Miller’s career in vocational education has taken him all over the world — from Thailand to the Bahamas.
Wayne was born in Hydro, Oklahoma, on March 8, 1920. He graduated from Oklahoma A&M College in 1942 with a degree in animal husbandry. He earned a master’s in animal husbandry from the University of Illinois in 1957. Wayne served in the United States Marine Corps during World War II as a platoon leader and company commander, overseeing truck drivers and truck mechanics under combat conditions.
After the war, Wayne returned home and worked as assistant county agent in Muskogee, directing all 4-H club activities for boys and 4-H club animal projects. In 1946, Wayne joined Oklahoma State Tech, now known as OSU-Okmulgee, as head of the Division of Agriculture. In 1951, he was recalled to the Marine Corps and served as executive officer of the Motor Transport School at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.
He returned to Oklahoma in 1952 and became project leader in the animal husbandry office of the Agricultural Extension Service at Oklahoma A&M. Wayne rejoined Oklahoma State Tech in 1958, first serving as assistant director and later as director, until his retirement in 1984.
As director of OSU-Okmulgee, Wayne took the school from the post World War II “skills and knowledge” era into the computer age. He saw enrollment double, supervised the addition of new buildings and instructional equipment, and witnessed the granting of college credit for OSU-Okmulgee courses.
Wayne also developed a relationship with Thailand, and during the ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s several hundred Thai faculty attended OSU-Okmulgee. The link between the college and Thailand continues today.
Retirement was not the end of Wayne’s involvement in vocational education. From 1984-1985 he served as World Bank technical education consultant in Jamaica and the Bahamas. He also served as a visiting consultant to Thailand to help develop their vocational and technical college and visited Egypt and Saudia Arabia to prepare local students planning to attend OSU and OSU-Okmulgee.
In 1986, Wayne joined Oklahoma State University as program consultant for the Office of International Programs.
Mr. Miller was inducted into the CareerTech Hall of Fame in 1999.