Dr. Kevin Sweeney

For the Love of History

Dr. Kevin Sweeney

Dr. Kevin Sweeney grew up on a ranch in Paoli, Oklahoma. After graduating high school, he enlisted in the Navy and had the opportunity to see a number of ancient sites in the Mediterranean and Persian Gulf. It was there that his love of history began.

After serving for four years, Sweeney retired from the Navy and earned a teaching certificate in history, political science and geography from the University of Oklahoma. For the next 11 years Sweeney coached basketball and track while earning his M.A. in Education from Northwestern Oklahoma. He eventually went back to school and earned his Ph.D. in history from Oklahoma State University. It was at this time that a familiar name around Wayland connected Sweeney with a new opportunity.

“Estelle Owens knew a professor of mine at Oklahoma State University,” Sweeney recalled.  “She called him and asked if OSU had any graduate students who could teach both geography and history, and he gave her my name.”

One of Sweeney’s favorite things about teaching at Wayland is that it allows him to “explore themes of faith” that he wouldn’t have been able to at a state school.

“In many ways we have more academic freedom than professors at the state colleges.”

Sweeney also said he enjoys the small class sizes, which allows him to get to know the students better than he could when he was teaching as an adjunct at Oklahoma State.

“My favorite thing about teaching is the relationships that I get to develop with my students, other faculty and staff here,” Sweeney said.  “I also absolutely love history.”

Outside of the classroom, Sweeney enjoys reading, playing guitar with his children or at church and jogging.