NewsOK: Oklahoma City News, Sports, Weather & Entertainment

How the Olympics produced an OSU graduation ceremony

Oklahoma State professor of business Bruce Barringer presents American pole vaulter Cale Simmons his diploma on Ipanema Beach in Rio de Janeiro. [PHOTO PROVIDED]
Oklahoma State professor of business Bruce Barringer presents American pole vaulter Cale Simmons his diploma on Ipanema Beach in Rio de Janeiro. [PHOTO PROVIDED]

There's never been an Oklahoma State graduation ceremony quite like this.

Wednesday, I brought you the story of OSU professor Bruce Barringer and his daughter, Jenny Simpson. She became the first American woman to win an Olympic medal in the 1,500 meters, and of course, he was there to see it.

But he also was there to present a diploma.

American pole vaulter Cale Simmons recently completed a master's degree in the Spears School of Business's entrepreneurship program. He took all of his classes online while living and training in Colorado. But upon learning that Barringer, the head of the School of Entrepreneurship, was going to be in Rio to watch his daughter, Simmons asked if he could be presented his diploma there.

Wish granted. 

Barringer presented Simmons with his diploma on the iconic Ipanema Beach. They did it right there on the sand, with surfers and sunbathers around them and the Rio skyline in the background. 

Simmons was joined by his girlfriend, twin brother, sister and a friend.

"My time with Cal was super cool," Barringer said.

He also reported that Simmons, who went to high school in California and college in Colorado, was actually born in Oklahoma City. We'll definitely claim him and make sure to get him added to our "Olympians with Oklahoma connections" list for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

Related Photos
Oklahoma State professor of business Bruce Barringer presents American pole vaulter Cale Simmons his diploma on Ipanema Beach in Rio de Janeiro. [PHOTO PROVIDED]

Oklahoma State professor of business Bruce Barringer presents American pole vaulter Cale Simmons his diploma on Ipanema Beach in Rio de Janeiro. [PHOTO PROVIDED]

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-662936dd031c011a8699d4635328b6d2.jpg" alt="Photo - Oklahoma State professor of business Bruce Barringer presents American pole vaulter Cale Simmons his diploma on Ipanema Beach in Rio de Janeiro. [PHOTO PROVIDED] " title="Oklahoma State professor of business Bruce Barringer presents American pole vaulter Cale Simmons his diploma on Ipanema Beach in Rio de Janeiro. [PHOTO PROVIDED] "><figcaption>Oklahoma State professor of business Bruce Barringer presents American pole vaulter Cale Simmons his diploma on Ipanema Beach in Rio de Janeiro. [PHOTO PROVIDED] </figcaption></figure>
Jenni Carlson

Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football... Read more ›

Comments