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General News

Remembering Lee Okster

Dear University Honors Program students,

Lee OksterI am writing to share some sad news that we in the UHP received a few days ago. Professor Lee Okster, who taught Origins and Evolution of Modern Thought for us several times in recent years, passed away early in the morning on February 14th. As many of you know, Professor Okster was diagnosed several years ago with a devastating form of brain cancer. Despite the formidable obstacles of his treatment, he chose to teach for us and for the Department of Philosophy during this time. He loved teaching and, as he once put it to me, his encounters with students “helped to remind him of why life was worth living.” I will never forget meeting Professor Okster for the first time and learning of his decision made in mid-career to return to the study of philosophy, something he had loved as an undergraduate. We in the Honors Program are grateful that at least some our students had the pleasure and good fortune to study with this man, a wonderful scholar and person.

There will be a memorial service to celebrate Professor Okster’s life on Saturday, March 12th, at 2:00 p.m., held at Trinity United Methodist Church in McLean, VA. Any student who wants to attend this service can. In addition, we will keep a card in the UHP front office in our Foggy Bottom townhouse for students to sign. I will bring it with me to the memorial service.

Maria Frawley