Maria U Okeke

Division Of Health P/E & Recre


Office Hours

Room 444 Al Lawson Center

Monday and Wednesday: 12:05 PM – 1:05 PM
Tuesday and Thursday: 10:45 AM – 12:00 PM

Current Semester Schedule

Health for Modern Living (HSC 1100-001) • Mon. Wed. Fri. 9:05 AM – 9:55 AM
Health Promotion (HSC 3710-001) • Mon. Wed. Fri. 11:15 AM – 12:05 PM
Community Health (HSC 3202-001) • Mon. Wed. 2:30 PM– 3:45 PM
Health for Modern Living (HSC 1100-002) • Tue. Thu. 9:30 AM – 10:45 AM


About Me

Dr. Maria Okeke is a professor of health education in the Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation at Florida A&M University. For over 29 years, she has developed and taught numerous health education courses at FAMU. Her research areas include HIV/AIDS education, violence prevention, health disparities among Black and African Americans, sex education, and contraception attitudes and practices among Nigerian college students. Dr. Okeke is very passionate about community service, and she believes in giving back to the greater community. Over the past 20 years, she has traveled to Nigeria to educate rural students, distribute school supplies and uniforms, awarding scholarships to less fortunate children and brilliant students. As the President of Arondizuogu Daughters Association USA (ADA-USA), she has played a pivotal role in renovating three rural schools in Arondizuogu, Nigeria. Dr. Okeke and ADA-USA have collectively articulated and clarified the transformative potential of philanthropy in addressing rural global school challenges and opportunities for change.


Work History

  • Community Health Education
  • Violence Prevention Education
  • HIV/AIDS & COVID-19 Education at HBCUs.
  • Community Service as a pivotal component of college education
  • Community Health Education with a focus on minority health and health disparities among Black and African Americans, and roles of civic organizations in improving school-based education in a rural Nigerian community


  • Ph.D. in Health Education/Public Health, the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN
    Minor: Child and Family Studies, emphasis on family therapy | 1987

  • MPH in Community Health Education, the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN | 1985

  • BSN in Nursing, RN Certification, Georgia College, Milledgeville, Georgia | 1983

Work History

  • Professor of Health Sciences, Florida A&M University, COE, Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, Tallahassee, FL. | Fall 1998- Present

  • Associate Professor of Health Sciences, Florida A&M University, Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, Tallahassee, FL. |. 1993-98

  • Assistant Professor of Health Sciences, Georgia Southern University, Department of Health Sciences, Statesboro, Georgia. | 1988-93

  • Staff Nurse (RN), Dekalb General Hospital, Oncology, Department, Decatur, GA. | 1987-88

  • Graduate Teaching Assistant, The University of Tennessee, Division of Health and Safety, Knoxville, TN. American Red Cross Certification, First-Aids, and Emergence Care. | 1985-87       

  • MPH Field Experience, Kirkwood Health Center, Maternal and Infant Health Division, Atlanta, GA. | Summer, 1985

  • Nurse Technician, St. Joseph Hospital, Oncology Floor, Atlanta, GA | 1984

  • Graduate Nurse, High Risk, Post-Partum Ward, Grady Memorial Hospital, Atlanta, GA | Summer, 1983

  • Volunteer Graduate Nurse, Maternal and Infant Education, Arondizuogu, Nigeria, Department of Health | Fall 1983 

Academic Accomplishments

Dr. Maria Okeke has received numerous (over 51) awards, honors, certificates, and letters of recognition for public, professional, and religious services not limited to these mentioned here:

  • 2022 Recipient of a plaque presented by St. Eugene Catholic Mission & Students Center during its 70th anniversary for extraordinary service and leadership to the Church formation, development, and for serving as the advisor for the FAMU Catholic Student Association for 16 years
  • 2015 Recipient of FSU College of Medicine HIV/AIDS Community Advocate Award, for Exemplary Service in Advancement of Research and Awareness of HIV/AIDS in the Big Bend Area.
  • 2013 Recipient of AAHE Certificate of Appreciation for service on the Multicultural Involvement committee for two years
  • 2012 Recipient of a plaque presented by The Association of Ndi Igbo in Tallahassee (ANIT) for excellence in service to the Nigerian Igbo community.
  • 2009 Recipient of a plaque presented by SASHA in recognition for extraordinary Leadership and dedication to HIV/AIDS prevention at FAMU. 
  • 2007 Certificate of Appreciation presented by the Chair C.O.E. Apple Pinning Committee for service well done.
  • 2007 Certificate of Appreciation presented by FAMU Delta Sigma Theta Sorority for Serving as the program keynote speaker for the commemoration of United Nations Day.
  • 2005-2006 Recipient of teacher /advisor of the year award Florida Agriculture and Mechanical University. 2005 Recipient of AAHE Certificate of Appreciation for serving on the award committee for three years.
  • 2005 Manchester Who is among Executive and Professional Women in Nursing and Health Care. Appointed as a biographical candidate and was approved.
  • 2005 Recipient of a plaque, presented by St. Eugene Catholic Chapel and Student Center, for ten years of service as a member of the pastoral council
  • 2004 Recipient, Superior Accomplishment Award, FAMU Employee Recognition Program.
  • 2004 Recipient, Award of Excellence in Service to Nigerian Schools, APU National Congress of North America (June 25th)
  • 2004 Certificate of appreciation presented by the Great Recoveries for excellent service as a board member for over 7 years
  • 2003 Recipient of Student Advisor/Counselor of the Year Award, St Eugene’s Catholic Student Chapel, FAMU Campus Ministry
  • 2003 Certificate of Appreciation Conferred to Maria Okeke by American Association for Health Education (AAHE) in recognition of service as Chairperson of Scholarship Committee (2001-2003)
  • 2000 Certificate of Appreciation presented by FAMU Office of International Program for
  •  Outstanding Contribution during the International Awareness Week (March)
  • 2000 Plaque presented in Appreciation for supporting “Be Smart, Don’t Start” Anti- Tobacco Program by Smith-Williams Service Center.
  • 1999 Recipient of FAMU Teacher Incentive Program Award
  • 1999 Certificate of Appreciation conferred by AAHE in Recognition for Service as a member of the Multicultural Involvement Committee (1996-1999)
  • 1999 The City of Tallahassee presents a plaque for Outstanding Community Service in Health Education to Senior Citizens at the CWSC, Bond Community.
  • 1999 A plaque presented for Many Years of Services rendered to Great Recoveries Inc. /Bond Day by Day Program (May)
  • 1999 Appreciation Award presented by Smith-Williams Service Center in recognition for Outstanding Public Service to the City of Tallahassee, Stamp on America Women’s Forum
  • 1998 Recipient of Advanced Teacher of the Year Award, FAMU ($2000 received)
  • 1998 College of Education Certificate of Recognition for the Advanced Teacher of the Year Award
  • 1996 Recipient of Teacher/Advisor of the Year Award, FAMU (Received $2,000)
  • 1994 Certification of Appreciation, Florida Association of Health, Physical Education, Recreation, Dance and Driver Education Conference (FAHPERD)
  • 1993 Nominated for Black Image Award
  • 1992 Award of Excellence in Service to the University and Community, Georgia Southern University (Received $4,000)
  • 1992 College of Health and Professional Studies Excellence in Service Award, Georgia Southern (Received $100)
  • 1992 Certification of Appreciation, Blitch Street after School Program
  • 1991 Black Caucus Image Award for Humanitarian Services
  • 1991 President Bush’s 1000 Point of Light Award - Blitch Street after School Program, Statesboro, GA
  • 1990 Dean Day Smith Service to Mankind Award, City of Statesboro, GA
  • 1990 Health Service Award, Rural Health Association (Okeke and Community Health Students)

Academic Accomplishments

  • Personal Health
  • Health Promotion for Majors
  • Community Health
  • Preventive Approaches to Substance Abuse
  • Advanced First Aids and Emergency Care
  • Human Sexuality
  • School Health, K-12
  • Consumer Health
  • Mental Health and Counseling
  • Environmental Health and Safety