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The University of Central Arkansas has selected 75 incoming first-year students as Honors Scholars and 30 incoming first-year students as University Scholars for the fall semester.

The students entering the UCA Norbert O. Schedler Honors College in Conway have an average high school grade-point average above 4.0 and an average ACT college-entrance exam score of 29.

The incoming Honors College class includes 68 students from Arkansas and seven students from out of state. Some of them — about a quarter of the group — are the first in their families to go to college.

The University Scholars class includes 26 students from 23 Arkansas cities and four students from out of state.

University Scholars, which is in its second year, is an honors program that operates alongside the 37-year-old Norbert O. Schedler Honors College.

UCA received nearly 900 applicants for the two scholars programs. Candidates were considered based on academic performance, service and leadership potential.

The names and hometowns of each student, followed by their high school name, are as follows:

Honors scholars

Caden Darby, Bentonville, Life Way Christian School

Brianna Frawley, Fort Smith, Southside High School

Thomas Gray, Springdale, Springdale High School

Ashley Hansen, Bella Vista, Pea Ridge High School

Zachary Humphrey, Alpena, Alpena High School

Vivian Norris, Fayetteville, Fayetteville High School

Kathryn Pearson, Fort Smith, Northside High School

Mikelle Porter, Van Buren, Van Buren High School

Kayla Roat, Bentonville, Bentonville High School

Jennifer Self, Bentonville, Arkansas Arts Academy High School

Allison Shook, Rogers, Rogers Heritage High School

Lauren Sights, Greenwood, Greenwood High School

Cameron Triplett, Fort Smith, Northside High School

Terry Uhm, Fort Smith, Southside High School

Delaney Van Wilpe, Rogers, Rogers Heritage High School

Noah Walker, Hackett, Greenwood High School

McKennah West, Ratcliff, Ozark High School

Makenzie White, Fayetteville, Har-Ber High School

Sarah Withers, Berryville, Berryville High School

University scholars

Harrison David, Rogers, Rogers Heritage High School

Sian Fox, Bentonville, Bentonville West High School

Haylee Hawbaker, Siloam Springs, Siloam Springs High School

Autumn Kennedy, Spring-dale, Shiloh Christian School

Delwin Portillo, Berryville, Berryville High School

Stella Radke, Ozark, Ozark High School

James Youngs, Rogers, Rogers Heritage High School


McKenzie Blanchard of Siloam Springs, Hannah Halmes of Ozark and Kurt Lentine of Springdale were among 14 incoming Arkansas Tech University students selected to participate in the 2019 Freshman Leadership Experience Aug. 14-17 prior to the beginning of the fall semester.

The program provides participants with an opportunity to engage with other ATU freshmen, current campus leaders, university staff and other leadership experts.

Anticipated outcomes for FLE participants include making connections prior to the first day of class and establishing a leadership and involvement plan for their first year at ATU.



University of Central Arkansas student Marco Ramirez has been awarded a scholarship from The Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations to attend its 2019 Summit on Diversity and Inclusion to be held in Chicago on Nov. 8.

A senior from Bentonville who is double majoring in public relations and communication, Ramirez is one of eight diverse public relations students chosen from universities across the country, and he is the only student chosen from Arkansas.

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I am super excited to represent my university and the state of Arkansas in Chicago for the Plank Center events,” said Ramirez. “The UCA School of Communication helped prepare me for this opportunity by not only providing mentoring and guidance but also by supporting my passion for diversity and inclusion. The faculty from the School of Communication taught me how to articulate who I am and understand my self-worth.”

Each Plank Center scholarship, valued at approximately $1,800, covers the costs of travel, accommodation and tickets to the Summit on Diversity and Inclusion, along with two other events sponsored by The Plank Center, the “Milestones in Mentoring” Gala and the Student Mentoring Session.

During the summit, attendees will gain a deeper understanding of the profession and learn about the barriers to and best practices for growing, mentoring and retaining diverse populations within the field.

The “Milestones in Mentoring” Gala honors leaders throughout the profession who, by word and deed, have demonstrated a superior commitment to mentoring others, and who are committed to accelerating the success of others in the field.

Co-sponsored with De-Paul University’s PRSSA Chapter, the Student Mentoring Session provides an open-dialogue setting for the Milestones in Mentoring honorees to share their personal experiences and provide over 50 students with advice on the public relations industry.


Kasha Katrece Pinkerton of West Fork has received a master of science in nursing from the University of Alabama during summer commencement Aug. 3.


Clifford Ethan Bird of Fort Smith was named to the University of Alabama dean’s list for summer 2019, with a 3.5 GPA or above.



Jennifer Hardaway of West Fork s among Southeast Missouri State University’s summer 2019 graduates.

Hardaway graduated with a master of arts with a major in public history: historic preservation option.



Incoming students at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law began their first fall semester on Aug. 10 with a day of public service at Booker T. Washington Elementary School on South Main Street in Little Rock.

After a welcome from law school administration, 161 students converged on Washington’s campus in record-breaking rain. Through it all, the students, their group leaders and Bowen Law School staff completed projects both inside and outside the elementary school.

Local students who participated in the project included AshLee Bradshaw of Fayetteville, Zachary Cumbie of Huntington, Daniel Curtis of Fayetteville, Drew Curtis of Harrison, Brian Fields of Fort Smith, Jackie Hancock of Rogers, James Harris of Springdale, Jackson Hertlein of Paris, Megan Pruitt of Prairie Grove, Blake Rowley of Fayetteville, Lyda Ryan of Rogers, Monica Spier of Rogers and Reid Wheeler of Fort Smith.

The 161 incoming students collected almost 1,200 books. They stuffed over 400 sacks, one for each elementary student, with a book, eraser, stickers and a personal note of encouragement from a law school student.


Belmont University kicked off classes for its fall 2019 semester with a record-breaking enrollment number as the University welcomed 8,481 students to campus, tripling the 2,796 students enrolled in 2000 and marking a 57% increase in the last decade alone. Local students attending included Cole Bishop of Springdale, Kaitlyn Mash-burn of Elkins, Michael Shanks of Rogers and Harrison Williams of Rogers.


Bill Watkins of Rogers, president of Beaver Water District’s board of directors, presented University of Arkansas students Emily Sher-rill of Rogers, and Jake Krier and Alyssa Ferri, both of Fayetteville, with the Joe M. Steele & Hardy W. Croxton Memorial Scholarships for the fall 2019 semester. These scholarships provide financial assistance to upperclassman or graduate students in the departments of civil engineering, biological and agricultural engineering or crop, soil and environmental sciences who have demonstrated interest in drinking water treatment, wastewater treatment, environmental or life sciences. Board Members donate board meeting attendance fees to the scholarship fund. The fund is managed by the University of Arkansas. Donations may be made payable to the Joe M. Steele & Hardy W. Croxton Memorial Scholarship Endowment Account and mailed to Gift Services, 300 University House, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR 72701.

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