Archives for April 2016

Tech Earns Tree Campus USA Designation

The Arbor Day Foundation has honored Arkansas Tech University with its Tree Campus USA award.

Tree Campus USA is a national program created in 2008 by the Arbor Day Foundation to honor colleges and universities for effective campus forest management and for engaging staff and students in conservation goals.

Arkansas Tech achieved the title by meeting Tree Campus USA’s five standards, which include maintaining a tree advisory committee, a campus tree-care plan, dedicated annual expenditures for its campus tree program, an Arbor Day observance and student service-learning project.

There are 254 colleges and universities across the United States that have achieved the Tree Campus USA recognition.

“Students are eager to volunteer in their communities and become better stewards of the environment,” said Matt Harris, chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation. “Participating in Tree Campus USA sets a fine example for other colleges and universities, while helping to create a healthier planet for us all.”

Arkansas Tech began a tree planting program during the 2009-10 academic year. The trees are a continuation of a long-term landscaping beautification program made possible through the generosity of Tech alumni Robert and Sandra Norman of Tulsa, Okla.

As of spring 2016, the Norman family tree project has led to the planting and care of 850 trees on the Arkansas Tech campus in Russellville.

Viticulture and Enology Offering Courses in Fort Smith and Russellville

Members of the Arkansas River Valley will be able to learn more about the process of vineyard management and wine-making as part of two courses the Arkansas Tech University-Ozark Campus will offer this fall.

Both courses will be offered at Morton Hall in Russellville and at Chaffee Crossing in Fort Smith. The fall semester runs from Wednesday, August 24 through Tuesday, December 13.

The Survey of Grapes and Wines course is designed to help familiarize students with the major wine-producing regions of the world including differences in grapes and wines from those regions.

The class will meet at the following times:

  • Morton Hall: Wednesdays from 1-3:50 p.m.
  • Chaffee Crossing: Mondays from 5:30-8:20 p.m.

Introduction to Viticulture is a course focused on vineyard management for those wishing to enter the commercial grape-growing industry or create and maintain a small, backyard vineyard for personal use.

Students will gain the knowledge to start their own vineyard including site selection, design and layout, grape variety, trellis systems, pruning and fertilization, disease and insect pest control, harvesting and more.

The class will meet at the following times:

  • Morton Hall: Wednesdays from 5:30 – 8:20 p.m.
  • Chaffee Crossing: Thursdays from 5:30 – 8:20 p.m.L

Learn more about the Viticulture and Enology program at Arkansas Tech University-Ozark Campus.

To register for these courses, or for more information, contact the Office of Student Services at (479) 667-2117 or visit

Day of Service Postponed, Ceremony Canceled

Inclement weather has forced changes to scheduled events at the Chartwells Women’s Sports Complex on Friday, April 29.

The 2016 Arbor Day service project for students, faculty and staff hosted by the Arkansas Tech University Office of Facilities Management has been postponed until the fall 2016 semester. More information about exact dates, times and locations will be announced at that time.

An accompanying ceremony announcing a national honor for Arkansas Tech has been canceled due to inclement weather. The honor will be announced by news release on and OneTech announcements during the afternoon hours of Friday, April 29.


Suns Win One, Lose One at GAC Tournament

Nationally eighth-ranked Arkansas Tech University defeated Southern Nazarene University in its opening-round softball game at the 2016 Great American Conference Tournament in Bentonville on Thursday, but a late-night loss to Harding University dropped the Golden Suns into the elimination bracket.

Weather permitting, Arkansas Tech (45-8) will face East Central University (25-30) in a win-or-go-home contest at 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 30, in Bentonville. Radio station KCAB 97.1 FM/980 AM and will provide live coverage.

Game One: Tech 2, SNU 0

Arkansas Tech’s Jalissa Gum pitched the third no-hitter in GAC Tournament history to lead the Golden Suns to a 2-0 win over the Southern Nazarene Crimson Storm on Thursday afternoon.

Gum (19-1) struck out 11 batters and needed just 82 pitches to go the distance. The only base runner she allowed came on a third-inning walk issued to Jessica Thompson.

Tech’s Janie Knowles notched both runs batted in with a two-run home run to left field in the bottom of the second inning.

Southern Nazarene starting pitcher Kayla Wyatt (18-14) allowed two runs on one hit in five innings.

Game Two: HU 1, Tech 0

Alexus Lawellin’s RBI double in the bottom of the 10th inning gave Harding a 1-0 victory over Arkansas Tech in a winners’ bracket game that ended early Friday morning.

Amanda Berdon drew a lead-off walk to start the last of the 10th inning and moved to second base on a sacrifice bunt by Courtney Derrick.

With two out and a 2-2 count, Lawellin sent a shot down the left field line that brought Berdon home with the winning run at approximately 2:15 a.m.

Harding’s Hannah Johnson (20-8) was the winning pitcher. She tossed 10 shutout innings and limited the Golden Suns to four hits while striking out seven.

Gum (19-2) went the distance in the circle for Arkansas Tech. She was charged with one run on seven hits. Gum notched 14 strikeouts. Her consecutive innings without allowing an earned run streak ended at 55.

Graduate Student Spotlight: Karen Ricketts

Arkansas Tech University student Karen Ricketts is the graduate student of the month for March.

Ricketts is a native of Charleston, and she is studying multi-media journalism here at Tech.

Additionally, she serves as a graduate assistant in the Office of University Relations.

Upon graduation next year, she hopes to combine her passion for community service and visual storytelling to make a difference in her community.

Learn more about the Arkansas Tech Graduate College.