Arkansas Tech To Reach Milestone on Saturday

There are many measures by which the growth of Arkansas Tech University under the leadership of President Dr. Robert C. Brown can be gauged.

Arkansas Tech has set a new school record for enrollment in each of the last 11 years, added more than 40 academic programs and made $160 million in improvements to its campus on his watch.  But Brown’s focus has always been increasing the number of graduates that Arkansas Tech produces.

With that in mind, it is understandable that there might be an extra gleam in the president’s eye this weekend. That’s because once fall commencement concludes on Saturday, Arkansas Tech will have conferred more degrees during Brown’s 16-year tenure as president than it did in the 84 years before his arrival combined. Between the time it was created by Act 100 of the 37th Arkansas General Assembly on April 1, 1909, and the spring of 1993, Arkansas Tech awarded 16,477 degrees. From the time Brown became president on July 1, 1993, through this Saturday’s commencement, Tech will have awarded 16,622 degrees to its graduates. That means that as of Saturday, 50.2 percent of the 33,099 degrees that Arkansas Tech has awarded will have been earned during the Brown presidency. The number of degrees conferred at Arkansas Tech on an annual basis has increased by 98 percent over the past 15 years. Tech awarded 724 degrees in 1993-94. In 2008-09, Arkansas Tech presented graduates with 1,434 degrees.  “This achievement in producing high-quality graduates for our state is a milestone that all of our faculty, staff, alumni and friends should be proud of,” said Brown. “It is the result of strategic planning by our campus community, shared governance between our faculty and administration and an ability to attract many of the brightest students in our state to Arkansas Tech University. “But more than any other factor, this achievement is a testament to my faculty colleagues,” continued Brown. “Their commitment to excellence in the classroom and their determination to aid our students in persisting toward graduation create the foundation for all that we do.” A total of 390 students are scheduled to receive degrees this Saturday at John E. Tucker Coliseum.

There will be a 10 a.m. ceremony for those graduates from the Graduate College, the College of Arts and Humanities and the College of Education.

Graduates from the College of Applied Sciences, the College of Business, the College of Natural and Health Sciences, the College of Professional Studies and Community Outreach and all graduates earning associate’s degrees will walk in a ceremony at 2 p.m.

For more information about Saturday’s commencement ceremonies, contact the Arkansas Tech Registrar’s Office at (479) 968-0272 or visit