High school seniors from around Arkansas and beyond filed into Tucker Coliseum on Thursday morning for the opening session of Time Out for Tech 2023, a preview day for prospective college students hosted by the Arkansas Tech University Office of Admissions.
A total of 1,208 high school seniors pre-registered for Time Out for Tech 2023. More than 175 additional students registered at the opening session, bringing the total to approximately 1,400 high school seniors. Including parents and families, 2,328 guests pre-registered for the event.
“(ATU) has a lot to do and a good community,” said Mason Brady, a senior at Russellville High School, Time Out for Tech attendee and prospective fisheries and wildlife major at ATU. “Earning a college degree will give me more job opportunities. All of my family has gone to college, so I want to keep that going. All of them went to Tech, so I’m keeping the legacy alive.”
The opening session was followed by academic break-out sessions, campus tours, lunch at the various dining options on campus and a photo opportunity with Jerry the Bulldog, ATU campus ambassador.
Time Out for Tech provides high school seniors and their families with a chance to learn more about the academic programs, student housing options and campus life opportunities available on the Russellville campus.
Anna Morgan traveled from her hometown of Monticello to learn more about the biomedical option within the Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering degree at ATU as well as the opportunity to become part of the crew that produces live video streams of ATU athletics events.
“I like coming up with ideas for bettering the medical field,” said Morgan. “ATU is such a welcoming place. That’s what I’ve noticed so far. It’s scary to move away from my parents, but I’m ready. I want a new chapter. Both my parents went to college and graduated. I look up to them. They were the first from their families to graduate, so now I want to be like them.”
Chasey Hudson of Harrison plans on majoring in elementary education at ATU beginning next fall.
“I hope to learn more about financial aid, campus life and how I can get involved,” said Hudson when asked why she came to Time Out for Tech. “I was browsing colleges, going on campus tours and came here after visiting a couple of other universities. This just felt like home. There is a strong community here where you can be yourself. I most definitely want to get involved with the Wesley Foundation. Church is a huge part of my life and I would love to have that sense of community here.”
Meeting new people and capturing a sense of the college experience were high on the priority list for Calvin Willis of West Helena when he walked into Tucker Coliseum on Thursday morning. He expressed appreciation for the value of an ATU education and the prompt communication he has received from the ATU Office of Admissions.
Willis plans on majoring in computer science at ATU. The band and the cheerleading squad are among the campus involvement opportunities he has an interest in joining.
“If I can graduate from college, it will prove that if I put something in my mind, I can do it,” said Willis. “If I get that degree, it will mean I worked hard for it. It will feel like a reward to myself.”