A Brief History of Westark College - University of Arkansas

A Brief History of
University of Arkansas – Fort
Smith/Westark College
Based on the Westark Oral
History Project, 1997-99
Presented by Henry Rinne and Billy Higgins
What’s in a name?
Fort Smith Junior College -- 1928-1965
Westark Junior College -- 1965-1973
Westark Community College -- 1973-1998
Westark College - 1998-2001
University of Arkansas – Fort Smith – 2002present
 1928 FSJC founded as part of the Fort Smith Public
Schools (funded by school district)
 1950 FSJC separated from FSPS and established as a
private institution, because of change in state laws
 1952 FSJC moves to Grand Avenue Campus (County
Poor Farm)
 1965 Sebastian Co. Community Junior College District is
created (funded by local mileage and state)
 2002 Junior College District is dissolved and the campus
becomes a member of the University of Arkansas
System as a four-year institution
FSJC/Westark/UA Fort Smith
J. W. Ramsey 1928-1952
Elmer Cook 1954-1958
E. T. Vines 1958-1967
Dr. Shelby Breedlove 1968-1974
Dr. James Kraby 1975-1983
Joel Stubblefield 1983-2001 (President); 20022005 (Chancellor)
Dr. Sandi Sanders 2005-2006 (Interim)
Dr. Paul B. Beran 2006-present
A Few Watershed Events
Founded in 1928, Fort Smith Junior College
holds first classes in Fort Smith High School.
Nine students graduate in 1930.
A Few Watershed Events
In 1936, Fort Smith
High School moves to
its new site and FSJC
holds classes under the
A Few Watershed Events
1950 FSJC leaves
the public school
system and
becomes a
private two-year
Moved to the
Grand Avenue
Campus in the
summer of 1952
A Few Watershed Events
Introduction of Vo/Tech education in 1961
A Few Watershed Events
Integration of FSJC takes place Summer term
A Few Watershed Events
Creation of state supported community college
system 1965
Accreditation 1960-1973 (First accreditation for
five year period in 1973)
More events...
Vietnamese education/relocation program
More events...
Men’s Basketball
team wins
national title
And again in
More events...
And the Lady Lions win it all in 1995!!!
Where men are men, and WOMEN are CHAMPIONS!!!
More events...
Business and Industrial Institute
established in 1982
Echols campus purchased 1986
Boreham Library completed 1987
Westark Foundation begins first major
gifts campaign 1988
University Center approved by state 1989
Even more events...
Dizzy Gillespie performs with Westark Jazz 1989
Even more events...
green and
carillon 1995
Even more events...
Act 971 of 1997 designates Westark College as a
“Unique Community College”
1999, Westark College partners with the Higher
Learning Commission to develop bachelor’s
degree programs at two-year colleges
December 15, 2000 merger agreement signed by
Board of Trustees
July 17 2001, Sebastian County voters approve
dissolution of the community college district and
tax changes
Even more events...
January 1, 2002, Westark College becomes
the University of Arkansas – Fort Smith
(Change of affiliation granted by HLC in November 2001;
Focus visit in April 2002)
UA Fort Smith acquires the Drennen-Scott
Historic Site and begins $5.6 million
restoration project 2005
Chancellor Joel Stubblefield dies, October
And Even more events...
Paul B. Beran, Ph.D. named Chancellor,
April 2006
New colleges formed 2008: College of
Languages and Communication; College of
Humanities and Social Sciences; and
College of Science, Technology,
Engineering, and Mathematics
Bricks and Mortar
Ballman-Speer 1957
Holt Library 1960
Technical Complex
Gymnasium 1964
Science Building
(Flanders) 1968
Vines Building 1968
Fullerton Student
Union 1970
More Bricks and Mortar
Gardner Building 1972
Breedlove Building 1976
Boreham Library 1987
Science, Math, and
Center 1993
Campus Green & Bell
Tower 1995
Business & Industrial
Institute addition 1997
More Bricks and Mortar
Baldor Technology Center 2000
Smith-Pendergraft Campus Center 2001
Joel R. and Barbara L. Stubblefield Center 2002
Sebastian Commons opens as first residence hall
on campus 2004
Pendergraft Health Sciences Center 2005
Fullerton and Vines remodeled 2006-2008
Lions Den, first traditional residence hall and
dining facility opens 2010
To date, the state has not funded a building on the campus.
Numa sculpture dedicated April 2010

similar documents