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The University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville (UACCB) “is a comprehensive community college committed to providing learning experiences that improve the lives of those we serve.” It is one of the fastest-growing community colleges in Arkansas.
UACCB was founded in Batesville (Independence County) in 1975 as Gateway Vocational-Technical School, created to provide hands-on technical training and educational opportunities to the residents of Independence County and the surrounding area. According to state Senator Bill Walmsley, the name “Gateway” was chosen “not only because Batesville is the gateway to the White River Basin, but because this school was to be the gateway to education and a better quality of life for people in this area.” Don Tomlinson was the institution’s first president, serving in that capacity until 1994. On July 1, 1991 the Arkansas General Assembly included Gateway among the fourteen technical schools in Arkansas that would become technical colleges.
In 1991, Gateway Technical College was recognized by Community College Week as being among the nation’s fifty fastest-growing two-year colleges. In October 1997, the college joined the University of Arkansas System, having pursued the partnership to increase its growth, name recognition, and support in the state legislature. Contingent upon the passage of a one-quarter-cent county sales tax, which provides approximately $1 million annually to fund new and ongoing educational programs, Gateway Technical College became the University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville in March 1998. UACCB is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association. The institution serves approximately 1,500 students each semester with a service area that includes Independence and Cleburne counties. UACCB also shares Stone and Sharp counties with Ozarka College.
UACCB offers a variety of degrees and certifications. These include the Associate of Arts (AA), the Associate of Arts in Teaching (AAT), and the Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degrees. Technical certificates are offered in business, industrial technology, allied health, and public service, and the adult education program offers general education development (GED) and English as a second language (ESL) certificates. In the fall of 2007, UACCB launched the Doyle “Rog” Rogers Jr. Aviation Maintenance Program. UACCB was also the first college in Arkansas to offer an online AAS degree from licensed practical nurse (LPN) to registered nurse (RN) levels.
In 1999, UACCB and Lyon College formed the College Opportunity Program (COPS). This is a joint exchange program, a transfer system, and a financial aid program that enables qualified UACCB students to transfer to Lyon College to complete their bachelor’s degree. In 2000, the school announced a consortium with Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas and the University of Arkansas Community College at Hope to offer the AA degree online. In 2006, UACCB and Southside High School began Southside Project Graduation, which assisted Southside High School seniors in completing the application process for admittance to UACCB. In 2007, the program was renamed PROJECT: COLLEGE BOUND and includes Cave City (Sharp County), Cedar Ridge (Independence County), Southside (Independence County), Cushman (Independence County), and Concord (Cleburne County) high schools. Finally, in 2007, the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences announced that it would locate its eighth Area Health Education Center (AHEC) jointly in Batesville and Mountain Home (Baxter County) to increase health education and services available to students and rural healthcare providers. Student enrollment in September 2014 was 1,320.
For additional information: “Gateway Vo-Tech School Observes First Year of Operation in Area.” Batesville Guard. May 3, 1976, p. 1.
Ogilvie, Craig. “Batesville Colleges Have Unique Partnership.” Batesville Daily Guard. March 27, 2006, pp. 1–3.
University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville. http://www.uaccb.edu (accessed December 12, 2008).
William L. Wood University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville
Last Updated 12/12/2016
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