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MAGNOLIA, AR – At a regular meeting of the Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board (AHECB), Sherrel Johnson of El Dorado was elected chair. Having served as former director of speaker programs at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service and former interim vice chancellor for university advancement at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Johnson succeeds Bob Crafton, a retired Consulting Engineer having co-founded Crafton Tull and Associates.
The AHECB met at the Donald W. Reynolds Campus and Community Center at Southern Arkansas University (SAU) in Magnolia on January 27. SAU President Dr. Trey Berry welcomed institutional representatives and briefly explained how SAU became the Muleriders in 1922. Berry then made the Coordinating Board members honorary Muleriders.
Along with Johnson, the board elected the following officers for 2017-2018, Dr. Jim Carr as Vice Chair, Dr. Michael Stanton as Secretary, Dr. Charles Allen as Academic Committee Chair and Greg Revels was re-elected as Finance Committee Chair.
The board approved the election of the foundation supervisory committee and approved the reimbursement of expenses for members of the AHECB and Institutional Certification Advisory Committee (ICAC).
In fall 2016, 22,138 first-time degree seeking students entered Arkansas public institutions. Of all students enrolled in fall 2016, 39.7 percent were placed in one or more remedial courses; which is a decrease in the remediation rate of 1.7 percent from fall 2015.
In other business Friday, the board approved the following new academic programs:
• Certificate of Proficiency, Technical Certificate and Associate of Applied Science in Programming/Mobile Development, Black River Technical College
• Master of Business Administration, Arkansas Tech University
• Off-Campus Center, Northwest Arkansas Community College
In finance committee business, the board approved the Annual Higher Education Financial Condition Report and the economic feasibility of loan issues for the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and the University of Arkansas at Monticello.
The board approved 11 new degree certifications from 2 colleges and universities through its Institutional Certification Advisory Committee, which evaluates and monitors degree programs offered to Arkansans by out-of-state institutions. A number of other programs with requested changes or deletions were also approved. A complete list is available at www.adhe.edu.
The Arkansas Department of Higher Education is responsible for carrying out the policy directives of the AHECB, approving and reviewing college and university academic programs and developing funding recommendations for the state’s 11 public universities and 22 public two-year colleges as well as several other post-secondary entities.
In addition, the agency is responsible for distributing approximately $130 million annually from state revenues and lottery funds intended to ease the financial burden of students seeking an education beyond high school. For more information, visit www.adhe.edu.