Merit Scholars Program

To attract and keep the best and brightest in central Arkansas, an increased focus on high-achieving students is needed. Enhanced learning experiences and career placement opportunities should be made available to qualified students with academic achievement, demonstrable civic engagement, and leadership abilities.

Features of the program include partnerships with local, regional, and statewide business organizations, close interaction and mentoring with faculty and business professionals, and experiences emphasizing the global economy.

Merit Scholars would be assigned a faculty or Business Advisory Council mentor to provide enhanced experiential learning opportunities both within and outside the traditional classroom setting. Scholars would be given the opportunity to directly experience global business and culture through planned study-abroad partnerships with partner business schools in Europe, Central and South America, and Asia. Additionally, concrete experiences with local and regional firms and start ups would be facilitated through the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center located within the COB. Scholars would work in GIS mapping, economic forecasting and analysis, and other key economic development programs.

Scholar internships or co-operative experiences provide a meaningful work integrated learning opportunity. Employers benefit by having access to well-trained and highly-motivated student workers for research or special project management. The relationship also provides the employer a cost-effective means of evaluating potential full-time hires realizing savings during the recruitment, hiring, and training process.