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Adams Establish Endowed Scholarship to Empower Future Innovators in Computer Science

Jerry and Madelyn Adams
Jerry and Madelyn Adams

In a display of commitment to the importance of technology and education, a Conway couple has made a generous donation to create an endowed scholarship for computer science majors at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

Jerry and Madelyn Adams donated $30,000 to create the Jerry and Madelyn Adams Endowed Undergraduate Scholarship, which will provide assistance for education-related expenses including tuition, books, fees, and room and board. The scholarship will be awarded to a full- or part-time undergraduate computer science major with a GPA of 3.25 or higher and will be based on financial need and/or merit.

“UA Little Rock is a terrific school, and my time on the Board of Visitors and advisory board has shown me what an impact the university can make for its students,” Jerry Adams said. “Even during my time at Acxiom, we recruited heavily from UA Little Rock because the students were very mature and applied themselves well in their careers. I am very excited about UA Little Rock’s leadership, and I think the school and the students have an exciting future ahead of them.”

This donation is a part of the Centennial Campaign, UA Little Rock’s largest fundraising effort to date. The university is working to raise $250 million by its 100-year anniversary in 2027.

Jerry Adams, who serves as a member of the advisory board for the Donaghey College of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics, said the couple decided to make the donation after hearing about innovative steps the Department of Computer Science has taken in recent years.

These innovations include the addition of a cybersecurity major in 2021 and a recent partnership with the Arkansas Center for Data Sciences to create a program to strengthen educational pathways for computer science majors through the combination of scholarships, internships, apprenticeships, and workforce development.

“I also want to acknowledge Dr. Mary Good’s incredible impact on me,” Jerry Adams said. “Mary Good, who served as founding dean of the former Donaghey College of Engineering and Information Technology, was recruited by former Chancellor Chuck Hathaway just before I joined the UA Little Rock Board of Visitors. I took over as chair of BioVentures after Mary joined UA Little Rock. We worked on many important projects together. Her contributions to UA Little Rock were enormous. She was a good influence on me and thousands of others.”

The Adams’ recent donation is a profound investment and testament to their commitment to higher education in Arkansas.

“Education is the future,” Jerry Adams said. “We live in a knowledge economy, and it’s becoming more and more critical for our people to have competent computer skills. It’s so important for people to understand technology and have the education to do so to have a productive, 21st century life.”

“Education is everything,” Madelyn Adams added.

Jerry Adams graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of the South, and Madelyn Adams studied at the University of Iowa. The couple moved to Arkansas in 1973, where Jerry Adams was one of the founders of Acxiom. He retired from Acxiom in 2007 after 34 years serving in a variety of senior leadership roles. He then founded the Arkansas Research Alliance in 2008 and served as president and CEO until 2021.

He continues to stay active in the community serving on a number of boards, including the Arkansas Community Foundation, Interfaith Center, Arkansas Imagination Library, Conway Development Corporation, Arkansas Center for Health Improvement, Syrian Emergency Task Force, and Winrock International.

The Adams live in Conway and are the proud parents of two sons and four grandchildren.

For more information on the Centennial Campaign, visit to find out how your contribution can make an impact through scholarships, student support, program excellence, and improving the living and learning environment at UA Little Rock.