Arkansas Short Takes

Welcome to the home of Arkansas Short Takes, where you will find a series of short videos featuring stories about outstanding students, faculty and special points of pride at the University of Arkansas.

Plant Love

Sophomore honors student Rhiannon de la Rosa saw plastic containers being tossed in the trash across campus and realized she could use her love of plants in an environmentally sustainable way. She gathers bottles and cups, paints them and propagates plants in them to give to students. In fact, if you want to drop off a used container, she will trade you a plant in a decorated planter. A horticulture major in the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences, Rhiannon’s goal is to share her love of plants and spread a little happiness while encouraging others to adopt a reuse, reduce, recycle philosophy.

Finding “The Way”

The Honors Passport program immerses students in foreign cultures and history, providing unique experiences through travel and innovative teaching. In 2018, students and faculty with the Honors Passport program traveled to France and Spain, following the ancient pilgrimage path known as “The Way,” the Camino de Santiago. This trip is one of the many study abroad opportunities at the University of Arkansas, where about 1,200 U of A students visited 56 countries last year.

Mining the Future

One in five students in the latest freshman class at the University of Arkansas are the first in their families to go to college. Providing a path to college for first generation and under represented students through mentoring, scholarship support and access is an important part of the university’s mission to ensure hard-working Arkansans have the opportunity to attend, succeed and graduate from college. It’s part of our core philosophy focused on one student at a time.

This is the story of Lizbeth Juarez, an Honors College civil engineering major and former first-generation students Joshua Byron Smith, assistant professor in English and John English, dean of the College of Engineering.

Raising the Bar

When twin sisters Lexi Weeks Jacobus and Tori Weeks Hoggard arrived on the University of Arkansas campus, they had more than just a spot on the Razorbacks’ national championship-winning women’s track and field team in mind. The Cabot natives wanted to join the nation’s best women’s collegiate pole vaulting program and pursue their degrees in biochemistry in the Honors College.

Advancing Arkansas

Meet some of the U of A’s first recipients of the Advance Arkansas Scholarship, a new scholarship for Arkansas students who want to come here but can’t afford to do so. The Advance Arkansas Scholarship program was created to address one of the largest obstacles to finishing a college degree - unmet financial need. This scholarship helps close that gap so hard–working Arkansans have the financial ability to come to the U of A and stay through graduation.

Let Us Farm

The U of A freight farm sits among residence halls in the quad, quietly growing heads of lettuce in a freight container to feed the campus community. More than 12,700 heads of lettuce have been harvested by the two student workers operating it and have been consumed at dining facilities across campus. For the students, it’s a living lesson in sustainability, hydroponics and the importance of local produce. For campus, farm to table never had a shorter commute.

Star Power

Astrophysicist Amber Straughn fell in love with the night sky in her backyard in Bee Branch, Arkansas. The U of A’s Honors College and J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences set her trajectory toward NASA and a career studying distant galaxies through the new James Webb Telescope.

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