Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences, and the Arts

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Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences, and the Arts
ASMSA Color Logo.png
Great Seal of ASMSA
200 Whittington Avenue
Ouachita Mountains
Hot Springs, Arkansas, Garland 71901
United States
Coordinates 34°31′05″N 93°03′29″W / 34.51807°N 93.05798°W / 34.51807; -93.05798Coordinates: 34°31′05″N 93°03′29″W / 34.51807°N 93.05798°W / 34.51807; -93.05798
School type Public Residential High School
Motto Somnus enim dissolvit
Established 1991
Opened 1993
Founder William Jefferson Clinton[1]
Status Open
Oversight University of Arkansas
CEEB code 041148
Dean Dr. Rheo Morris, Bob Gregory
Director Corey Alderdice
Grades 11th-12th
Gender Co-ed
Age range 15-18
Enrollment 230
Education system Semester
Language Multilingual
Hours in school day 9.5[3]
Campus William Jefferson Clinton Presidential Park and Visitor Center[2]
School color(s)      Hunter Green
     Navy Blue
Athletics conference SLAMT
Mascot Cyborg Dolphin
Accreditation AdvancEd
National ranking 13th[4]
Average ACT scores 30.6
Publication Tangents
School fees $850 max per year[5]
Tuition Free
Graduates (2017-2018) 100%
Affiliation NCSSSMST

The Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences, and the Arts (ASMSA) is a two-year, public residential high school located in Hot Springs, Arkansas. It is a part of the University of Arkansas administrative system and a member of the NCSSSMST.[6] The school was originally known as The Arkansas School for Mathematics and Sciences (abbreviated ASMS). The school is accredited by AdvancED.[7]

School Description[edit]

Academically, the school is modeled after the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics. Studies focus on mathematics, computer science, science, and humanities. All courses are taught at the Honors level or above. ASMSA offers approximately 60 courses for university credit through partnerships with the University of Arkansas at Little Rock as well as other advanced high school courses for elective credit. ASMSA graduates finish their two-year experience having earned an average of 45 college credit hours. ASMSA has an arts program, which was recently added in 2004 by the state legislature. Though not yet at the depth of the school's STEM-based programs, investment has been made in recent years to enhance experiences in studio and digital arts.

The school was created in 1991[8] with backing from then-Governor Bill Clinton. The charter class enrolled as juniors in 1993 and graduated in 1995.

Prospective students apply during the spring of their sophomore year and submit application forms, grade transcripts, SAT or ACT results, and three letters of recommendation. Generally, students can only enter the school as a rising junior. Additionally, some students will repeat their junior year of high school at ASMSA because they didn't apply in time to be admitted with their regular class.

Students who attend ASMSA spend their time in a dormitory away from their homes. The dormitory is not co-ed, and there is no co-mingling outside of the two designated and approved co-ed mingling areas.[9] The students are supervised by full-time Residential Mentors.[10] Most of the campus of the school itself is located in the former St. Joseph's Catholic Hospital in the William Jefferson Clinton Presidential Park in the historic district of Hot Springs, and it is surrounded on three sides by the Hot Springs National Park.

All faculty have at least a master's degree in their field, and 45% have a Ph.D. or other terminal degree in their field.[11] Notable professors at the school have included Dr. Don Baker, who was a Foreign Service Officer for the United States Department of State; Mrs. Melanie Nichols, who has served on several AP committees and has been active in the math education community, was a mathematics teacher at the school before becoming Dean of Academic Affairs in 2006; Dr. Brian Monson, who has previously taught at the University of Tulsa and the Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematics, is chair of the science department and teaches AP Physics C, Optics, and Folk Music and Acoustics, and plays the harmonica and the mandolin; and Charlie Cole Chaffin, who was a chemistry teacher at the school, was a member of the Arkansas State Senate.

Several former and current teachers at the school also instruct during the summer at the Arkansas Governor's School. The current Director of the school is Corey Alderdice.[12]


ASMSA students have a number of projects and activities that completely fill their time. One of the school's trademarks is FIRM, a longitudinal research project which culminates in the school's participation in the Intel Science and Engineering Fair, Senior Research Symposium or Arts Capstone, depending on the project. Students select a research topic at the start of their spring semester as a junior and will continue to research this project for the next fourteen months through a class titled Fundamentals in Research Methods. This project ends during Science Fair week, which is generally in late February. ASMSA competes as its own region in the state competition because of the quantity of projects it produces every year - often a hundred or more. Projects sometimes culminate with substantial monetary awards, governmental recognition, as well as publication in local, statewide, regional, and nationwide news outlets.[13]

Student life[edit]

Student involvement at ASMSA is present and there are a plethora of exciting clubs, associations, and groups. The cultural awareness ADAPT Club shares and discusses different heritages, often with cultural foods, games, movies, stories, and music for the members as well as the general student body to enjoy, accept, and appreciate.[14] There is also the SGA (Student Government Association) for those select number of students willing to bear the immense roles of leadership in their school environment. Other exciting clubs, associations, and groups include: the Dolphin Dance Team, Model UN, Beta, Delta, Young Republicans, National Honor Society, FBLA, Youth Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Science, Technology, Medicine, Music, and Liberal Arts (NAASTMML), SLAMT Sports Alliance, Community Leaders (CLs), Student Ambassadors, and many more. The League of Legends Clan has been shut down by the Director due to its 'non-academic nature'.


External links[edit]