Arkansas Tech University

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Arkansas Tech University
Seal of Arkansas Tech University
Type Public University
Established 1909
President Robin E. Bowen
Students 12,009
Location Russellville, Arkansas, U.S.
Campus Rural, 516 acres (2.09 km2)
Colors Green and Gold
Nickname Wonder Boys (men)
Golden Suns (women)
Mascot Jerry the Bulldog
Arkansas Tech University

Arkansas Tech University (ATU) is a comprehensive regional institution located in Russellville, Arkansas, United States. The university offers programs at both baccalaureate and graduate levels in a range of fields. Arkansas Tech will welcome its first doctoral cohorts in the Summer of 2015. The Arkansas Tech University–Ozark Campus, a two-year satellite campus in the town of Ozark, primarily focuses on associate and certificate education.


Early history (1909–76)[edit]

Aerial view of Arkansas Tech University, 2008

The Second District Agricultural School was created by Act 100 of 1909 of the Arkansas General Assembly It was decided on February 10, 1910, to found the school in Russellville. On October 26, 1910, the first classes were held in Russellville. The original purpose of the school was to offer classes leading to a high school degree. Later on, the school took on the first two years of college instruction, and the school's name was changed to Arkansas Polytechnic College by the General Assembly in 1925 to reflect this change in purpose. At this time, the course work leading to a high school diploma was phased out and in 1931, Tech formally only offered courses leading to a college degree.

Recent history (1976–present)[edit]

The school took on its current name of Arkansas Tech University on July 9, 1976.

In the fall of 2003, Arkansas Tech University announced it intended to overtake the state vocational school, Arkansas Valley Technical Institute, in Ozark, the seat of Franklin County. As of July 1, 2004, the Ozark campus has acted as a satellite campus of Arkansas Tech and has begun offering coursework leading toward an Associate of Applied Science degree in various subjects.

On Oct. 23, 2013, Jerry the Bulldog was adopted as Arkansas Tech's campus ambassador after a 76-year absence from the school.

From 1997-2015, enrollment at Arkansas Tech has increased by 183 percent. The Fall of 2015 marks the 17th consecutive year that Arkansas Tech has established a new institutional record for largest enrollment at 12,009 students, also officially making ATU the 3rd largest institution of higher learning in the state of Arkansas for the past 2 consecutive years.

Arkansas Tech has invested $180 million in upgrades to its infrastructure since 1995 and the university has added more than 40 new academic programs of study under the leadership of Robert C. Brown, who has served as president of Arkansas Tech since 1993. In April, 2014, Dr. Robin E. Bowen was unanimously selected by the university trustees selected to succeed Dr. Brown; when she takes office on 1 July 2014, she will become the first woman to lead a four-year, public Arkansas university.[1]

International and Multicultural Student Services Office[edit]

The Office of International and Multicultural Student Services is dedicated to providing student support services which enhance the college experience for international and multicultural students. Programs and activities are designed to encourage the intellectual and social development of students by providing opportunities for cross-cultural interaction. The achievement of academic excellence and the development of sensitivity, understanding and appreciation of cultural diversity throughout the campus community provide the foundation for all support services.[2]

Facilities on National Register of Historic Places[edit]

Several Tech buildings are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[3]

  • Old Art Building—Retired academic building.
  • Caraway Hall—Residence Hall, renovated in 2005.
  • Hughes Hall—Residence Hall, renovated in 2010
  • Techionery—Academic building, mainly used as a theatre shop and performance space by the ATU Theatre Department.
  • Williamson Hall—Academic building, renovated in 2003 to include kitchen facilities.
  • Wilson Hall—Residence Hall.


College of Applied Sciences[edit]

  • Agriculture
  • Computer and Information Science
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Emergency Management
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Parks, Recreation and Hospitality Administration

College of Arts & Humanities[edit]

  • Art
  • Behavioral Sciences
  • English
  • Foreign Language
  • History & Political Science
  • Music
  • Speech, Theatre, and Journalism

College of Business[edit]

  • Accounting and Economics
  • Management and Marketing

College of Natural & Health Sciences[edit]

  • Biological Sciences
  • Mathematics
  • Nursing
  • Physical Sciences

College of Education[edit]

  • Curriculum and Instruction
  • Health and Physical Education

College of Professional Studies and Community Outreach[edit]

  • Early Childhood Education
  • General Studies
  • Professional Studies

Academic centers[edit]

Student life[edit]

Residential halls[edit]

University Commons
  • Baswell Hall
  • Brown Hall
  • Caraway Hall
  • Critz Hall
  • Hughes Hall
  • Jones Hall
  • M Street
  • Nutt Hall
  • Paine Hall
  • Roush Hall
  • South Hall
  • Stadium Suites
  • Tucker Hall
  • Turner Hall
  • University Commons
  • Vista Place
  • Wilson Hall

Greek system[edit]


Current athletics logo

Arkansas Tech participates in NCAA Division II athletics as a charter member of the Great American Conference. Tech was a member of the Gulf South Conference from 1995 to 2011. Previously, Tech was a member of the Arkansas Intercollegiate Conference in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics. The university fields four men's and six women's varsity sports, as well as a club sports program:

Athletics logo (c. 1982)


  • Chartwells Women's Sports Complex (tennis, softball)
  • Hull Building (Athletic Training, Athletic Performance Development, intramurals)
  • Tech Field (baseball, capacity 600)
  • Thone Stadium at Buerkle Field (football, capacity 6,500)
  • Tucker Coliseum (basketball/volleyball, capacity 3,500)


Arkansas Tech University has dual nicknames: men's athletic teams are called the Wonder Boys, while the women's teams are called the Golden Suns.

On November 15, 1919, John Tucker, a 17-year-old freshman from Russellville, scored two touchdowns and kicks two extra points to lead the Second District Agricultural School Aggies to a 14-0 upset win over Jonesboro. In newspaper accounts following the game, Tucker and his teammates were referred to as "Wonder Boys," and the nickname remains to this day. Tucker was labeled as "The Original Wonder Boy" and was associated with the school for the rest of his life. He went on to play on the University of Alabama's Rose Bowl team in 1931 and served Arkansas Tech in a variety of roles - including coach, athletic director and chemistry professor - between 1925 and 1972. Two buildings on the Tech campus - Tucker Coliseum and Tucker Hall - are named in his honor.[4]

Tired of being referred to as the Wonder Girls or Wonderettes, the female athletes of Arkansas Tech held a contest in the spring of 1975 to determine what their new mascot would be. Several names were nominated, but in the end, the athletes selected Golden Suns as their new nickname.[5]

Notable alumni[edit]

  • John Burris, member of the Arkansas House of Representatives from Boone County
  • Trevor Drown (Class of 2001), Republican member of the Arkansas House of Representatives for Pope and Van Buren counties since 2015; Libertarian Party U.S. Senate nominee in 2010[7]
  • Michael Lamoureux, Republican; Former Arkansas State Representative from District 68 (Pope County) 2005-2009; Former Arkansas State Senator from District 4, 2009-2013; Former Arkansas State Senator from District 16 (Newton and Pope counties and parts of Boone, Carroll and Van Buren counties) 2013-2014; Chief of Staff to the Governor of Arkansas 2015-present
  • Andrea Lea (B.S. in Emergency Administration and Management), Republican member of the Arkansas House of Representatives from Russellville since 2009; candidate for state auditor in 2014[10]
  • Kelley Linck (B.S. in Business Administration, 1986), Republican member of the Arkansas House of Representatives from Marion County since 2011[11]
  • Tanner Marsh, Montreal Alouettes quarterback of the Canadian Football League.
  • Rebecca Petty (B.S. in Criminal Justice, 2013), Republican member of the Arkansas House of Representatives for Benton County since 2015; advocate of child crime victims, resident of Rogers, Arkansas[12]
  • Marcus Richmond (B.S. in Physical Education), Republican member of the Arkansas House of Representatives from multi-county District 21 in western Arkansas[13]
  • Greg Standridge (B.S. in Business, 1987), Republican member of the Arkansas State Senate for Pope, Newton, Boone, Carroll and Van Buren counties since 2015; insurance agent in Russellville[14]


  1. ^ Election of New Arkansas Tech University President is Historic for State. 22 April 2014, retrieved 13 May 2014
  2. ^ IMSSC
  3. ^ NRHR
  4. ^ Polytechnic College
  5. ^ Women athletics
  6. ^ "Robert Dale, R-68". Retrieved January 1, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Trevor Drown". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved April 8, 2015. 
  8. ^ "Jane English's Biography". Retrieved December 7, 2013. 
  9. ^ "Jon Eubanks, R-74". Retrieved January 4, 2014. 
  10. ^ "Andrea Lea, R-71". Retrieved January 1, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Kelley Linck, R-99". Retrieved January 3, 2014. 
  12. ^ "Rebecca Petty's Biography". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved April 13, 2015. 
  13. ^ "Marcus Richmond's Biography". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved April 1, 2015. 
  14. ^ "Greg Standridge's Biography". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved April 17, 2015. 
  15. ^ "Boyd Anderson Tackett". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved June 21, 2013. 
  16. ^ "Steve Womack". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved June 21, 2013. 
  • Walker, Kenneth R. 'History of Arkansas Tech University 1909-1990', Arkansas Tech University, 1993.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 35°17′40″N 93°08′02″W / 35.294371°N 93.133783°W / 35.294371; -93.133783