Student government reforms campus election, voting process

The 2014-15 Student Government Association executive staff made revisions to its senate campaigning process and updated some of its senate positions. These changes include eliminating the senator-at-large position to include represenatives from each of the academic colleges and a senator’s position for non-traditional students. Vice President junior Zach Carter said the change in these positions will help better represent and serve UCA’s community by having a representative that better understands the intents and ideas of each academic college across campus. He said this year’s executive senate is the most diverse yet and said the executive staff hopes the rest of…

Conway shooting leaves one injured

A shooting occurred in the Gusano’s Pizza parking lot on Dave Ward Drive after a fight broke out, leaving one person injured Sept. 7. Conway police responded to a call around 12:40 a.m. that a fight had broken out in the restaurant’s parking lot. During a crowd altercation, Tyler Jackson suffered a gunshot wound in his right foot. Officers were unable to immediately locate a suspect from within the crowd. According to the incident report, when Conway officers arrived on scene, a large crowd had gathered in the parking lot and neighboring bank parking lot. Officers took note of a…

Common lecture rescheduled, now Black History Month event

Because his record label ARTium/Def Jam scheduled a European tour during the time he would have spoken at UCA, musician, author and actor Common’s lecture has been rescheduled and will now be during Black History Month. His lecture, originally scheduled for Nov. 18, will now be at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 10, 2015. “Common is a very prolific writer, rapper and actor,” senior box office worker Tre Sandlin said. “His lecture was moved because his album came out at the end of July” and the album tour will run through November. Reynolds Performance Hall Finance and Marketing Director Ashley Love…

Campus crime rate down from last year, increase in overall initiative

UCA has noticed a decrease in crime since this time last year, according to the monthly crime, incident and activity report for June 2014 released by the UCA police department. UCAPD Chief Larry James said he is pleased with the way the campus community has adopted good crime prevention techniques and are using them regularly. “They’re locking their doors in residence halls, which was a big problem several years ago—we had a lot of burglaries,” he said. “Since we’ve done [Operation] Gotcha and things like that, [crime] has really improved.” The monthly crime, incident and activity report for June 2014…

Police Beat

The following reports and arrests are from the UCAPD docket. UCAPD reports any tickets issued as arrests, according to ucapd.com. Nonstudent arrested for DWI after speeding down Bruce Street  Officers observed nonstudent Conrad Heard Jr., 22, speeding about 35-40 mph over the speed limit on Bruce Street at 6:41 a.m. Sept. 4. UCAPD immediately followed Heard and after running his tags, found Heard was driving with expired tags that were registered to a gray Kia, not the Chevy Impala he was driving. When UCAPD pulled Heard over, the car hit a curb while turning. Once the officer started to walk…

New support group helps students cope with having alcoholic family, friends

UCA’s Counseling Center created a new support group for students called Adult Children of Alcoholics. Students who have dealt with or are currently dealing with alcoholic family members and friends are encouraged to go to this support group and discuss their difficulties with behaviors they have encountered. The meetings will be held during x-period every Thursday in Torreyson West 337. The program will be held using some of the same 12-step programs as an accredited Adult Children of Alcoholics group, though it is not a recognized organization. However, the support group will start each week with some of the official…

Promotional posters spark criticism

The UCA Faculty Senate executive panel set up a meeting with Christina Madsen, vice president of communications, public relations and marketing, Aug. 22 to discuss some of the promotional posters posted around campus in light of the incoming 2018 class, worrying that some of the language used in the posters seemed to promote social aspects of the university taking precedence over the importance of academic success. Madsen was in charge of the effort to set up the posters around campus. “The faculty are not asking to micromanage UCA’s [public relations],” Ben Rowley, faculty senate vice president, said. “We just wanted…

Campus looks to Google Apps as email provider

The Information Technology department is currently working through a trial with Google Apps for Education in the hopes of connecting UCA with Google Apps services this fall. UCA is connected to the Novell Groupwise email service, but after much expressed frustration from students and staff, UCA’s new Chief Technology Officer Christopher Davis is leading the charge in the switch to Google Apps for Education—starting with the students. Forty Information Technology (IT) employees will be evaluate the Google system during the next few weeks for bugs. Davis said the two biggest issues at hand are connecting the account to the myUCA portal…

Without associate degree, transfer students see difficulty in receiving credit for general education classes

Transferring credit hours proves challenging for transfer students, because they must meet general education requirements, along with having enough credits to have progress toward a degree. Senior baseball pitcher Chris Caudle, who transferred to UCA from Crowder College in Neosho, Missouri, said he was a few credits shy of completing his general education requirements when he initially transferred to UCA. “My biggest challenge was trying to have enough credits to have progress toward a degree,” Caudle said. “I came in with a few hours short of finishing my [general education requirements].” The Arkansas Course Transfer System, which can be viewed…

Bear logo featured on big screen; “Left Behind” chooses to feature UCA in costume

Alumna Kyla McFalls, 25, helped UCA receive recognition on the big screen when she submitted UCA’s logo to the writers and producers of “Left Behind,” starring Nicolas Cage. The Magnolia native graduated from UCA in May 2011 with a digital filmmaking degree. Since her time at UCA, McFalls has helped work on several film sets, as she got her first career move working on the set of “Pitch Perfect” as an intern the August following graduation. The idea to submit UCA’s logo to the writers and producers of “Left Behind” arose through McFalls’ position as clearance coordinator on set. As clearance…

Police Beat

Student hit while walking through crosswalk by Schichtl Hall  UCAPD was sent to the scene of an accident by Schichtl Hall at 7:46 a.m. Aug. 26. When officers arrived, they immediately met with the pedestrian that had been hit, student Amy Ward. Ward claimed she was walking across the crosswalk in front of Reynolds Performance Hall when she was hit by a blue Jeep. Ward complained that the incident caused pains in her left arm and hand. After speaking with Ward, officers addressed the Jeep driver, student Christian Reynolds. Reynolds claimed that while driving westbound on Beatrice Powell the sun…

Aramark makes changes to meal plans, equivalency

Students have noticed changes Aramark has made to meal plans and meal equivalencies as they return to the university for the 2014-15 academic year. Students with meal plans at UCA have the option to trade out a meal at the Christian Cafeteria for a meal in the Student Center or other campus vendor. Meal equivalency allows students to choose an entrée, a side item and either a bottled water or 24-ounce fountain drink as a meal, verses dining in the cafeteria. Previously students had the option to choose two sides to go with their entrée instead of sticking with a…

Campus police gearing up for National Safety Month

UCAPD has worked with several campus organizations to prepare for National Campus Safety Awareness Month in September, with this year’s program featuring a specific theme each week. The first week focuses on drug and alcohol awareness. “UCA is a safe place and it takes all of us working together to keep it that way,” UCAPD Community Services Director Arch Jones said. National Campus Safety Awareness Month will kick off with the 80 Proof Extravaganza. UCAPD, the Student Government Association and Student Wellness and Development worked together to put on the event. Students can participate in putt putt golf, ping pong,…

Kelley Erstine named Chief of Staff

Effective Sept. 1, UCA alumnus Kelley Erstine will return to the university as the new Chief of Staff, leaving behind his almost seventh year at the Independent Insurance Agents of North Carolina as the chief executive officer. “I am very pleased that Kelley Erstine has agreed to serve as Chief of Staff,” president Tom Courtway said in a statement released July 17. “He knows the institution very well, is a proven administrator and is well known throughout the state of Arkansas.” Erstine was offered the position in mid-2013, but turned it down to stay in North Carolina. “The timing is…

UCA board achieves its funding goal

 UCA reached its goal for the amount in the unrestricted and unallocated fund for the first time this year, according to the financial report given at the board of trustees meeting Aug. 15. Finance and Administration Vice President Diane Newton, who presented the financial report, said in previous years the department has tried to build the fund up to $16 million. The department has not only reached this goal, but has surpassed it, with $17,487,475 in the fund as of July 31. The fund had $38,706,580 before year-end transfers. After $13,913,961 in year-end transfers, the fund had $24,792,629 for the…

HPER Center expansion to include outdoor recreation rentals, six-lane pool; completion date set for Nov. 11

With the fall 2014 semester underway, UCA continues its development on the HPER Center Expansion Project. After the HPER Center’s summer closure, the project is planned to be finished and re-open to students Nov. 11. HPER Center’s Administrative Assistant Jennifer Boudreaux said, “[Everything] is coming along nicely and going along as planned to open in November.” Staff was concerned with the amount of time the HPER Centerwould be closed for students, but with an impressive seven-month closed construction, the center is right on schedule. This expansion entails many new changes, including an indoor pool, updated lockers and racquetball courts. The…

Police Beat

Einstein employee threatened  UCAPD received an email regarding suspicious threats made to an Einstein Bros’ coffee shop employee on Aug. 20. When officers went to the Student Center to discuss the situation, the complainant, Connie Bartley informed UCAPD that an employee of hers came to her and said the suspect, Michael Mason, had made several remarks toward employees regarding bringing a gun to campus. Officers continued investigations and found that Mason made the comment that if coffee went up in prices then he would have to get his pistol. Whenever he was informed he should not make comments of that…

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