UACCB Named Arkansas’s ACT Career Preparedness Exemplar

The University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville was named Arkansas’s ACT Career Preparedness Exemplar for the 2016-2017 ACT College and Career Readiness Campaign.

Established in 2013, the annual ACT College and Career Readiness Campaign celebrates achievement and creates awareness around the goal of college and career readiness for all. ACT developed the campaign to shine a light on the individuals and institutions doing more with less, overcoming personal or community obstacles and serving as examples to others working to improve the condition of college and career readiness for all. 

The campaign identifies exemplars in each of four categories — students, high schools, postsecondary institutions, and employers — for each participating state. 

ACT State Councils — comprised of education and workforce professionals in each state — selected UACCB from a group of applicants for the Arkansas ACT Career Preparedness Award and ultimately state exemplar designation.

 “The University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville has been deliberate and diligent in facilitating the development of partnerships with local high schools, businesses and industries.  Through purposeful communication with all partners, relevant career training is developed. This provides assurance that business and industry needs are addressed and students are prepared for the work place,” said UACCB Chancellor Deborah Frazier. “For UACCB to receive recognition as Arkansas’s ACT state exemplar validates the hard work and dedication in addressing career readiness for students and their regional economic impact.”

UACCB received the ACT Career Preparedness Award for clearly communicating future career opportunities to concurrent and traditional community college students. UACCB worked with local business and industry leaders to discover the essential workforce skills necessary to improve the economic prosperity of both the employee and employer.

In 2016, UACCB awarded 419 degrees, including 140 certificates of proficiency, 70 technical certificates and 209 associate degrees. Among the degrees, 19 high school seniors concurrently enrolled earned 11 certificates of proficiency in certified nursing assistant, two in child development and six in welding before graduating from high school.

According to data in the 2016 Economic Security Report prepared through the Arkansas Act 852 of 2015, UACCB students earning technical certificates had a 92% employment rate, the highest in the state. Registered nursing students earning an associate degree exceeded the service area median income by 25.5% and were employed at a rate 88%. Medical technician students had an employment rate of 100% and earned approximately $32,856 annually.

All state exemplars will be considered for national semifinalist status by an ACT selection committee, which will narrow the group to four national semifinalists per category. Finally, a national selection committee composed of national education and workforce leaders will choose one semifinalist per category to make up four national exemplars. These National Exemplars, along with all state exemplars and semifinalists will be honored at an ACT recognition event in late fall 2017 in Iowa City, Iowa.