Community Letter from the Chancellor

portrait of woman
Lisa Willenberg
To the greater UACCM campus community: 

For over 50 years, the University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton has been a beacon of light during troubled times. From the closure of Crompton Mills, followed a few years later by the closures of Arrow Automotive and Levi Strauss within the same week, to the financial crisis of 2008, the college has been a source of strength for our community. We responded by offering retraining and preparing hundreds of displaced workers for new and improved job opportunities. As other economic development possibilities arose, we responded to industry-driven needs like the petroleum technology program during the Fayetteville Shale Play boon. Most recently, the construction of the 53,843-square-foot Workforce Training Center to meet the current and immediate demand for skilled technicians across the state and region is another example. Whatever the circumstance may dictate, people look to us for comfort and strength.

What a difference a month makes. In late February, we were busily preparing schedules for the summer and fall semesters, as well as budgets for the next fiscal year. This month, the college model was essentially reinvented in less than a week exhibiting again a nimble ability to respond and continue to serve students and conduct business. While unlike anything faced in our history, the college again remains committed to responding thoughtfully and strategically. 

As the COVID-19 pandemic emerged, our college transitioned to fully online for instruction and most all support services, just as many of you have. Moving a college based mainly on face-to-face instruction to all online took the herculean team efforts of UACCM faculty, staff, and students. I am elated, though not surprised, at how this challenge drew everyone together to quickly implement new ways of serving all students. 

Many of our faculty were already experts at online instruction. Others are most comfortable teaching in physical classrooms. In a very short time, more than 50 faculty learned how to transition their classes to fully online delivery with the guidance of our incredible Information Technology and Computer Information Systems departments along with our fully committed faculty and academic team. As a result, approximately 300 more classes were available online or remotely than in just the week before. 

Although there were a few bumps along the way, this transition has been successful. Our greatest concern, as always, is our students, and we know this has been disruptive. For that, our hearts go out to each of them. Faculty and student support services staff continue to personally reach out to these students and remain available for any questions or concerns. In addition, tutors, admissions, registrar, recruitment, student accounts and student development professionals continue assisting students by phone, email, Blackboard Collaborate, Zoom, and text. Our students can find contact information for these individuals on our website:


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