Students complete summer research

Ouachita Baptist University’s J.D. Patterson School of Natural Sciences Summer Research Program was one of the few institutions in the state to continue summer research during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 2020 program included 26 students and 12 faculty members and was only two students short of the program’s overall record number of student researchers in a single summer.

Included in those 26 students were Cannon Fisher, a senior nutrition and dietetics major from Wynne, and Gabe Poe, a junior biomedical sciences major from Lake City.

The university is located in Arkadelphia.

Manuel earns Optus Family Scholarship

Optus, Inc. in Jonesboro has selected Mary Manuel as this year’s recipient of the $1,000 per semester Owptus Family Scholarship. She is the daughter of Ryan and Jackie Boyd. Ryan is a national account manager for Optus and has been with the company for 15 years.

Manuel, a 2020 graduate of Jonesboro High School, graduating with a 4.09 grade-point average, will attend Arkansas State University in the fall, majoring in occupational therapy.

The Optus Family Scholarship honors Adam Harrington who died in 2006. He was a Nettleton High School graduate and the son of Optus employee Neal Harrington and wife Rhonda.

To qualify for the scholarship, students must be full-time working towards an undergraduate degree at an accredited college or university, have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0, and be the child or grandchild of a current full-time Optus employee.

Students begin pharmacy degree

Thirty-five students received their white coat on Aug. 21 at Harding University in Searcy to begin their academic training to become doctors of pharmacy.

Area students participating in the ceremony were Caroline Parker of Harrisburg, Iliriana Ramadani of Jonesboro, Ngoc Nguyen of Paragould, Claudia Sifford and Emma Vancil, both of Pocahontas, and Khue Truong of Wynne.

Local student makes Columbia dean’s list

Columbia College in Missouri has named Monica Semora of Paragould to its summer semester dean’s list.

To be included, a student must have completed 12 semester hours in a 16-week period and achieved a minimum grade-point average of 3.5 on a 4.0-point scale.

Patterson receives Reeves Scholarship

Patrick Patterson of Jonesboro, a 2013 graduate of Cabot High School who is pursuing an associate of science degree in business, is the first recipient of the Noah Reeves Scholarship.

The scholarship is designed to assist ASUN students who have faced adversity while trying to reach their academic goals. Reeves was an ASU-Newport student that lost his battle with cancer in early 2020.

Local A-State alumni honored

The Arkansas State University Alumni Association and Student Philanthropy Council has announced recipients of Emerging Young Alumni awards. Among those named were two area residents.

Adam Watkins of Jonesboro earned a bachelor’s degree in social work in 2006 and master’s degree in social work in 2011.

He currently serves as executive director of the Northeast Arkansas Regional AIDS Network, with which he has been associated for 15 years. He has worked with A-State’s Department of Social Work to arrange a student internship opportunity, serves on the department’s community advisory board, and is board chairman for the campus Wesley Foundation.

Graycen Colbert Bigger of Pocahontas is an economic developer and communications specialist. She serves as executive director of the Northeast Arkansas Regional Intermodal Authority (NEARIA) and assistant vice president of community development for Farmers and Merchants Bank.

Bigger earned bachelor’s degrees in photojournalism and the history of art from A-State in 2009.

Local students graduate at SAU

Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia recognized 172 graduates at Summer 2020 Commencement Ceremonies.

Area graduates and their degrees included David Rogers II of Jonesboro, bachelor of business administration in management; Katrina Hall of Wynne, bachelor of science degree in biology; Victoria Tacker of Tyronza, master of education in library media; and Caroline Armstrong of Lake City, master of science in agriculture.

Jonesboro student helps at college event

Layton Holifield of Jonesboro was among the more than 350 Culver-Stockton students, alumni, faculty, staff and community members who spent Aug. 22 volunteering for the 11th annual Everyone Doing More event, the largest community service project sponsored by the college.

Culver-Stockton is located in Canton, Mo.

Area students graduate at MSU

Local students graduated from Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas, this August. Kristen Harper of Bono and Kacey Higgins and Kendal Youngman, both of Jonesboro, all earned Master of Science in Radiologic Sciences degrees.

Dollar General supports literacy

Schools and literacy programs in Northeast Arkansas are among the recipients nearly $55,000 in literacy grants awarded in Arkansas by the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.

Recipients include United Way of Northeast Arkansas in Jonesboro, $1,375; Marmaduke School District, $4,000; Manila High School, $4,000; Osceola High School,$2,500; and Trumann High School, $4,000.

UALR announces summer honors list

Hannah Tyler, of Manila has been named to the summer 2020 chancellor’s list at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

To be named to the list, a student must have completed at least nine credit hours with a 3.9 grade-point average.

DDNS receives grant

The Delta Digital News Service at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro has received a $20,000 grant from the Fred Darragh Foundation to help expand the capacity of DDNS to better serve the news outlets in the Delta region, help recruit high school students to careers in journalism, and provide professional-level experience for A-State journalism students.

Delta Digital News Service is a working lab for undergraduate students to feed content to news organizations of all sizes and types. It is an anchor project for A-State’s Media and Communication’s multimedia journalism program.

Local high school program recognized

Jostens, producer of yearbooks and student-created content, has announced that Brookland High School’s yearbook program has been named a Jostens 2020 National Yearbook Program of Excellence.

Jostens recognizes yearbooks that reflect a broad representation of the student body and help students develop skills such as communication, collaboration and information, and communication technologies literacy.

The BHS yearbook program is led by seniors, Emily Brannon, Emma Erwin, Riley Smith and Madison Reynolds, under the direction of Molly Lee, yearbook adviser.