About Arkansas State University-Newport
Arkansas State University-Newport has a unique history regarding its relationship with the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. ASUN is a campus of the Arkansas State University System. Prior to being named ASU-Newport, the campus was known as White River Vocational Technical School, which received accreditation on April 19, 1989, by the Commission on Schools of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
In 1991, the Arkansas Legislature passed Act 1244 which merged White River Vocational Technical School with ASU-Beebe. In 1992, it became ASU-Beebe/Newport and over time has evolved into ASU-Newport. As a continuation of the process of becoming an independent entity, the faculty and staff of ASUN were informed on April 21, 2000, that the Arkansas Board of Higher Education gave its approval for ASUN to become a stand-alone campus. The stand-alone status was contingent upon the following:
1) The President and Board of Trustees of Arkansas State University will create the position of Chancellor as the chief executive officer of ASUN, effective July 1, 2001;
2) ASUN will have a separate budget appropriation;
3) ASUN will gain HLC accreditation no later than May 1, 2006.
The 83rd General Assembly of the Arkansas Legislature passed Act 297 into law on February 19, 2001, creating a separate budget appropriation for ASUN effective July 1, 2001. The prospect of gaining stand-alone status generated a great deal of enthusiasm among ASUN constituents. The faculty, staff, and students of ASUN, as well as community members with an interest in the campus, then began the HLC self-study process. A team of consultant evaluators were scheduled to visit the campus on April 1-3, 2002.
In August 2000, David Jamieson, Assistant Professor of Biology, was appointed Coordinator of the Self-Study. During pre-session meetings on August 21-22, 2000, administration and faculty began discussions about pursuing accreditation and the role of the faculty and staff in that endeavor. Karen Kietzman was selected to serve as the Commission's staff liaison for Newport. Preparations began immediately for production of the Self-Study Report with a final draft due by December 2001. An HLC Steering Committee was formed, and individual assignments were made; these assignments were made in a manner that helped ASUN produce a thorough and accurate report.
The self-study has allowed ASUN to examine each function of the institution. This process enabled the ASUN community to identify and better understand institutional strengths and challenges. ASUN currently has a wide array of opportunities to offer prospective students including transfer degrees. In addition, the college has recently begun to concentrate on becoming a "learning-centered" institution and is in the process of developing methods of assessing those efforts. As changes occur in the campus, the student body, or the course offerings, the priorities-quality teaching and attention to the individual student-remain the same.
Philosophy of ASUN
The essential purpose of Arkansas State University-Newport is to provide a two-year postsecondary program of education responsive to the needs of the clientele. The faculty and staff share a commitment to the belief that both traditional and non-traditional students should be given a continuing opportunity for development and extension of their skills, knowledge, and awareness of their role in society. Arkansas State University-Newport realizes this primary objective as students:
(1) enter the college
(2) find programs compatible with their goals
(3) persist in higher education until their goals are obtained
(4) subsequently, become responsible members of society