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Arkansas Colleges and Universities

Find Campus Colleges and Universities in ArkansasArkansas Colleges and Universities: Arkansas Colleges

A College for Every Student in Arkansas

So, you live in Arkansas, and you want to go to college. Nationally, college graduates make almost twice what workers with only a high school diploma make (around $58,000, vs. around $31,000). So, where can you go to college close to home?

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Colleges and Universities in Arkansas

You have three general choices for face-to-face classes:

  • State colleges, like the University of Arkansas system (with over a dozen campuses throughout the state).
  • Historically Black (HBCU) college (Philander Smith, in Little Rock)
  • Private colleges, including religious colleges

In Arkansas, religious colleges mainly means Baptist colleges, with colleges like Central Baptist and Williams Baptist. There's also colleges like Crowley's Ridge College (the Church of Christ) and Lyon, which is Presbyterian and one of Arkansas' best liberal arts colleges.

You also have the option of going to college online. If you do that, you can classes from an in-state college (University of Arkansas's Global Campus offers online classes), or look beyond for a wider array of options.

These schools vary demographically: overall the public colleges average 75% white students, and 18% Black, with a 53/47 female to male ratio, while the schools with a conscious focus (religious, ethnic) have greater uniformity in their student bodies. The schools also vary a lot in cost.

  • Arkansas Community College: At an Arkansas community college, you would pay as little as $1400 a year at Mid-South Community College, or $3500 a year if you go to East Arkansas Community College.
  • Four Year Public College: Go to a four year public college, and the tuition jumps a bit more: Arkansas State will run about $7700 a year, and the University of Arkansas about $7200.
  • Private College. Private tuition varies more widely. At the low end, you've got Arkansas Baptist (another HBCU) where tuition runs $3300 (with another $750 in fees) and at the high end, Hendrix, where tuition and room and board combined total over $41,000. No matter where you choose, there is a wide range of financial aid available, both general, and specific (such as the Ellen Carpenter Scholarship for HBCU students). For example, all of Hendrix's students get some financial aid, and the average award is $24,000.

Labor market information

When you choose a career, you will want to think about what will be satisfying to you, but also what you're likely to make, and external factors like what the future holds for the Arkansas economy. Right now the mean annual income in Arkansas runs about $35,500. Social service workers as a field earn around $37,000, Arkansas teachers earn about $42,000 per year, healthcare workers $60,000 per year (with a wide variation depending on field), as do architects and computer analysts. Lawyers earn about the $85,000, and business managers earn as much as $100,000 in sales or marketing.

Some fields are likely to see more growth than others. All of the following fields are projected to have more than a 20% increase in demand in the next 5-7 years:

  • Teachers (23-27% increase)
  • Social /Mental Health Workers, and Substance Abuse Counselors (20-40% increase)
  • Registered nurse (27% increase) and other health workers (30+% increase)
  • Industrial Engineers (24%)
  • Veterinarians (26% increase)
  • Translators (28% increase)
  • Correctional Officers (30% increase)
    Computer and Network Analyst (22-42% increase)

So you see, you have a wide range of options in Arkansas, and many educational and career opportunities.

Author: Greg Beatty
Arkansas Colleges, Universities, & Schools
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