Outstanding is an Understatement


UCA’s Board of Trustees and President Houston Davis kicked off a new awards initiative called Bear C.L.A.W.S. (Celebrating the Lofty Achievements of our Wonderful Students). Basically, the award is given to recognize students for being amazing. Yes, really. It’s given to students or groups of students who fall into one of the following categories:

  • International, national and statewide recognition/scholarship awardees

  • Students presenting research at statewide, national or international conferences

  • Students who are recognized with internships at a high level

  • Award-winning RSOs (Registered Student Organizations)

  • New student groups

The first Bear CLAWS awards were given to Lillian McEntire and Anastasiya Klimiankova on August 18. UCA President Houston Davis proposed the award and was excited to see the students recognized.

“UCA has some of the brightest, most accomplished students in our state,” he said. “I thought it would benefit all of us — students, staff and faculty — to see outstanding students being recognized before the [Board of Trustees] at their meetings.”

Meet the Recipient: Lillian McEntire

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Lillian McEntire is a biology, pre-optometry major and honors interdisciplinary studies minor from North Little Rock. The UCA senior is the president and founder of the Food Recovery Network’s Conway chapter (they take food that would be thrown out and donate it to local shelters), which won Outstanding Community Outreach by a Student Organization. She is also involved with Capstone Project, which provides vision care for homeless people in Arkansas and more.

Pretty amazing, right?

As for the CLAWS award, Lillian received it in honor of her work as a UCA Ambassador, and for being named a 2016 Newman Civic Fellow — the only one in the state for that year.

“It was such an honor to be nominated and especially to receive that award from the president and the board,” she said. “I’m really glad they’ve started this initiative because there are so many high-achieving students at UCA that deserve this kind of recognition.”

Meet the Recipient: Anastasiya Klimiankova

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Anastasiya Klimiankova came to UCA from Belarus in Eastern Europe and is studying accounting. Are you ready for this list of accolades? The UCA senior was selected for the CLAWS award for a number of achievements:

  • Recognition as a recipient of the Fred and Malpica Foundation Scholarship for 2017-18

  • Status as the 2016-17 president of UCA’s chapter of Beta Alpha Psi (BAP)

  • First-place award in Best Practices in Strategic Planning at the 2017 BAP Southwest Regional meeting

  • Third-place award for Best Practices in Strategic Planning in the 2017 BAP International Meeting

  • Internship with Pricewaterhouse Coopers

Klimiankova said it’s difficult NOT to succeed in the accounting department at UCA (so humble!), where she has been challenged, supported and encouraged to pursue new ideas in the subject she loves.

“It feels great to be recognized for your hard work and accomplishments,” she said.

We can’t argue with that.

Kudos to President Davis and the UCA Board of Trustees for creating the Bear CLAWS award – and for the many outstanding UCA students who make it such a great idea.

Ultimate Insider Info: Study. Chill. Eat.


We’ve all been there—you’ve got a big test coming up, and you’re trying to stay ahead of the curve by planning plenty of time in advance to study. Or you’ve waited until the night before and you’re trying to stuff your brain with as much information as you possibly can. Either way, you’re going to need a good spot to study, and no matter how hard you try, the distractions in your dorm room are just too tempting. Lucky for you, UCA’s campus is filled with study nooks that are perfect for light reading and late night cramming alike.

Student Center

It’s a popular spot for socializing, but the UCA student center also serves as a favorite place to study on campus. Study rooms upstairs offer a quiet, distraction-free space to get work done. There’s limited free printing for students in the Student Center, meaning you can print off all of the study materials you need and then some. The Student Center is also home to a grocery store and the UCA Bookstore, where you can buy school supplies and scantrons as well as UCA gear. There’s limited free printing for students in the Student Center, meaning you can print off all of the study materials you need and then some. The Student Center is also home to a grocery store and the UCA Bookstore, where you can buy school supplies and scantrons as well as UCA gear.


Donaghey Hall

It’s hard to beat studying in a coffee shop or chill restaurant, and Donaghey Hall is home to a few of Conway’s best. Blue Sail Coffee and Mosaique Bistro are located on the first floor of the residence hall and offer coffee, tea and a wide variety of tasty menu items. The relaxed atmosphere, convenient location and late night hours make both ideal locations for getting work done.

Also in Donaghey Hall is the brand new UCA Makerspace, powered by the Conductor, which launched September 5. This space serves as a place where the UCA community can see their ideas come to life and get help on projects from Maker Ambassadors. You can also sign up for classes and workshops to learn about everything from 3D printing your own products to micro manufacturing jobs.

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One of your greatest resources in test prep and research is going to be the Torreyson Library. In addition to the thousands of books and articles available in the library, there are also single and group study rooms, all with whiteboards inside. There are laptops available for rent as well as computers, and students can print using their BearCards.



Studying inside for too long can make you stir crazy, and sometimes you’ve just gotta get outside. Luckily, being a UCA student means that studying and being outside aren’t mutually exclusive. The campus-wide wifi allows you to access the internet anywhere—yes, even when you’re outdoors. The fountain at Harding Centennial Plaza is one of the most serene and picturesque spots on campus, and students can often be seen doing homework while enjoying its view. There are also plenty of tables around campus where you can enjoy some fresh air without losing any study time, and there’s even a hammock farm on campus if you feel like stretching out to study (or taking a nap between study sessions).

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You can’t power a study session on an empty stomach, so it’s important to know what your quickest and most convenient food options are. This is where your BearCard becomes your best friend—it’s part of your meal plan, but you can add money to it at any time. Most restaurants around town will offer student discounts with your BearCard, but there are plenty of options on campus as well:

If you absolutely can’t get out of your dorm to study, you can have pizza or Bite Squad delivered to your residence hall.



If you’re worried about having to trek across campus just to find a decent place to study, fear not—there’s a shuttle service for that. On-campus shuttles will take you wherever you need to go, from apartments to athletic fields to the library. And the best part—they’re free! Bus schedules are available online and shuttle routes are available online or on the free UCA shuttle app, which has real-time updates of the shuttle and its stops.

Good luck and happy studying!


Have you ever thought about how many changes come with starting college? New town, new school, new classes, new schedule, new friends, new activities, new living space! It can all be pretty overwhelming. And to add to the chaos, you get to share tight quarters with sometimes a complete stranger. Cue the panic mode. But don’t actually, it’s not that bad! There’s a reason people continue to live with roommates throughout college, and it’s because they can actually be pretty helpful. Having someone there with you when you first get to school sounds pretty intimidating, but don’t worry, we’re here to help! Whether you and your roommate are best friends or complete strangers, there are some easy things you can do to ensure you keep all the good vibes in your dorm room.

  1. Communication is key - Having a roommate is almost exactly like being in a relationship with someone. Talk about EVERYTHING. And no, not just your favorite color and your high school sweetheart. Talk about your likes and dislikes, what makes you frustrated, how you like to spend your free time, etc. Heck, even take a personality test together and talk about how you are similar and different.
  2. Agree on shared/independent spaces and things - Do you have certain things you don’t want someone else to touch? Does it bother you when someone plops down on your bed without asking or warning? Don’t be alarmed when your spacial boundaries are different than your roommate. Boundaries are different for everyone so be sure to ask their boundaries, and you do the same!

  3. It’s okay to complain or have confrontation (respectfully of course) - Nobody likes a complainer, but it’s okay to talk about issues or problems, especially EARLY on. The sooner you talk about it, the better. If it’s annoying you that they never replace the toilet paper, tell them the first time, not the 10th. If you don’t like how they always leave their wet towel on the floor, kindly ask them to make sure and hang it up. Being open about problems and issues will only help resolve them faster. *PRO TIP* - If you’re feelin’ extra, talk about these things in PERSON, not over text. It’s much easier to be understanding (for both parties) if you’re talking face to face.

  4. Dealing with stress - There are lots of ways to handle stress. Whether you like to exercise it out or cry it out, let your roommate know. It’s important for them to understand how you will react in times of stress.

  5. Compromise - You have your habits and routines; so does your roommate. Don’t assume they’re going to change their whole lifestyle just to fit yours, and vice versa. Living with a roommate is all about creating a space where you can both be yourself. If they’re a loyal Game of Thrones watcher and you want nothing to do with it, for goodness sake don’t make them stop watching it. Be respectful and work your schedule around it! It’s one time a week, come on.

  6. Cleaning schedule - This will totally make you feel like your mother, but creating an organized cleaning schedule is really the only way to accomplish keeping a tidy and clean room. It’s surprising how quickly things dirty up, especially with two people in close quarters, so pay attention to your OWN mess and most importantly, SHARE duties. Talk about the cleaning situation the first week and stick to it. *PRO TIP* - Charts are helpful!

  7. Grocery shopping and eating - Are y’all splitting groceries and toiletries? Are you rotating grocery shopping or keeping all food separate? Talk about it! Trust us, you will regret not being open when your freezer full of Halo Top is gone or your toothpaste tube is empty.

  8. Don’t expect to be BFFs - It’s important to get to know your roommate, but don’t worry, you don’t have to spend ALL your time with them. It’s a fact that the better you know someone, the more accepting you are to them so set apart some time to spend together. You’ll be living together so be someone your roommate can trust. You can be each other's best asset or worst enemy. If you end up BFFs, how cool? If not, whatever.

  9. Talk about sleep schedules - Are you a night owl or early riser? Do you snooze the alarm 8 times or pop right out of bed? These are questions to ask! Sleeping in the same room with opposite schedules is tough, but doable. Be respectful of their time and sleep, and they will do the same for you. At the end of the day, college students are sleep deprived, so create an environment that’s comfortable to snooze! *PRO TIP* - College naps are GOLD. Include naps into your sleep schedules.

  10. Bathroom habits - No one wants to be stuck on the toilet without toilet paper, or find hair on the walls in the shower. If you’ve been living by yourself, you might have never noticed your bathroom habits and vice versa. It’s common to not know your expectations until something happens, so be aware and when it does, talk about it.

Living in a toxic environment is not healthy and can only harm your college experience. If you feel like you or someone you know is having a difficult time with their living situation, our housing team is here to help! Please contact Dr. Stephanie H. McBrayer, Director of Housing & Residence Life/BearCard for guidance.

Dr. Stephanie H. McBrayer
Director of Housing & Residence Life/BearCard
(501) 450-5932

College of Business

The business world is constantly evolving and changing, and sometimes it can be tough to keep up. Enter UCA’s College of Business, home to more than 1,500 undergraduate students and more than 100 graduate students, all taught by about 70 faculty members. Students have opportunities to get hands-on experience in a number of different business fields—from accounting to marketing to management information systems—through the College of Business internship program, one of the most active in the state. Back in the classroom, students are trained in how to make a difference in both the business community and in society. Our students are also in the business of getting hired—the quality education College of Business students receive is highly recognized throughout the state, with major companies prioritizing UCA grads in their hiring decisions. To learn more about the College of Business, visit http://uca.edu/business/.

College of Education

When UCA was founded in 1907, its purpose was to train students to become professional teachers. Though we’ve added a few more areas of study since then, our dedication to building up future educators has remained the same and made the UCA College of Education the premier program for educator preparation in Arkansas. With programs in teacher preparation, education leadership, instructional technologies and more, as well as advanced programs in specialty areas, UCA is home to some of the most sought-after educators in the state. But don’t take our word for it, just ask one of the many UCA grads scoring above the state and national averages on their licensure exams. Learn more about the College of Education at http://uca.edu/education/.

Honors College

You don’t have to stop learning when you leave the classroom. The Schedler Honors College at UCA allows students to live in a community of like-minded students who share the same passion for learning, diversity and scholarship. With opportunities to volunteer, study abroad and enjoy a full ride scholarship, students in the Honors College become leaders on campus and in the workforce. Learn more about the Honors College here: http://uca.edu/honors/.

College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics

There’s a great big world out there to study and explore, and your journey to discovering it starts at UCA. Our College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics offers degrees in biology, chemistry, environmental science and more. When you study in state-of-the-art facilities like the brand new Conway Corporation Center for Sciences and Dr. Edmond E. Griffin Planetarium, even the sky’s not the limit! To learn more about the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, visit http://uca.edu/cnsm/.

College of Liberal Arts

Passionate about exploring ideas and broadening your understanding of the world around you? You might be a perfect fit for the College of Liberal Arts. Through scholarly and creative endeavors and the exchange of ideas, students in the College of Liberal Arts gain knowledge of different disciplines and graduate prepared to take on a rapidly changing professional world. The College of Liberal Arts offers degrees in a variety of subjects, including English, history, political science, sociology and more. To learn more about the College of Liberal Arts, visit http://uca.edu/liberalarts/.

College of Health and Behavioral Sciences

UCA produces more healthcare professionals than any other school in Arkansas. Offering students hundreds of hours of practical, hands-on experience in more than 1,000 health-related professions, the College of Health and Behavioral Sciences is the largest college on campus and is home to the departments of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Nursing and more. To learn more about the College of Health and Behavioral Sciences, visit http://uca.edu/chbs/.

College of Fine Arts and Communication

Studying in the College of Fine Arts and Communication doesn’t just mean performing well on stage—our students perform extremely well in the classroom and beyond. Students develop their skills in the departments of Art, Music, Communication and Film, Theatre and Creative Writing, with all departments placing a heavy emphasis on practicing to perfect your craft. Here, you’ll have the opportunity to learn from the best in the business both in the classroom and through the Artist-in-Residency program. Prepare to lead the next generation of artists, communicators and scholars with the College of Fine Arts and Communication. To learn more about the College of Fine Arts and Communication, visit http://uca.edu/cfac/.