At a press conference Wednesday on the University of Central Arkansas campus, Acxiom Corporation announced a pledge of $200,000 to the school's Department of Computer Science.

According to UCA, the pledge to be given over the next five years will help underwrite the hiring of a new, tenure-track faculty member in that department.

"We sincerely appreciate this gift that will allow us to attain a a high quality faculty member...along with our high quality students. We are forever grateful," said Tom Courtway, interim UCA president.

The department will conduct a national search this fall to hire an individual to fill the Acxiom Professorship in Computer Science. The candidate will begin working at UCA next fall.

Acxiom's representative, Gary Arnold, associate relations, said that more than 100 UCA students or graduates were hired by Acxiom in 2 years.

Acxiom's CEO and President Scott Howe, said in a release that UCA's graduates of the computer science program "have been a substantial part of our success."

Dr. Steve Runge, dean of the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, praised the recent accomplishments of the computer science department.

Runge said that UCA computer science students' software design team placed third nationally in the 2011 Microsoft Imagine Cup competition. Other accomplishments include the successful publishing of several manuscripts and papers written by the department's students and faculty.

A trend in education that UCA has risen above is a decline in computer sciences enrollment among students, Runge said.

According to Runge, the department's enrollment increased 20 percent in a year's time, when national numbers declined.

"This growth has created positive challenges in terms of meeting the classroom instructional needs of our students," said Runge. "To continue on this positive trajectory requires that we recruit and retain the highest-quality faculty members."

According to UCA, Acxiom Corporation, the data and analytics company headquartered in Little Rock, began making financial contributions to the school in 2002. 

Contributions have supported joint activities such as conferences, programming contests, IT Academy for high school students and Acxiom Laboratory for Applied Research.





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On Wednesday, University of Central Arkansas Interim President Tom Courtway announced that Acxiom Corporation has pledged $200,000 over the next five years in support of the university’s Department of Computer Science.


“Good things are happening at UCA,” Courtway said. “People believe in our mission, our students, our faculty and staff. Individuals, foundations and corporations want to invest in our people, programs and projects and I’m pleased to make an announcement to that end today. We have a strong and long-running partnership with Acxiom, and today I’m excited to tell you about how they have decided to invest in us.”


The company’s gift will help underwrite the hiring of a new, tenure-track faculty member in the Computer Science Department. The department will conduct a national search this fall to hire an  individual to fill the Acxiom Professorship in Computer Science. The successful candidate will begin working at UCA next fall.



Full story coming.