Welcome to the Pride!
The college exploration process is an exciting and important time for your family. The University of Arkansas – Fort Smith (UAFS) recognizes that parents and other family members play an important role in their students' college selection and their success throughout their college career. We are here to help you both through the college application process and to understand the many support services here to help them succeed. The most important role you can play in this process is listening to and supporting your student. Help him or her through the application process and in applying for financial aid including scholarships. At the same time, encourage him or her to remain focused on high school academics.
The UAFS Advantage
- Outstanding education with many future-focused majors
- One of the most affordable universities in the region
- Safe and beautiful campus
- Support services for your student -- Tutoring, Fitness Center, Counseling Center, Health Clinic, and more
- 87% of UAFS graduates are employed or attending graduate school within six months of graduation
As a parent, you know that education will be the most important asset for your student in the years ahead. Our degree programs – which include top-notch offerings in humanities and social sciences, languages and communication, business, education, engineering, health sciences, and the applied sciences – have been developed in partnership with industry and government leaders. This ensures that our graduates have the knowledge and skills they need to be successful today and to grow into the new opportunities of tomorrow.
UAFS provides quality educational opportunities to meet the variety of educational needs of individuals within its communities. These include bachelor's degrees, associate's degrees and shorter programs in academic, career, and occupational programs. Students are encouraged to participate in internships to provide real work experience and to participate in Maymester international study abroad opportunities. Programs of study are designed to provide the knowledge students will need to accomplish their career goals, but also to encourage students to think critically and creatively.
Request for Information
We want to send relevant college and major information to your student. Please have them complete a Request for Information form to receive this important information. This will ensure they receive the information they need regarding becoming a Lion.
Basic Tips to Begin the College Selection Process
General High School Information
- Take the college core curriculum in high school to prepare for college. We recommend 4 years of English, 3 years of science (physical science, biology, and chemistry or physics), 4 years of mathematics, and 3 years of social sciences. Also, languages, art, and music are excellent electives.
- Encourage your student to be mindful of his or her GPA and to purposefully develop leadership abilities along with talents. Involvement in productive extra-curricular activities at their high school or in the community is ideal.
- Explore career interests by reading and talking to professionals about their career paths.
- Take college courses while still in high school to get a “Head Start” in college. Students may take courses during the high school terms and in summer terms. (Concurrent Admissions Information)
College Selection Tips
- Attend local college fairs to start gathering college information.
- Junior/senior year -- contact us for information, admissions timelines, and to schedule a campus visit. Attend financial aid workshops hosted by your high school and/or UAFS
- Keep a file for each college considered.
- Encourage your student to take the ACT and/or SAT early to apply for scholarships. Recommend testing summer prior to senior year and early in the fall of their senior year.
- Encourage your student to complete applications in the fall of their senior year for admissions, scholarships, and housing.
- Apply for Financial Aid and Scholarships through the University and your community.
- Senior year/January -- Start applying for federal and state aid -- scholarships, loans, and grants. Parents can help your student through this process by watching deadlines and providing required materials. Enjoy your child’s high school experience and help them prepare for the college experience.
UAFS Admission Steps
- Complete an online Application for Admission.
- Provide proof of immunization against measles, mumps, and rubella. Immunity can be shown by providing proof of having received two doses of measles, two doses of mumps, and two doses of rubella vaccines.
- Provide official high school transcript of grades, credits, and date of graduation, or GED scores. (Early admission process will require the high school transcript (6th or 7th), student’s shot records, and placement scores (ACT, SAT or COMPASS testing at UAFS). For scholarships, we will need the 6th and/or 7th semester transcript. Upon graduation, we will need the final high school and any college transcripts sent to UAFS.
- Provide an official college transcript of any college level coursework you have taken while in high school (not including classes taking at UAFS).
- Provide official ACT or SAT scores or COMPASS test scores. Placement scores are current for four years. The COMPASS test is administered in the UAFS Testing Center. The first test is free. Contact the Admissions Office for more information. Attend New Student Orientation.
- Once accepted, first-time entering students will register for their courses through the New Student Orientation Program. This is a full day event where students will receive an orientation for the University, hear about Student Life to become involved on campus, meet their faculty and deans, and register for their courses. NSO Event for spring (January) enrollment will be held in December and the NSO Events for fall (August) enrollment will be held during the months of May through August.
UAFS firmly believes that cost should not be a barrier to the earning power and professional flexibility that only a college degree can provide. That’s why we keep our tuition low and offer generous financial aid and scholarship resources. Applying for federal, state and institutional financial aid is easier than ever before. It is estimated that 10% of the students on a college campus are eligible for federal aid, but have simply never applied. Our financial aid professionals are ready to assist your student in getting the best financial aid package possible.
Financial aid includes grants, scholarships, loans, and student employment. Funding comes from the federal and state governments, UAFS and private sources. Financial aid can be used for costs related to a student’s education, including tuition and fees, books, and required supplies, meals, on-campus housing, study abroad, or transportation. A student must apply well in advance of deadlines so they know the amount of their financial aid package. Educational funding may also be available through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the Bureau of Indian Education, Arkansas Rehabilitation Services, and WAEDA.
Students who wish to apply for grants, loans, and work-study must submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Copies of the FAFSA are available in high school counseling offices or online. UAFS's priority financial aid application deadline for the fall semester is April 15 (Prestige Scholarships have a December 15--fall of senior year--deadline.) .In addition to scholarships and grants, students may finance their education through on-campus employment or student loans.
To help your student get the most of their scholarship and financial aid opportunities, contact our financial aid office today at 479-788-7090 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We will be happy to answer your questions and help them achieve their educational goals.
UAFS offers a competitive scholarship program for qualified students based on academic excellence and leadership potential. Vocal and instrumental music performance, cheerleading, and athletic scholarships are also offered on an audition/tryout basis.
Prestige Scholarships have a deadline of October 10. See link above for details.
Freshman Merit Scholarships are available contingent upon funding. Applications using a sixth semester transcript are encouraged. These scholarships are based on the high school GPA and ACT scores. Students would need to apply and submit official ACT scores.
Special Admission Events
We encourage students and families to visit campus and experience UAFS. By scheduling a campus tour, students will meet other students, faculty and staff, tour the beautiful campus, and finish by talking with an admissions officer to address specific questions. This tour will be personalized to meet the student and family needs.
Visit our Campus Visits page for details.
Special days are hosted for seniors in the fall and for juniors and sophomores/freshmen in the spring to visit and experience UAFS. Parents are invited to attend these events too and will attend a special parent session. Find out more on our Preview Days page.
Cub Camp is a freshman experience designed to prepare first-time, full-time UAFS freshman for a successful transition into college. It is held prior to the start of the fall term and is a great opportunity to meet and make new friends. It also includes an interactive, year-long networking experience geared toward helping new students learn about ongoing traditions and campus culture while instilling pride.
|Admissions and School Relations||479-788-7120 or toll free 888-512-5466|
|Financial Aid and Scholarships||479-788-7090|
|Parent and Family Programs||479-788-7241|
How large is UAFS?
Fall 2013 enrollment was more than 6.800 students. Our 123-acre campus houses 20 modern buildings and features the largest free-standing bell tower in the south central United States
Who will advise my student?
Each student is assigned a professional advisor, college advisor or faculty advisor depending on their major. We want students to have contact with their advisor to plan their career goals, long-term academic plan, to monitor their academic progress and assist with the registration process. It is vital that students contact and work with their advisors. Students need to know and follow their degree plans and understand the University policies and programs. Students can find more information on advising at:
If my student needs additional help in a class, are resources available?
There are a variety of services available to help students succeed in the classroom. The Gordon Kelley Academic Success Center (ASC), located in the Vines Building, provides a variety of free services including math labs, a writing center, group tutoring, and computer support programs for a wide range of courses. The ASC provides many academic support services from mini academic workshops such as note taking, time management, and study skills to individual and group tutoring to assist students with specific challenges of the course content and the student's overall college experience.
Do I have to pay all my student's tuition and fees at registration?
Payment is due before classes begin. See the Registration Calendar for payment deadlines. Payments may be made by debit card, credit card or personal check. For a nominal fee, students have the option of setting-up an installment plan during the fall and spring semesters. Installment plans are not available in summer.
What is an Academic Early Alert?
We want your student to be successful in their courses so we have implemented an Academic Early Alert Program! Faculty can initiate an academic early alert if a student is having academic problems in the course such as missing classes, poor test scores, needing additional academic support such as note taking, etc. Students will receive an academic alert providing feedback on their progress and will be encouraged to see their faculty or advisor for additional help.
Do you provide job placement services?
Yes. The Career Services Center provides UAFS students and graduates with a full range of career services. The professional staff will advise students on a variety of areas such as coordinating internships, full-time and part-time employment, and providing job search assistance with resumes and interviewing workshops.
My student has special needs. Who can we contact about this?
UAFS makes every effort to offer equal educational opportunities for all students. To ensure a total university experience for students with disabilities, we seek to provide reasonable accommodations and services for students who have a physical, emotional, or learning disabilities. The underlying philosophy of the program is to provide support, where possible, that will maximize each student’s opportunities for the academic success.
Students, who qualify for assistance under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), may present validation of their disability and request services by contacting the advisor for students with disabilities, Roger Young. Mr. Young may be reached at: (479) 788-7577.
Do you offer online classes?
UAFS is one of Arkansas' largest providers of real-time, Web-based courses. We offer a variety of alternative delivery methods to meet the growing needs of our diverse student population, including, Internet, evening and weekend courses, and distance education options. Many of our general education classes are offered via the Internet. Please note, however, that alternate delivery classes are often the first to fill, so students should register as early as possible!
Are there graduate assistants in the classroom?
No. All of our classes are taught by professional faculty. Our professors maintain scheduled office hours so that they can assist students outside the classroom. And since we’re a learning-centered rather than research-driven institution, the number one priority of faculty is to ensure that UAFS students receive a quality education.
Is there housing available?
Yes. The Office of Housing and Residential Life is committed to creating a residential community that supports a vibrant learning experience at UAFS. The University currently offers the following on-campus housing options:
Lion’s Den Residence Hall--The Lion’s Den is home to primarily first-year students. The residence hall is a sustainable design and features Living and Learning Communities focused on sustainability and civic engagement. Residents enjoy a variety of suite-style room options including one, two, and three-bed room floor plans with four to five people in each spacious suite. Amenities consist of fully furnished rooms,”loftable” extra-long twin beds, community lounges, safety and security features, and residential programming. The on-site dining facility accommodates students with flexible meal plans in a setting that is both convenient and comfortable. The dining hall is a buffet style facility with several healthy options.
Sebastian Commons Apartments--Sebastian Commons offers a unique student housing experience for upper classmen who wish to reside on-campus. It is an exclusive apartment community for UAFS students, with one, two and four bedroom floor plans. Amenities include all basic utilities being paid, full kitchen, individual rooms, queen sized beds, gated parking, a sand volleyball court and basketball courts on-site. All rooms are equipped with extended basic cable as well as internet service.
Laundry facilities are located on-site in both Sebastian Commons and the Lion’s Den. For information on either facility contact the Housing Office at 479-788-7340.
Is the campus safe?
Officers of the University Police Department patrol campus buildings and parking lots 24 hours a day, including weekends and holidays. The department also provides, by request, a security escort for students who are walking alone on campus at night or a jumpstart should students need assistance with their vehicle. Both services are available free of charge.
What events or activities are available for my student on campus?
Whether students choose to take in a Broadway show, watch a battle between two nationally-ranked athletic teams, or just relax with friends at a movie, campus life at UAFS offers something for everyone. Our athletics program, features men's baseball, women's volleyball, and men's and women's basketball, cross country, tennis, and golf. UAFS has more than 80 student organizations including an active Campus Activities Board and Student Senate. Our students perform throughout the semester in the jazz band, concert chorale, vocal jazz, symphonic band, and drama productions.
Where else can I look for parent resources?
We know that as your student makes the transition from high school to UAFS, you want to help them succeed. Parents play a key role in helping their student make a smooth transition to a higher education environment. While a parent's role may change when their student goes to college, we hope that the information available here will answer some questions, ease some concerns and allow you to encourage your child to take an active role in securing academic accommodations.