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Arkansas State University developed from an agricultural school founded on April 1, 1909 by Act 100 of the 37th Arkansas General Assembly. It was created as one of four Arkansas high schools to teach agriculture, horticulture and the art of textile manufacturing. Today, the university grants bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees through its various colleges. With cutting-edge research capabilities, Arkansas State is building on its first hundred years and looking to the future.
|Type||Public flagship research university|
|Established||1909; 112 years ago|
|Endowment||$84.43 million (2019)|
|Budget||$172 million (FY 2020)[|
|Location||Jonesboro, Arkansas, Arkansas, United States|
|Colors||Scarlet, Black and White|
Victor C. Kays of Illinois was recruited as the first principal (later changed to president), and he immediately began recruiting faculty and building the new campus on the donated land. While work on the buildings continued, the first classes opened on Oct. 3, 1910 in downtown Jonesboro in the old Elks Lodge Hall above a jewelry store on Washington and Main. The 189 enrolled students were taught by a faculty of eight, including Kays. Staff consisted of a secretary, a superintendent of farms and a superintendent of residence halls. Work not done by faculty or staff was performed by students, who paid no tuition but were expected to work on the campus.
Despite its agricultural focus, the "Aggie School" offered a well-rounded curriculum from the beginning, and many of the general education courses were taught using college level textbooks. Kays also introduced athletics during the first year, as well as fine arts programs and a range of extracurricular
Accrediting organizations set the academic standards by which their member institutions must comply. This quality assurance process is performed by private membership associations. Arkansas State University is accredited by the regional institutional accreditor, the Higher Learning Commission, Chicago, IL.