Admission Counselors

Jalen Allen

Jalen Allen

Admissions Counselor
(501) 472-8074
Central Arkansas

Hello everybody!

My name is Jalen and I was born and raised in McGehee, Arkansas. When the time came to decide which university I wanted to attend, I knew without a doubt that UCA was the place for me! In 2017, I started my academic journey at UCA and I loved every second of it. At UCA, I found a home away from home, and it equipped me with all the tools I needed to succeed and grow not only as a student but as an individual. So, by the time I graduated from UCA in 2022 with a degree in Cybersecurity, I was ready to take on the world!

Getting the opportunity to be an Admissions Counselor means that I can help make the admissions process as easy and smooth as possible for future Bears. I love getting to meet and connect with new people, and being able to do that while also helping prospective students join the best campus community that there is makes this the job of my dreams.

In my free time, I enjoy spending time with friends and family, binge-watching my favorite comfort tv shows, and spending way too much time on Tik-Tok.

Lizzie Langston

Lizzie Langston

Admissions Counselor
(501) 205-9351
Northeast Arkansas/Tennessee


My name is Lizzie Langston and Northeast Arkansas is where I call home, specifically Blytheville or also known as Bly-Vegas. I decided to see what these purple bears and striped football fields were all about during my senior year of high school and I am so glad I did! I am very proud to consider myself a Bear. As soon as I stepped on campus I was ready to make the most of my experience as a college student engaged within their campus community.

The first door I couldn’t wait to walk through was UCA Greek Life where I made connections, friendships, and grew so much as an individual. As a Greek student I was able to participate in Greeks Lead, Greek Judicial Board, and was selected to be a Pi Chi(panhellenic recruitment counselor)! Through these connections I decided to become a UCA Ambassador where I was able to show prospective students what I was proud to call home. It was amazing to see students light up the same way I did on my tour with my family! During my time in Undergrad I also was involved with LEAD Team, President’s Leadership Fellows, UCA Dance Marathon, and a member of the Norbert Schedlers Honors College.

Four years flew by and I am now a 2023 UCA graduate with a degree in Psychology with minors in Marketing and Honors Interdisciplinary Studies. I am now a proud member of the Order of Omega(all Greek honors society). I will be a lifelong member of the Honors Center Society. I was also honored to be inducted into the Purple Society alongside UCA’s “Who’s Who”among UCA students.

I am so excited to start this new chapter to help future bears feel the same love, support, and community that I got to experience the same way I did! I can’t wait to work with you to make your admissions process as smooth as possible! Also, I can explain how roundabouts work too hahaha!


Caitlin Straw

Admissions Counselor
(501) 472-4825
Northwest Arkansas/Missouri

Hello beautiful humans!

My name is Caitlin Straw, and I’m UCA’s Regional Admissions Counselor for NWA and Missouri. I was born in San Diego, CA, and raised here in Central Arkansas. I attended Conway High School, class of 2012, and then the University of Central Arkansas. I graduated from UCA in 2016 with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and a minor in Public Relations.

During my time on campus, I was very involved socially and academically, as I loved every opportunity to meet new people and engage with my community! I was a Student Ambassador for the Office of Admissions, a Resident Assistant for the Office of Housing and Residence Life, and a member of Lambda Pi Eta Communication Honor Society, PRSSA, and UCA’s knitting club, Knitwise! Also, during my time as a student at UCA, I had the opportunity to compete in a national plus-size beauty pageant, and I am proud to say I am Miss Arkansas Plus America 2015.

In my free time, you can find me staying up to date on the latest plus-size fashion trends (#bodypositivity), binge-watching sci-fi and supernatural shows on Netflix, and playing with my pups! I am honored to represent my alma mater as an Admissions Counselor and help future Baby Bears navigate the admissions process. This job is a dream come true, and I love sharing my stories with students across the south. I genuinely believe UCA offers its students every opportunity to take the experiences they have here and use them to change the world for the better!


Sydney Welch

Admissions Counselor
(501) 472-1432
Southwest Arkansas/Texas

Hey everyone! My name is Sydney. I was born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky, and southern Indiana. While in high school, I was on the oldest radio station for three years, where I discovered my passion for broadcasting. In 2014, I began my college journey at the University of Southern Indiana, where I completed my B.A. in Radio and TV Broadcasting. I was involved in many student organizations in offices such as Housing and Residence Life, Student Life, and Undergraduate Admissions. My involvement led me to discover a career in Student Affairs. I graduated in 2018 and went straight into graduate school at UCA.

During my grad school career, I served as the Coordinator for Retention Initiatives in Housing and Residence Life. In my role, I was responsible for the Peer Coaching program within the residence halls. I completed internships with Greek Life, co-teaching Journeys to Success and Admissions at UCA. I also interned with the University of Louisville for one summer in Campus Housing. My various experiences and classes confirmed my passion for making a college campus a home away from home for students. I graduated with my M.S. in College Student Personnel Administration in May 2020.

I am thankful I can continue working for this fantastic university, recruiting students to make UCA their future home. Every day I tell myself, “Be the person you needed when you were younger.” – Ayesha A. Siddiqi.