Outreach and Community Engagement

Interim Executive Director: Kristy Carter, 450-3118

[1] General Information and Origin of the Division

Since 1920, public service has supported the University’s mission when the first correspondence study classes were offered to meet the need for trained teachers in remote locations of the state. As the University’s role and scope expanded, outreach programs also evolved to reflect a more comprehensive curriculum. Facilities and technology resources grew to support these new offerings and were often used in connection with public service and community activities.

In 1975, the Board of Trustees created the Division of Continuing Education, now Outreach and Community Engagement, as a central administrative unit to coordinate the growing number of university outreach programs. The Division’s role was to work with internal units to respond to public service needs. This role was affirmed in 1988 when the continuing education model of “administratively centralized/academically decentralized” was espoused as an outcome of institutional restructuring. This model, which remains in place today, allows the academic units to retain ownership of outreach programs, while providing a centralized portal of access for engagement with the public.

[2] Mission, Vision, and Activities of the Division

Vision Statement:  The Division of Outreach and Community Engagement (OCE) aspires to meet the diverse needs of our University and community partners through comprehensive learning and civic engagement opportunities.

Mission Statement: The Division of Outreach and Community Engagement (OCE) connects the campus with the community and provides quality, innovative and life-long learning opportunities in the areas of professional development, personal enrichment, and community and economic development.

Program and Services:

  • Brewer-Hegeman Conference Center and customized conference support services for on- and off-campus meetings.
  • Business Outreach and Training Services offered to local business and industry.
  • Calendaring of several University facilities.
  • Community and Economic Development- consulting, coordination, and research services.
  • Community Education, which includes non-credit, personal interest courses.
  • Professional Development courses and workshops for educators.
  • Concurrent Enrollment courses offered at local high schools.
  • Extended Study credit courses offered on a self-paced format.
  • Summer athletic, youth, and special interest camps.

[3] Organization of the Division

The Division of Outreach and Community Engagement is divided into eight functional program areas:

Professional Development Programs provides professional development opportunities and other curriculum-driven programs for community, government, and workforce development.

Extended Study offers distance education courses for college degree or non-degree credit, via web-based correspondence formats. This program allows students additional time to complete courses.

Community Education Programs includes non-credit  and personal enrichment courses that are open to the public during the fall and spring semesters.

Scheduling and Events facilitates, supports and coordinates on- and off-campus meetings and events which include summer youth programs designed to provide personal and academic enrichment.

Business Outreach and Training Services includes customized training and consulting services offered on a contractual basis. Companies may be eligible to receive state funding for training.

Concurrent Enrollment offers credit courses to high school students at their local high schools.

Center for Community and Economic Development includes the Community Development Institute Central. The Center supports Arkansas’ communities and community developers, and represents the university through community engagement efforts with external partners.

Courses and programs facilitated through the Division of Outreach and Community Engagement are governed by approved fees and refund and registration policies that may differ from policies for other university courses or programs.

For more information on Outreach and Community Engagement projects, policies, and current offerings, come by our office located in the Brewer-Hegeman Conference Center, Suite 102, call (501) 450-3118, or visit uca.edu/outreach.

You can find information about the Brewer-Hegeman Conference Center online at uca.edu/brewerhegeman.