For the third straight year, a team University of Arkansas – Fort Smith students earned national recognition by competing against top schools from across the nation to raise awareness about the national debt.
Graduate Kayley Corley of Booneville, along with students Alex Ellis of Gentry, AnnMarie McCollum of Mulberry, Andrew Pearcy of Greenwood and Taylor Wewers of Fort Smith led a campaign across the UAFS campus to bring knowledge of the national debt to their fellow college students, an effort that was rewarded by the school placing in the top 10 of 75 competing universities and colleges.
“To be able to do a three-peat of placing in this competition really speaks to the caliber of students and the faculty and staff we have here,” said Corley, who graduated from UAFS this spring. “We honestly wouldn’t be able to do this if we didn’t have the support that we have here at the university. We’re competing with top-tier schools like the University of Texas, the University of Miami, and Dartmouth, and we’re holding our own against them.”
“We are making a difference and we are making waves,” Corley continued. “I think that’s important, and I think it’s important to know that UAFS has that potential and can stand against these educational giants.”
Events the team coordinated on campus included Let’s Taco Bout the Debt, where they handed out free tacos to students across campus while they discussed facts about the national debt; a watch party for the second presidential debate; and a meeting with Congressman Steve Womack to discuss what leaders in Washington were doing to curtail the debt.
The team also spoke to the Student Government Association at UAFS about the debt and how they could help raise awareness as leaders on campus.
“The national debt has implications across the board. If we don’t fix it, it’s going to come down to our nation choosing between paying interest payments or providing funds to support veterans or homeland security,” Corley said. “If we don’t start working on it now, we’re going to have to make those decisions.”
For placing as a top school, McCollum represented UAFS at a fiscal summit held in Washington, D.C., by the Petersen G Petersen Foundation, a sponsor of the Up to Us competition.
About the University of Arkansas - Fort Smith
The University of Arkansas – Fort Smith is the premiere regional institution of Western Arkansas, connecting education with careers and serving as a driver of economic development and quality of place in the greater Fort Smith region. Through a small campus, dedicated professors, and the university’s unique bond with its community, students at UAFS are able to do more in the areas they are passionate about, both on- and off-campus, in a way that prepares them for post-graduate success. To find out how you can do more at UAFS, visit www.uafs.edu.