Retiring professor Francis builds scholarship to keep helping students

Monticello, Arkansas – Professor Paul Francis, who is bringing a 34-year career at the University of Arkansas at Monticello to a close, wants to continue helping students, even in retirement.

By Lon Tegels – College of Forestry, Agriculture and Natural Resources
University of Arkansas at Monticello

“The one thing I wanted to do was leave something behind. I’ve been grateful to UAM for giving me this opportunity,” he said. “The students meant a lot to me; they’ve been like family to me. Now I have their children as students. I thought I better retire before I start getting their grandchildren; that’s when I’ve been here too long.”

Francis said that depending on interest rate the newly-endowed fund should provide scholarship amounts between $750 and $1,000. 

“I decided to create an endowed scholarship for agriculture students and primarily for non-resident students. I want to attract students from outside our typical recruitment area. The scholarship has just been endowed, and it has to wait a year to gain interest. The first scholarship should be available in January 2023,” Francis said, adding that he hopes the fund will endow two scholarships. 

The agriculture faculty will choose the recipient.

“There are no strict requirements other than they are non-residents and have a high potential to complete their bachelor’s degree,” said Francis. He adds, “No essay will be required.” Francis said the Faculty Committee could use it to recruit new students or retain students already here with little or no financial support.

About the College of Forestry, Agriculture and Natural Resources and the Arkansas Forest Resources Center

The College of Forestry, Agriculture and Natural Resources, and the Arkansas Forest Resources Center, a University of Arkansas System Center of Excellence, brings together interdisciplinary expertise through a partnership between the University of Arkansas at Monticello and the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture. The College and Center are headquartered at the University of Arkansas at Monticello campus, but their programs range statewide with the mission of developing and delivering teaching, research, and extension programs that enhance and ensure the sustainability and productivity of forest-based natural resources and agricultural systems. Academic programs are delivered by the College of Forestry, Agriculture, and Natural Resources through the University of Arkansas at Monticello. Through the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture, research is administered by the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station, and extension and outreach activities are coordinated by the Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service.

The University of Arkansas at Monticello and the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offer all of their programs to all eligible persons without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and are Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employers.

About the Division of Agriculture

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s mission is to strengthen agriculture, communities, and families by connecting trusted research to the adoption of best practices. 

Through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service, the Division of Agriculture conducts research and extension work within the nation’s historic land grant education system.

The Division of Agriculture is one of 20 entities within the University of Arkansas System. It has offices in all 75 counties in Arkansas and faculty on five system campuses.

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs and services without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.

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