Arkadelphia, Ark. – With high school graduation approaching quickly, the Arkadelphia Promise Office has announced a deadline for the Arkadelphia Promise Scholarship.  Arkadelphia seniors are strongly encouraged to submit their application to the Arkadelphia Promise Office by May 15th, 2011.  Applications submitted by the May 15 deadline will be given first consideration.For more information about  [ Read More ]

Jason W. Jones has been hired as executive director of the Arkadelphia Promise Foundation, the chairman of the foundation’s board of directors announced Wednesday.
“Jason has demonstrated a strong desire to see that the Arkadelphia Promise supports all Arkadelphia families and has presented a clear plan of action to turn the Arkadelphia Promise into a reality for this year’s senior class and those who will follow,” Bryan McKinney, the board chairman who’s also dean of the Hickingbotham School of Business at Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia.

It’s been more than three weeks since the announcement that the Arkadelphia Promise had been established to guarantee aspiring Clark County college hopefuls the funding to attend a university.

Now, Arkadelphia Superintendent Donnie Whitten says he and the rest of the faculty and staff with the school system are working hard to make sure the high standards set by the new program are met.

Spurred by the Clark County Strategic Plan, the school has worked over recent years to improve Advance Placement classes and to begin a college predatory program.

According to Whitten, these programs prompted a desire to go a step farther. Planning for the Arkadelphia Promise began 18 months ago, and it took the sponsorship of the Ross Foundation and Southern Bancorp to make it all come together.

Posted on Nov - 24 - 2010

The Path to the Promise

Posted by rexnelson / Rex Nelson’s Southern Fried

In El Dorado and Arkadelphia, the dreams of Charles Murphy Jr. and Jane Ross live on. The El Dorado Promise and the Arkadelphia Promise will help make those two cities shining stars for the southern half of our state. Interestingly, the initiatives have their roots in a pair of great Arkansans who both were born in 1920.

In the previous post, I wrote about the Arkadelphia Promise scholarship program, which was unveiled last week.

The Arkadelphia Promise is being funded by the Ross Foundation and Southern Bancorp.

Arkadelphia-based Southern Bancorp has now become the largest and most profitable rural development banking organization in the country. The first bank it purchased was Arkadelphia’s Elk Horn Bank & Trust Co. in 1988. Since then, other banks have been purchased across Arkansas and in the Mississippi Delta. Southern Bancorp has grown stronger than ever under the leadership of Phil Baldwin.

Posted on Nov - 23 - 2010

The Arkadelphia Promise

Posted by rexnelson / Rex Nelson’s Southern Fried

Arkadelphia and El Dorado are two of my favorite towns. Now, they have something else in common — something very special. Last week, people filled the football stadium at Arkadelphia High School. They were there to see the Arkadelphia Promise scholarship program unveiled. It’s something that will change the face of my hometown forever.

I thought of President Clinton’s comments last week as people filled the football stadium at Arkadelphia High School. They were there to see the Arkadelphia Promise scholarship program unveiled. The initiative is modeled on the El Dorado Promise, though there are key differences. It’s something that will change the face of my hometown forever, and it’s being made possible by the Ross Foundation and Southern Bancorp. No longer will the families of Arkadelphia High School graduates have to worry about coming up with the money to pay college tuition and fees as long as their children meet certain standards.

Posted on Nov - 23 - 2010

Excerpts From Recent Arkansas Editorials

By Associated Press Writer | (AP)

Log Cabin Democrat. Nov. 17, 2010.


When we first heard of the El Dorado Promise, a scholarship program founded by Murphy Oil Company that pays tuition and mandatory fees to Arkansas two- and four-year colleges for El Dorado High School graduates who meet qualifications, we knew it was going to be a substantial influence on the students it helps.

Now, a few years later, Murphy Oil is still sticking to its promise, and the statistics gathered in just three short years are astounding. What was once a deteriorating community is now a thriving, bustling atmosphere where parents from all over the country, and a few from other countries, are beating down the school districts doors for a chance to get their students enrolled in El Dorado schools.

Now, there’s another promise. From another community. And it has all the makings to be another El Dorado Promise.

It’s the Arkadelphia Promise Scholarship. And it has the same goal as the El Dorado Promise: sending graduates to college because it’s what’s best for the community and local economy.

With the support of the Ross Foundation and Southern Bancorp, the Arkadelphia Promise will offset the difference between what the Arkansas Academic Challenge Scholarship (the lottery scholarship) covers and the total amount of mandatory tuition and fees at any accredited public Arkansas college or university.

Posted on Nov - 22 - 2010

Arkadelphia Students Promised Scholarships

By Admin High School Scholarships

ARKADELPHIA – Tuesday’s announcement of the Arkadelphia Promise Scholarship, which will allow qualifying students in the Clark County seat to attend college free of charge, was big news for the community.

The new scholarship program was introduced during an Education Pep Rally held Tuesday at Badger Stadium with special guest Gov. Mike Beebe.

“All of you should now have no excuses not to go to college and not to finish college,” Beebe said to the students in the crowd Tuesday night. “There is a direct correlation between a college degree and the economic vitality of a community. You all are on your way. You should be very proud of one another, you should be very proud of Arkadelphia, and you should be very proud of these students. All of you deserve the recognition that everybody can give you. I’m proud of Arkadelphia, and I’m proud of Clark County.”

The program was developed by the Clark County Strategic Plan, a planning initiative designed to address the future development of the area in the next 10 years, and is sponsored by the Ross Foundation and Southern Bancorp, both based in Arkadelphia.

Posted on Nov - 22 - 2010

Hail the Mighty Badgers

By Arkansas Business Editors/ Arkansas Business

Current seniors and future graduates of Arkadelphia High School join graduates of El Dorado High School in being the beneficiaries of a powerful promise: college scholarships, opportunity, a great chance to create a great future.

The Arkadelphia Promise Scholarship, announced last week, is funded by the Ross Foundation and Southern Bancorp. The program will pay students eligible for Arkansas Lottery scholarships the balance of their college tuition and fees.

Posted on Nov - 17 - 2010

Beebe commends the Arkadelphia Promise

By Rance Collins / The Daily Siftings Herald

Arkadelphia, Ark. — Making a special appearance at the Arkadelphia Promise event was Gov. Mike Beebe, who said he was proud of the efforts of the people of Arkadelphia.

“Today there are all sorts of people who can say for the first time: my child, my grandchild, can go to college,” said Beebe. “The obstacles have been knocked down, thanks to the Ross Foundation and Southern Bancorp.

By Claudia Lauer / Arkansas Online

Students who graduate from Arkadelphia High School will get help picking up the tab for college.

Representatives from Southern Bancorp and the Ross Foundation, both based in Arkadelphia, announced Tuesday that they have partnered to start a scholarship program that will help students pay the cost of tuition and mandatory fees up to the highest rate of a public university in Arkansas.

The partners did not put a cap on the amount of money they would make available but said the program will last for at least 18 years.

Southern Bancorp is the largest rural development bank in America. The Ross Foundation manages timberlands set aside for conservation, and its philanthropic arm was formed to support the educational and development …