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Groundbreaking ceremony for new
Liberal Arts Building announced

Sept. 16, 2008 -- Arkansas State University-Jonesboro will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for a new Liberal Arts Building on Saturday, Sept. 20, at 3 p.m. Governor Mike Beebe announced a $4 million contribution by the state of Arkansas toward construction of the building during ASU's Legislative Day last Saturday. Update: In case of rain, the groundbreaking ceremony will be held in the lobby of the Dean B. Ellis Library. Parking will be available in the library parking lot.

Previously, members of the Arkansas General Assembly had appropriated $2.7 million for planning, designing, and other necessary steps before construction could be started.

The Liberal Arts Building will serve as the new home for the College of Humanities and Social Sciences. It will house five of the college’s six academic departments – English and Philosophy; History; Political Science; Languages; and Criminology, Sociology and Geography. The Heritage Studies Ph.D. program will remain housed in the Dean B. Ellis Library.  The 120,625-square-foot, four-story building will contain state-of-the-art classrooms, computer labs, faculty offices, departmental suites and conference rooms.

The new Liberal Arts Building at ASU will house the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Speakers will include ASU-Jonesboro chancellor Robert L. Potts, ASU Board of Trustees chair Mike Gibson, Dr. Gloria J. Gibson, dean, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Dr. C. Calvin Smith, emeritus professor of history, state Senator Paul Bookout, and student representative Abram Skarda.

Chancellor Potts says, “This groundbreaking is an act of faith in our legislature to provide the funding to complete this building. We have been given the first $4 million by Governor Beebe from his General Improvement Fund, generously provided by the 2007 General Assembly. We will need approximately $30 million more to complete the building, and we hope for an additional $15 million during the next legislative session.”

Dr. Gloria J. Gibson, dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, says, “Just as this new structure will stand as a powerful physical landmark—the intellectual heart of the university—a liberal arts education continues to provide a durable foundation for life-long learning.  The humanities and social sciences are central to what it means to be educated, because the disciplines celebrate and nurture human creativity and freedom.  The new Liberal Arts Building will more effectively allow faculty to continue to prepare students for the increasingly global world that awaits them.”

The College of Humanities & Social Sciences offers outstanding and innovative undergraduate and graduate degrees in a number of disciplines.  Students may also select minors from traditional, interdisciplinary, or multidisciplinary areas of study.  The faculty are leading scholars in their respective fields.  Courses and degrees in the College of Humanities & Social Sciences prepare students for life-long learning, visionary leadership, civic responsibility, global awareness, and an appreciation of diversity.

For additional information about the College of Humanities and Social Sciences and its many programs, visit the college online at

The groundbreaking will be held on the lawn southeast of Wilson Hall, and parking will be available in the lot near the College of Fine Arts.



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