Campus News


    Students intending to receive federal financial aid for summer enrollment MUST register for all summer classes during the Summer I enrollment period. This includes all classes for Summer I, Summer II, and Summer III. Any classes added after this date will not be considered eligible for Financial Aid.

    Students enrolled in classes for Summer I and/or Summer II, will NOT be able to receive financial aid for any Summer III class added after June 2, 2014. Financial aid regulations require enrollment for all summer terms to be established by the census date (June 2, 2014) which is the date the Financial Aid office determines aid eligibility.



    Students pre-registered in Summer I, II, and III classes will have all summer charges paid with Summer I and II aid.

    Summer I / Summer II aid eligibility will be applied to students accounts on June 10, 2014. These funds will be applied to tuition, fee, and book charges on the student account for Summer I, Summer II, and/or Summer III charges. If there are excess funds available, they will be refunded on June 13, 2014.  

    Some students who are eligible for a Financial Aid refund check may not receive their refund until the Summer III refund date, as all summer charges will be paid out of Summer I and II aid. Most students should not expect a refund until July 11, 2014.

    Students should monitor their student account and the COTO web page for complete information on Payment/Refund Information.



    Student Pell Grant awards are based on remaining eligibility for the 2013-2014 award year. This award may be adjusted downward based on student enrollment.

    Only students who have not exhausted their annual eligibility limit between the Fall and Spring semesters will be eligible for Pell Grant during the Summer 2014 semester.



    In order to be eligible for loans, students must be enrolled in at least 6 credit hours.

    To receive loans, students must have a valid Master Promissory Note and Direct Loan Entrance Counseling on file with the Financial Aid Office

    If a student borrowed loans during the Fall 2013 and/or Spring 2014 semesters and did not receive his/her maximum annual loan limit amount, he/she may be eligible to receive Direct Student Loans during the Summer 2014 semester.

    Loan eligibility cannot be determined until a student has preregistered for all summer classes.  Summer only loans must be disbursed in two payments:  June 13 2014 and July 11, 2014.  All charges will be deducted from the first loan disbursement.



    If a student was awarded summer financial aid and did not meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy standards after grades have been reported for the Spring 2014 semester, summer aid will be cancelled and the student will need to make alternative arrangements to pay for his/her 2014 Summer semester tuition and fees.

    Satisfactory Academic Progress will be reviewed after the Summer 2014 terms. The Satisfactory Academic Progress policy can be found on the financial aid web page located at


    Please refer to the COTO Financial Aid web page and COTO Catalog for additional information.

    *Visiting/summer transient students are not eligible for financial aid.

  • Yoga class is being offered at College of the Ouachitas on Thursdays for 4 weeks beginning April 3 from 5:30 - 6:30 p.m. in the Great Room, A300.  Taught by certified instructor Kasey Spence.  Cost is $20 for four weeks. Mats will be provided. Click here for a list of other Community Education classes offered at College of the Ouachitas.

  • COTO will host the Spring graduation and transfer fair on Tuesday, March 4th from 10-1 in the Great Room. 

    Come by to apply for graduation, order cap and gown, and get information about transferring to complete your bachelor’s degree!

  • College of the Ouachitas will host a grand opening on Friday, February 21st, for the 3D Printer Innovation Center.  Drop by between the times of 1:00pm - 2:30pm to see the largest MakerBot Innovation Center to date!


    With the help of a lot of boxes, the College of the Ouachitas is opening an innovation center to teach students how to design and produce their own products, while providing training opportunities for businesses.

    “We are going to be the world’s largest MakerBot desktop 3-D innovations center,” said Stephen Schoonmaker, president of of the college in Malvern. “We have acquired more than 50 3-D printer/replicators for use by our pre-engineering students.”

    The 3-D printer/replicator has been a much-talked-about technology in recent years. The printer, in a frame about the size of a small aquarium, uses spools of plastic materials, looking like a cord spool for a giant lawn trimmer, to produce three-dimensional objects based on digital designs.

    “It’s a little like magic,” Schoonmaker said. “If you have an image in mind, you will be able to make it.”

    MakerBot, a New York-based manufacturer of the desktop 3-D replicators, was called by Jody Callahan, an instructor at COTO, about purchasing some of the units for the pre-engineering program.

    “Some of the companies wouldn’t talk to us,” he said, “but when I called MakerBot, a person answered the phone, and we started talking.”

    The purchase of a couple of units became something more as talks continued. Once Schoonmaker entered the negotiations, a partnership was developing between the college and the company. He said the talks continued through the Christmas holidays, and the printers were shipped, arriving New Year’s Day.

    “It was like Christmas,” Callahan said. “We came to school in jeans, and we unloaded the delivery truck ourselves, including Dr. Schoonmaker. We were excited.”

    “We were interested in having enough machines to create a corridor of learning,” Schoonmaker said. “If you have a sufficient number of machines, you can make learning practical. If you start a project on one machine, it might run for hours, but with multiple machines, you can make separate parts and have a useful class experience.”

    Callahan said that as he talked with MakerBot, the company’s officials urged the college to not change its curriculum.

    “They said not to change what we were teaching,” he said. “Rather, they wanted their printers to enhance what we were doing — to take this emerging technology and work it into the program.”

    Schoonmaker said the MakerBot has taken the idea of an innovation center to teach the use of 3-D printer/replicators beyond the College of the Ouachitas and will open centers in other schools.

    Bre Pettis, CEO of MakerBot, said an innovation center at an institution of higher learning will change the dynamics of teaching creative design.

    “Class projects can be fully realized and brought to life through 3-D printing and scanning,” he said. “Product prototypes can be created, refined and finalized at a much faster and affordable pace. Schools can train future innovators and be ahead of the curve when it comes to preparing students for the real world and workforce.”

    In addition, a second program at COTO will be opened to nonstudents.

    “The innovation center will be teaching members of small businesses and even major industry in the use of the machines,” Schoonmaker said. “We will establish what should be the first program to earn a certificate of training for the desktop 3-D printer.”

    Callahan said the school will be setting standards for the training program.

    “The students will follow the curriculum,” he said. “We will be meeting with representatives from MakerBot to talk about the learning certificate, what it will contain and what it will mean when it is earned.”

    Schoonmaker said the program is costing about $100,000, with the college able to buy the printers at a special price. In all, the school purchased 47 one-head machines, as well as six two-head machines that can work in two materials for more-complex designs. The school also purchased six digitizers. Those are 3-D scanners.

    “You can place an object on the scanner, and it will create a digital design of the object,” said Glenn Franklin, senior instructor of the pre-engineering program. “Then with that design, you can make another [object] with the replicators.”

    The printers at the school use two kinds of plastic, Franklin said.

    “PLA (polylactic acid) is made from cornstarch,” he said. “It’s not very durable, but it’s good for making a prototype quicker than creating a mold, which is very costly for something that probably will change. If it does change, you just recycle the plastic and make another one.”

    The other plastic is acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, or ABS, which is more durable and is often used in injection molding. The plastic is used in pipes and for many uses in automobiles, Franklin said. LEGOs are made from ABS, and some of the items being made at the school resemble the plastic building blocks.

    One of the major parts of the training for the college students and those who will earn the certificate will be the computer program used for designing.

    “At the college, the students use a high-level CAD (computer assisted design) program,” Callahan said. “You design a criteria, then draw what you want to make in the virtual world, check it for fit and function, then send the file to the printer.

    Schoonmaker said two of the students in the pre-engineering program have already created designs for uses that could be patented.

    “If these students are able to create something like that this early in their training,” he said, “imagine what they can do once they have their engineering degrees. Now is their chance to learn how to create.”

    In addition to the 3-D printers, the school recently received two industrial plastic-injection systems, donated by the Kohler Co., which has a plant in Sheridan.

    “We received the donation with the help of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission,” Schoonmaker said. “With this equipment and the printers, we can develop training based on these machines and have the beginning of a program in plastics.”

    Franklin said he is excited to see what the students can do with the new equipment as it goes on line.

    “We have some of the top kids in the college in this program,” he said. “You don’t take this course because it’s cool or because your friends are taking it.”

    Schoonmaker said the college is waiting for the stands that will hold the machines to arrive and that the grand opening of the innovation center will be scheduled for later in February.

    Tri-Lakes Edition Writer Wayne Bryan can be reached at 501-244-4460 or

  • If you are a Student, Faculty or Staff Member of College of the Ouachitas you are invited to enter the Art Show.

    Art must be delivered to the COTO Library during the last week of February – 24, 25, 26, 27. Ribbon winners will be announced at a reception on March 3 at 12:15 pm. Click here for details.

  • ACT Test Prep Course will be taught at College of the Ouachitas on Tuesdays, March 4th through April 8th, from 6 - 9 p.m.  There will not be a class on March 25th due to spring break.  Cost for the course is $125.   You must register and pay before class begins on March 4th.  Click here for more information.

  • TRiO Student Support Services will be hosting a luncheon for our participants, Wednesday, February 12th, from 12pm. – 1p.m., in the Great Room at College of the Ouachitas.  If you are a TRiO participant, please reserve your seat with Ms. Lori at 501-332-0288. For more information, click here.

  • The last day to charge books to your Financial Aid is Friday, January 31st.
    Financial Aid refunds will be disbursed on Friday, February 14th.  Refund checks will be available after 9am at the Business Office windows. Students must have Student ID and Driver's License.

  • On Thursday, January 16, around 10:00 a.m., Malvern Police Department informed the college that they were responding to a call regarding a threat of a firearm at College of the Ouachitas by an individual visiting the campus.  A search of the suspected individual and their vehicle determined that no weapons were present.  MPD removed the individual from the campus without further incident. 

    College of the Ouachitas takes situations of this nature seriously, as we place paramount importance on the safety of our students, faculty, staff and campus visitors. Situations of this nature allow college officials to evaluate and strengthen existing emergency protocols in order to assure the highest level of security for the College community.