Program Schedule for Class XV:
Participants are required to attend at least 80% of the program sessions, including the entire opening session, which is mandatory. The 2020-2021 program year is tentatively scheduled as follows:
Orientation: Sunday, September 20, 2020 – Tuesday, September 22, 2020 – Fairfield Bay Conference Center, Fairfield Bay.
Participants will come together as a class, examine leadership, as well as their individual roles and responsibilities. The class will also receive a background on topics of significant concern in Arkansas as a foreword to issues presented throughout the program.
Orientation runs from 12 p.m. Sunday, September 20 through 12 p.m. Tuesday, September 22, 2020
Education & Workforce:
Thursday, October 15 – Friday, October 16, 2020 – Batesville
The deployment of Arkansas’ education system has a storied history and is, to this day, our State’s standard-bearer for local control. Facilitated by administrators and respected leaders from across the gamut of Arkansas’s education system, the class will be immersed in one of our state’s greatest responsibilities and challenges.
Agriculture & Outdoor Life:
Monday, November 16 – Tuesday, November 17, 2020 – Jonesboro
As the state’s No. 1 industry, agriculture is crucial to Arkansas’s economy. More than 44,000 farms spread across 13.8 million acres annually contribute more than $20 billion to the Natural State. That’s nearly one quarter of the state’s economic activity. Additionally, Arkansas agriculture provides jobs for one of every six citizens. In this session, you will trace the path – and the economics – of the crop cycle from the test tube to the supper table, all of which begins and ends in Northeast Arkansas. On Day 2 of this session you will experience the outdoor life that gave Arkansas the “Natural State” nickname. You’ll hear from those on the front lines for the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission who play an important role in oversight of the protection, conservation and preservation of various species of fish and wildlife in Arkansas. And you may also get more than a windshield tour of the type of places that brought ABC’s Wide World of Sports to Arkansas’s doorstep.
Government & Military:
Tuesday, December 8 – Wednesday, December 9, 2020 – Little Rock, North Little Rock & Jacksonville
Little Rock is the home of the State’s Capitol and three branches of its highest governmental bodies. On its flanks are some of Arkansas’s strongest military installations.
In Part 1 of the Session, the class will assume the roles of legislators and work with sitting elected legislative leaders and various specials interests to move bills through the process from introduction in the committee room to final passage or defeat on a Chamber floor.
In Part 2 of the Session, the class will travel to North Little Rock and Jacksonville, Arkansas to experience a 10,000 foot view of Central Arkansas’s military footprints. Top military personnel will escort the class through this experience and shine a light on the importance of these installations – and where we’d be without them.
Natural Resources, Defense & Industrial Development:
Monday, Jan. 11 – Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021 – El Dorado, Magnolia & Camden (The Golden Triangle)
Few people realize that south Arkansas is such a hub for global aerospace, defense and advanced technological and chemical companies with worldwide interests. But as a part of Class XV you will experience them all. With nationally ranked companies a plenty there is no shortage to the eye opening education you will receive. South Arkansas has seen a rapid expansion of industrial development, advances in weaponry and the distribution of natural resources. The issues surrounding the utilization of these important areas come to life with behind the scenes tours of companies that keep our military equipped with the best in tactical equipment and provide innovative ideas and products. Those areas combined with a look into the thriving Industrial Park areas, this session will surely open your mind to the wonders that are created in this part of the state.
Economic Development & Infrastructure:
Thursday, February 18 – Friday, February 19, 2021 – West Memphis & Blytheville
This session will take a look at the Infrastructure of our state with a chance to assume the role of the Highway Commissioner as you prioritize funding to repair and replace Arkansas’ Highways. The economic development in this area of the state is ever changing so Class XV will get the chance to take a glimpse of some of the most popular sources of this region.
Tourism, History & Revitalization:
Wednesday, March 10 – Thursday, March 11, 2021 – Hot Springs
Arkansas is a state rich in history with a tourism industry that provides a lot to see and do. Tourism, strengthened by the revitalization of many key areas of our state, contributes quite a lot to our economy. During this session, class members will have a chance to look into an area full of history. This area has been a target for many revitalization projects that have restored structures to their historical beauty, reinforced the draw for tourists and increased the effect of economic development in the region.
Wednesday, April 21 – Friday, April 23, 2021 – Northwest Arkansas
From healthcare to poultry production, and transportation to retail sales, Northwest Arkansas continues to be one of the fastest-growing and most progressive areas of the United States. Class members will examine the impact a relative handful of entrepreneurial pioneers have had not just within our state but nationally. They will also see how those who have followed have pooled the collective resources to continue their legacy.
Leadership, Planning & Graduation:
Thursday, May 20 – Friday, May 21, 2021 – Little Rock
Classmates will pull on their proverbial gowns and parade through the streets. But before they do, this now cohesive unit will examine the miles they’ve traveled and make plans for the future. Joined by eleven years of alumni, the class will take their places in a long line of graduates and become a part of this accomplished group. Highlighting the series of events will be some of Arkansas’s most accomplished leaders.