Jim Collins’ life was eternally modified the week earlier than his sophomore yr at Mississippi State College.
“My mom died unexpectedly and all of a sudden,” said Collins. “Maybe I used to be naïve, however I used to ben’t actually apprehensive about money. We simply went To school. I mowed yards Inside the summertime, however there have beenn’t scholarships again then like there At the second are. So, my uncle, Dr. Lewis Put together dinner, sat me down and tprevious me ‘don’t fear about school, it’s taken care of.’ Properly, he thought I used to be going to get like a welding certificates. 9 yrs later I had my doctorate.”
Collins by no means forgot that act of kindness. He has repaid it by way of his educating and philanthropy on behalf of Arkansas Tech College college students, All of the whereas displaying his trademark blfinish of sincerity and humor.
On Tuesday, Arkansas Tech devoted the Dr. James “Jim” Collins Agriculture Classroom in his honor. Located on the Tech Farm, the classroom and the adjoining greenhouses have been The state of affairs for numerous horticulture classes imparted from Collins to his ATU college students all by way of a full-time educating profession that spanned 34 yrs.
Collins, who hpreviouss a Bachelor of Science diploma from Mississippi State As well as to Grasp of Science and Doctor of Philosophy levels from Louisiana State College, retired from Arkansas Tech in 2017 On the rank of professor of agriculture. He was identifyd professor emeritus of agriculture by the Arkansas Tech Board of Trustees in 2021.
His contrihoweverions to ATU past The conventional classroom have included overseeing the annual Arkansas Tech Division of Agriculture plant gross sales for 34 yrs and serving as authorities director and master of ceremonies for the annual Miss Arkansas Tech College rivals.
Collins was voted 2010 authorities director of the yr by the Miss Arkansas group, 2015-16 ATU Bridge to Excellence mentor of the yr and 2017 ATU professor of the yr.
He has maintained his volunteer duties with the Miss Arkansas Tech rivals since his retirement. The event routinely currents Greater than $20,000 per yr in assist to the Arkansas Tech college students who Take part in it.
“Dr. Collins’ management of the spring and fall plant gross sales allowed him To Wind up to be An envoy from Tech to the group,” said Dr. Judy Cezeaux, dean of the ATU College of Engineering and Utilized Sciences, Through the dedication ceremony. “His service as authorities director and master of ceremonies for the Miss Arkansas Tech College rivals continues To current a literal stage for his character and Humorousness to shine.”
The ATU Board of Trustees voted in January 2021 To Name of the Dr. James Collins Agriculture Classroom in recognition of Collins’ monetary dedications to assist Arkansas Tech and its college students by way of the ATU Basis.
“As educators, we tfinish To Think about The Prolonged time period,” said Dr. Mary B. Gunter, chief of staff and distinguished professor of instructional management at Arkansas Tech, Through the dedication ceremony. “We would like Definitely one of the biggest for our college students right now so thOn They might develop To Wind up to be the leaders of tomorrow. As somebody who has devoted his life’s work to horticulture, It is simply pure that Dr. Jim Collins would have an astute understanding that what we sow right now Might be not reaped For A lot of months or yrs To return.
“That Perspective, mixed Collectively with his affection for Arkansas Tech, has prompted Dr. Collins to make beneficiant provisions in his monetary planning that Shall revenue ATU college students into perpetuity,” continued Gunter. “In recognition of his dedication to The biggest method forward for Arkansas Tech, the university hereby formally dedicates this facility As a Outcome of the Dr. James Collins Agriculture Classroom.”
For Collins, it’s all about paying forward that useful present from Uncle Lewis.
“Unexpectedly I turned 66 yrs previous final yr,” said Collins. “It dawned on me that I don’t have any youngsters or grandyoungsters. Upon demise there Shall be a legacy that I depart behind. I hope I’ve left a legacy by way of educating And by way of Miss Tech. I made A selection I wouldn’t thoughts to have This further legacy. It’s pretty neat to have my identify on a constructing. This suggests Tons to me.”