In ancient Greece, each city centralized around the Forum – a place for citizens to come together to interact while debating politics, religion and philosophy.

honors-0014.jpgThe Honors College at the University of Central Arkansas has a forum of its own, complete with chairs and couches for invigorating discussions or just to lounge in between class, a big screen television for thought-provoking films, and a piano for the musically inclined.

Students have used the forum as a place to study and interact for years, and the time had come for a new, updated look. The forum – under the direction of Rick Scott – was last updated in the 1990s, and the furniture had been re-upholstered multiple times with some pieces deteriorating. 

Glenda Middleton, the Honors College secretary, approached Kayla Cooper, a junior interior design student and Honors College member, for help with the overall design of the space.

“Glenda presented me with several design obstacles in the project. The room needed to be functional and mobile, while also being sturdy and comfortable. They also wanted the room to be very streamlined and contemporary, yet still very inviting,” said Kayla.

In May, design decisions were made, starting with the paint color – Plumberry. 

“I wanted to select a color that would bring out the beauty of the art in the room,” Kayla said. Once the color palette was chosen, everything began to fall into place, and the space was finished by August, just in time for the fall semester.

The room features new lighting by TEC lighting, to accent the hall of class graduate portraits as well as the magnificent student art in the room. Sleek and movable chairs and couches were purchased to replace the old furniture, and tall café tables were placed throughout the room to add interest and height. 

The focal point of the room is the faux-finished wall in the back of the space, which adds a glitzy backdrop to the new design. The space was polished off with chrome accessories and a new, flat screen television.

“The forum is a lot more open and inviting now, which makes me want to spend more time in the room,” said Samantha Weston, an Honors College senior. 

The forum has been finished for a few months, and the reception seems to be great.  Students and teachers are enjoying the newly modernized Forum as it continues to be the heartbeat of the UCA Honors College.

The Honors College would like to acknowledge the hard work of the people involved with the Forum Remodel-Summer 2008:

Kayla Cooper (Honors scholar, interior design

   major) for her design plans.

Bob Morris (Innerplan Office Furniture) for

   furniture and space planning.

Vanessa McGhee (TEC Lighting of Maumelle)

   for lighting design.

Mark Ferrell (Kwal Paint).

Charles White Cable for data cable and data

   projector installation.

DeBoard Electronics for television and audio


Physical plant employees, especially John

   Wages (supervision of all physical plant

   workers), Bill McCrory (carpentry), Curtis

   Gabbard and Mark Mize (electricians), and

   Tim Ingram and Red Prewitt (painters).

Charles and Ryan Johnson, decorative

   artists with House of Ivo and the upholstery


Phil Frana, Jeremy Lusk, Seth Byers, Steven

   Nelson, Berry Middleton and Leesa Clark

   for their hard work in transporting and

   moving furniture.