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September 1, 2015 10:15 AM, EDT

Arkansas Gives $3 Million to University for Trucking Studies

(From left to right) Tom Courtway, president of the University of Central Arkansas, Scott Bennett, AHTD director and Steve Williams, chairman and CEO of Maverick USA Inc.

The University of Central Arkansas received a $3 million award to create an endowed faculty position that will focus on the trucking industry, the Associated Press reported.

The university says the new major will train students in motor carrier operations, regulation, safety, risk management, transportation policy and labor relations, AP reported.

“Trucking companies must employ properly trained managers to operate safely and profitably. UCA students will lead the trucking industry in safety, operational excellence and future regulatory discussions,” Doug Voss, associate professor of logistics and supply chain management, said in a statement.

The university submitted a proposal to create a named, chaired faculty position in its College of Business. That position will implement a four-year major in supply chain logistics management.

“This generous funding provides important resources that will allow the UCA College of Business to build upon the prior success of the supply chain logistics management faculty. Logistics and supply chain management represents an important industry in Arkansas and is, indeed, the backbone of commerce across the nation,” UCA President Tom Courtway said in a statement.

“We are proud to be able to expand our academic program to meet the growing talent demand from this industry and express our thanks to the Highway Commission and Director Scott Bennett,” Courtway said.

The Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department presented the award in late August during a ceremony at the University of Central Arkansas.

The Arkansas Highway Commission approved the $3 million award in June. The money comes from the department’s Arkansas Commercial Truck Safety and Education Program.

AHC also awarded money to the Arkansas Trucking Association as well as the Arkansas Highway Police. UCA was the only higher education institution to receive funding.