Jim and Pat McClelland Help Students With Capital and Scholarship Support

Jim and Pat McClelland.
Photo by Russell Cothren

Jim and Pat McClelland.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Alumnus Jim McClelland and his wife, Pat, of Little Rock have pledged $100,000 to support the planned Civil Engineering Research and Education Center at the University of Arkansas, which will be located at the Engineering Research Center. This gift is a continuation of the philanthropic support they have provided to the College of Engineering and the university over the years.

The Civil Engineering Research and Education Center, or CEREC, will be a “living laboratory” for civil engineering undergraduates at the university. Students will use the center’s design and construction process to explore topics in construction techniques and management; computer-aided design and drafting; plan development; construction materials; soil mechanics and foundation design; structural steel design and reinforced concrete design. The Civil Engineering Research and Education Center will also provide students with vital opportunities for hands-on experience through laboratory exercises and research activities.

“This new center will be a valuable resource for our faculty and students, as well as for our industry and higher education partners,” said John English, dean of the College of Engineering. “It will create new opportunities in teaching, research and service on campus and across the state. The McClellands have been great friends to the college, and we’re very grateful to them for supporting this project.”

McClelland describes his gift to CEREC as “painless” because it is being funded through a 401K mandatory distribution, and he encourages others to do the same. He also sees it as an opportunity to continue his family’s support of students at the U of A.

“We’ve never had a civil engineering building,” said McClelland. “This facility will educate thousands over the lifetime of the building. I view that as our legacy – to help all of those students.”

In addition to the Civil Engineering Research and Education Center, the McClellands continue to support the J.E. and Maurice A. McClelland Endowed Scholarship in Civil Engineering as well. The scholarship is named in honor of Jim McClelland’s father, who graduated in 1940, and his mother. The McClelland scholarship provides financial assistance to upperclassmen civil engineering students, and preference is given to Arkansas residents.

“This is our 19th year of providing scholarship support,” said McClelland. “We started with two recipients, and now we have four. Over the years, we’ve gained friends – and even employees – through this scholarship by helping students get an education.”

McClelland is chairman emeritus of McClelland Consulting Engineers, Inc. in Little Rock. He grew up in Fayetteville, and his wife, Pat, grew up in Little Rock. The two met during their freshman year of college at the U of A and have been married for 51 years. Both of their sons are graduates of the University of Arkansas.

McClelland is a member of the Arkansas Academy of Civil Engineering, the College of Engineering Dean’s Advisory Council and the Campaign Arkansas Steering Committee. He is also the chair of the College of Engineering Campaign Arkansas committee. He and Pat are included in the Chancellor’s Society and are recognized as ThoroughReds for their consecutive years of giving to the U of A.

About the College of Engineering: The University of Arkansas College of Engineering is the largest engineering program in the state of Arkansas. Over the past decade, the college has experienced unprecedented growth. Undergraduate enrollment has doubled since 2007, and total enrollment in the college is now over 4,000 students. The College of Engineering offers graduate and undergraduate degrees in nine engineering fields, as well as incorporating distance learning and interdisciplinary programs. Faculty in the college conduct research in many key areas, including electronics, energy, healthcare logistics, nanotechnology, transportation and logistics.


About the University of Arkansas: The University of Arkansas provides an internationally competitive education for undergraduate and graduate students in more than 200 academic programs. The university contributes new knowledge, economic development, basic and applied research, and creative activity while also providing service to academic and professional disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation classifies the University of Arkansas among only 2 percent of universities in America that have the highest level of research activity. U.S. News & World Report ranks the University of Arkansas among its top American public research universities. Founded in 1871, the University of Arkansas comprises 10 colleges and schools and maintains a low student-to-faculty ratio that promotes personal attention and close mentoring.


Jennifer Holland, director of development communications
University Relations
479-575-3583, jholland@uark.edu


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