Martin First to Earn Dual Degrees Through Poultry Science Partnership

Mia Martin (left), the first dual-degree graduate of the U of A and the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff through the poultry science 3-plus-1 program, and her adviser Patrice Sims, project program specialist in Bumpers College's Department of Poultry Science.
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Mia Martin (left), the first dual-degree graduate of the U of A and the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff through the poultry science 3-plus-1 program, and her adviser Patrice Sims, project program specialist in Bumpers College's Department of Poultry Science.

With her graduation this week, Mia Martin becomes the first student to earn degrees from both the U of A and the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff as part of a four-year dual-degree program with an emphasis in poultry science.

The four-year program allows a student to take three years of coursework at UAPB and a final year at the U of A to earn a “3-plus-1” dual degree.

Martin is earning a bachelor’s degree in poultry science from the U of A and a bachelor’s degree in agriculture from UAPB, both of which were attained in four years.

U of A’s Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences, and its Department of Poultry Science, created a 3-plus-1 certification program with UAPB in 2013. In 2018, the two institutions upgraded the collaborative effort to a dual-degree program.

“We are very excited to see Mia earn her B.S. in poultry science through our 3-plus-1 transfer degree program with UAPB,” said David Caldwell, head of U of A’s Department of Poultry Science and director of the Center of Excellence for Poultry Science. “We have had students complete this program in the past, but the program was a certificate-granting program at that time. We are eager to work closely with our colleagues at UAPB to grow enrollment in this 3-plus-1 program to help meet the employment needs of our industry stakeholders.”

Martin, who is from Detroit, Michigan, completed three years at UAPB in the School of Agriculture, Fisheries and Human Sciences, and one year at the U of A to earn bachelor’s degrees from both universities.

“I chose to add poultry science to my undergrad path because it was different,” Martin said. “I knew it would add value to my career. The goal after graduation is to enroll into graduate school and earn a master's in animal science.” 

While at the U of A, Martin completed a minimum of 30 hours in poultry science, was a member of the Poultry Science Club and completed an internship with physiologist Walter Bottje, a researcher and scientist with the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station, the research arm of the U of A System Division of Agriculture.

“We are pleased to recognize Mia as our first graduate through this partnership with UAPB,” said Bumpers College Dean Deacue Fields. “Making it easier for students to access our programs, especially from all areas of the state, is a priority, and Mia is hopefully an inspiration to others to follow her example. One of the first things we did when I became dean three years ago was improve this agreement from a certification to a dual-degree program to attract more students and help meet the need for more young professionals in the poultry industry. Congratulations to Mia on being the first!”

The collaboration between the two institutions, for the original certification program and upgraded dual-degree program, is to help meet a need for more degreed professionals in the poultry industry and to attract students into the college from other areas.

“It gives me immense pleasure to see Mia as our first student to graduate from the 3-plus-1 transfer degree program from both UAPB and UAF,” said Tracy Dunbar, head of UAPB’s Department of Agriculture. “At UAPB, she was able to balance her involvement in the marching band as well as remain focused and determined in the classroom. I have come to know her as a strong, independent and hardworking student who is always prepared to learn.”

The curriculum includes an eight-semester degree plan with a two-semester senior year plan for the U of A.

“She is a young woman who cares deeply about agriculture, animal and poultry science, and how humans and animals impact each other’s lives,” Dunbar said. “I am pleased with her success and wish her best in her future endeavors. I also want to acknowledge Dr. Jayant Lohakare, associate professor of animal science, who has worked directly with her since her enrollment at UAPB.”

Bumpers College provides academic advising, scholarship opportunities and faculty mentoring, advises students about internship opportunities in the poultry industry, and sends representatives to help recruit students.

“Mia’s success as the first student to graduate from the 3-plus-1 dual-degree program between the University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff and the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, speaks to her determination, dedication, forward thinking and hard work,” said Doze Butler, dean of UAPB’s School of Agriculture, Fisheries and Human Sciences. “She is the first such student from UAPB with many more to come. UAPB is building a pipeline of students to follow in Mia’s footsteps. The 3-plus-1 dual-degree program was created to fill a need for animal science professionals with specializations in poultry. Graduates from the program will be in demand in the poultry industry.”

In 2016, Paula Johnson was the first student presented with a Certificate of Poultry Science. A native of Pine Bluff, she earned her bachelor’s degree in agriculture from UAPB at the same time.

Bumpers College and the Department of Poultry Science established a similar 3-plus-1 dual-degree program with Arkansas State in 2017.

Patrice Sims, project program specialist in the Department of Poultry Science and with the Center of Excellence for Poultry Science, and Martin’s adviser, is the coordinator of the program. She can be reached at 479-575-3699 or

The Department of Poultry Science also has an memorandum of understanding for faculty and student exchange in place with Universiti Putra Malaysia in Selangor Darul Ehsan, established in 2018; with South China Agricultural University in Guangzhou, signed in 2015; and with Agro-Industry, a subdivision of Panyapiwat Institute of Management in Nonthaburi, Thailand, created in 2014.

About the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences: Bumpers College provides life-changing opportunities to position and prepare graduates who will be leaders in the businesses associated with foods, family, the environment, agriculture, sustainability and human quality of life; and who will be first-choice candidates of employers looking for leaders, innovators, policy makers and entrepreneurs. The college is named for Dale Bumpers, former Arkansas governor and longtime U.S. senator who made the state prominent in national and international agriculture. For more information about Bumpers College, visit our website, and follow us on Twitter at @BumpersCollege and Instagram at BumpersCollege.

About the University of Arkansas: As Arkansas' flagship institution, the U of A provides an internationally competitive education in more than 200 academic programs. Founded in 1871, the U of A contributes more than $2.2 billion to Arkansas’ economy through the teaching of new knowledge and skills, entrepreneurship and job development, discovery through research and creative activity while also providing training for professional disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation classifies the U of A among the top 3% of U.S. colleges and universities with the highest level of research activity. U.S. News & World Report ranks the U of A among the top public universities in the nation. See how the U of A works to build a better world at Arkansas Research News.


Robby Edwards, director of communications
Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences


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