Skip to main contentSkip to main navigationSkip to footer content
Alumni | Events | Students | UAFS MailbagFebruary 23, 2024

UAFS Mailbag: Where Memories Roar

Written By: Ian Silvester

Welcome back to another edition of the UAFS Mailbag. The campus was alive with more activity than usual recently, all thanks to Homecoming.

This year’s theme, “Where Memories Roar,” was apropos of how I left the week feeling, and I hope you felt the same. If you are like me, this homecoming was your first at UAFS, and I’m looking forward to many more! If this isn’t your first, I sincerely hope you had an equally great time and made memories that will roar for years.

The week was highlighted with competitions, reunions, games, and, of course, the crowning of this year’s Homecoming King and Queen.

All week long, teams competed in banner, office decorating, dance, and tailgate competitions. The Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity won the banner competition. The office decoration competition went to the Baha’i Club and the World Language Department.

Not to be outdone, Dancing with the Lions was a fun event with fierce competition. Dance drama was reserved for 1st place, where a tie ensued. The sorority-fraternity team of Gamma Phi Beta and Sigma Nu tied with the Nostalgic Numa Association. The tailgate winner was the team composed of ROTC, the Black Student Alliance, and the Student Veteran Organization. Congratulations to all the competition winners; a complete list of winners can be found here.

As tradition goes, homecoming celebrations celebrate all those who have called themselves a Lion or another school mascot. The UAFS Homecoming was the same, with multiple events welcoming back alums. The first event, Cub Camp Reunion, marked 20 years of the first tradition Lions are a part of.

The reunion invited all students, faculty, and staff who have participated in or helped lead Cub Camp throughout the years and concluded by recognizing Cub Camp Hall of Famers.

Awards were given to:

  • Cody Prater
  • Sarah Murrah
  • Zach Gramlich
  • Coy Wineland
  • Brooke Devine
  • Will Hutson (posthumously)
  • Dylan Bean
  • Destiny Rogers
  • SK Thomas
  • Dyllan Newell
  • Reagan Newell

Before the Homecoming Tailgate and basketball games got underway, another reunion took place. The Alumni Reunion Brunch welcomed Lions dating back to when UAFS was still Fort Smith Junior College and every name in between.

At the brunch, five Lions were honored by the UAFS Alumni Advisory Council. Awarded with the Young Alumni Award were Dr. Daniel Fudge, class of 2012, and Jaime Vargas, class of 2018 and 2023 (Master of Healthcare Administration). The Stacey Jones Outstanding Faculty and Staff Award was given to Dr. Nicki Stancil. The Spirit of Numa Award, for a non-alum friend and supporter who champions the mission of UAFS through volunteer or philanthropic service, went to Sara Putman, the owner and operator of Bookish at the Bakery District. The highlight of the award presentation came at the end when the highest recognition offered, the Distinguished Alumni Award, was awarded to Stephanie London, the assistant dean of students at UAFS. You can read more about the alumni awards and the recipients here.

Before homecoming festivities ended, the Lions took to the court, hosting St. Mary’s University. The women’s basketball team beat the Ratters by 30 points, 86-56, to start the day. Following the women’s game was the men’s basketball team, who came up short against St. Mary’s 95-81 despite a 33-point performance by senior Payton Brown.

At halftime of the men’s game, the 2023 Homecoming king and queen, Jesse Witt and Shae Gilbertson, returned to UAFS to announce this year’s king and queen. Eight students were elected to the homecoming court, and Kendrix Holcomb and Krystal Boylan were crowned Homecoming King and Queen.

I hope you all had as much fun as I did experiencing my first UAFS Homecoming. I’m already looking forward to next year’s!

As always, if you have a story you’d like to see in the UAFS Mailbag or a question about campus answered, email

Until next time,


  • Tags:
  • UAFS Mailbag
  • Homecoming

Media Relations

The UAFS Office of Communications fields all media inquiries for the university. Email for more information.

Send an Email

Stay Up-to-Date

Sign up to receive news and updates.


Rachel Rodemann Putman

  • Director of Strategic Communications
  • 479-788-7132
Submit A News Tip