Alumnus Andy Hall was a traditional student, choosing to attend Arkansas State University-Beebe immediately after graduating Beebe High School in 2006. “I chose ASU-Beebe because it suited my lifestyle of being family-oriented and working a full-time job,” said Hall.
Hall graduated with an Associate of Arts Degree and then continued his education with A-State on the Beebe campus to earn a Bachelor of Science in Business Management. He has been a loan officer for First Security Bank for the past seven years.
Hall said his decision to attend ASU-Beebe was mainly because he wanted to stay close to home while attending college. “I had lived in Beebe since I was five and the convenience and affordability were major factors influencing my decision to attend ASU-Beebe,” said Hall. “At one time I contemplated transferring after my first two years, but decided to continue to pursue my bachelor’s degree right here at ASU-Beebe through the A-State programs.”
“What I remember most about ASU-Beebe is the atmosphere of the classes, where you are one student among 30, which allows more interaction with your classmates and teachers. In some of the larger universities, there are sometimes more than 100 students in some classes, which would obviously make it more intimidating to speak up and ask questions when you are not completely understanding what is being taught,” said Hall. “Also, students can visit the Learning Center at ASU-Beebe, which is very conducive to studying and working on assignments.”
Hall said that the accounting courses at ASU-Beebe were especially beneficial for his career in the financial field. “I really enjoyed my accounting classes and the skills I learned have carried over to help me be successful in my career in banking and working with numbers and finances on a daily basis. Group projects were common in my program of study and taught me to communicate and collaborate with teammates, which are essential skills in a workplace.” Hall said one of his best experiences, in particular, was a small business management team project creating a business plan and competing with other college teams in Arkansas. “The relationships built with other students are experiences that go beyond the academic achievements and can last a lifetime,” said Hall.
When asked about the response to the pandemic within the banking industry, Hall said: “Obviously, like every other business, we have had to make changes in the way that we conduct business. With face coverings still being a requirement, we have had our lobbies closed and are doing the majority of our business through the drive-thru and over the phone which has proven to be a challenge. We miss out on a large part of the customer interaction and providing in-person customer service; however, we have adapted and changed the way we provide service to our customers, such as helping customers find solutions to sustain their business during this difficult time.”
Hall said his mother and brother also attended ASU-Beebe and his wife Elizabeth graduated from A-State with a doctorate in Physical Therapy. The couple has a four-year-old son, Hudson.
In offering advice to future students, Hall cautioned them to avoid debt as much as possible. “There are numerous cases where student loan debt is necessary and beneficial. However, avoid taking out additional student loans for living expenses as much as possible.”
“I encourage students to find a career path that will make them happy. In everything that you do always give it 100%. Whether it be in the workplace, assignments, or mowing the grass. Create habits of going above and beyond what is expected. It is contagious and will help you succeed,” said Hall.
“Our alumni are our strongest asset in communicating the value of ASU-Beebe. I am inspired by their stories,” said Rose Mary Jackson, Associate Vice Chancellor for Institutional Advancement. "We gladly share their stories of how ASU-Beebe has positively influenced them."
Arkansas State University-Beebe Alumni Stories is a project of the Alumni Association with the goal of sharing and preserving the ASU-Beebe historical and educational experiences of former students. If you are an alum and would like to share your story, contact Institutional Advancement at (501) 882-8855.