Southern Arkansas University (SAU), Magnolia, Ark., partnered with First Financial Bank, Cincinnati, to build the First Financial Bank Poultry Education Facility.

The new complex, which consists of three phases, will allow students to observe and interact with different aspects of poultry production – from breeder to hatchery, from broiler to processing. It will also contain a feed storage room and a classroom/laboratory.

“This is an exciting day for SAU, for our students and for the poultry industry in south Arkansas,” says Trey Berry, president of SAU. “This day is about our students, and it is also about partnerships. We are truly blessed to have such a great partner in First Financial Bank of El Dorado.”

Dr. Jeffry Miller, Ralph Boulware professor of agriculture and chair of the Department of Agriculture, will offer students an “experiential” opportunity that enables students to actually work in the field.

“We see this (facility) as a win-win for students and industry,” he adds. “We are helping provide food for a growing world population.”

“We are interested in anything that promotes south Arkansas, and this is a great partnership,” says Chris Hegi, chief executive officer of First Financial Bank.