Another Point of View
I awoke on Monday morning at a hotel at the DFW airport where I was attending a Conference USA Board meeting. Our conference staff do an excellent job of planning these meetings so we can do our Board work efficiently. My colleague, Dr. Rodney Bennett of Southern Miss, is currently serving as the Chair of our Board and I am Vice Chair. I believe that our Board is focused appropriately on enhancing the conference’s national profile and competitiveness. We have excellent conference staff and I enjoy working with them and the Presidents of our conference universities. Dr. Bennett and I will have a more competitive viewpoint this weekend.
On Tuesday morning, I arrived early to work and saw a heavy dark smoke arising from a neighborhood just south of campus. From my office, I could see the intense flames as the Head Start School was fully consumed. While I often enjoy some incredible views from my 16th floor office, this day brought a more somber perspective.
Later Tuesday, I enjoyed a visit from architect Mike McSwain who was on campus to get feedback on plans for our new academic center in Bossier City near the Cyber Innovation Center. The first floor of the academic center is nearing completion and we expect to occupy that in the Winter Quarter. We hope to complete plans for the 4th floor and begin construction on that before the end of this year. The first floor will include a Cyber Training Center that will help us meet the workforce needs of the rapidly growing cyber industry in North Louisiana.
Tuesday was filled with meetings with my administrative team, students and prospective students. Kathy and I enjoyed attending the Lady Techster’s welcome dinner at Argent Pavilion on Tuesday evening. The Tipoff Club has continued to host this event since the program’s inception in the early 1970s.
On Wednesday, I returned for another full day of meetings in my office.
I drove to Bossier City on Thursday morning to get an update on the construction progress of our Academic Center and to meet with Craig Spohn of the Cyber Innovation Center to discuss some of our collaborative efforts. I also met with others from our Louisiana Tech Research Institute, a 501c3 organization that we established to support cyber and defense R&D, and Barksdale Air Force Base.
Here are a few of my favorite pics for the week: