From the desk of President Leslie K. Guice
Living in Ropp – Part 2
F. Jay Taylor moved into the new President’s residence north of Aillet stadium in 1972. From 1972 until 1985, the “Old President’s Home” was used by the former College of Home Economics and I am sure that former Home Economics Dean Agnes Miller must have hosted many elegant teas in this room. In 1985, the Office of Special Programs moved into the facility. Former Special Programs Director Steve Rodakis used this area to welcome prospective students to the Tech Rome program. While working with Special Programs, Tech Art professor Albino Hinojosa weaved some of his artistic magic into many illustrations, portraits, and sketches depicting Louisiana Tech people, facilities, and campus life. “Bino” donated a lot of his work to the Library Special Collections.Moving to the stairways, one is welcomed by a beautiful stained glass window. That window was designed and built by a Tech legend, and a very special friend of mine, Dr. Virgil Orr. Dr. Orr, a Tech chemical engineering alumnus, served as Vice President for Academic Affairs until his retirement in 1980. He has served the institution, community and state in many ways since arriving in Ruston in 1940. It is not unusual to see him and his wife, Myrtis, enjoying lunch in the Ropp dining room. I will never forget the time that as sophomores, my best friend and I were called by name by Dr. Orr as we walked across the quadrangle. We had only met Dr. Orr once in his office prior to that interaction. Dr. Orr is one of those great leaders who helped shape the culture, values, and traditions of Tech that we now formally embrace as the Tenets of Tech. Immediately above the living room is one of the three bedrooms on the second floor. With 12-foot ceilings and furniture designed for the period, these bedrooms, each with it own spacious bathroom, provide a comfortable and relaxing space for many special guests who frequently visit campus. Staying in the Ropp Center, these guests can conveniently walk to visit with faculty and others at any location on campus. Staying at Ropp also provides visitors with a better opportunity to get a sense of our campus activities and culture.