From the desk of President Leslie K. Guice
Week 13 Update
This has been a very busy and productive week. We made significant progress with several of our proposed new facilities, and had several other major initiatives that have required our attention this week. One of those initiatives involves a global company that is considering locating in North Louisiana. Louisiana Tech would play a major role in fulfilling the workforce needs for that company and I remain optimistic that things will turn out positively. Regardless, this experience points to the crucial role that Tech plays in the economic competitiveness of North Louisiana and the State of Louisiana. We also hosted the Director of Research and a key operations director for a federal agency. Our faculty did their usual extraordinary job of presenting the capabilities and resources of Louisiana Tech. We are optimistic that this visit will result in greater research activities and more internships and job opportunities for our students in an area of national importance. In spite of these difficult economic times, Louisiana Tech is continuing to find ways to create opportunities for growth. I am particularly appreciative of our community partners who play such pivotal roles in supporting us. And I am very proud of our faculty, staff, and students who continue to do outstanding work that brings positive recognition to Louisiana Tech. On Thursday, we headed to Dallas to get ready for the Heart of Dallas game with Army at the Cotton Bowl. We had a nice luncheon with several Tech alumni from DFW on Thursday. It was great to hear their stories about their experiences at Tech as well as to learn more about their successes in their professional careers. We received a lot of encouragement and support for the directions that we are headed, particularly in our expansion of recruiting efforts in the metroplex area. On campus, Thursday was a big day for students as it was Career Day. With 145 companies and over 1000 students participating, this was the largest career fair ever! Thanks to Ron Cathey and the Career Center staff for hosting such a great event – http://news.latech.edu/2013/09/27/tech-hosts-record-numbers-for-career-day/ The participation level bodes well for our students and graduates who were recently announced to receive the highest average starting pay of any Louisiana university by Payscale.com. Tech was also ranked No. 1 in the state for Return on Investment – http://news.latech.edu/2013/09/24/payscale-com-ranks-louisiana-tech-no-1-in-state-in-roi-starting-salaries-for-graduates/ Also on campus Thursday, the Enterprise Center hosted the I-20 Corridor Regional Accelerator. This showcase was an event for business ventures and entrepreneurs participating in this year’s Accelerator initiative. In addition to the Accelerator participants, the event featured endeavors supporting entrepreneurial activity and economic development, such as the I6 Proof of Concept Center, University Foundation Innovation Fund, and the CEnIT-sponsored TOP DAWG Idea Pitch and New Venture Championship. Demonstrations of innovative research technologies which are advancing to the marketplace were exhibited with many of the participants and companies having been conceived or supported through Dr. Davy Norris’s EDA I6 Center grant. Attendees toured The Thingery (new innovative product maker space in University Hall) to view 3D printers in action. Individuals from diverse backgrounds in the region attended and enjoyed networking to support new and growing enterprises that are developing in our local communities. The Accelerator participants shared their visions for a wide range of entrepreneurial products and services, benefitted from audience feedback, and made helpful connections for their businesses. Now getting ready for more alumni meetings and Tech tailgating this week-end. Go Dogs! Beat Army!