From the desk of President Leslie K. Guice
Kicking off a Homecoming Weekend
Homecoming week is always an exciting time at Louisiana Tech. Our students and staff have a full slate of activities planned every year, and those activities seem to be getting better and better. One of the great things about working on a college campus is getting to participate in these events and to experience the enthusiasm, energy, reflections and loyalty expressed by so many. Monday began with some staff meetings for me including with my Communications Director (Dave Guerin), Coordinator of Planning (Ryan Richard), and Major Gifts Officer (Michelle Robinson). They always keep me looking ahead on those areas that are so important to advancement of the institution. We also had a couple of accreditation review teams on campus this week, and I had several meetings on Monday and Tuesday with those visitors. Our engineering, engineering technology, computer science and interior design programs were the focus of this week’s visitation teams. I appreciate the thousands of hours that our faculty and staff spend in preparing for these visits. Accreditation reviews are a very important part of our self-improvement process, and it is always productive to do the internal assessments that receive thorough external reviews by peers in the profession. Thanks go to our students and alumni advisory boards for participating in the process as well.Late Tuesday afternoon, VP Terry McConathy and I met with the Dean and Department Heads in the College of Liberal Arts. We are meeting with each of the colleges’ administrative teams to discuss university directions and to get feedback. I believe open communications are essential for advancement of the institution, and I appreciate the positive feedback and responsiveness that we have had in our colleges since I became President. On Tuesday evening, I had a lot of fun judging the Union Board’s Talent Show. The Tonk was full for the event and everyone seemed to enjoy all twelve acts that were selected for the show. It was interesting for me to see our students showcasing their talents in venues that are different. Special thanks to the Union Board officers for all of the excellent planning and coordination for the event. And thanks to the other judges, Adam Collins, Becky Carswell and Bob Burt, for doing the heavy lifting required to pick the winner out of that talented group of students. Wednesday morning, I had a nice visit from my friend, current BPCC Chancellor and Northwestern State University President-designee, Jim Henderson. Jim and I have worked together on a lot of projects over the years and I look forward to working with him as a colleague in the University of Louisiana System. Jim has some deep Tech roots as his father, Clem Henderson, was one of our football players from the legendary Joe Aillet teams of the mid-1940s. Later Wednesday, I drove over to Bossier City to meet with our close friends and partners at the Cyber Innovation Center and the staff of the Air Force Global Strike Command to discuss some areas of mutual interest. Barksdale is a crucial component of North Louisiana’s economy, and we are always looking for ways that we can be supportive and work together to create new opportunities for growth in our region. I was in Baton Rouge on Thursday to emcee the Louisiana Innovation Council’s Award Ceremony for those organizations selected by Louisiana Economic Development to represent some of the most innovative organizations in the state. I was pleasantly surprised when Louisiana Tech University was recognized by Secretary Stephen Moret for being one of those organizations. We have a tremendous team here that works together every day in supporting innovation, entrepreneurship and partnerships. The work of that team has not only led to significant economic impacts in our region, but has served as a model for the rest of the state. Today is a big day of recognition of our alumni and I look forward to participating in these events today as well as in the other events throughout this Homecoming Weekend.