From the desk of President Leslie K. Guice
Wrapping up the Summer Quarter
It’s hard to believe that Summer Quarter classes are over. I am looking forward to commencement next week and congratulating another outstanding class of graduates! We have had another busy week with a wide range of activities. On Monday, I had meetings with our fund-raising consultant, a prospective student, Communications Director Dave Guerin and each of my Vice Presidents. I also met with our class of “Bridges to Bulldogs” students who challenged me, VP Jim King and Dean Pamela Ford with excellent questions. These students are those who only need a little help to fully qualify for admission as freshmen this Fall and who have demonstrated the desire and commitment to do so by taking the summer to achieve their goal. We are going to be proud to welcome these students as freshmen in September. On Tuesday, I had a conference call with the Conference USA Board of Directors regarding the recently announced retirement of Commissioner Britton Banowsky. C-USA Executive Associate Commissioner and COO Judy MacLeod was named Interim Commissioner today, effective September 15th. We are all very confident about the leadership she will provide to us during this transition. Later Tuesday, I met with Michele Robinson of our University Advancement staff to get updates on fund-raising. I also met with VP Jim King to discuss our exciting new Quality Enhancement Plan that will be rolled out to a pilot group of freshmen this Fall. I’ll provide more details on that in a future posting. On Wednesday, I was pleased to meet with our new University Senate President, Patrick O’Neal to discuss plans for 2015-16. The Senate plays an important role in representing the interests of the faculty and staff, and helping us to identify and shape policies and activities that can enhance the campus environment for all. I also met with a small team that is looking at expanding our Early Childhood Education program and with AD Tommy McClelland to get updates on recent plans and activities for our athletics program.Later Wednesday, I traveled over to Shreveport to meet with my friend David Rowe, President of Centenary College, to discuss some potential areas of collaboration between our institutions. I have enjoyed interacting with David informally at numerous events in the Shreveport/Bossier community and we both see some strong benefits to the community and to our campuses through collaborating on some meaningful projects. The Centenary campus is beautiful with a rich tradition and history. On Thursday, I was pleased to meet with a couple of Lady Techster basketball prospects to share with them some perspectives on our campus and academic programs. I was also honored to present Dr. Ted Englebrecht, Professor & Smolinski Chair in Accounting, with an Professor Emeritus award in recognition of his leadership and service. Ted has been impactful as a scholar and mentor in our College of Business. The faculty awarded him with a new chair – one that can be used on the porch of his retirement home in Colorado. Later Thursday and Friday we hosted our third candidate for the VP for University Advancement position. In between meetings, I enjoyed a surprise visit from my friend, alumnus and former professor Ahmad Behbahani. Ahmad taught two of my sons who graduated in chemical engineering and I appreciate his continued passion and loyalty to Tech. Ahmad reminded me of stories of former Tech faculty and staff like Ron Thompson and Joe Thomas who made a big difference in his life.