From the desk of President Leslie K. Guice
Homecoming Week 2016: What a week!
Homecoming Week 2016: What a week! After several meetings in the office on Monday, I headed to the airport for a flight to Atlanta to attend a SACSCOC meeting. This meeting brought together off-site accreditation review teams from across the country to make our final assessments of the accreditation self-study reports developed by our sister institutions. This long-standing peer review process is an integral and important part of institutional accreditations. Our review team finished its work a little early on Wednesday so I headed over to the airport to catch up on e-mails before flying back to Monroe. On Thursday, I returned back to the office to have a meeting with Representative Jack McFarland. I also welcomed a visit from interim Chancellor of Louisiana Delta Community College Dennis Epps and Ruston Campus Provost Doug Postel. Both of these visits gave me an opportunity to share some of the special programs and industry partnerships that we have to offer to support economic development in the region. Homecoming officially kicked off for me and Kathy with a parade through our Tech campus on Thursday evening. We were honored that Paul and Johnie Hogan drove us in their Tech-colored Ford Model A-1, and we were following the lead car carrying Grand Marshal Nate Burkhalter. Nate is the Alumni Association’s Young Alumnus of the Year and a recent engineering graduate who has demonstrated excellence in his professional and civic activities. He is also well-known for his participation as a finalist in the America’s Ninja Warrior competition. We enjoyed having Nate and all our honored alumni on campus for all of our Homecoming activities. Friday was filled with meetings with the College of Business Advisory Board, the Alumni Association’s Annual Awards Luncheon, and a special press conference to announce a scholarship program honoring Tech’s first two African American students who attended Tech in 1965, James Earl Potts and Bertha Bradford Robinson. I also enjoyed a visit from one of my former architecture students, Christopher Coe, who was on campus to receive the Distinguished Alumnus Award for the College of Liberal Arts. Early Friday evening, Kathy and I hosted a reception for the Class of 1966 before heading over to the pep rally and Lady Techster vs. LSU basketball game. Saturday was filled with “Breakfast with Champ” at the Lambright Center, the Golden Society Brunch recognition event at the Student Center, tailgating at Argent Pavilion and an afternoon football game versus UTSA at Joe Aillet Stadium. Kathy and I also welcomed Lorena and Eric Herrera to our house for a visit before heading out to the tailgate. Lorena is a 4th-grade teacher from San Antonio who has adopted Tech as her university. Using Tech’s Tenets, fight song, and other special activities, Lorena teaches her students what it means to be good citizens in their school and their community, to challenge them every day to reach their full potential, and to inspire her students to start planning for attending college early. I have written about Lorena and her students in my blog over the past three years, and it was wonderful to have her on our campus for this special event. The Bulldogs won their game against the UTSA RoadRunners on Saturday night, clinching the West Division Championship for Conference USA, and wrapping up an extraordinary Homecoming Week! Hope you enjoy a few of my favorite pics for the week: