Over the past couple of weeks in Baton Rouge, our Governor and our legislative leaders have been engaged in nonstop discussions and negotiations to bridge a gap between the
resources we have and the resources we will need to move Louisiana forward. In an effort to preserve funding for higher education and to ensure that future generations of Louisianans have the same opportunities for a college education that were afforded to us, these elected representatives have already made some tough decisions and, in the face of both support and opposition, have stepped out on behalf of those who are looking to them for confidence and confirmation that strong public universities will form the foundation of their futures in the State of Louisiana.
I acknowledge and express my appreciation for the tough decisions our legislators are making in support of Louisiana Tech and all public universities in our state. Throughout this special session, we have asked our leaders to report to the front lines and secure our positions in the battle for higher education. And they have made significant progress and gained much ground in that mission. Higher education serves such an important role in economic and community development throughout our region, and has immeasurable impacts on the citizens and communities of our state. Our institutions of higher learning have become the epicenters for industry and innovation growth, community service and support, culture and fine arts, and the overall improvements in quality-of-life in nearly every corner of Louisiana. In this role and with this responsibility, our universities simply cannot afford to take a step backwards as we are an essential part of the solution to a strong and prosperous future for Louisiana.
The progress that has been made on behalf of higher education has been encouraging and commendable, but there is still much that needs to be done in the last few days of this special session. A revenue shortfall still exists and it will take more tough decisions by our elected leaders to bridge the gap and ensure stable funding for higher education.
I encourage all friends and advocates of higher education across the state to stand with our leaders and support their efforts to fund higher education and preserve the opportunities that have been afforded to us by those who have served in the past. Please lend your voice and communicate clearly and constructively with our leaders about the importance of a strong and productive public university infrastructure as a top priority for the State of Louisiana.
Dr. Les Guice
Louisiana Tech University