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Future of Ruston forum Thursday night

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RUSTON, La. (KNOE 8 News) – The University Senate at Louisiana Tech University will host its 2nd annual "The Future of Ruston" campus and community forum, April 18 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. in the University Hall Auditorium.

"The Future of Ruston" offers a Tech/Ruston perspective and will focus on the progress and development of the university and surrounding community.  The event will feature a variety of guest speakers offering perspectives relevant to their areas of expertise and how they relate to Louisiana Tech and Ruston.  A series of 15-minute discussions will look at topics such as economic and community development, campus growth, and academic issues and outlooks for K-12 and post-secondary students.

The event will begin with an informal reception at 5:00 p.m. followed by a welcome from Louisiana Tech University Senate President Larry Jarrell and presentations by the guest speakers from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.  The forum will conclude with a 30-miniute panel-style question and answer session.

All members of the campus and Ruston community are cordially invited to attend and encouraged to participate in the discussion.

"The University Senate feels it is important to have an on-going dialogue between the Louisiana Tech University and the City of Ruston," said Jarrell.  "The forum is an opportunity for sharing information between the two entities and to address questions from all who attend.  Through our collaboration, the University and the City of Ruston can forge a bond that is beneficial to all involved."

Guest speakers include Louisiana Tech Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Graduate School Dr. Terry McConathy, Louisiana Tech Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. Jim King, Ruston Mayor Dan Hollingsworth and Lincoln Parish Schools Superintendent Danny Bell.

The forum agenda is as follows:

  • Larry Jarrell – Louisiana Tech University Senate President: Opening Remarks
  • Dan Hollingsworth – Mayor, City of Ruston: Update on Ruston downtown development, Main Street, Ruston 21 initiatives, and the future outlook for the city
  • Dr. Jim King – Louisiana Tech Vice President of Student Affairs: Progress of various Louisiana Tech initiatives, buildings, green spaces, student body, faculty and staff
  • Dr. Terry McConathy – Louisiana Tech Vice President Academic Affairs and Dean of the Graduate School: Progress in academic initiatives, graduate school advancements, and the future vision in these areas.
  • Danny Bell – Superintendent of Lincoln Parish Schools: Update on restructuring of schools, accountability issues, new education mandates, and how our schools are preparing.

"My hope is through sharing information including how we can work together to make each other better, we can ensure we are all working for the same goals for the future of Ruston and Louisiana Tech University," Jarrell said.  "The expected outcome is to continue to strengthen the relationship between the City of Ruston and Louisiana Tech University, and hopefully create opportunities for even stronger ties in the future."

This year's "The Future of Ruston" forum continues discussions started during last year's forum titled, which focused on issues such as population trends and community demographics, progress and growth of the Lincoln Parish School District and Louisiana Tech, and new education mandates.

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