6 p.m. - 8 p.m.
University of Louisiana at Lafayette Alumni House
600 E St Mary Blvd, Lafayette, LA 70503
sponsored by Wildcat Brothers Distilling
The Universities of Louisiana R.F. Lewis Scholars Program enhances the collegiate experience of black male students in our System. Specifically, the R.F. Lewis Scholars Program will recruit black males and provide educational programs, mentoring opportunities, and co-curricular experiences to improve outcomes.
Each cohort will comprise two students chosen from each University of Louisiana System member institution for a total of 18 members each year.
Shaun Harper along with Kuykendall (2012) developed eight standards for Black male achievement. Key among those standards is: academic achievement, student development, and improved degree attainment rates must be prioritized over social programming. Although many programs, including the R.F. Lewis Scholars program, allow for out-of-the-classroom engagement and experiences that serve to enhance community building and social and network capital, the R.F. Lewis Scholars program will also place emphasis on learning and academic achievement opportunities, specifically research experiences. Not only will engaging in research create a more robust academic experience by connecting the student’s classroom theory with a practical, real-world problem, but it will also provide a built-in research mentor. The scholars will have the opportunity to present their research at the University of Louisiana System’s Academic Summit as well as other disciplinary professional academic conferences.
As part of the Reginald F. Lewis Scholars Program, scholars will participate in faculty-led research and international exchange program. The international component will take place over two semesters during the scholar’s junior year. The first semester of his junior year will involve registering for a cultural competency course at the ULS institution where the scholar is enrolled. This course will be taught by the faculty member who will lead the study abroad trip. During the second semester of his junior year, the scholar will enroll in a research and travel abroad class at the ULS institution where he is enrolled. As part of the class, all ULS scholars will be assigned a topic of research to work on jointly with students from a ULS international host institution. During the same semester, scholars will travel abroad to the host institution to present the research alongside students from the host institution.
The Management and Leadership Institute for the Universities of Louisiana (M&LI) is a two-semester program for mid-career faculty and staff who aspire to broadened academic, professional, or administrative leadership roles. The Institute will immerse participants in a program designed to maximize their effectiveness in management roles. Nine two-day sessions will be held over the course of two semesters, with each of our Universities of Louisiana campuses hosting a two-day session.
R.F. Lewis Scholars will have the opportunity to participate in the sessions held at their University’s campus. Scholars will join Management and Leadership Institute participants in gaining a deeper understanding for effective leadership in higher education.
The R.F. Lewis Scholars will collaborate with the University of Louisiana System Student Advisory Council annually to participate in a system-wide service learning initiative. The Scholars will benefit from their service learning experiences as service learning has a positive impact on students. Service learning initiatives serve to increase students’ skills and knowledge. Service learning projects also allow students to engage with others outside of their circles; thus, providing them with meaningful life-long experiences. Ultimately, the Scholars will be able to apply what they will learn to “real world” experiences and develop a commitment to service.
The R.F. Scholars on each campus will be mentored by faculty, staff and upper-class students on their campuses. Students will be given a survey to complete to determine areas of focus and challenges for the scholar. Each campus will create a mentoring team to support the scholars. Mentors will be selected to meet with the scholars and address the areas of focus and challenges for the scholar. In addition, the mentoring team will provide professional development and personal development experiences, and social opportunities to connect the scholars to leaders on campus.
One-on-one mentoring: Students will meet weekly with their mentor to discuss a variety of topics including classes, college life, resources, challenges
Professional and personal development: Mentors and scholars come together and participate in workshops and experiences that help students grow professionally and personally
Socials: Mentors and Mentees will attend several planned socials with campus leaders and student leaders
Scholars will be required to participate in a retreat experience annually. The retreat will offer students the opportunity to engage in team-building exercises, set personal goals for the upcoming year, develop leadership skills, and strengthen collaborations. This shift in perspective is a rare opportunity for student scholars to reflect and share their needs, challenges, and victories in higher education.
Thank you for your interest in supporting the R. F. Lewis Scholars Program. Any level of donation will impact our scholars. For your reference, below is a breakdown of costs associated with each scholar’s three-year experience.