The Multifaceted Value of Universities
During the summer months much of the hustle and bustle of backpack clad college students on our campuses is replaced with the pitter patter of cleats and tennis shoes as younger students attend a myriad of camps. This is just one of the many ways University of Louisiana System schools open their doors to Louisiana’s communities.
On average, there are 100 events going on every day of the year at the eight universities. Last year, over 3.7 million people attended cultural, science, public policy, training, economic development, athletic, agriculture and special events.
Whether it is the Martin Luther King Musical Tribute Celebration at Grambling State University, Space Days at Louisiana Tech University, the Southwestern Livestock Show and Rodeo at McNeese State University, a festival of arts and humanities called Jubilee at Nicholls State University, Louisiana Boys and Girls State at Northwestern State University, the LHSAA Ladies Top 28 basketball tournament at Southeastern Louisiana University, Drums Across Cajun Field at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette or the Bayou Jamboree at the University of Louisiana at Monroe, these events and many others bring local, national and international experiences to Louisiana’s citizens.
The communities where our campuses reside rely on the universities to serve as the hub for cultural programming, family-friendly activities and community-building events above and beyond university activities. Through hosting these various events, our universities enhance lives and generate revenue for local and state economies. Last year, campus visitors spent $275 million on items such as food, gas and lodging.
In addition, when Louisiana is threatened by hurricanes, our universities serve as vital resources through special needs shelters, medical personnel and volunteers. So, the next time you are on one of our eight campuses for any of these aforementioned reasons, please let this serve as a reminder of all the valuable roles a university plays.
States that invest in higher education thrive both economically and culturally.
Randy Moffett, President
University of Louisiana System