June 30, 2020

By Dr. Beth Christian

Louisiana College has received a grant from the Louisiana Board of Regents to improve classrooms and teaching facilities on campus.

The $87,330 department enhancement grant will be used to renovate classrooms in Guinn Auditorium, which houses the Missions and Ministries Division, the Physician Assistant Program and the Bolton Chapel classroom.

“This grant will help transform teaching and learning on the campus of Louisiana College,” said Dr. Henry O. Robertson, coordinator of sponsored programs.

The Louisiana College funding proposal was written by Dr. Justin Langford, associate professor of missions and ministries. Work has already begun, and the project will continue during the 2020-2021 academic year.

Langford said the grant was one of 21 proposals to be fully funded of the 147 the Board of Regents received for the 2019-2020 cycle.

“The upgrade to classroom furnishings will move us away from small, individual desks to full-length seminar style tables, which will increase student mobility and give easier access to desk space for students with disabilities,” Langford said. “This will also allow for better classroom collaboration.”

Major upgrades are also planned for Bolton Chapel, as well as technological upgrades throughout the classroom spaces, he said.

“Bolton Chapel is not only our largest classroom in Guinn, but it is utilized frequently during the academic year for faculty meetings, cultural events and community gatherings,” Langford said. “The hardware that will be added in this room will not only allow for reliable classroom presentations and interaction, but it will also make streaming live events and connecting to other classrooms a possibility.”

LC President Rick Brewer expressed his appreciation for the grant award, noting the student and community impact this award will have.

“We know the Louisiana Board of Regents has to decide between dozens of worthwhile proposals from public and private institutions all across the state, and we are so very grateful to have received one of the grant awards this year,” Brewer said. “Nearly every LC student takes classes in this building, and the upgrades will be noticed and experienced immediately.”

According to the Board of Regents website, support funds are made possible through interest earnings on a trust fund dedicated in the Louisiana State Constitution for projects “designed to foster excellence in education, research and service, as well as promote economic development through collaborations between academic programs and industrial, business and professional entities.”  The competition each year “is available to any eligible formally recognized department or unit and includes a multidisciplinary component. Awards will be made for comprehensive (multi-year, multi-activity, broad-impact) projects, as well as targeted (short-term, smaller-scale) projects. All institutions are eligible to compete to support educational, research, and workforce activities. A spectrum of activities, from equipment purchases to curricular redesign, are allowed and encouraged; support for graduate students, either as fellowships/scholarships or assistantships, is also permitted. Disciplines are eligible every other year, on a rotating basis.”