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August 13, 2010

Gov. Jindal delivers annual “State of State” speech at ULM

The University of Louisiana at Monroe’s Fant-Ewing Coliseum served as host site for the launch of Gov. Bobby Jindal’s 2010 “Building a Better Louisiana for Our Children” parish tour. The event was part of the Monroe Chamber of Commerce noon luncheon on Wednesday, Aug. 11.

Jindal spoke of higher education’s importance to economic development and touted the state’s infrastructural investments in the colleges across the region, specifically ULM’s chemistry and natural sciences building, the library, and the pharmacy building.

He also highlighted educational advancements in the last legislative session, including passage of the La. Grad Act, HB 1171, which gives all public postsecondary institutions the option to raise tuition up to 10 percent by entering into a six-year performance agreement with the Board of Regents and meeting specified performance targets aligned with the institution’s scope and mission.

The governor, who signed the bill into law on June 30, said it gives “flexibility tied to accountability,” stating that Louisiana residents should expect no less from a student’s academic performance than would be expected from an athletic performance.

Before Jindal’s remarks, ULM Interim President Steve Richters welcomed the governor and about 150 guests to the campus as he invited them to “come see what this remarkable university has to offer.”

Monroe Mayor and ULM alum Jamie Mayo also welcomed Wednesday’s visitors to the coliseum, noting that the university was his “home” and Fant-Ewing in particular was the site of many successful games in which he competed.

“I scored 24 points and had eight assists right here,” he said, smiling. “That’s a true story now, I’m not kidding!”

Also on hand were Miss Louisiana 2010 Kelsi Crain, a ULM sophomore kinesiology major, and Miss Monroe Hope Anderson, a senior Mass Communication major at the university.

Chamber of Commerce President Sue Nicholson gave recognition to ULM Career Counselor Alberta Green, for her assistance with photography of the State of State event.

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