TUSKEGEE, Ala. (August 18, 2012) — Tuskegee University faculty and staff met Friday to outline and share the upcoming goals for the institution. Plans focused on the future and Tuskegee’s advancement needs were presented during the annual All University Conference. The all-day event was organized by the Office of the Provost and held in the ballroom of the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center at Tuskegee University.
During opening remarks, Gilbert L. Rochon, Tuskegee University president, said that it was highly important that the institution remain competitive in a new environment of higher education where community colleges and for-profit schools are becoming more popular options for minority students rather than historically black institutions. He said it is important that the university produce graduates that are not only able to get jobs, but are capable of becoming future leaders. As a solution, he encouraged the creation of more opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students to publish research work and gain work experience.
“We have got to work, as faculty, to develop grants and contracts that include opportunities for students,” Rochon said.
Rochon said that he has witnessed the “overwhelming” amount of love alumni all over the world have for the university and found it inspiring. To continue the positive reputation of the university and maintain alumni bonds, Rochon stressed the importance of cultivating a student-centered and customer service-oriented environment at Tuskegee.
“No matter how hard the day has been, we have got to be warm, ingratiating and welcoming to our students, alumni and people from the public,” he said.
After the president’s remarks, presentations on institution-wide plans and processes were given by several members of the senior staff and faculty. Harold “Kippy” Tate, vice president for capital projects and facility services, discussed completed and ongoing construction projects on campus. Using two recently renovated residence halls as examples, Tate said his office plans for construction on campus to follow a deliberate plan that will incorporate modern and efficient building design.
“We can’t do anything less, the standards have been set,” Tate said.
Later in the day presentations were given on academic organization, programs, assessment of progress and planned efforts as well as various aspects of University College. Richard K. Dozier, dean of the Robert R. Taylor School of Architecture and Construction Science, gave an overview of the architecture school’s history and accomplishments.
He noted that Tuskegee is one of only seven historically black institutions that offer architecture. He also mentioned the close connection between past and present architecture students and the university. He said students built many of the campus’ historic buildings and many alumni had or have a part in either the design or construction of the new and forthcoming structures.
“We like to say we built the place,” Dozier said about the architecture school.
Audience listens to information during All University Conference in the ballroom of the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center at Tuskegee University.
Walter Hill, College of Agriculture, Environmental and Nutrition Sciences dean, gives a presentation during All University Conference on Friday.