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Southern University and A&M College had its beginning in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1880 when a group of black politicians, led by former U.S. Senator P.B.S. Pinchback of New Orleans; a distinguished legislator, T.T. Allain of Iberville; and Henry Demas of St. John Parish petitioned the State Constitutional Convention to establish a school of higher learning for “colored” people. As a result of this petition, Southern University came into existence on April 10, 1880, by the passage of ACT 87 of the Louisiana General Assembly.
The Southern University System has always been a leader, not only as the country’s lone historically black college system, but also as the producer of successful graduates throughout the world. Notable alumni include Lt. Gen. Russell L. Honoré (retired), Commanding General of the U.S. First Army Commander of Joint Task Force Katrina; Sandra Simpson Mitchell, vice president and general manager Home Box Office, Incorporated; James A. Joseph, former U.S. ambassador to South Africa; Celeste A. Clark, senior vice president for global nutrition and corporate affairs, Kellogg; and Rickie Weeks, second baseman, Milwaukee Brewers. Not to be excluded are nine U.S. generals and many military officers, other leaders who began their careers at Southern, along with a host of alumni who have walked the halls of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government, ranging from local to national levels. Other distinguished alumni include:
Act 87 provided for the establishment of a university for the education of persons of color. The act further provided that the Board of Trustees should “establish a faculty of arts and letters, which shall be competent to instruct in every branch of liberal education; and, under rules of and in concurrence with the Board of Trustees, to graduate students and grant degrees pertaining to arts and letters on persons competent and deserving the same.” Under the provisions of Act 87 of the 1880 Louisiana General Assembly, Southern University first opened on March 7, 1881, in New Orleans.
Claire Babineaux-Fontenot, VP of audit and tax policy, Walmart Stores, Incorporated Mel Blount, member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame Lou Brock, record-setting base-stealing Major League Baseball player
A significant development in the history of the University was the passage of the Second Morrill Act of 1890, which provided for the establishment of an agricultural and mechanical department for people of color, with support from both the state and federal governments. The passage of the Second Morrill Act led to the reorganization of the University as a land-grant institution, with separate divisions for agriculture and mechanical arts.
LaRonica L. Conway, associate commissioner, Southeastern Conference
The University remained in New Orleans until 1912, when Legislative Act 188 authorized its change of location from New Orleans to Baton Rouge. The University was reopened on the new site on March 9, 1914, under the presidency of J.S. Clark.
Randy Jackson, Grammy Award-winning producer, “American Idol” judge
The Southern University and A&M College System was established in 1974 by a state constitutional mandate which fashioned the Southern University campuses into a system. Southern University is the nation’s only historically black 1890 Land Grant University System in the nation. The System’s five campuses are: Southern University and A&M College at Baton Rouge (est. 1880), the Southern University Law Center (est. 1947), Southern University at New Orleans (est. 1956), Southern University at Shreveport (est. 1964), and the Southern University Cooperative Extension Service (est. 1972), which became the fifth campus of the System in 2001, named the Southern University Agricultural Research and Extension Center. Today, the SU System is a leader in graduate and undergraduate level education through quality four-year, graduate, professional, and research programs among its five Louisiana campuses. SU is among the top producers of African-American graduates in combined disciplines of engineering, technology, business, computer science, nursing, and mathematics.
Lavell Crump (a.k.a. David Banner), music recording artist Willie Davenport, two-time gold medalist of U.S. Olympic Track Team Melvin L. “Kip” Holden, first African-American mayor-president of the City of Baton Rouge and Parish of East Baton Rouge
Avery Johnson, former Dallas Mavericks coach Sandra K. Johnson, Ph.D., engineer and IBM master inventor Bob Love, former Chicago Bulls great and city councilman Branford Marsalis, renowned jazz artist Rodney Milburn, Track and Field gold medalist at 1972 Munich Olympic Games Revius O. Ortique, the first African American elected to the Louisiana Supreme Court Isiah Robertson, six time NFL Pro-Bowler Maurice G. Sholas, M.D.,Ph.D., medical director, Children’s Rehabilitation Services / practice director, Children's Rehabilitation Associates, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Aeneas Williams, former NFL Pro Bowler U.S. Military Generals: Charles Honoré Russell Honoré Edward Honor Donald Delandro Sherian Cadoria Gregory Rountree Jude Patin Isaac Smith Joe N. Ballard
At - a - Glance
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THE SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY SYSTEM What began as a dream more than 130 years ago is today a living legacy of determination, commitment, and success. The Southern University and A&M College System is the only historically black university system in America. The System has a diverse enrollment of more than 14,000 students with locations in Louisiana’s capital city of Baton Rouge, New Orleans, and Shreveport. A law school and agricultural and research center also are located in Baton Rouge. The System campuses appeal to students with various undergraduate, graduate, and professional degree offerings. Widespread accomplishments of faculty and alumni have positively impacted society at every level. With a strong foundation, a proven record of achievement, and a fresh vision for the future, Southern University’s charge to advance the mission of its founders’ remains at the heart of our administrators, faculty, students, and alumni. The campuses of the Southern University and A&M College System pride themselves with distinct learning environments, each having its own identity and brand. Despite the differences in the constituencies that they serve, the commonality of all campuses lies in providing quality educational experiences that are affordable and accessible to all. Each of our campuses is deeply rooted in their respective communities and is responsive to regional intellectual, cultural, and labor needs by supporting economic and workforce development that bring benefits to the state and region. VISION The Southern University System aspires to prepare students to compete globally in their respective professions and to provide advanced study in graduate and professional schools. Our shared vision is to pursue excellence in providing leadership on the state, regional, national and international levels for education, research, and service activities consistent with the System’s strategic goals and strengths. SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY LAW CENTER (SULC) · · · ·
Founded 1947 Baton Rouge Chancellor - Freddie Pitcher Student enrollment Fall 2009 – 599
The Southern University Law Center is noted as one of the leading law schools in the country while it maintains its historic role of giving opportunity to under-represented racial, ethnic, and economic groups. The juris doctor degree (J.D.), through a full-time and a part-time day and evening program, is offered at the Southern University Law Center. The Law Center and the Southern University Nelson Mandela School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs also offer a J.D. and master of public administration joint degree. There are more than 3,000 alumni of the Southern University Law Center, which is noted as one of the most diverse law schools in the country. The Law Center has contributed to the education of more than 90 percent of the African-American attorneys in the state of Louisiana.
SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY AT SHREVEPORT (SUSLA) · · · ·
Founded 1964 Shreveport Chancellor - Ray Belton Student enrollment Fall 2009 - 3,014
Southern University, Shreveport, Louisiana, offers one-and two-year career programs designed to meet an increasing demand for technicians, semi-professional workers and skilled craftsmen. SUSLA prepares students for upward mobility in industry, business, allied health professions, and government. Additionally, associate degrees in the arts, sciences, applied sciences, as well as certificate programs are offered. While its radio technology and dental technology programs have gained accolades, SUSLA athletics program has etched its mark in the community college arena.
SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY NEW ORLEANS (SUNO) · · · ·
Founded 1956 New Orleans Chancellor - Victor Ukpolo Student enrollment Fall 2009 - 3,140
Founded in 1956, Southern University at New Orleans, awards degrees at the certificate, associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s degree levels. The university offers internet-based courses and compressed-video classes. The campus serves a largely economically disadvantaged student population and has the System’s largest non-traditional population, addressing the needs of full-time working students. In early 2010, SUNO opened the first residence halls on the campus. Recently a new Information Technology Center was opened and plans are in motion to construct a new building for the College of Business and Public Administration. SUNO, a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics and part of the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference, takes deep pride in its athletic program, which features highly accomplished men’s and women’s basketball teams.
SOUTHERN UNIVERSITY AND A&M COLLEGE (SUBR) · · · ·
Founded 1880 Baton Rouge Chancellor - Kofi Lomotey Student enrollment - Fall 2009 - 7,627
Situated on Scott’s Bluff, along the mighty Mississippi River, Southern University and A&M College, has arguably the best scenery along the river, along with one of the best values in higher education. The largest campus of the system, SUBR is home to nearly 8,000 students and is one of the nation’s top-10 producers of minority graduates and top-20 producers of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics doctoral candidates. Southern University and A&M College is a comprehensive institution offering four-year, graduate, professional, and doctoral degree programs. It offers bachelor’s degrees in 42 areas, 19 master’s, five doctoral, and two associate degrees. A member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC), the Southern University Jaguars have brought home SWAC titles just about every season since 1991. Student-athletes not only excel on the playing field and the classroom; they are making quite an impact in professional sports.
Did you know...? • Southern University signature programs in nursing, education, engineering, and computer science are aligned with the State of Louisiana’s high demand jobs that pay over $30,000 per year. • During 2007-2008, the SU System infused $539.5 million into the Louisiana economy (Hanover Research Council). • Southern University is one of the nation’s top 10 producers of minority students who go on to graduate school and one of the top 20 producers of science, mathematics and engineering graduates who go on to complete doctoral degrees. • U.S. News and World Report ranks SUBR as a top-tier school among historically black colleges and universities. • SUNO is the only institution in the state to offer degree programs in substance abuse counseling and business entrepreneurship. Additionally, Southern University at New Orleans’ School of Social Work and Criminal Justice are premier programs that are highly regarded by agencies throughout the state. • Stephen C. McGuire, chairman, Department of Physics, SUBR, was elected as a Fellow of the American Physical Society. • SUSLA was voted the third best two-year university in the country by Washington Monthly Magazine. The campus also was recognized as the sixth fastest growing two-year institution and ranked 44th among two – year institutions graduating African-American students. • SUBR’s Department of Rehabilitation and Disabilities Studies received a $1 million grant to design and operate a program to help students with disabilities succeed in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. • The SU Law Center is noted as one of the leading law schools in the country for its diverse faculty and environment for minority students by Princeton Law Review. • The SU Ag Center is the only land-grant institution in the state dedicated to sustaining underserved citizens by teaching strategies for family management, food and nutrition, childcare, agriculture, parenting, youth development, and urban forestry. • The SUBR School of Nursing, in 2010, was named “Nursing School of the Year” by the Louisiana Nurses Foundation and the Louisiana State Nurses Association. • SUNO received $1.75 million from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to strengthen its undergraduate recruitment and retention activities in mathematics and science. • The Law Center has contributed to the education of more than 90 percent of the African-American attorneys in the state of Louisiana. SULC graduates make up approximately seven percent of the Louisiana Legislature and more than 40 hold judicial offices at the local, state, and national level. • SUBR was awarded a $5 million grant from the National Science Foundation to establish the “Next Generation Composites Crest Center,” called NextGenC3, on the University’s campus. • SUSLA opened a $2 million Business and Community Development Center with the capacity to accommodate up to eight tenants.
AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH AND EXTENSION CENTER (SU AG CENTER)
• Michelle Claville, chair of the Department of Chemistry, SUBR, was awarded a $400,000 National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program grant.
· Founded 2001 · Baton Rouge · Chancellor - Leodrey Williams
• The State Farm Bayou Classic is among the oldest and largest historically black colleges and universities’ bowl football classics.
The Southern University Agricultural Research and Extension Center is an epicenter of basic and applied research, addressing the scientific, technological, socio-economic, and cultural needs of not only the state or nation, but also the world. The efforts of the Ag Center’s research teams have reached as far as the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, where researchers and scientists have teamed with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to help the Bosnian government improve food inspection standards. At home, the Ag Center helps small scale and limited resourced farmers develop and maintain environmental friendly operations. Strategically located extension agents are able to package and disseminate viable information designed for the improvement of the state’s quality of life.
• The Southern University Agricultural Research and Extension Center received a $300,000 USDA grant to support its Small Farmer Agricultural Leadership Institute. • SUSLA was awarded a $4.2 million U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration (ETA) grant from the U.S. Department of Labor. • Diola Bagayoko, SU System distinguished professor of physics, received the 2009 AAAS Mentor Award for Lifetime Achievement. • SUBR was awarded a $1 million NSF grant for a Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM) and for research training.
Published on May 31, 2010