RUSTON — The Louisiana State Licensing Board for Contractors has donated more than $250,000 to Louisiana Tech University’s Construction Engineering Technology program as part of its ongoing effort to increase the training opportunities for the next generation of leaders in construction management.
This gift is part of an annual commitment from the state’s professional contractors and the licensing board. Each year, the board donates the voluntary fees it collects from professional contractors to help support Louisiana programs that educate future construction professionals. To-date, Louisiana Tech has received more than a million dollars from the funds.
“In a time of financial need, the construction industry has stepped up and through voluntary contributions when renewing their contractor’s license made significant donations that enable the construction management programs to better educate and train the young leaders of tomorrow,” said Ken Naquin, chief executive officer of the Louisiana Associated General Contractors.
“The Louisiana State Licensing Board for Contractors is so proud of the leadership, professionalism, and commitment of the construction industry in Louisiana,” Michael McDuff, executive director of the Louisiana State Licensing Board for Contractors, said. “Voluntary contributions from licensing fees to the schools with accredited construction management programs is an example of partnership and teamwork to benefit the students, higher education, and the future for building a better Louisiana. Louisiana Tech exemplifies excellence and integrity with utilization of these contributions.”
Representatives from the Louisiana Associated General Contractors, the Louisiana Contractors Licensing Board, and local contractors presented the check to Louisiana Tech President Dr. Les Guice at a luncheon on Sept. 30. Dr. Hisham Hegab, dean of the College of Engineering and Science, Reginald Jeter, chair and professional-in-residence for the Construction Engineering Technology program, Dr. Leland Weiss, director of civil engineering, construction engineering technology, and mechanical engineering, and Devin Ferguson, senior director of development for the College of Engineering and Science, were also in attendance.
This funding helps Tech’s Construction Engineering Technology program provide students with access to cutting-edge construction management equipment and facilities and travel opportunities for student competitions. Much of the funding received in this year’s donation will be spent to upgrade lab equipment and renovate lab spaces. In addition, some funds will be used to support travel for the University’s student chapter of the Associated General Contractors/North American Society of Trenchless Technology (AGC/NASTT), as they attend professional conferences such as the AGC Annual Convention, Underground Construction Technology Conference, and the NASTT No-Dig Show.
“We are grateful for the Louisiana construction industry’s support,” Hegab said. “The funds that the licensing board and individual contractors provide help us continue to provide future construction engineering professionals with hands-on experience using the latest field equipment. It also helps us provide them with experience networking and communicating with professionals in conference settings.”
Louisiana Tech’s Construction Engineering Technology program provides students with a background in math, science, engineering, construction, and business to prepare graduates for leadership positions in the construction industry. Program graduates enter the workforce with the skills to manage and supervise activities related to converting the plans and specifications prepared by engineers and architects into finished facilities.