Grambling State University and the University of Louisiana System will launch a review of the university following concerns raised by football players who ended their boycott Monday.
The institutional review will conduct a comprehensive assessment of the institution and make recommendations for improvement. This isn't the first time institutional reviews have been conducted at UL System universities. The most recent one occurred at the University of New Orleans in 2011.
PREVIOUSLY: What got Grambling back on the field
"I believe good things can come from creative tension," said Grambling President Frank Pogue to the UL Board of Supervisors Tuesday. "You can use creative tension to bring attention to the needs of society. In this case we are using it to bring attention to something larger than athletics — larger than football.
"What we are addressing today is symptomatic of something larger that exists on our campus, our financial plight. We have serious needs across the university community. I intend to work closely with Dr. (Sandra) Woodley to develop and conduct a comprehensive review of Grambling's academics, facilities, student services, athletics and financial needs to make our university stronger."
The school's football team protested among other grievances substandard athletic facilities, unhealthy conditions and long bus rides to games. But players also contended the problems they saw in facilities went beyond athletic sites.
"Dr. Pogue and I agree," said UL System President Sandra Woodley. "No matter how hard you try, you can always do better. We want Grambling to be the best it can be, so we will be taking a critical look at every aspect of the university. The exact format of this review is yet to be determined, but it will be a combination of an internal and external review. Dr. Pogue and I will sit down and identify appropriate experts that can help us determine how to improve the university."
This will be Grambling's second institutional review. The first was conducted in 2002 by a team of six consultants. That review brought about some 76 recommendations.
According to the university, Grambling's overall state funding has been cut by 57 percent to about $13 million while the athletics budget was cut $335,000 to $6.8 million.
Mary Nash-Wood also writes for The Shreveport Times.