Friday, September 21

SU Ag Center Holds Summit for Lafayette Area 8th Graders

Students arrive at event venue

Baton Rouge, La. – Southern University Agricultural Research and Extension Center on Wednesday, September 19 held its first joint Back-to-School Summit at the Blackham Coliseum in Lafayette. The event brought together approximately two thousand 8th grade students from six surrounding parishes. Students from St. Landry, Lafayette, Vermilion, St. Martin, Pointe Coupee, and Evangeline were exposed to several motivational speakers on the topics of bullying, self-esteem, abstinence, and "Discovering the Winner in YOU." Participants enjoyed two musical performances by 16-year old Recording Artist Shalyric Self. They also won several door prizes including safety helmets, musical headphones, and educational materials. A member of the SU Admissions Office was on hand to share information about the university.

Event attendees and the public have provided lots of positive feedback on the success of the summit. Participating students reported that they enjoyed the Back-to-School Summit.

When asked if she enjoyed the summit, Heather Gilmore from Lafayette Parish stated, "It was very fun and I liked the prize drawings and the speakers!"

The event was organized by the Southwest Center for Rural Initiatives, a satellite entity of the SU Ag Center whose mission is to conduct basic and applied research and to disseminate information to the citizens of Louisiana in a manner that is useful in addressing their scientific, technological, social, economic and cultural needs. Dr. Wanda Burke serves as director of the Center.

For further detail, contact Meloni Hutchins at (225)771-2242 or via email

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Bridget Udoh
(225) 771-5714

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