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Grambling State Hosts White House Correspondent, April Ryan

CNN Analyst & White House Correspondent to Keynote GSU’s Black History Convocation

By GSU Media Bureau

April Ryan HeadshotGRAMBLING, LA — February 26, 2018 – White House Correspondent, April Ryan, who is well known for her coverage of presidential administrations and African-American issues will deliver the keynote address at the 2018 Grambling State University Black History Convocation on February 27, 2018.

The only black female reporter covering urban issues in the White House and one of only three African Americans to serve on the board of the White House Correspondents Association, Ryan is a veteran journalist who began her White House work during the Clinton era. Since then, she’s grown to become the Washington Bureau Chief for the American Urban Radio Networks and through her “Fabric of America” news blog, CNN appearances and radio content, she reaches millions of Americans weekly.

“For more than one hundred years, Grambling State’s led Louisiana in engaging and attracting those who champion the African-American vantage point in media,” said Rick Gallot, GSU’s 10th President. “We’re honored to host Mrs. Ryan to share her unique perspective with our students.”

Ryan joins a long list of notable African-Americans featured at Grambling State University events, including Roland Martin, Johnny C. Taylor, and Dr. Frederick D. Haynes, III.

GSU’s Black History Convocation is free and open to the campus, surrounding communities, and media.

Grambling State University Black History Convocation, 2018
Tuesday, February 27, 2018 | 11:00 a.m.

T.H. Harris Auditorium, Grambling State University

403 Main Street, Grambling, LA 71245

 For media credentials or more information, please contact




About Grambling State University

Grambling State University, located in Grambling Louisiana, is a historically black university founded in 1901. The University has been accredited by 13 accrediting associations and holds accreditations in all programs required by the Louisiana Board of Regents. The 590-acre campus offers 43 undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Grambling State University is a member of the University of Louisiana System. For more information visit





GSU Weather Closure: Tuesday, January 16

We will be CLOSED for normal business and classes TOMORROW (Tuesday, Jan 16) in anticipation of the wintry precipitation forecast for overnight and into Wednesday.

The convenience store in Tiger Express will open today (Monday) from 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm for students to stock up on supplies.   In the event of a power outage, they are prepared to provide sack lunches (sandwich, chips, cookies, fruit and soda).

On TOMORROW (Tuesday, Jan 16), McCall Dining Hall Hours will be according to the Brunch Schedule:  Brunch (10:30 am – 1:00 pm) and Dinner (4:30 pm – 6:00 pm)

We are monitoring National Weather Service reports for Wednesday and the rest of the week.

GSU advises students, faculty and staff to be careful and cautious.

Spring 2018 registration continues online via Banner.




Larry Holston Acrylic on Canvas

Larry Holston
Acrylic on Canvas



Four Grambling State faculty are sharing art work during a special show at the university’s Dunbar Gallery through late January

Grambling State University’s Dunbar Gallery is hosting the Annual Faculty Art Exhibition, SeeSaw, January 8 – 29. Artists exhibiting are Donna McGee, Rodrecas (Drék) Davis, Larry D. Holston, and Terence C. Williams II. The works in the show encompass a range from satirical discourse on social topics to introspective contemplation as an antidote to stressors in contemporary culture.

McGee, professor of art, holds a bachelor of science in art education from Mississippi State University, a masters in counseling from Mississippi State University and a master of fine arts in studio, painting and drawing from Louisiana Tech University. Her work is rooted in the belief that man is an integral part of nature. She believes that through communion with the natural world, we gain a greater understanding of ourselves.

“Drék” (pronounced Dreek) Davis, assistant professor of art, is a native of Monroe, Georgia, and holds a master of fine arts degree from the University of Georgia. Davis’ works address underlying meanings associated with words such as “Black” and “Magic” and the irony of such words when considered in the context of black culture.

Holston, assistant professor of art, received his bachelor of arts degree in art education from Grambling State University and a master of arts in art from Northwestern Louisiana University. His work for this is reflective of people and the way they express their identity through their physical appearance.

Williams holds a bachelor of fine arts degree in sequential art from Savannah College of Art and Design. His work is a visual commentary on various social topics and current events. He brings the art of the graphic novel into the gallery setting to capture attention and generate discussion in a different format.

The public is invited to meet the artists at a closing reception to be held in the gallery on January 25 from 4:30 p.m.-6 p.m. Gallery hours are from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 8:30 a.m.-12 noon on Friday. The gallery is closed on university holidays. Dunbar Gallery is located in Dunbar Fine Arts Annex on Hutchinson Street in Grambling. Accommodations are available for large groups and special needs persons. For more information, please call 318-274-2274 or 318-274- 3462.




In higher education, every university’s history includes the gift of a few iconic leaders whose work and service grow the very fabric and trajectory of the institution.

Dr. Joseph B. Johnson, the third president of Grambling State University, was uncontestably one of our legacy’s greatest gifts. My GSU president and fellow member of Kappa Alpha Psi’s Gamma Psi chapter, Dr. Johnson will forever be remembered as a bold and progressive leader.Dr and Mrs Johnson (former GSU President)

Never afraid to speak his mind or challenge the status quo, he helped elevate our University to one of America’s most influential and recognized African American institutions.

His voice and contributions created impact that will be felt for generations to come. From his conversations with students under our “tree of knowledge” to his Whitehouse visits with various presidents, his presence helped create the change our university, nation, and world needed to see.

He and his administration’s tireless work on legacy-changing efforts included preparing the Consent Decree, which brought millions of dollars to GSU; establishing key academic programs including our School of Nursing, MBA program, and top-ranked computer science programs; and establishing GSU’s Earl Lester Cole Honors College and our doctoral program in developmental education.

Our first alumni president and the first Kappa president of GSU, Dr. Johnson will be remembered for the way he used his Grambling love to grow our University’s place in history.

He invested in our community, campus, and a long list of GSU alumni who have followed in his footsteps in shaping our world and education.

Grambling State University will be forever indebted to President Johnson. He was a fighter, a warrior and one of the voices who made sure our institution never settled for ordinary. It was an honor to call him President, mentor, and advisor.

I know I speak for all in our GSU family when I say he will always be remembered and deeply missed.  Christy and I send our prayers and condolences to the Johnson family during this difficult time.



More than 350 students are expected to graduate during the Grambling State University (GSU) fall 2017 commencement exercises at 10 a.m. Central, 11 a. m. Eastern, on December 15, 2017, in the Fredrick C. Hobdy Assembly Center in Grambling. The university will award 268 bachelor’s degrees, 95 master’s degrees and 7 doctorates.

GSU’s commencement speaker will be Dr. Frederick Douglass Haynes, III, Senior Pastor at Friendship-West Church in Dallas, TX. Dr. Haynes is a Dr. Frederick Haynessocial activist, orator, and educator. He is committed to advocating for economic justice for under-served communities and to empowering the disenfranchised. Dr. Haynes has received numerous awards and honors for his ministry and activism. Ebony Magazine named him to its “Power 100” list of most influential African Americans in 2012. He has been inducted into the National Black College Alumni Hall of Fame. He was honored to give remarks at the memorial service of one of the most respected world leaders of the 20th and 21st centuries, South African President Nelson Mandela.

A special, off-site commencement program is scheduled for 11 a.m. Eastern at the AT&T Metro Center in Atlanta. Thanks to the generous support of AT&T, several GSU football program student-athletes will graduate in a special ceremony in a corporate multipurpose room in advance of Saturday’s Celebration Bowl football game.



The Grambling State University Army ROTC will host a commissioning ceremony on Thursday, Dec. 14, at 10 a.m. The keynote address will be given by Colonel (Retired) Jeremy M. Martin, Director of Public Affairs and Outreach at Bell Helicopter, National Capital Region, and Former Chief of Staff in the Office of the Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs. Refreshments and fellowship will follow in the Black and Gold Room. Three cadets will be commissioned. The Army ROTC will conduct an oath of office during graduation.


Commencement rehearsal will be held at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 13, at the Fredrick C. Hobdy Assembly Center. On Dec. 15, graduates should arrive at the Assembly Center at 8 a.m., while faculty, staff, and students participating in the ceremony will assemble at 8:30 a.m.


GSUMAP2017Visitors attending the commencement at the Assembly Center are asked to park in the designated locations. There will be a drop-off and pick-up area in front of the Assembly Center for those needing additional assistance, but this is not a parking area. Graduates are asked to park in the parking spaces near the Eddie G. Robinson Memorial Stadium sign closest to the Conrad Hutchinson Performing Arts Center to allow family and friends to park closest to the Assembly Center. Parking spaces will be monitored and proper credentials must be displayed or vehicle will be towed. No curb parking — violators will be towed.


The doors to the Assembly Center will open at 7 a.m. No visitors will be allowed to enter the Assembly Center before 7 a.m. All audience members should arrange for their parties to be seated at the same time. SAVING SEATS FOR OTHERS WILL NOT BE ALLOWED. Ushers will be monitoring the rows to ensure that all seats are filled. While waiting for commencement to begin, please be respectful and courteous to others attending the ceremony, mindful of any instructions made by Grambling employees working at commencement, and listen carefully to any pre-commencement announcements.


Everyone attending the commencement is asked to be respectful of others who want to hear the names of their graduate called, to see their graduates in the procession and receive their degrees. To ensure that this formal event is as enjoyable for everyone as possible, NO CONGRATULATORY BANNERS, FLAGS OR AIR HORNS WILL BE ALLOWED INSIDE THE ASSEMBLY CENTER.


Only university-authorized campus and external media will be allowed on the floor of the Assembly Center to shoot and film the event. Only media with university-recognized media credentials will be allowed on the center’s floor, and only authorized campus and external media representatives with university-issued media passes will be permitted on the floor. All others will be asked to clear the area.


To watch a live broadcast of commencement, visit and click on the “Watch 2017 Fall Commencement Live” link on the right side of the webpage in the “Spotlight” section. The live broadcast will be available 10 a.m. on Dec. 15. In addition, KGRM-FM will broadcast the entire commencement live. Tune in at 91.5 FM starting at 10 a.m. The station will broadcast until diplomas are awarded. Visit and click on the link at the right of the homepage to listen to KGRM live.

Watch Online: 


External media are asked to contact the Office of University Communications at or 318-274-2203 for information regarding admittance to commencement and to make interview requests. All external media must park in a designated parking area in the loading dock area at the back of the Hobdy Assembly Center, and are required to show media credentials. External media are asked to enter at the back of the building.


GSU POSTPONES 2017 Nursing Leadership Summit


Rear Adm. Sylvia Trent-Adams, the U.S. deputy surgeon general, was excited to be asked to speak at Grambling State University’s Nursing Leadership Summit. Unfortunately, due to an unforeseen change in her schedule, she will not be able to attend the Oct. 26-27 summit.

The summit has been postponed and will be rescheduled for a later date. The summit date will be based on her availability.

Refunds for ticket purchases, advertisements and sponsorships will be issued by the GSU Office of Advancement.

Please contact Vel Malone ( in the GSU Office of Advancement or call (318) 274-2217 for refund information or to ask questions.



Office of Advancement

Grambling State University

403 Main Street

Grambling, LA 71245




The NCAA clarification does not include seasons prior to the 2012-2015 academic years.

Grambling State University will not have to vacate its 2011 football championship season, including the 2011 Southwestern Athletic Conference championship.

In a communication GSU received from the NCAA Monday, the national athletics governing body clarified that the NCAA sanctions previously announced include the 2012-13 through 2015-16 academic years and therefore the “violations that occurred during the 2011-12 academic year are not included.” That means the 2011 football season record stands. The 2011 championship football team was 8-4 overall and beat Alabama A&M University 16-15 on Dec. 10, 2011, to win the SWAC title.

“This is a good day for Grambling State athletics,” said GSU Athletics Director Paul Bryant. “We have been through a lot these last several years, and we’ve had some most unfortunate failings that we are working to continue to assess and correct. It’s certainly good news that former head football coach Doug Williams and his G-men team will continue to be recognized for the good performances they had in fall 2011.

“Still, we acknowledge there were a number of things that should not have happened, and we have taken corrective action,” he added. “We recently invited the NCAA to our campus to help educate and train our entire athletics administration team and coaches. We are confident that we will perform far more effectively in the future when it comes to NCAA guidelines and policies.”

GSU President Rick Gallot expressed his appreciation to the NCAA for the review and clarification, and he thanked Bryant and his team for being dogged stewards of the school’s academic and athletic obligations and responsibilities. “The NCAA has an important job to do holding all its institutions to high standards, and that includes our beloved institution with its storied athletics history,” said Gallot. “We thank the NCAA for this clarification, which I know will bring relief to many of our alumni and fans. I assure everyone that we will come out of this situation better and stronger.”



University leaders express joy, say more hard work remains

By WILL SUTTON / GSU Media Bureau

GSU Associate Dean of Nursing, Dr. Meg Brown and GSU President Rick Gallot

GSU Associate Dean of Nursing, Dr. Meg Brown and GSU President Rick Gallot

With a unanimous decision, the Louisiana State Board of Nursing approved Grambling State University’s plans for a new undergraduate nursing program, pending a Louisiana Board of Regents meeting. If all goes well, the program would start in fall 2018.

“This is what we have worked hard for these last several months,” said Meg Brown, associate dean of nursing in the university’s College of Professional Studies. “The work to get to this stage has been the process required by the state of Louisiana.” Now, she said, “the work of building the program starts.”

Though the nursing board voted to support the new program, the board requires full approval from the Regents, and the Regents approved the program pending support from the nursing board. GSU must return to the Regents to get final approval, then the nursing board will allow Grambling State to move forward with the process. That is expected to be a formality.

Nursing board members said the plans for the planned stringent, academically-rigorous program is what GSU needs. As developed and proposed in the approved letter of intent, the school’s new undergraduate nursing program would require specific preliminary general education and other courses and a strong academic history before a student could be admitted as a nursing major. The board, meeting at the Louisiana State University Lod Cook Alumni Center on the LSU campus, urged Brown and GSU President Rick Gallot to continue the good work to get the new program in place.

In essence, the board determined that GSU is well-positioned to move forward with plans for the program for the first full step of a multiple-step process. The board’s action authorizes the university to move to another important step — identifying and hiring faculty and preparing, putting curriculum changes in place and establishing regulations and rules before marketing the program. After successfully implementing the next set of actions, the institution hopes to be positioned by spring 2018 to promote a new undergraduate program and recruit students for its first cohort of 30 students for the program to start in fall 2018.

“We’re happy to see you moving forward,” board president Laura Bonanno told Brown and GSU President Rick Gallot as they sat at a table in front of the board. She said the board was excited that Gallot had taken the position as president in August 2016 and that he made the undergraduate nursing program a priority.

Board member Tavell Kindall made a point of saying that he is a two-time GSU nursing program graduate. Kindall, a board-certified family nurse practitioner who earned a doctorate in nursing practice, works at the Greater Ouachita Coalition Providing AIDS Resources and Education (GOCARE) in West Monroe, Louisiana.

“This was an important next step,” said Gallot. “Dr. Brown has done a fantastic job preparing for today, and because of her work we are well positioned to proceed to do what needs to be done to make this happen.”

Ellen Smiley, GSU’s provost and vice president for academic affairs, is looking forward to the next set of actions as she works with Brown and others to determine the characteristics and qualities needed as undergraduate nursing faculty and staff are identified. “Putting together a team with the right set of values and a commitment to make this program successful is going to be critical,” she said. “We have high expectations for the program, and therefore we have high expectations for the people we choose to be a part of building this undergraduate foundation.”

Gallot, whose wife, Christy Gallot, is a nurse with three nursing degrees from GSU’s nursing program, said it means a lot to the university’s first lady and fellow nursing alumni to have a strong nursing program and he’s committed to making that happen.

“We didn’t come this far to stumble and fall,” he added. “We’re going to work with Dr. Brown to make sure that her nursing vision leads not only to the implementation of this program but to developing scores of successful nurses practicing across northern Louisiana, this state and this nation.”