Counseling, Wellness Checks, Prayer Among Efforts at Grambling State to Support Students, Employees

Measures in place to restrict non-student access to campus

by Bobbie Handcock | University Communications

GRAMBLING, La. – October 19, 2021 – On and off-campus partners have rallied together to support wellness and recovery efforts at Grambling State University (GSU) following shooting incidents that occurred October 13 and 17. In addition to the GSU Counseling Center, assistance is being provided by counselors from the University of Louisiana System. The GSU Student Center will continue providing counseling sessions in small groups, virtually, and one-on-one meetings for students, faculty, and staff. Campus Living and Housing are also continuing to conduct daily Wellness Room visits and I.D. checks will continue at campus entry points to restrict non-student access to campus.

Classes were also canceled for Monday, October 18, and Tuesday, October 19. GSU administrators met with student leaders to determine the implementation of a campus-wide curfew that will be in effect from 9:30 p.m. through 6 a.m. until further notice.
McCall Dining Center revised its hours of operation to 6 a.m. through 9:30 p.m. daily and retail locations will remain open during their regular hours.

The “Stronger Together” initiative created by GSU student leaders has been embraced by the campus community and serves as the unifying theme for all engagements and outreach activities. GSU President Rick Gallot said university officials are focused on providing support to students on campus and employees to create safe spaces that are dedicated to mental wellness.

One of the things President Gallot has committed to do is to reserve October 17-23 as a period for fasting and prayer. A virtual zoom call has been held daily at noon with students, faculty, and staff as a way to connect and join in prayer to heal the campus and the community.

“My faith is what leads me in making the decisions that I make,” said Gallot. “In addressing this current challenge, it’s important for me that prayer be the first resort, not the last resort.”

President Gallot said that he is dedicated to continual improvement at Grambling State University and sparing no effort to foster the safe, supportive environment the campus deserves.

“I start each day with the understanding that our students come here for an education and far too often it’s outsiders who have created these situations that have put life and limb in danger,” Gallot said. “That’s not why we’re here. That’s not what we’re about after 120 years – our priority is keeping our students safe.”

Additional efforts include a breakfast dialogue with the Office of Campus Living & Housing at several residence halls, a mental health discussion via Zoom, and listening sessions hosted by the Office of Student Affairs.

Both incidents are currently under investigation by Louisiana State Police (LSP). Any information regarding the incidents should be sent to LSP at (318) 345-0000 or GSUPD (318) 274-2222.