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Louisiana State University

Louisiana State University

Table of contents
1 Higher Education In Louisiana
2 History
3 Athletics
4 Famous and Important Alumni
5 Achievements
6 Sources/External Links:

Higher Education In Louisiana

There are four higher education systems in Louisiana. The LSU system, the Southern University system, the University of Lousiana system, and the Louisiana Community and Technical College System. The four systems are all subject to oversight by the Louisiana Board of Regents. There are also 10 independent colleges in the state represented by the Louisiana Association of Independent Colleges and Universities.
External Link: List of independent colleges

Current LSU System Entities

LSU has more than 30,000 students and 1,300 full-time faculty members. Louisiana State University is both a land-grant and a sea-grant institution.

The LSU System is composed of the following:

LSU's main campus is located in Baton Rouge, on the banks of the Mississippi River. The Baton Rouge campus boasts more than 250 principal buildings which are grouped on a 650-acre plateau. LSU's landscaping was called "a botanical joy" in its listing among the 20 best campuses in America in Thomas Gaines' The Campus as a Work of Art. The live oak trees on LSU's campus have been valued at $36 million. Through the LSU Foundation's "Endow an Oak" program, individuals or groups are able to endow live oaks across campus.

The LSU system has a presence in all 64 Louisiana parishes through its cooperative extension service. This service assists farmers, gardeners, and other businesses deal with some of Louisiana's unique environmental challenges.

The Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge is a widely recognized authority on nutrition and preventive medicine.
External Link: Pennington Biomedical Research Center website

Former LSU System Entities

Lake Charles Junior College opened in 1940 under LSU's direction (The name was later changed to John McNeese Junior College). It would split from the LSU system in 1950, and become a separate four year institution known as McNeese State University. It is now part of the University of Louisiana system.

The Northeast Center was established in Monroe in 1934. It was the first branch school of LSU, though other colleges (schools within the university) had been placed in other cities across the state prior to that time. It was separated from the LSU system in 1950, and is currently part of the University of Louisiana system, known as the University of Louisiana - Monroe, or ULM.

Francis T. Nicholls Junior College opened in 1948 in Thibodaux. It split from the LSU system in 1956 to become an autonomous institution, later known as Nicholls State University. Presently, it is part of the University of Louisiana system.


The Louisiana General Assembly passed legislation in 1853 creating a state institution of higher education, named The Seminary of Learning of the State of Louisiana (French translation: l'Universite' de l'Etat de la Louisiane) near Pineville. The institution's first building was completed in 1859, and classes began in 1860.

In 1861, the school's name was changed to Louisiana State Seminary of Learning & Military Academy (French translation: le Lycee Scientifique et Militaire de l'Etat de la Louisiane). At the beginning of the American Civil War in this year, the school, like the rest of the country, was deeply affected. Faculty, administration, and students alike left the school, most to join or support the Confederate Army. Later that year, Louisiana seceded from the Union, and the school was shuttered.

The seminary re-opened for the spring session in 1862, only to close again less than a month later following military action by federal forces. The library's contents and many other items were destroyed, but the building was saved. The school remained closed until the conclusion of the war in 1865. That autumn, classes resumed in Pineville.

The Pineville campus building burned down in 1869. Classes resumed 2 weeks later at the Institute for the Deaf, Dumb, and Blind in Baton Rouge. In 1870, the seminary officially became The Louisiana State University (French translation:l'Universite' de l'Etat de la Louisiane).

Meanwhile, in 1874, the Louisiana State Agricultural & Mechanical College (later Lousiana A&M) is opened as a separate school on the University of Louisiana campus in New Orleans. Classes were held there until the new campus in Chalmette, near New Orleans, was completed. This campus was racially integrated.

Louisiana State University and Louisiana A&M College were combined in 1876 by the Lousiana Legislature, which prompted a title change to Louisiana State University and Agricultural and Mechanical College. That name remains the official name of the school today. LSU became a land-grant institution.

In 1886, the Department of the Interior transferred title of the Baton Rouge Arsenal, which was seized by Louisiana militia during the Civil War, to the state of Louisiana. The former arsenal became the new campus. University President D.F. Boyd paid for much of the repair and construction himself, without reimbursement.

LSU adopted the tiger as the official mascot in 1896.

Olivia Davis became LSU's first female student in 1901. She graduated in 1905.

Architect Theodore Link's campus plan was approved and construction of present buildings began in 1922.

LSU received its first live mascot, named "Little-Eat-'Em-Up", a black bobtailed tiger, in 1924 from an alumni living in South America. Tulane and LSU played the first football game on the new campus on Thanksgiving Day of that year. LSU lost. The field was "temporarily" named Tiger Stadium. That name is still in use today.

In the fall of 1925, classes began on the Baton Rouge campus. It was dedicated the next year, and remains the primary campus of the University.

LSU's student body adopted the current alma mater in 1930.

In 1978 LSU became a sea-grant institution.


LSU is a member of the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) and the SEC (Southeastern Conference). It fields teams in all major men's and women's sports. Its official team colors are purple and gold.

According to a study by LSU economics professor Loren Scott, the existence of LSU Athletics generates $131 million in sales for businesses in the Baton Rouge community, another $40 million in household earnings and supports over 2,100 jobs in the Baton Rouge area.

LSU fielded its first football team in 1893. In their first ever game, they lost to Tulane 34-0.

Since then, LSU has won national and SEC titles in nearly every sport.
National Titles

SEC titles
Source: Athletics Information page

Famous and Important Alumni


Sources/External Links:

LSU's main website and assorted pages within that domain
LSU Faculty Handbook
Louisiana Board Of Regents