BATON ROUGE, La. – Louisiana State University Chancellor Michael Martin says that adding Louisiana Tech University to the LSU System could make for a stronger flagship university in Baton Rouge.
Louisiana Tech could essentially swap spots with the University of New Orleans, which is expected to move into the University of Louisiana System if legislation is passed next week. A transfer of Louisiana Tech could not be approved until next year.
“I see some benefit,” Martin said during a Chancellor-Staff Senate Forum on Thursday at the LSU Student Union. “We are more similar than all the other institutions in the state.”
Last week, Louisiana Tech President Dan Reneau said there had been more interest shown in the university joining the LSU System.
Martin said Thursday there are some collaborations that could be expanded, if Louisiana Tech is in the LSU System. The two schools have discussed expanded collaborations in nanotechnology, biomedical engineering and other fields.
“There’s some collaborations I believe we can do better if Tech were in our system,” Martin said. “I believe we need to look at some of those things and so does Dan.”
A study commissioned five years ago by the LSU System suggested the Tech-UNO swap as a way of setting up a possible three-way merger of Louisiana Tech, LSU at Shreveport and the LSU Health Sciences Center at Shreveport.
Martin said he is not sure of the ideal higher education structure, but that there are “peculiar” aspects now, such as LSU at Eunice community college and the Pennington Biomedical Research Center fitting in the same system.