"I thought the opening was very sacred in reference to the bands rendition of "Sweet Spirit". The song set the tone for the honoring of the founders", said Mary Boden Harris, a First Year Experience instructor. Sunday, September 24, 2006 was the opening for Founders Week, a celebration that takes place each year at GSU to commemorate the founding of the university and pay homage to the people who founded the institution.
The evenings event began with the opening of the world famed Grambling State University Band, presentation of colors by the Army ROTC, the reading of the proclamation by President Judson and Mayor Andrews, a brief history of GSU by the Dean of Graduate Studies Emeritus, Professor Leon Whittaker, and the closing prayer by Reverend Clifton Lewis of Mt. Harmony Baptist Church in Ruston.
Shortly after the opening ceremony, students and faculty proceeded to T.H Harris Auditorium for the convocation with Attorney Lezli Baskerville as the guest speaker. Baskerville is the President and CEO of the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (NAFEO). She encouraged the Grambling State university students to register and vote so their voices will be heard throughout the community. She touched on a plethora of topics about the black community and the opportunities that not many students take advantage of.
Dr. William White, professor of Educational Leadership said, " She gave an excellent address touching on a number of topics of interest to both students and faculty, and that he appreciated her firm commitment to college access for colleges and universities to provide the necessary learning and support services to help students be successful. "I thought Founder’s Day was very informative, I learned a lot about the true foundation of GSU, and I believe that it is one that should not be forgotten", said freshman Whitney Allen.
"It was a great tribute to the founders, and was very empowering and touched on the right subjects for students such as myself", said freshman Cemia Khalek.