|The University of Louisiana at Lafayette|
|UL Lafayette logo|
|French nickname||l'Université des Acadiens|
|President||Ray P. Authement|
|Location||Lafayette, LA USA|
|Athletic teams||Louisiana's Ragin' Cajuns|
|Colors||Vermilion and White|
The University of Louisiana at Lafayette, also known as UL Lafayette, is located in Lafayette, Louisiana, and is the third oldest campus in the University of Louisiana System. UL Lafayette was founded in 1900 as the Southwestern Louisiana Industrial Institute (SLII). In 1960, the institution gained university status and became the University of Southwestern Louisiana (USL); in 1999, the university became known by its present name.
UL's main campus consists of 137 acres (554,000 m²)in the heart of Acadiana; the athletic complex and Cajundome sit on 243 acres (983,000 m²); University Research Park has 148 acres (599,000 m²); and the Center for Ecology and Environmental Technology has 51 acres (206,000 m²). The university has a 600-acre farm/renewable resources laboratory with a 30-acre pond for crawfish and catfish culture in Cade, Louisiana. It has a 48-acre New Iberia Research Center in New Iberia, Louisiana, which is among the world's largest private non-human, primate breeding colonies.
UL Lafayette has 11 colleges and schools, and it offers 61 undergraduate degree programs, 29 master's degree programs, and 8 doctor of philosophy programs, which are applied language and speech sciences, biology, cognitive science, English, Francophone studies, mathematics, computer science, and computer engineering. The university graduates about 1,100 students each fall and spring.
A selective admissions university, UL Lafayette is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. All undergraduate programs at UL Lafayette that are eligible for accreditation by professional agencies are accredited. The university is a member of the Southeastern Universities Research Association and is categorized as a Carnegie Doctoral/Research-Intensive University.
UL Lafayette will be featured in the 2006 edition of America's Best Value Colleges, a Princeton Review/Random House college guidebook, featuring fewer than 100 U.S. schools. The university was included in the 2005 edition of The Best 357 Colleges and its MBA program was included in the 2005 edition of The Best 143 Business Schools (The Princeton Review).
A group of UL Lafayette students are building a small artificial satellite that will be launched into orbit next year from the Republic of Kazakhstan. In 2004, UL Lafayette students and faculty produced CajunBot, one of 25 autonomous vehicles that competed in the U.S. Department of Defense DARPA Grand Challenge. CajunBot, which was featured on CNN, uses artificial intelligence and GPS positioning to navigate a designated route while detecting and avoiding obstacles.
The Paul and Lulu Hilliard University Art Museum permanent collection consists of more than 1,500 works of art, including paintings, prints, drawings, sculpture, and photographs. This collection represents 18th, 19th and 20th century Louisiana, as well as the United States, Europe and Japan.
- Softball - Sun Belt Champions 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005. 14 NCAA Regionals, 33 All-Americans, 24 Straight Winning Seasons.
- Basketball - 2003-04 Sun Belt West Division Champions 2004 Sun Belt Conference Tournament Champions. 2005 Sun Belt Conference Tournamet Champions. NCAA Tournament participant 2000 and 2005. In the mid 1970s, the basketball team was cited for numerous rules violations and forced to disband for several years, giving it the distinction of being one of the few universities to receive the NCAA's harshest punishment, known informally as the "death penalty".
- Baseball - First Year of Baseball: 1903. First Year of Division I: 1972. Years of Baseball: 91st season. All-Time Record (since 1960): 1,256-940-4 (.572). All-Time Division I Record: 1,074-748-3 (.589). All-Time Sun Belt Record: 206-123 (.626). NCAA Appearances/Last: Ten/2005. All-Time NCAA Tournament Record: 17-20. Regular Season Conference. Championships: 13; Gulf States Conference (1949-53, 1966); Southland Conference (1972-73); American South Conference (1988-91); Sun Belt Conference (1997, 2005). Conference Tournament Championships: 1 Sun Belt Conference (1998). Last Time in Postseason: 2005 SBC Tournament.
- Writer-in-residence Ernest Gaines has been nominated for the 2004 Nobel Prize in Literature. He is author of The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman and A Lesson Before Dying.
- Governor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco is the first UL Lafayette graduate to hold Louisiana’s highest elected office.
- President Ray Authement is the second longest serving university president in the U.S. according to The Chronicle of Higher Education. As of 2005, Authement has been president for 32 years.
- National Football League veterans Jake Delhomme, Brian Mitchell and Brandon Stokely played college football for UL Lafayette. They hold numerous school records, and have established themselves as premiere players in professional sports.
- Major League Baseball Cy Young Award winner Ron Guidry played college baseball for UL Lafayette.
- Long-time Dallas Cowboys kicker Rafael Septien played for the school as well.
- Exercise guru and Louisiana native Richard Simmons attended UL Lafayette.
- Former Miss USA Ali Landry was a student and communications major.
- 1898 - Louisiana legislature approved the creation of an "Industrial Institute and Academy" in the 13th Senatorial District.
- 1900 - Dr. Edwin L. Stephens was named the first president of Southwestern Louisiana Industrial Institute (SLII), which located on the outskirts of Lafayette on 25 acres (101,000 m²) of donated land. SLII opened its doors on Sept. 18, 1901, with 100 students and eight faculty members.
- 1903 - 18 students were the first to graduate from SLII.
- 1920 - Began a four-year course culminating with a bachelor of arts degree.
- 1921 - SLII was upgraded to the Southwestern Louisiana Institute (SLI) as one of the state's designated institutions of higher learning.
- 1954 - Within months of the " separate but equal " decision by the U.S. Supreme Court, SLI admitted 70 African American students, to become the first all white college in the Deep South to achieve racial desegregation. The court-directed move was accomplished without the violence and turmoil often seen in later attempts to end the segregation of educational facilities throughout the South.
- 1960 - SLI became the University of Southwestern Louisiana (USL) upon achieving university status.
- 1984 - University changed its name to the University of Louisiana, which only lasted a few days until Louisiana politics forced the named changed to USL.
- 1999 - USL was renamed the University of Louisiana at Lafayette (UL Lafayette).