The fire truck decorated with tiger stripes from the Louisiana State University Fire and Emergency Training Institute (FETI) in Minden was a huge hit on a recent visit to the LSU in Your Backyard program in Shreveport.
The event was held at the LSU AgCenter Caddo Extension office.
Michael Martin, LSU chancellor, was accompanied by Dr. Patrick Colyer, Northwest regional director of the AgCenter, in giving opening remarks.
The event included a presentation from Martha Cuddeback, professional in residence and director of the LSU Office of Community Design and Development, discussing "Minden Main Street Workshop: Sustainable Small Town Development."
A local elementary education major also gave a testimonial.
Martin praised the LSU AgCenter for making a difference. He said he was concerned about the aging of the farming population, energy and tourism. "Let's get good people attracted into the agriculture sector and it will affect the economy," Martin said.
Martin served for six years as vice president for agriculture and natural resources at the University of Florida, leading the university's Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences with more than 3,000 employees statewide. He has also been vice president for agricultural policy and the dean of the College of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Sciences at the University of Minnesota. He began his academic career at Oregon State University as a faculty member in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
"The backyard for the LSU AgCenter is youth development," Colyer said. Webster Parish reaches 1,250 4-H members and 26 school clubs.
The mission of FETI is to provide training and education to fire and emergency response providers in order to protect life, property and the environment. Throughout history, FETI has served the people of Louisiana, the region and the nation through extensive fire service training programs that encompass instruction, research and public service.
The program originally was housed on the main campus of LSU. In 1972, the program moved from the main LSU campus to its own facility extensively expanding classroom space and practical fire-training facilities.
The training center is located south of the main LSU campus, but in 2007, LSU FETI opened a second campus in Minden, known as Pine Country and located at 214 Dutch Harbor.