LAFAYETTE, La. — On the campus of the University of Louisiana, back in February, something pretty neat happened. One of the custodians, a man named Phillip Narcisse, whose employer ABM provides janitorial services in a number of buildings on the UL campus.
Mr. Narcisse’s wife was battling a number of health issues, and the medical bills were mounting; housing had also become a concern.
So, on their own and unbeknownst to Mr. Narcisse, members of the UL faculty got together, put together a GoFundMe account on behalf of Mr. Narcisse, and guess what?
In just a couple weeks, they raised over $5,400.
Why does this story resonate? Why is it philanthropically cool? Because it’s members of the UL family taking care of a member of UL’s extended family.
Now, that’s just one way UL faculty members and administrators and employees have gotten together to help out and provide services for students, staff and like Mr. Narcisse, extended family.
The campus imprint of helping others permeates throughout Acadiana.
“I think it’s great that the community comes together,” says UL Senior Communications Representative Eric Maron. “We look at ourselves as a part of this community. We’re very big part of the community, we live in the community, our children go to school here. So it’s only natural that we would be involved in everything.”
And there are a number of ways UL takes care of its employees and students, adds Maron. “We have different programs here on campus, like the Campus Cupboard, where we help some of our students who are having hunger issues, get taken care of and we provide food for them, all by using some terrific volunteers.”
Anxiety. Depression. There’s relief for those needing help in that arena as well.
“We also have mental health assistance,” explains Maron, “so if people need help with a litany of psychological issues, they can be seen by a counselor.”
Plus, there’s the big picture: UL, located essentially in the center of Acadiana, assists all of Acadiana.
“If you look at our community as a whole, you see a lot of our faculty and staff are on different boards, charity boards –everything from United Way to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and beyond,” says Maron.
“We try to be involved as much as we can because this is our community as well.”
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