- Staff Reporter
RUSTON – “We will come back better and stronger” was a phrase echoed throughout the Louisiana Tech campus in the immediate days and weeks following the April 25 tornado that damaged or destroyed many of the athletic facilities.
Nearly five months later, the phrase still rings loud as LA Tech graduate Tim Cutt, ’83-Peotroleum Engineering, and his wife Carolyn have donated $250,000 in honor of former Petroleum Engineering professor Dr. Robert Caruthers to assist in the rebuilding of the Lady Techster Soccer Complex.
“We are tremendously grateful for the leadership from Tim and Carolyn Cutt,” said LA Tech Athletics Director Tommy McClelland. “This gift is a symbol of not only their desire to help our soccer program rebuild, but for it to be even bigger and better than it was before. This will help make that a reality.”
“I want to extend my sincere gratitude for Tim and Carolyn’s contribution to help rebuild the women’s soccer complex,” said head coach Kevin Sherry. “Their generous gift will have a major impact on the lives of our soccer players. This type of support encourages our continued commitment to reach our goals for the program.”
Cutt, who was named a 2015 Distinguished Alumnus for the College of Engineering and Science, and his wife decided to honor his former professor by helping to rebuild and upgrade the soccer facility.
“Dr. Caruthers was a humble leader who cared deeply for students at Louisiana Tech,” said Cutt. “He believe in me – seeing potential in my future that I didn’t recognize then – and offered consistent encouragement so that I could achive that potential. Throughout my educational journey, he challenged me to greater leadership and involvement in class as well as with extracurricular activities.”
Caruthers made a profound impact on countless students, and his influence helped inspire Tech President Dr. Les Guice as well.
“Dr. Caruthers helped inspire all of us in the College of Engineering and Science, and he made a great impact on thousands of students in the classroom and the lab,” said Guice. “By focusing their gift on the creation of athletics facilities that help out student-athletes attain the highest level of athletic and academic performance while bringing greater national visibility to our institution, Tim and Carolyn are honoring an important member of the Tech Family. Their leadership in this endeavor is a wonderful legacy for the whole campus.”
Caruthers was a long-time engineering professor at Tech, leading the University’s program in Petroleum Engineering and Geosciences. After serving Tech students for nearly 30 years, from 1967-95, he passed away on Oct. 3, 2016.
Cutt said he and Carolyn saw a need on the Louisiana Tech campus, and they knew that Caruthers was the perfect individual to honor by helping rebuild “a facility that will inspire young women to exceed their personal goals in both sports and life.”
“The Cutts have provided a wonderful example of how our University connects athletics and academics, said Brooks Hull, Tech’s Vice President for University Advancement. “Their leadership gift – given during Louisiana Tech’s 125th anniversary year – will help set the tone for rebuilding out facilities to honor current and former student, faculty and staff.”
The EF3 tornado caused almost complete devastation of the 10-year old soccer complex as well as the softball, tennis and baseball facilities while damage occurred to other complexes such as track and field.
Demolition of the Lady Techster Soccer Complex began in early September. A site for the future complex has yet to be determined.
Article sourced from provided press release.