The five-piece band got a big round of applause from the students at the first stop on UofL President James Ramsey’s annual fall Presidential Outreach Tour. 

Along with UofL Director of Admissions Jenny Sawyer, the jazz ensemble and other UofL faculty, staff and students, Ramsey visited Heath, Paducah Tilghman and Reidland high schools Sept. 26.

Ramsey spoke to hundreds of students – including top academic performers – stressing the importance of a college degree and the positive impact it has on a person’s employability and lifetime earnings.

He also played recruiter, pointing out the small class sizes and attractiveness of Belknap Campus, opportunities for students to do research as sophomores and juniors, the “family” feel of the university, opportunities to be engaged in the wider community through volunteer activities and the vibrancy of the city of Louisville with its arts, entertainment, sports and restaurant venues.

“We don’t want to be the biggest (university); we want to be the best. We want more students like you” who excel in the classroom and are engaged in the community, he told students.

Besides Ramsey, UofL seniors Brooke Cantwell and Raine Thompson – both from Paducah – talked to students about their positive experiences at UofL, while fine arts faculty member Gabrielle Mayer talked to them about the arts.

That night, UofL hosted a reception for alumni, and students from the School of Music and the College of Arts and Sciences presented a free Celebration of the Arts at Paducah’s Carson Center.

This fall’s Presidential Outreach Tour also includes visits to schools and hosted events in Lexington, Lebanon, Northern Kentucky, Hardin County, Jefferson County and Floyd County