Third annual ‘Day of Giving’ scheduled April 26
Southeastern will hold its third annual day of giving on Wednesday, April 26. Called
“All in for Southeastern,” the event is designed to encourage alumni, friends, students,
supporters and community members to join together to support the university in an
“This is a day when we ask all of our Southeastern family to pitch in and make
a donation to help Southeastern build on its legacy of excellence. Donors can direct
funds to specific areas of interest they would like to support when making an online
donation,” said Vice President for University Advancement Wendy Lauderdale.
“We also ask for a little help in spreading the word,” she said. We’re asking
our supporters reach out to four friends who also know the importance of Southeastern
but who may not be involved. Encourage them to participate by making a donation as
She said any amount is beneficial and will make a difference in the lives of
students, whether its $10 or $10,000. Funds raised are used for student scholarships
and academic enhancement.
Additional information is available at southeastern.edu/all-in or at facebook.com/southeasternfoundation.
Donations can be made at anytime or on any day, but are encouraged between 12:01
a.m. and 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, April 26.
For more information, contact the Office of University Advancement at 549-2239.
FIRST GUARANTY KICKS OFF SOUTHEASTERN DAY OF GIVING – First Guaranty Bank made an advanced donation in the amount of $10,000 to Southeastern
in support of the university’s Day of Giving scheduled Wednesday, April 26. Pictured
are, from left, First Guaranty Accountant Michael Moye, Southeastern Director of
Corporate and Foundation Relations Lynn Horgan, and First Guaranty Vice President
and Chief Credit Officer Randy Vicknair.
Biggs to lead Southeastern Alumni Relations
Michelle Biggs will join Southeastern in the new role of executive director of alumni
relations in the Division of University Advancement. She will report to campus for
her first day of work May 1.
Biggs brings to the position over 25 years of experience in strategic planning,
many of which she obtained during her work within the non-profit realm. A graduate
of Louisiana State University, Biggs currently serves as communications and administrative
officer at the St. Tammany West Chamber of Commerce. Prior to that position, she served
as associate director for Southeastern’s Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts.
Biggs is a 2015 graduate of the Institute of Organization Management, a four-year
educational program focused on non-profit management, sponsored by the U.S. Chamber
“Michelle’s past experience will be an asset as we implement new initiatives
directed at ensuring increased engagement from a diverse alumni community,” said Vice
President for University Advancement Wendy Lauderdale. “We look forward to having
her return to work once again within the Southeastern Family.”
As executive director of alumni relations, Biggs will be charged with providing
strategic vision to define and implement best practices and innovations that engage
Southeastern alumni in lifelong, progressive relationships with the university.
“It is an honor to be selected as Southeastern’s first executive director of
alumni relations,” said Biggs. “I very much look forward to working with all members
of the Lion Nation to build on the prior successes of the alumni program and to continue
to strengthen the university’s alumni network.”
Southeastern Alumni Music Recital to feature euphonium artist
The Department of Fine and Performing Arts will present its annual Alumni Music Recital
at 6 p.m. on Monday, April 24, featuring euphonium artist Chasse Duplantis.
A Southeastern music education graduate, Duplantis will be accompanied by other
university musicians in the concert to be held in the Pottle Music Building Recital
Hall. The concert is free and open to the public.
Duplantis is currently a graduate teaching assistant working on his doctorate
in musical arts. A teaching assistant for the LSU Department of Bands, he works with
the Tiger Band and Bengal Brass and teaches tuba and euphonium in the School of Music.
He previously earned his master of music degree from LSU in euphonium performance.
Duplantis will be performing Andrew Beall’s “Rose of Sharon,” the first movement
in Andrew Beall’s “Song of Almah;” Astor Piazzolla’s “Oblivion;” and “21” by Andy
Akiho, which will include Seth Bagwell playing marimba and vibraphone.
Other pieces on the schedule include Georges Bizet’s “Pearl Fishers,” in which
Duplantis will be joined by Brian Gallion on euphonium and Henry Jones on piano; and
“Remembering the Future” by Ryan O’Connell to include mezzo soprano Meghan Dawson
and Jones on piano.
For additional information, contact the Department of Fine and Performing Arts
Southeastern choirs to join Northshore Choral Society for performance April 30
The Southeastern Chorus, Concert Choir and Women’s Chorale will join the Northshore
Choral Society for “Cherubini Requiem,” a performance at St. Joseph’s Abbey, 74376
River Road in St. Benedict on Sunday, April 30.
The concert will also include performances of Jonathan Dove’s “Seek Him That
Maketh the Seven Stars” and Gustav Holst’s “Two Psalms.”
Sponsored by the Department of Fine and Performing Arts, the free performance
is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Conductors include Southeastern Director of the University
Chorus/Northshore Chorale Brian Martinez and Director of Choral Activities Alissa
Mercurio Rowe, who will direct choirs with the assistance of Amy Wilt Prats, graduate
For more information on the concert, contact the Department of Fine and Performing
Arts at 549-2184.
Higher Ed at the Capitol
Southeastern students, faculty and staff joined groups from the University of Louisiana
System institutions to advocate for higher education this week at the Capitol. The
group emphasized the importance of higher education to the state's economy.
Southeastern SGA President Erin Fernandez testified before the House Appropriations
Committee saying students at Southeastern are worried about the uncertainty surrounding
the state budgets and the budget for TOPS. “Students are having to take on more jobs,
which ultimately distracts them from their education even more because they’re so
worried about how are they going to pay for it,” she said.
Readings at Sims Library held
Each year during National Library Week, Dayne Sherman hosts this reading series at
Sims Library to showcase the many talented creative writers in our community and to
encourage literacy through listening. This year marked the 14th installment of Readings
at Sims Library. What follows is info from the event program about each writer:
Anne Babson’s collection of poetry, entitled The White Trash Pantheon, won a prize from the Southern Writers, Southern Writing Conference. The opera for
which she wrote the libretto, Lotus Lives, was performed in New York and Montreal
last year. Her work has appeared in over one hundred journals on five continents,
and she has been anthologized in both the United States and England. She has done
residencies at Yaddo and Vermont Studio Center, and she has been nominated four times
for the Pushcart. She has won many editorial prizes for her work.
Demitrius Jones holds an undergraduate degree and a Master of Science in Applied
Sociology from Southeastern. He writes poetry.
Dr. Sarah Spence, a retired associate professor from Southeastern, earned her doctorate
in English from Louisiana State University. Her novel For the Duration features a
young girl leaving a small town in southwest Louisiana to work at Higgins Boats in
New Orleans during WWII.
Bailee Owens is a 20-year-old senior at Southeastern majoring in English with a concentration
in creative writing. She is an admirer of sunsets, Renaissance art, and the Oxford
comma. Hopefully she'll be lucky enough to write young adult novels and maybe even
teach at a university one day.
Edmund Jenkins is a graduating senior in the Southeastern English Language and Literature
program. He is an amateur musician with an interest in linguistics and semiotics.
He lives in Hammond with his wife and son.
Hollie Priest writes poetry and creative nonfiction. She’s an English Education major
at Southeastern with hopes of traveling the world on a teacher’s salary.
READINGS AT SIMS LIBRARY - Pictured at the Readings at Sims Library are, from left, Dr. Sarah Spence, Anne
Babson, Bailee Owens, Dayne Sherman, Hollie Priest, Edmond Jenkins, and Demitrius
Southeastern receives $10 million bequest, largest single donation in its history
Southeastern recently received the largest single donation in its 92-year history,
a bequest totaling $10 million, the university announced today.
Seth W. Ryan, a 1953 Southeastern business graduate, passed away on Jan. 8 bequeathing
a significant portion of his estate to Southeastern’s Foundation in the name of his
wife, Thelma McNamara Nicaud Ryan. Over 15 years ago Southeastern was approached by
Ryan’s attorney about the potential bequest. Ryan’s identity remained anonymous until
his recent death.
Ryan’s bequest will become part of the Southeastern Foundation Scholarship Endowment.
In honor of his wife, who was unable to attend college, Ryan outlined that income
from his donation be used for scholarships for female students in specific academic
“Seth Ryan’s deep generosity will benefit female students in perpetuity. In honoring
his wife, Thelma, he has established a legacy that will provide generations of women
with the opportunity to benefit from strong careers and better futures,” said Southeastern
President John L. Crain.
Vice President for Advancement Wendy Lauderdale said the donation significantly
bolsters one of Southeastern’s strategic initiatives – to increase the number of women
enrolled in STEM programs.
“Southeastern’s student population is over 60 percent female, but women only
account for approximately 15 percent of STEM majors,” she said. “These scholarships
will encourage and aid women to enter these high demand, well-paying disciplines.”
Lauderdale said the scholarships will also be used in the areas of nursing, business
and education for female students.
“Nationwide fewer women are entering STEM programs and careers,” said Crain.
“With so much demand for graduates, Southeastern looks forward to leading the way
in providing more financial assistance to women considering these careers.”
In fulfillment of Ryan’s wishes to honor his wife with this gift, Lauderdale
said, Southeastern will name the current Biology Building in her honor, subject to
approval of the University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors. Officially, it
will be renamed the Thelma McNamara Nicaud Ryan Science Building. The building façade
will have the name “Thelma Ryan Science Building” upon its dedication, which is anticipated
All programs housed within the building will offer scholarships under the Ryan
“We are so honored that Mr. Ryan saw the potential in Southeastern as a steward
of his estate. He saw that this university could make a difference in so many lives
by using the estate that he spent a lifetime building. I know his wife would be both
proud and satisfied,” said Lauderdale. “Having Mrs. Ryan’s name on our building will
forever remind us of the kindness and vision of Mr. Ryan and his legacy of helping
Sims Library Presents “Tablet to Tablet” Exhibit
Sims Library will host “Reading the World: Tablet to Tablet” Monday, April 24, through
Thursday, May 19. This visually stunning exhibit takes you through the evolution of
books, from stone tablet to digital tablet, showing how different cultures have contributed
to the world around us through the written word.
“‘Reading the World: Tablet to Tablet’ was created by Calcasieu Parish Public
Library and Culture Fest Louisiana, with artwork by Erik Jessen of Mixed Media Group,”
said Outreach and Instructional Media Librarian Angie Balius. “The exhibit comes to
Southeastern through a partnership between Tangipahoa Parish Library and Sims Library.
Together, we hope this exhibit will help spark conversations about how books have
a personal impact on our lives and how they continue to influence our understanding
of other cultures.”
The exhibit is free and open to the public during library hours, which are Sunday
2 to 11 p.m., Monday through Thursday 7:30 a.m. to 11 p.m., and Friday 7:30 a.m. to
For more information on the exhibit, contact Balius at 549-3898, or email@example.com.
Let’s Talk: Art focuses on the Bilbao Guggenheim Museum
The latest lecture in the spring series of “Let’s Talk: Art,” sponsored jointly by
Southeastern’s Department of Fine and Performing Arts, the Hammond Regional Arts Center,
and the Friends of Sims Library, will be held on Wednesday, April 26 at 5 p.m. at
Southeastern’s Contemporary Art Gallery. Dr. Irene Nero, associate professor of visual
art, will present “Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim Bilbao Museum in Spain: 20 Years Later.”
“In October of 1997, the Guggenheim Museum opened in Bilbao, Spain. Housing part
of the extensive collection of the famous twentieth-century art collector and patron
Peggy Guggenheim, the museum was heralded as the most significant building of the
20th century,” said Sims Library Director Eric Johnson. “Dr. Nero, a specialist on
the museum’s architect Frank Gehry and his work, will show why this evaluation holds
true even 20 years later.”
The lecture is free and open to the public.
The next lecture of the “Let’s Talk: Art” series is “Celebrating 55 Years with
the Hammond Art Guild” scheduled Wednesday, May 10, at 5 p.m., at the Hammond Regional
Arts Center, located at 217 East Thomas St., in Hammond.
For more information, contact Johnson at 549-3962.
Southeastern’s Columbia Theatre to present ‘The Boy Who Cried Wolf’
Younger fans of Southeastern’s Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts will get
an extra treat this month with the Pajamas and Play presentation of The Boy Who Cried Wolf. Scheduled on April 29, the performance will begin at 7 p.m. in the downtown Hammond
“What if no one believed what you told them, even if it was the truth,” asked
Columbia Theatre and Fanfare Director Roy Blackwood. “In this Pajamas and Play presentation,
a boy learns an important life lesson about integrity, honesty, and the consequences
of ‘crying wolf’ in this musical retelling of a classic tale.”
Blackwood said Pajamas and Play is a feature tailored specially for children
and designed to make theater performances especially accessible and appealing to them.
“All children love bedtime stories. That’s what this is – only live,” Blackwood
added. “Kids are invited to wear their pajamas, robes and slippers to the 60-minute
performance. We even plan to send the kids home with cookies and milk. Parents, all
you’ll have to do is tuck them in.”
Tickets for The Boy Who Cried Wolf are on sale at the Columbia/Fanfare box office, 220 E. Thomas Street, 543-4371. The
box office is open Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and one hour prior to
For more information, contact the Columbia Theatre office at 543-4366 or visit
Honors Convocations schedule announced
College honors convocations are scheduled next week. All faculty and staff are invited
The schedule is as follows:
College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences: May 1,
1:30 p.m., Alumni Center
College of Science and Technology: May 1, 3:30 p.m., Alumni Center
College of Education: May 2, 10 a.m., Alumni Center
College of Business: May 2, 3:30 p.m., Alumni Center
College of Nursing and Health Sciences: May 2, 6 p.m., Student Union Theatre
Kinesiology and Health Studies hosts annual ASK KHS Symposium
Each year, the Department of Kinesiology and Health Studies organizes a professional
development day for students - the ASK KHS Symposium.
It’s a day-long event that features presentations by professionals who work in
careers in health promotion, sports medicine, fitness, sport management, and physical
education teaching and coaching. In addition, students have an opportunity to interact
with internship sites and current senior interns.
This year’s event was held March 28. Some of the featured presenters included
Brett Weinberger, assistant director, Recreation and Parks of Baton Rouge; Ashlee
Menke, health educator, Cancer Center of Greater New Orleans; Kasey Hill, director,
The Sports Medicine Clinic; Fred Zoller, owner, Lean Performance Academy; Jay Artigues,
SLU athletic director; Joanna Faerber, National Elementary PE Teacher of the Year;
and Debora Jones, diabetes education coordinator, North Oaks Health System.
KINESIOLOGY AND HEALTH STUDIES HOSTS SYMPOSIUM -
Pictured, from left, are Southeastern Associate Professor of Exercise Physiology Bovorn
Sirikul and St Tammany Parish Hospital Exercise Physiologist Nancy Dardis.