Nicholls awards 674 degrees during Its largest commencement

THIBODAUX — Marking its largest commencement in campus history, Nicholls State University awarded 674 degrees to students during its May 18 ceremonies.

Among the spring graduates were six students who received the President’s Medal of Honor for earning a perfect 4.0 grade point average. They include Angelle Aubin, biology (pre-medicine/pre-dentistry) major from Thibodaux; Trevor Boudreaux, biology (pre-medicine/pre-dentistry) major from Thibodaux; Jada Foret, general family and consumer sciences (child, family and social services) major from Galliano; Drew Ledet, biology (pre-medicine/pre-dentistry) major from Thibodaux; Louise Lugibihl, elementary education (PK-3 certification) major from Bourg; and Logan Sonier, biology (pre-medicine/pre-dentistry) major from Houma.

During the morning’s commencement exercises, Nicholls awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters to Travis Lavigne Jr., chancellor of Fletcher Technical Community College in Houma. Dr. Sandra Woodley, president of the University of Louisiana System, delivered the keynote address at both ceremonies.

A complete list of graduates is downloadable here: Spring 2013 Graduate List. Academic honors are noted. Students graduating summa cum laude earned a cumulative GPA of 3.9 or higher, magna cum laude graduates earned a GPA of 3.7 to 3.899, and cum laude honorees earned a GPA of 3.5 to 3.699.

 

Spring Commencement AM 2013

CUTLINE: Pictured from left are Presidential Medal of Honor recipients Louise Lugibihl, elementary education major from Bourg; Jada Foret, general family and consumer sciences major from Galliano; Trevor Boudreaux, biology major from Thibodaux; Dr. Stephen T. Hulbert, university president; Drew Ledet, biology major from Thibodaux; Logan Sonier, biology major from Houma; and Angelle Aubin, biology major from Thibodaux. To receive the medal, students must graduate with a perfect 4.0 GPA.

 

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Nicholls adjusts work hours for summer

Thibodaux – To help reduce costs through energy conservation, Nicholls State University will modify its office hours this summer. Beginning May 28, Nicholls will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Mondays through Thursdays and 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Fridays. The regular daily work schedule of 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. will resume on Monday, Aug. 5.

Nicholls to award honorary doctorate to Fletcher chancellor

THIBODAUX — During its spring commencement exercises on Saturday, May 18, Nicholls State University will award its highest form of recognition — an honorary doctorate — to Travis Lavigne Jr., chancellor of Fletcher Technical Community College in Houma.

A 40-year veteran of Louisiana’s postsecondary education system, Lavigne has led Fletcher through expansive growth while working closely with Nicholls to develop a unique collaboration between the two institutions. Touted as a statewide model, the partnership allows students to cross-enroll in courses and receive academic advising at both schools. Fletcher students can be pre-admitted and seamlessly transfer to Nicholls after completing their two-year program, and Fletcher instructors teach developmental courses for Nicholls students. Because of the mutually beneficial relationship, Nicholls has been able to phase out its two-year academic programs and focus on strengthening its bachelor’s and graduate degree offerings.

“All that Fletcher and Nicholls have accomplished together over the past decade is due in very great part to the leadership of Travis Lavigne,” said Dr. Stephen T. Hulbert, Nicholls president. “Travis cares deeply about providing access to the college experience, whether it is a certificate or degree. He is a willing partner in any effort to enhance that access.”

Since he became chancellor in 2003, Lavigne — with little financial support from the state and a small faculty and staff — led Fletcher in developing accredited associate degree and certificate programs that meet regional workforce demands. The Ponchatoula native is also an active member of the Houma community and has chaired the Louisiana Student Financial Assistance Commission since its 1997 inception. Under his leadership, hundreds of millions of state and federal dollars are provided annually to Louisiana’s college students through the TOPS program and other scholarships, grants and loans. Hulbert said Lavigne has been one of his most respected colleagues during his 10-year Nicholls presidency.

“Our work together began as two professional colleagues who shared interests and responsibilities,” he said. “It ends a decade later the same way but with a warm friendship to boot!”

Travis Lavigne

UL System president to address record number of Nicholls spring graduates

THIBODAUX — Nicholls State University will hold its largest spring commencement in campus history on Saturday, May 18, in Stopher Gymnasium. Administrators are projecting to confer more than 650 degrees, surpassing last spring’s record of 599.

Ceremonies will begin at 10 a.m. for College of Arts and Science and College of Education graduates and at 2 p.m. for College of Business Administration, College of Nursing and Allied Health and University College graduates.

Dr. Sandra Woodley, who became the eighth president of the University of Louisiana System in January, will deliver the keynote address at both ceremonies. A Weaver, Ala., native, Woodley personally understands the challenges of first-generation and nontraditional college students. As the first in her family to attend college, she earned her bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees while married with two children. Prior to assuming leadership of the UL System (which governs nine universities, including Nicholls), she gained strategic planning and budgeting experience at four other state system offices, mostly recently serving as vice chancellor for strategic initiatives for the University of Texas System.

During its commencement exercises, Nicholls will also award an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters to Travis Lavigne Jr., chancellor of Fletcher Technical Community College in Houma. Lavigne, who has worked in Louisiana post-secondary education for more than 40 years, has led Fletcher in developing accredited associate degree and certificate programs that meet the region’s workforce needs and help prepare students to transfer to a four-year university. He has worked closely with Nicholls to develop a unique, mutually beneficial relationship between the two institutions; the partnership has been touted as a model across the state. Since 1997, Lavigne has also chaired the Louisiana Student Financial Assistance Commission, which administers the TOPS program along with other scholarships, grants and loans. Under his leaderships, hundreds of millions of state and federal dollars are provided annually to Louisiana’s college students.

 

System Board Headshots 2013

Woodley