Houma businessman, philanthropist donates to Nicholls

Misty Leigh McElroy/Nicholls State University

THIBODAUX, La. — Nicholls State University Bridge to Independence Program students and members of the Alumni Federation will now be able to scoot around campus in their own golf carts thanks to a gift from a Houma philanthropist.

Arlen “Benny” Cenac, Jr., owner of Cenac Marine, gifted the two new carts to the two programs last week.

“We here at the Arlen B. Cenac, Jr. Family of Companies are proud to be able to supply the Bridge to Independence Program and Alumni Federation with the resources to make their job and lives a little easier and faster to accomplish their remarkable goals,” said Cenac, who has served on the board for the Nicholls College of Business and the Nicholls Foundation.

The Bridge program will use its 6-passenger cart to assist in transporting students across campus to their jobs, while the Alumni office will use its cart to haul supplies across campus to events such as tailgating.

“This will allow myself and my staff to spend more time connecting with our alumni and our students in order to generate much-needed support for the Alumni Federation and Nicholls as a whole,” said Katherine Gianelloni, director of Alumni Affairs. “We are truly fortunate to have donors like Mr. Benny, who love our alma mater and the Nicholls Alumni Federation as much as we do.”

Bridge advisor Dr. Mary Breaud said this new cart will be great for a program that has grown from 8 to 30 in the last two years.

“It is especially important during inclement weather and for our students who have some health issues and walking long distances in the heat is very difficult,” she said. “We feel very fortunate to have wonderful donors to the Bridge to Independence program like Mr. Benny Cenac. His generosity is greatly appreciated.”

Bridge to Independence assists students with intellectual disabilities or autism spectrum disorder with job and social skills. Nicholls’ program is one of only 50 in the United States certified by the U.S. Department of Education and the only one in Louisiana.


CONTACT: Jacob Batte, Media Relations and Publications Coordinator, 985.448.4141 or jacob.batte@www.nicholls.edu