LSMSA Class of 2023 celebrates 39th commencement ceremony
103 TOPS-qualified graduates earn $30,910,405 in undedicated, merit-based scholarships
– During the Louisiana School for Math, Science, and the Arts (LSMSA)’s 39th Commencement Ceremony, 103 seniors graduated from the school. The ceremony was held in Prather Coliseum on the campus of Northwestern State University on May 20, 2023.
“The Louisiana School is a continuum with a strong past and a hopeful future," said LSMSA Executive Director Dr. Steve Horton. “As you celebrate this significant milestone in your life, I encourage you to keep in mind the support and encouragement you received during this journey.”
LSMSA’s commencement tradition began in Prather in 1985 with 172 members of the first graduating class. Horton began the 39th commencement by expressing gratitude to everyone who makes the Louisiana School possible, including citizens throughout the state, legislators, elected officials, alumni, families, faculty, staff, students, and the board of directors. He then recognized members of senior administration who have helped make the school’s success possible, including Dr. John Allen (’98), Chief of Staff and Director of Operations; Ms. Angela Couvillion (’93), Registrar and Chief Articulation Officer; Dr. Kristi Pope Key, Director of Academic Affairs; Ms. Ali Landry, Executive Director of the LSMSA Foundation; Ms. Christie Price, Dean of Students; Ms. Emily Shumate, Director of Enrollment Services and Institutional Research; Ms. Rolanda Slutsky, Director of Support Services; and Ms. Randi Washington, Director of the Living Community.
In her senior address, “Living Life Forward,” Ashley Green of Houma spoke about progressing beyond difficulty.
“At LSMSA, we have developed the durability and maturity that we need to pick ourselves up and keep moving forward. We’ve been taught to use our voices for what we believe in, regardless of our opposition,” she said. “The school has given us the skills to be doers, and as doers, we can accomplish our dreams. Thank you, LSMSA, for helping us to understand and to live.”
Dr. Kim Hunter Reed, Commissioner of Higher Education for the state of Louisiana, was the keynote speaker.
“Whatever your future holds, we know it will be amazing because you’ve put in amazing work,” said Reed, who referred to the class as resilient and steadfast, particularly given their untraditional high school careers due to the Covid-19 pandemic. “Louisiana needs each and every one of you – all your talents, all your energy, and all you have to offer.”
Sixty percent of LSMSA’s graduating class will attend 13 colleges and universities in Louisiana while 40 percent are headed to 37 different universities throughout the U.S. and abroad. Collectively, the LSMSA Class of 2023 – all of whom qualify for TOPS – has been awarded $30, 910,405 in undedicated, merit-based scholarships. This scholarship money is in addition to more than 3,000 hours of college credit earned through articulation agreements and dual enrollment credits, which more than 84 percent of the class took advantage of during their time at LSMSA.
“The pandemic and its related fallout created monumental challenges, but you proved that in times of crisis, we find our character in moving forward, in embracing challenges, and in serving our communities,” said Horton. “I want to challenge you as the Class of 2023 to continue to excel, to continue to learn and to serve, and to know that the Louisiana School will remain here for you and with you. Go forward – go forward and excel.”
LSMSA’s newest alumni by parish are:
East Baton Rouge Parish
Jefferson Davis Parish
Uyen Nhi Pham
Anne Michelle Long
Pointe Coupee Parish
St. Charles Parish
St. Mary Parish
St. Tammany Parish
West Feliciana Parish
Out of state
William Brown – Industry, TX
Emma Cecchini – Cary, NC
London Osborn – League City, TX
Jaime Perdue – Kingwood, TX
Mary Claire Theut – The Woodlands, TX
LSMSA, an internationally ranked boarding school, is a tuition-free, public high school for high-achieving rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors with a nominal room and board fee to cover housing, meals, and campus activities. The LSMSA Foundation offers assistance for families in need to ensure no eligible student is denied the school’s college-level living/learning experience. For more information about the Louisiana School or to apply for the 2023-24 school year, visit www.LSMSA.edu