Reimagining the Southeastern Brand

Since 1925, Southeastern has continuously evolved as a strong academic institution while simultaneously staying committed to its two main pillars of excellence and caring. As we now look forward to celebrating our first 100 years, Southeastern is reimagining a unified brand that resonates with all audiences.

Globally and across the nation, higher education has become increasingly competitive, and students have more and more choices. Southeastern understands how important it is to communicate to its students, potential students, alumni, and supporters how unique our University is.

Because of this, Southeastern recently embarked on a concerted effort to discover the best ways to communicate our brand. Starting with market and identity research, our brand concept was turned into an action plan that is now being carried out across the University.

This is unfolding on all fronts, from our language to our logos, colors, type, photos, and videos. The following pages demonstrate these new elements in use.

One prominent aspect you will notice is our implementation of storytelling through student, alumni, and faculty profiles. These profiles do not tell what Southeastern offers and the monumental impact it can have—they show it. They help convey that it’s all about the path you take, the actions that make up your experience, and the destination you seek.

These profiles also help highlight what makes our University such a special place and how exceptional our students and alumni are, and they are just a sampling of the countless stories of determination, excellence, resilience, and persistence from across our University community. Using great storytelling, these stories can all join together to become the story of Southeastern.

Several of these profile stories, along with our other new brand elements, are featured below.

When put into action, this new rebrand concept elevates Southeastern as a strong academic institution with highly competitive degree programs, inspiring career experiences, and caring faculty and staff.

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Alumni Center Refresh

After an extensive renovation, the Alumni Center is now reopened and ready to welcome back alumni and all members of our Southeastern community.

The Alumni Center has been a respected landmark on Southeastern’s campus since it was erected in 1994. Proudly overlooking the main campus from West University Avenue, the 12,700-square-foot building serves as a hub for returning alumni, touring visitors, and the Hammond community. From phone-a-thons to networking events, reunions and more, the Alumni Center has experienced its fair share of campus happenings, and while it has always been home to the department’s staff, it has also served as an office space for various staff members from the University Advancement division of Southeastern. If walls could talk, the Alumni Center’s would have a rich history to tell!

Over the years, the activity and staff focuses within the building have adapted to remain relevant with Southeastern’s constituents and their needs. On February 7, 2022, after weeks of archiving and cleaning, the staff vacated the Alumni Center in preparation for the latest shift, a complete renovation and modernization of the space. Thanks to partial funding from the Southeastern Foundation, in six short months the Alumni Center was refreshed into a reimagined environment that has provided Southeastern and the Alumni staff the opportunity to better welcome alumni and guests onto our campus.

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A fresh, distinguished façade imagined by the architects at Holly and Smith proudly displays Southeastern’s new shield logo. Upon entering the building, guests are now greeted by an open, inviting space. Vibrant greens paint the wall with pride. To the left of the lobby area lies the Alumni Association staff offices, and to the right and on the newly furbished second floor you’ll find members of the University Marketing and Communications team. The well-known banquet hall has been updated to better suit the wide variety of events and occasions it has traditionally been used for, and that space will soon be married with a unique outdoor kitchen crafted by Angelo’s Landscape Group. Together, the hall and new outdoor area will allow the Alumni Association to host more events and opportunities for our alumni, growing chapters, and the Hammond community.

Physical and metaphorical walls have been removed through this renovation, and we are excited for the future of the Association and the University. We invite you back to experience the improvements and hear about what’s on the horizon for Southeastern from the Alumni Association and University Advancement team. Visit us today at 500 West University Avenue!

BY OLIVIA GRAZIANO

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Nursing Program Ranked Among Top in the Nation

Southeastern’s Nursing Program has been nationally and locally ranked by EduMed, an organization that connects students with expert-driven information about education, training, and financial aid opportunities in healthcare and medical support.

Southeastern ranked No. 1 in the state in Best Online Nursing Programs, No. 4 nationally in Most Affordable Online Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Programs, and No. 31 nationally in Top Nurse Practitioner Programs – Four Year Schools.

“I am not surprised our online graduate nursing education programs are nationally ranked,” said School of Nursing Department Head Ken Tillman. “Southeastern School of Nursing’s faculty members strive to provide quality online education based on nationally recognized standards and best practices for online delivery of course content.”

When ranking institutions, EduMed looked at factors such as academic and career support services, affordable tuition, and which schools provide the best fully and partially online programs.

“As we look to the future of healthcare and its growing demands from society at large, it is paramount that those who are interested in medical careers can find the best opportunities to get the necessary education to kickstart their dreams—and Southeastern offers just that,” said EduMed Outreach Coordinator Wes Harris.

The rankings can be accessed here.

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Southeastern Instructor Named Best Welding Educator in America

Southeastern Instructor of Industrial Technology Anthony Blakeney has been honored with the WEMCO Excellence Award as the top educator in the country. A resident of Ponchatoula, Blakeney was nominated by his peers.

“For over two decades, Anthony has dedicated himself to teaching our students about welding technology. He has single-handedly developed the welding program into one that is not just regionally recognized, but also nationally recognized,” said College of Science and Technology Dean Daniel McCarthy. “He is more than deserving of this prestigious award, and we are proud to have him as a member of our faculty at Southeastern.”

WEMCO created the annual Excellence in Welding Awards to recognize individuals and organizations that are instrumental in raising the image of welding, strengthening the industry, and have shown exemplary dedication to promoting the image of welding in their communities.

“I am humbled to be recognized by my colleagues within the American Welding Society and by the American industrial sector,” Blakeney said. “My passion for my students has always driven what I do.”

Each year individuals from the welding industry nominate their peers for these awards. The nominations are submitted to the Excellence in Welding Committee, which reviews them carefully before the winners are selected. The winners are announced at the Excellence in Welding Awards Ceremony at the FABTECH Show. Blakeney will accept his award in Atlanta next month during the awards ceremony and luncheon.

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Providing Independent Monitoring of Lake Maurepas

Southeastern will provide independent, scientific monitoring of the Lake Maurepas ecosystem as part of Air Products’ work on its Louisiana Clean Energy Complex.

Air Products is to start preliminary studies on the viability of the Lake Maurepas area for a proposed ‘Blue Hydrogen’ production and carbon capture and permanent sequestration project. An essential component of these initial studies will be extensive environmental monitoring of the Lake Maurepas region by Southeastern, so that any impacts of this project can be understood, and data be made publicly available.

“Southeastern will be monitoring all facets of this project involving the lake to ensure up-to-date data and information are available. We will make all the data we record available to the public to ensure everyone’s right to know any findings,” said Dan McCarthy, dean of the College of Science and Technology.

“We realized from the outset that we needed comprehensive and independent monitoring of Lake Maurepas and said so publicly early in our work on this clean energy project,” said Louisiana Clean Energy Project Manager at Air Products Andrew Connolly. “We are pleased to have Southeastern serve this important role. Their scientists have been studying this ecosystem for decades and, with the Turtle Cove Environmental Research Station, they are singularly and best qualified to conduct this monitoring study.”

The scientists from Southeastern will be monitoring the marine life populations (fishes, crabs, shrimp) as well as the plant life in the surrounding wetlands, and also be on watch and studying any variations in water quality. All findings will be uploaded to a publicly accessible website that will be housed through Southeastern and which will be announced as it is developed and monitoring efforts have begun.

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Plans Unveiled for New Athletics and Athletic Training Facilities

Southeastern has announced plans for new state-of-the-art facilities that will elevate both academics and athletics at the University. The facilities’ improvements will encompass over 50,000 square feet and are made possible through a combination of public and private funds.

The multi-phase, multi-year project will begin with an update and enhancement for the home of Lion Baseball – Pat Kenelly Diamond at Alumni Field, where a new entranceway, ticket booth, and additional concessions area will be constructed for the upcoming baseball season. In addition, along the left-field line, a newly constructed baseball fieldhouse facility will include locker rooms, offices, meeting and storage space, as well as improved athletic training facilities. This new home for Southeastern Baseball is expected to be completed in late 2023.

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In conjunction with private funds made available through the Lion Athletic Association and Southeastern Foundation, Southeastern was approved for a capital outlay project during the 2022 Legislative Session that will provide significant renovations and enhancements for the academic athletic training program as well as intercollegiate athletics.

The new and upgraded facilities will serve as home for the University’s Master of Science Program in Athletic Training along with Southeastern Intercollegiate Athletics. In addition to classrooms and laboratory facilities for the Athletic Training program, expanded space for sports medicine, new locker rooms, and offices for Southeastern football and soccer programs will be part of the project.

Southeastern is one of only three universities in the state of Louisiana that offers the degree in athletic training. The new facilities confirm Southeastern’s ongoing commitment to the athletic training academic program and greatly assist in helping ensure athletic training students become “real-world” ready as part of their academic experiences.

“We’re excited to announce this historic addition for Southeastern Athletics and our athletic training program,” Southeastern Director of Athletics Jay Artigues said. “This project is a game changer as the facility enhancements will not only be beneficial to our department, but the university and community as a whole. Our student-athletes continually embody our mission statement of excellence in the classroom, community, and competition, and this project will give the Lions and Lady Lions the opportunity to build on that success and elevate our programs to the next level.”

“Athletic trainers are highly trained health care professionals that support the sports medicine team,” College of Nursing and Health Sciences Dean Ann Carruth said. “As such, a strong partnership with athletics to provide real-world experiences is integral to the success of the program. We are very fortunate to have these new resources that will benefit the academic program and our students.”

The athletic training and intercollegiate athletics facilities project is currently in design, with construction anticipated to begin in early 2024 and completion expected by the fall of 2025.

“We are excited that donors, athletic boosters, and corporate sponsors are stepping up to provide private support to match state funds for these facility enhancements. For example, all of the baseball program enhancements are being made entirely through private funds. Significant private matching funds are also being raised to support the other facility enhancements,” said Southeastern President John Crain.

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Homecoming 2022 Recap

Thank you for joing us for Homecoming 2022!

Enhancing the Future of Education Through $5 Million Grant

Southeastern’s College of Education has received a five-year $5 million federal grant to strengthen the recruitment and preparation of new teachers, including increasing the number of teachers from underrepresented populations. The project is titled Building Rigorous Induction and Development for Growing all Educators or BRIDGE.

“By partnering with school districts, the BRIDGE project will support beginning teachers beyond graduation,” said College of Education Dean Paula Summers Calderon. “In doing so, we will help districts retain qualified teachers beyond the three to five-year lifespan of a new teacher.”

The Teacher Quality Partnership grant funds a partnership between Southeastern and selected district partners. The project will begin by engaging partners in the Tangipahoa Parish School System in the second year of the grant. The St. Charles Parish School System will be added in the third year of the grant, and a third district will be selected to join the project in year four.

Principal investigators Calderon and Cherissa L. Vitter will work closely with the school districts to recruit teacher candidates from underrepresented populations and to provide support to ensure their persistence through the program, resulting in classroom retention. The project will focus on the preparation of teachers in the shortage areas aligned with the current needs of the districts to reduce both out-of-field and uncertified teaching.

Calderon said the project will result in the preparation and induction of 375 more effectively trained, highly supported, and diverse new teachers over five years and increase the instructional leadership skills and knowledge of 150 mentor teachers who will support them.

“We are excited to work with the university and district partners to train mentor teachers as part of the solution for retaining and developing new teachers,” said NIET CEO Joshua Barnett. “Teacher leadership is a proven strategy for retaining and developing effective teachers by providing timely, relevant, and actionable support for their continued growth and improvement.”

Training for mentor teachers will increase the number of teachers prepared for leadership roles in their schools as they become available, expanding their impact to more students and teachers over the long term.

“We are committed to helping every student to excel,” said Superintendent of Tangipahoa School System Melissa Stilley. “The ability of our district to hire effective teachers and school leaders is highly dependent on the skills of teacher and school leader candidates. We are excited to partner with Southeastern and NIET to support our teachers in continuing to improve their classroom practices and better support student success.”

“This partnership will create high expectations for new teachers and support for teacher candidates in a yearlong residency,” said Superintendent of St. Charles Parish Public Schools Ken Oertling. “This will be followed by induction support in their first years of teaching.”

Combined these strategies will provide high-quality support for aspiring teachers that bridges their preparation program and their first two years in the classroom.

The BRIDGE project will address these challenges by enhancing Southeastern’s teacher preparation program, recruiting a more diverse cadre of new teachers, and creating induction programs in partner districts to support novice teachers to be more effective earlier in their careers.

Southeastern Professor Selected for Louisiana Writer Award

Southeastern Assistant Professor of Creative Writing David Armand has been selected as the recipient of the 23rd annual Louisiana Writer Award by the Louisiana Center for the Book in the State Library. The award is given to a contemporary Louisiana author in recognition of an outstanding contribution to Louisiana’s literary and intellectual life exemplified by the writer’s body of work.

“Professor Armand is a truly gifted writer and teacher. He is skilled in a variety of genres, and communicates his love of words to all of his students,” said College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Dean Karen Fontenot. “We are so lucky to have him at Southeastern, and I’m thrilled that he has received this honor.”

A native of Folsom and resident of Hammond with both undergraduate and graduate degrees in English from Southeastern, Armand has published four novels, The Pugilist’s Wife, Harlow, The Gorge, and The Lord’s Acre, all set in Louisiana; two poetry chapbooks, The Deep Woods and Debt; a full-length poetry collection, The Evangelist, soon to be released; and a memoir, My Mother’s House. Armand is also the author of an upcoming collection of creative nonfiction essays, Mirrors, to be published by University of Louisiana at Lafayette Press in spring 2023.

Armand served as Writer-in-Residence at Southeastern from 2017-2019 and has been recognized as a Gambit Magazine “40 Under 40” recipient.

In 2016 he was honored with Southeastern’s President’s Award for Artistic Activity, the Southeastern Faculty Senate President’s Award, and was named the St. Tammany President’s Artist of the Year. His first novel, The Pugilist’s Wife, earned the George Garrett Fiction Prize, and his second novel, Harlow, was listed on Amazon’s best novels about dysfunctional families.

“I’ve been so deeply honored to not only receive this award for my work, but also by the tremendous amount of support and kindness from the people in the Southeastern community, as well as throughout the state and beyond,” Armand said. “I know that my getting this award has been possible, in very large part, because of that spirit of kindness and generosity for which this state is so well-known. And I only hope my work can shine a bright light on that for more people to see.”

The Louisiana Writer Award will be presented to Armand at an opening ceremony of the Louisiana Book Festival on Saturday, Oct. 29, in Baton Rouge.

Celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month

Southeastern’s College of Business is launching its second cohort of the Hispanic Leadership Program as part of the celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month and the university’s commitment to cultural diversity and the professional development of the Hispanic population. The cohort includes 52 students from high schools in Tangipahoa and Livingston parishes.

According to the Pew Hispanic Institute, the U.S. Hispanic population reached 62.1 million in 2020, an increase of 23 percent over the previous decade that outpaced the nation’s 7 percent overall population growth. The share of U.S. Hispanics with college experience has increased since 2010. About 42 percent of U.S. Hispanic adults ages 25 and older had at least some college experience in 2019. Overall, the share of Hispanics with a bachelor’s degree or more education increased from 13 percent to 18 percent during this period.

The HLP’s purpose is to identify Hispanic youth with potential for education at the postsecondary level and to give them the skills and motivation necessary to be successful as leaders and in life. The HLP program provides opportunities for Hispanic youth to grow professionally, strengthens each student’s skills, and prepares them to contribute significantly to the workforce.

“We are proud of the impact of this program. It provides a culture that supports the students’ unique heritage while building skills and a network to help them be successful in the workforce and/or university,” said Tará Lopez, dean of the College of Business.

Director of the Southeastern Livingston Center Krystal Hardison said, “With this program, we will provide Hispanic/Latino students with real-world learning experiences, interactions, and opportunities.”

For over 24 years, Southeastern has worked with the Latin American community through the Latin American Business and Development Initiative.

“Every year, Southeastern’s Latin American Business and Development Initiative joins the celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month as a symbol of respect for Hispanic culture and diversity,” said LABDI Director Aristides Baraya. “Through this program and others, we show an appreciation of the value of the Hispanic culture by creating programs that help the progress of this community.”

National Hispanic Heritage Month originated in 1968 when Congress authorized President Lyndon B. Johnson to issue an annual proclamation designating National Hispanic Heritage Week. Twenty years after Johnson’s proclamation, President Ronald Reagan extended the recognition to the Hispanic community for one month.

Hispanic Heritage Month is dedicated to celebrating the culture and traditions of the Hispanic community and paying tribute to the significant contribution made by people of Hispanic descent, not only in the fields of culture, education, and arts, but also business and science in the U.S.