Memorial scholarship created to honor Alost

The family of the late Dr. Robert Alost created a memorial scholarship through the Northwestern State University Foundation to honor the man who served as the university’s president from 19 86-1996. Alost died April 17 after a long illness.

Friends are invited to contribute to the scholarship by visiting

Criteria for the scholarship is still in development.

Before becoming president, Alost, 85, served NSU as a faculty member, department head and dean. He was also co-founder of the Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts and director of the school from 1982 to 1986.

During his presidency at NSU, Alost led the university to an unprecedented period of growth when enrollment at Northwestern State increased from 5,272 to more than 9,000. That substantial increase laid the foundation for progress in academic achievement, athletic success, facility enhancements and other accomplishments that provided ongoing stability for the university after a period of declining enrollment and fiscal uncertainty.

Alost also oversaw the development of the Louisiana Scholars’ College, Louisiana’s designated honors college, and was engaged in the initial organization of the Department of Creative and Performing Arts, helping to establish the scholarship budget that was critical to the development of CAPA programs.

Active in numerous professional, civic and religious organizations, Alost was past president of the Natchitoches Parish Chamber of Commerce and served on the Board of Directors of the Natchitoches Tourist Commission. He was named Natchitoches’ Man of the Year in 1987. He was named to a 46-member NCAA Council Board of Directors in 1992.

Alost was inducted into the Northwestern Alumni Hall of Distinction, the Long Purple Line, in 2005 and was named a Natchitoches Treasure in 2018. He was inducted into NSU’s N Club Hall of Fame in 1990. Last year he was inducted into the Mrs. H.D. Dear Sr. and Alice E. D. Dear School of Creative and Performing Arts Hall of Fame.