Louisiana School welcomes 120 new students at Matriculation Ceremony

LSMSA holds traditional ceremony Friday, Sept. 2

(Natchitoches, La.) – The Louisiana School for Math, Science, and the Arts (LSMSA) recognized 120 new students representing 59 percent of the state’s parishes during its annual Matriculation Ceremony held Friday, Sept. 2 in the NSU A.A. Fredericks Auditorium.

Of more than 250 applicants statewide, 10 students joined the tuition-free, state-funded residential school’s senior class of 2023, 35 joined the class of 2024, and 75 became the beginning of LSMSA’s class of 2025. More than 75 percent of the incoming class came to LSMSA with a GPA of at least 3.9 and an average incoming ACT score that was six points higher than the average exiting ACT score for seniors in the state of Louisiana. Matriculants joined LSMSA leadership onstage to sign an official roster, officially cementing each of their places in the school’s nearly 40-year history.

“You have signed up for what I call the ride of your life,” said Executive Director Steve Horton, who reminded new students to enjoy every minute of their time at LSMSA. “I am fortunate to take this ride with you and know that all of us at LSMSA have your best interests close to our hearts.”

LSMSA Associate Lecturer of Theatre Scott Theriot, MFA, delivered a keynote address encouraging students to find joy in the process of their pursuits, not just in the end results.

“Put yourself out there,” he said. “Take that class, join that club or sport, give yourself over to something that brings you joy. Once you find it, cast out that net and let others see the joy you’ve found. Maybe it can be theirs, too.”

“Your being here today signifies your talents and determination,” encouraged LSMSA Senior Class President Ashley Green (’23) of Houma. “Your efforts to make it here prove that you belong.”

The processional was performed by the LSMSA Instrumental Ensemble conducted by Dr. Al Benner with the Pledge of Allegiance led by SGO President Rosie Shultz (’23) of Ruston. Jamie Perdue (’23) of Kingwood, Texas sang the National Anthem, and Emma Wale (’24) of Laplace led the crowd in singing the Alma Mater. Following the ceremony, students returned home to enjoy the first Extended Weekend of the academic year.