Annual Report from the President, 1995-96

Letter and Selected Highlights

From Centenary President Kenneth L. Schwab:

Dear Friends:

This report offers a snapshot of the past year, the 171st, in Centenary College's history. It captures, at a single moment, the figures about our fiscal health and the facts about the accomplishments of 1995-96.

It notes, for instance, that we held a year-long celebration of our 100th anniversary as a coed institution. It points out our high national rankings among "America's Best Colleges" and the wonderful support of those who make endowed chairs, scholarships and much more possible. It charts the areas of expenses and revenues.

Though no listing can cover all the successes of the year, many of the accomplishments of our community are contained in the pages of the printed edition of the President's Annual Report.

The Report also has a dimension beyond the words and figures. It is really about people -- all those whose efforts and support combine to educate students in the Centenary tradition. Together we form a community, with all its many facets and interests, who share a common goal and work together for its attainment. It is a large and ever-growing community as evidenced by the names included in our Honor Roll of Donors, those who have chosen to invest their financial resources for the benefit of Centenary College students.

It is my pleasure as president to salute and thank the members of the Centenary community for a year of progress in the life of the College. Faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends -- you are Centenary College. For all that you are and all that you do on behalf of Centenary College, please accept our sincerest gratitude.

With a thankful heart,
Kenneth L. Schwab

PRESIDENT'S ANNUAL REPORT, 1995-96, Some Highlights of A Year of Progress

The 1995-96 academic year at Centenary College of Louisiana was one triumphs and challenges, individual feats and institutional advancement. The listing that follows contains many of the accomplishments and events of the year.

National Recognition

$600,000 Hughes Award, Top 200 Colleges for Science, Top 10 Southern Colleges, PEW and ACE National Program Selections . . .

  • The Howard Hughes Medical Institute selected Centenary among 52 colleges and universities in the nation to share in $45.4 million in grants for undergraduate programs in the biological sciences. The $600,000 award to Centenary will mean the renovation of laboratories and new equipment to serve a new biosciences core program, including biology, chemistry and biophysics. It will also make possible a multi-year research program for undergraduates, new faculty development opportunities, a summer research program for high school students and teachers, and start-up funding for a new faculty member in neurobiology. It was the largest science grant Centenary has ever received.

  • Centenary was identified by Peterson's Guides as one of 200 colleges and universities in the United States that offers an outstanding undergraduate program in the sciences and mathematics. The Centenary program is described in the book Top Colleges for Science--Leading Programs in the Biological, Chemical, Geological, Mathematical, and Physical Sciences.

  • The College was selected by the Kellogg Foundation and the American Council on Education as one of only 26 colleges and universities nationwide to participate in a new leadership program. The four-year "Leadership and Institutional Transformation Project" aims to help colleges and universities cope with the major changes facing American higher education. Centenary was chosen from among 110 applicants for the project, which is conducted under a $1.2 million grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation of Battle Creek, Mich.

  • In its annual America's Best Colleges issue, U.S. News & World Report named Centenary as the tenth-ranked regional college / university in the South. The ranking marked the sixth consecutive year that Centenary was listed by the magazine.

  • Centenary was ranked among the nation's 150 "Best College Values," selected from over 3,000 institutions, by the editors of Money Magazine.

  • The Campus Roundtable of the Pew Higher Education Foundation program held two weekend meetings on campus. A 30-person group met as part of the national laboratory seeking to identify the best practices for improving quality, containing costs and sustaining the values that define the learning community of individual colleges and universities. The program is sponsored by The Pew Charitable Trusts.

  • Dr. Steven Shelburne, associate professor of English, was featured in The Chronicle of Higher Education in an article about his innovative joint class on the Internet, taught with a professor from Mississippi State University.

  • Centenary alumni in the news included former gymnast Kathy Johnson-Clark '81, who was inducted into the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame; Claudine Vaughan '93, dance graduate, who performed in a starring role during the opening ceremonies of the Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Ga.; and Carrie Flemmer '90, who participated in the Summer Olympics as the catcher on the Canadian women's softball team.

    Special Events

    Meadows Museum Turns 20, Author Massengill Speaks, Master Artists Visit, 100th Anniversary as a Co-ed Institution . . .

  • Author Reed Massengill spent a week on campus, visiting with all new students during fall orientation and delivering a public address. The Centenary Women's Endowment Quorum sent a Massengill book to each student during the summer prior to registration and students were asked to read the book prior to their arrival on campus.

  • A new dimension -- an annual symposium -- was added to Alumni and Family Weekend during 1995-96. Author Lis Harris participated in a panel on "Women and Work" along with Dr. Jeanne Campbell Reesman '77, Virginia Shehee '43 and professors Kathy Fell and Beth Leuck. The program was held in conjunction with the College's observance of 100 years as a coed institution. A "Career Conversations" series and several other events related to the theme were held during the year.

  • Two master artists from China spent the fall semester on campus as International Artists in Residence. Ru Gui, a noted calligrapher, and Wan Ding, a renowned artist, painted, visited art classes, presented an exhibit and taught a Chinese watercolor painting course.

  • The ninth annual Friends of Centenary Book Bazaar offered over 30,000 books for sale to the public and raised $26,000 for special projects. New at the event was a special recycling program held in conjunction with Recycled Fibers of Louisiana and the Shreveport Recycling Center. A first edition of the Oxford English Dictionary was also offered at a silent auction.

  • Veteran journalist and Los Angeles Times investigations editor Sara Fritz visited the campus for five days as a part of the Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellows program. She became the 37th Wilson Fellow to lecture at Centenary, which has hosted more Wilson Fellows than any other college.

  • The Meadows Museum of Art, 20 years old this year, presented "Impressions of the South" and "20 Years of Revel Art" during the fall semester. An "East Meets West" celebration in February included a week-long visit by Tibetan Monk Lobsang Samten, who created a sand mandala in the main gallery, and numerous other presentations by Centenary faculty. "Ancient Memories: Glass Sculpture by William Morris" was scheduled for March-May. The Turner Art Center presented "John Dellenger Photography," "Kristi Hanna, Paintings and Sculpture," the Hoover Water Color Society "Small Painting Show," a "Faculty Exhibit," "Cross-Cultural Legacies: Ten Women Artists," and "Student Exhibits." The Outdoor Sculpture Green featured works by Marshall W. Cunningham, Mark Grote and Victor Salmones.

  • The Marjorie Lyons Playhouse presented Bent, Red Scare on Sunset, subUrbia, Assassins, A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur, and Oliver


  • The Shenandoah Shakespeare Express, a professional touring company, presented seven public performances in April. It marked the fifth Centenary visit for SSE, which has developed a national reputation for simple, fresh, fine theater. For the first time, the company included a Centenary theater graduate, Heather Peak 95, who joined SSE in the fall of 1995.

  • Members of the Centenary ROTC contingent who trained and earned top honors at the 1954 Ft. Benning Summer Training Camp commemorated their efforts with a special ceremony. The group dedicated memorabilia and a trophy cabinet in Magale Library.

    Outstanding Faculty and Students

    Goldwater Scholar, TAAC All-Academic Award for Second Year Faculty Grants, Student Honors . . .

  • Biophysics Professor Juan Rodriguez received a grant to develop a novel way to pinpoint oxygen deficiency inside the body to help researchers detect and treat stroke, ischemic bowel disease and other circulatory diseases. Louisiana State University Medical School in Shreveport and the Biomedical Research Foundation co-funded the grant.

  • President Kenneth L. Schwab was elected to a national post with the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU). He joined the NAICU Board of Directors in February 1996.

  • The National Endowment for the Humanities awarded Centenary a $65,170 grant to be directed by Dr. Earle Labor, professor of English and noted Jack London scholar. The grant was for a summer-study seminar for elementary and secondary school faculty. The seminar topic is "Jack London: the Major Works." The award marked the fourth time Dr. Labor has been selected to offer the program, which draws participants nationally and internationally.

  • Physics student Richard Hasty was awarded the prestigious Goldwater Scholarship, the premiere undergraduate award of its type in the fields of science, mathematics and engineering. Hasty was one of 264 students selected on the basis of academic merit from a field of 1,200 nominated. Hasty's is the third Goldwater Scholarship that has been awarded to a Centenary College student in the last five years.

  • Centenary student-athletes combined to capture the Trans America Athletic Conference (TAAC) All-Academic Champion trophy for the second year in a row. Fifty-four Centenary students made the TAAC Fall All-Academic Team and 34 were on the spring team. Both of the year's Student Athletes of the Year were from Centenary, soccer players Martha Chaney and Matt Thornton. Ms. Chaney also received the Entergy/NCAA "Winning for Life" scholarship and the U.S. Natural Science Award in 1996.

  • A freshman transition program was piloted with 36 first-year students during the fall semester. Over the course of the semester, the advisors and their students planned and carried out a community service project in conjunction with a local environmental organization. They also participated in readings and discussions focusing attention on individual responsibility for the creation of community. The experience was designed to help first-year students at Centenary develop responsibility toward their community, integrate the modes in which they learn, bond meaningfully with fellow students and faculty, and remain happily at Centenary.

  • Dr. Ernest Blakeney, professor of chemistry, received a $52,000 grant from the Louisiana Education Quality Support Fund to support purchase of a gas chromatograph-mass spectrometer and microscale glassware for the Organic Chemistry Laboratory. Dr. Blakeney also receive $10,000 from the National Science Foundation's Instrument and Laboratory Improvement Program.

  • Dr. Tom Ticich, assistant professor of chemistry, received $15,000 from the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation to support purchase of a differential scanning calorimeter. He also received support from the Laser Science Topical Group of the American Physical Society to bring to campus an internationally recognized professor in the field of scientific applications of lasers.

  • Dr. Beth Leuck of the Biology Department received a National Science Foundation Instrumentation and Laboratory Improvement Grant for $40,000.

  • A 1995 Centenary graduate, Kristy Risner-Conrad, was named the Louisiana Woman of the Year by the NCAA.

  • Tenor Gregory Wilkins was named a winner in the Gulf Coast Regional Metropolitan Opera Auditions in January, 1996 in New Orleans. He won second place and was awarded $1,600 in prizes, including the Paul S. Plauche Memorial Award and the Amici Award given by Lexus of New Orleans.

  • French students continued their leadership role in the state and the nation. Centenary students created the only student-run French language newspaper in the United States and the first student-run French language radio program in the country. During the past four years, Centenary French majors have had a 100 percent acceptance rate to major graduate programs, including full-tuition remission and fellowships to schools such as UCLA, Purdue, Syracuse, Illinois and Notre Dame. In addition, all Centenary students who applied for scholarships from the Council for the Development of French in Louisiana have been successful and, for the past three years, Centenary students captured one-third of all such awards, compared to a statewide success rate of about 20 percent.

  • French student Christy Smith was one of seven students in the nation to receive a Joseph W. Yedlicka awards from the National French Honor Society for study at Laral University in Quebec. Katie Hall was chosen from among 13,000 applicants in North America to receive a major award from the National Security Education Program for the study of French-African literature in Dakar, Senegal. Jackie Burns was recommended for a Fulbright Scholarship to Belgium by the National Screening Committee.

  • Centenary dance student LeVette Fuller was chosen "Dancer of the Year" by the Shreveport Metropolitan Ballet.

  • Highland Hospital and Centenary jointly developed a graduate assistant program for athletic trainers.

    Facilities and Grounds

    Computerization, Renovations, Beautification, 52-foot Tall Climbing Tower, New Softball Field . . .

  • The campus became completely computerized, allowing students and faculty access to the Internet and state-of-the-art software and hardware. The project was initiated in 1994 to establish a fully integrated local area network system with Internet access for all faculty and students, three new networked laboratories and stand-alone personal computer clusters in each residence hall. The College also established a home page on the World Wide Web (

  • The College implemented the Campus Collaborative for Interactive Learning (CCIL), an interdisciplinary initiative that guarantees maximum application of computer technology within the classroom. As a result of CCIL, faculty in all disciplines began to integrate computer technology into their classrooms.

  • A gift of $110,000 from an anonymous donor was made for the renovation of Kilpatrick Auditorium.

  • Students from the Frost School of Business conducted a fund-raising campaign and erected the Patrick Peavy, Jr. Memorial Climbing Tower on campus. The Tower, located between Mickle Hall and Haynes Gymnasium, will be used to improve leadership skills through challenging physical tasks. A new seating and garden area surrounding the Tower was also planned.

  • Centenary was selected to receive a Beautification Award from the Highland Restoration Association. Improvements to the grounds have included new water wells; repairs and additions to irrigation systems; additional landscaping with shrubs, trees, rose bushes, azaleas and flowering annuals; a decked area between Sexton Hall and Bynum Commons; and a new mulching, fertilization and herbicide program.

  • The College's Physical Plant office was reorganized as a division of the Department of Finance and Administration and renamed the Office of Facilities Services.

  • A new softball field was constructed at the south end of the College's athletic fields.

    Honors and Honorees

    Corrington Award to Auster, Buseick Completes 150 Productions, Endowed Chairs, Hall of Famers

  • Founders' Day 1996 featured the inauguration of the Charles T. Beaird Chair of Philosophy. Dr. Kenneth L. Aizawa, the first Beaird professor, delivered the convocation address, "The Integration of Philosophy and Science." The Chair was established by Dr. Charles T. Beaird.

  • Two professors were installed in Eminent Scholars Chairs. Dr. Ernest W. Blakeney, Jr. was appointed to the Velma Davis Grayson Chair of Chemistry and Dr. Scott Vetter to the William C. Woolf Chair of Geology.

  • Novelist Paul Auster, author of The New York Trilogy and the screenplay for the movie Smoke, received the sixth annual John William Corrington Award for Literary Excellence. A unique feature of the award is that a book by the recipient serves as a text in all first-year English classes.

  • Robert R. Buseick, chairman of the Department of Theatre/Speech/Dance and director of the Marjorie Lyons Playhouse for 27 years, was recognized during the premiere of Oliver, his 150th production. The Robert R. Buseick Theatre Scholarship was created in his honor.

  • Dr. Jeffrey Trahan, professor of physics, was chosen Outstanding Teacher for 1995-96. Dr. John Peek, professor of political science, earned the Alumni Research Grant.

  • William E. Bradford 58 of Dallas, Texas, chief executive officer of Dresser Industries, was chosen as the 1996 inductee in the Alumni Hall of Fame. Recognition also went to Leonard Riggs, Sr. 28 of Longview, Texas, who received the Alumni Loyalty Award, and Dr. Lee Morgan, chairman and Willie Cavett and Paul M. Brown, Jr. Professor of English, who was named Honorary Alumnus.

  • Inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame were former basketball standout Willie Jackson, the late basketball coach F.H. "Buss" Delaney, former gymnastics coach Vannie Edwards, and tennis star Lauren Cotter-Ingram.

  • Honorary degrees were awarded to Dr. Dianna Ammons Redburn, Doctor of Science, and Robert L. Potter, Doctor of Divinity, during commencement 1996. Dr. Redburn was the commencement speaker.

    Endowments, Grants, Giving

    Douglas-Whited Chair Established; Broyles and Linco Chairs Funded Magale Bequest, Five Endowed Professorships . . .

  • The Louisiana Board of Regents approved and presented $800,000 in matching funds to complete two million-dollar endowed chairs at Centenary: the A. Harvey Broyles Chair of Computational Science and the Rudy and Jeannie Linco Chair of Business Administration.

  • The late civic leader and philanthropist Mary Amelia Douglas-Whited will be honored with a million-dollar Eminent Scholars Endowed Chair at Centenary as the result of a gift to the college from her husband, Edwin F. Whited of Shreveport, La. and Santa Fe, N.M. His $600,000 gift will enable the college to establish the Mary Amelia Douglas-Whited Endowed Chair and to apply for $400,000 in state matching funds to complete the $1 million endowment. Once the match is completed by the Louisiana Education Quality Support Fund, the gift will be "endowed in perpetuity."

  • Four areas became the beneficiaries of bequests totalling $915,000 from the estate of the late philanthropist Joanna Gunning Magale. Mrs. Magale's bequests included $300,000 for the Magale Library at Centenary, $300,000 for the sciences, $300,000 for scholarships and $15,000 for the Center for Learning Enhancement and Research. In the spring of 1996, the Louisiana Board of Regents approved $160,000 in matching funds for four new endowed Magale professorships.

  • A new endowed professorship was completed with the awarding of $40,000 from the Louisiana Board of Regents to match $60,000 from the Entrikin family for the John B. and Minnie Sue Entrikin Professorship.

  • The Houston Endowment, Inc., a philanthropy endowed by Mr. and Mrs. Jesse H. Jones, authorized a grant of $100,000 to Centenary to endow the Jesse H. Jones and Mary Gibbs Jones Endowed Scholarship Fund.

  • The Associated Colleges of the South, a consortium of 13 outstanding liberal arts colleges and universities located in the South -- including Centenary -- received two major grants. A $1.15 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation will support a cooperative program on development of instructional technology among the 13 members. A $495,000 grant from the Lettie Pate Evans Foundation will be used for faculty technology training, model technology programs and administrative cost containment.

  • Additional training for tutors of English as a second language became available as a result of a grant from International Paper Co. to the Literacy Volunteers of America, Inc./Centenary College.

  • The Shreveport Regional Arts Council awarded the Meadows Museum a general support grant of $10,000. Individual grants of $2,500 each from SRAC went to Bob Buseick, chairman of the Department of Theatre and Speech, and Kathleen Smith of the Department of Finance and Administration. The Museum was also the recipient of two grants totaling $10,000 for its 1995-96 art education partnership with Creswell Elementary School. The grants were from International Paper Co. and the National Endowment for the Arts.

  • The Community Foundation of Shreveport-Bossier awarded $50,000 to the College, which will fund 44 scholarships.

  • A new Merrill Lynch Scholars Program and $26,000 grant will enable the Frost School of Business to enhance the teaching of investments, finance and economics, and to place students as interns.


  • A new initiative issue was approved to allow a number of campus improvement projects, including new chillers and boilers, residence hall furniture, the purchase of two buses, payoff of the dining hall renovation, a library networking systems and the renovation of Rotary Hall.

  • An innovative tuition plan was adopted and will allow students to plan their college expenses without tuition increases. Effective with the fall semester of 1996, the plan guarantees full-time undergraduates a fixed tuition rate until they graduate.