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September 04, 2001

Board of Regents presents ULM with Eminent Scholars money

Officials from the University of Louisiana at Monroe today accepted matching funds in the amount of $440,000 from Dr. E. Joseph Savoie, Commissioner of Higher Education for the Louisiana State Board of Regents. The check presentation was made for ULM's most recent Endowed Chair and Endowed Professorship funded as part of the Regents Eminent Scholar and Endowed Professorships program.

The presentation came at an afternoon press conference in the Media Room of ULM's University Library.

"The University is forever grateful to these donors for making such an extraordinary contribution to our University," said ULM President Lawson L. Swearingen, Jr. "Because of these funds, $1,000,000 for the Emy-Lou Biedenharn Chair in Music and the $100,000 for the Beach Endowed Professorship in the School of Construction, the University will be able to continue to retain and attract the highest caliber of faculty to provide an outstanding education for our students."

ULM now has seven $1 million Endowed Chairs, and 38 Endowed Professorships provided by the Regents Support Fund. The Board of Regents presented ULM with $400,000 for the Emy-Lou Biedenharn Chair in Music and $40,000 for the Beach Endowed Professorship in the School of Construction. This funding constitutes the state's 40 percent match for the program.

The Emy-Lou Biedenharn Chair will be a part of a constantly evolving program. The ULM School of Music is under two roofs on campus, the Band building and temporarily Sandel Hall during the renovation of Biedenharn Hall. Upon completion, the offices, classrooms, listening center, and music computer laboratory, as well as a 290-seat Recital Hall. The Endowment will bring a nationally known professor, scholar or teacher to the university for continued enhancement of the music curricula.

The Biedenharn Family presence in the community dated back to the very beginning of ULM. The Biedenharn name is and has always been associated with good citizenship and cultural leadership. The Emy-Lou Biedenharn Foundation founded the Endowed Professorship in music in 1996. The new recital hall in Biedenharn Hall will be formally dedicated at its opening to the memory of Miss Emy-Lou Biedenharn and will thereafter be known at the Emy-Lou Biedenharn Recital Hall.

This Endowed Chair in Music will form an annual Artist-in-Residence appointment for the School of Music in order to showcase the diversity of tastes found in musical expression. Through this endowment, students, faculty, and the local community will have the opportunity to enjoy the performances of some of the outstanding musicians in the world today.

Donald and Fran Beach established the Beach Endowed Professorship in the School of Construction. The holder of the Professorship will be chosen based on the appropriate degrees and will have an impressive record of research and professional achievements. The funds for the Professorship may go towards improving community service, research, buying equipment, travel, and other activities as the holder sees fit.

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