Awarded at the Senior Banquet, Acorn Pins are bestowed on graduating seniors who entered LSMSA as sophomores and survived three years. This tradition was introduced after the school began admitting sophomores in 2007.
All school assemblies and special events begin with the singing of the LSMSA Alma Mater. The song’s lyrics celebrate the diversity and courage of the students who leave home to face the rigorous challenges of LSMSA. Dr. Kenneth Olson, Faculty Emeritus, composed the music, with lyrics by alumna Angela Durden-Duncil ‘96.
With futures born of visions broad And values from our homes endowed, Diverse and many, we became, United in your noble name.
Exalted, honored far and wide, Those selected, tested, tried. As eagles soaring strong and true, Over you, Louisiana School.
Dreams discovered, spirits high, As up above the eagles fly. Challenged, undaunted, and standing tall. We rise and conquer, give our all.
Within your walls our strengths are found, Where heart and mind are bound. As eagles soaring proudly rule, Over you, Louisiana School.
Bossier Hall opened in 1964 as a four-story residence hall for Northwestern State University. When LSMSA opened in 1983, Bossier and Prudhomme Halls were made available to LSMSA by NSU. Bossier housed LSMSA students for two years (1984-1986), housed LSMSA females for the first months of 1986-1987, and was returned to NSU once renovations to Caddo were complete. Bossier Hall was demolished in 2011, and its grounds now serve as an overflow parking lot for NSU students.
Northwestern State College began construction of Caddo Hall in 1961. Arranged in units of three rooms and a bath for six women, the structure was one of the first on the Northwestern campus to be air-conditioned and heated with individual units in each room. Caddo Hall was vacated by NSU in the late 1970s, and in 1984, NSU offered the use of Caddo Hall to LSMSA. Caddo Hall loyally served LSMSA as a home for female students for over 35 years.
Each year, graduates of LSMSA are chosen to share their experiences during their time on campus, in higher education, and in their careers. This Required Weekend begins on Friday night with a panel discussion, where the alumni introduce themselves, share stories from their time at LSMSA, lessons learned and mistakes made, and opinions on topics of interest to current students (in-state or out-of-state college? Student loans -- yea or nay?). On Saturday, students have a chance to attend individual presentations by the alumni, who tell about their career path or life strategies they have found helpful. The Parents’ Council provides a lunch afterwards for the alumni guests and students to continue their conversations.
Held the first weekend after the students move into the residence hall, each wing teams up in a series of fun competitions to determine which hall is “the best.” The students get a chance to get to know their neighbors in the halls and build rapport.
In the early years of LSMSA, the students would gather for a “talent show,” though the goal was usually to shock and confuse rather than provide aesthetic pleasure. Absurd costumes, song parodies, and dance moves of questionable taste were regularly on display. Though it ended in the late ‘90s, it is still fondly remembered by performers and audience members alike.
These are the weekends when the residence hall is closed and students go home for a break from the rigors of LSMSA. It also gives the residence hall staff a break from the rigors of LSMSA students. Classes generally dismiss at lunchtime on Thursday, and the residence hall re-opens on Sunday afternoon.
Designed the Class of 1985, the LSMSA ring is a unique twist on the class ring concept. It includes the crest, the student’s class number, and the state of Louisiana imposed on the jewel with Natchitoches marked by an imitation diamond. The LSMSA ring is a mark of distinction showing the world that you are a proud graduate of LSMSA and identifies you to other alumni as a fellow Eagle.
Prudhomme Hall opened on the Northwestern State University campus in September 1956. Built on the hill overlooking Chaplin's Lake, the hall included three independent wings converging in the middle to form a Y, with all angles being equal. The new facility boasted a "state of the art" intercom system, and each room included a "head set" phone, two twin beds, and two desks that included a florescent light. Prudhomme closed in the late 1970s. When LSMSA was created in 1982, Prudhomme and Bossier Halls were made available to LSMSA. Prudhomme originally served as the female residence hall, with students living on the second floor. The first floor housed faculty and administrative offices, classrooms, and study halls. Males lived in Bossier Hall. In 1986, Prudhomme was repurposed to serve as the residence hall for male students. Prudhomme Hall loyally housed 37 LSMSA classes until LSMSA turned the building back over to NSU in 2021.
A long-standing part of the academic requirements of LSMSA, required weekends bring students together on 3-4 weekends a year for additional academic experiences or school-sponsored events aimed at enhancing the living/learning environment.
Held every spring, alumni gather to commemorate five, ten, fifteen, twenty, twenty-five, or thirty years since their graduation from LSMSA. The weekend now features an event on Friday night that gathers all alumni, and individual classes plan events for Saturday night. Originally held on the same weekend as commencement exercises, the number of returning students and classes recently exceeded the ability of the school to host current and former students on the same weekend, so Reunion Weekend is held on one of the Extended Weekends when the students are not in town.
In spring of each year, juniors are presented with their class rings by family members, classmates, alumni, or teachers. Students are told of the proud history of the LSMSA ring and what it represents to the few who are allowed to don it.
Every year, the faculty and administration selects three to six graduating seniors to induct into the Robert A. Alost Hall of Fame. The students are selected based on academic achievement, leadership qualities, and the intangibles that make the living learning environment a success. The award is named after LSMSA's first executive director, the late Dr. Robert A. Alost.
Held the night before Commencement exercises, Seniors are recognized for their achievements while at LSMSA. Awards include the announcement of Gonfaloniers for graduation, achievement in area of study, the work service awards, and the Hall of Fame inductees.
Alumni gather every summer for a weekend to help with projects around the school. Alumni have painted, pressure washed, built fences and tables, sorted equipment for the science and theater departments, and cleaned the buildings and grounds of LSMSA over the years. What began with a small group of ten alumni has grown into an event connecting over 100 alumni every year. After a day of hard work, the participants gather to make music, tell stories, and connect with alumni from across the generations.
Louisiana School for Math, Science, and the Arts (LSMSA) is the preeminent state-supported residential high school with competitive admissions for Louisiana's high-achieving, highly-motivated sophomores, juniors, and seniors. As a public school, there is no tuition to attend, and assistance from the LSMSA Foundation ensures the program is available to all qualifying students regardless of family financial need.