News Release

Spears Foundation, alumni contribute to Katrina Fund for displaced students

Contact: Rene Abadie


Representatives of Spears Hurricane Relief Foundation contributes to Southeastern fund

KATRINA SCHOLARSHIP FUND BOLSTERED – The Spears Hurricane Relief Foundation bolstered Southeastern Louisiana University’s Hurricane Katrina scholarship fund with a recent $50,000 contribution. The scholarships will be used to help students return to their studies at Southeastern. Presenting a check to Alumni Association Ken Kenelly is Jamie Lynn Spears. Observing are, from left, Joe Miller, vice president for university advancement, Lynne Spears, and Kathy Pittman, director of the Alumni Association.


      HAMMOND -- Bolstered by a $50,000 contribution from the Spears Hurricane Relief Foundation, a special Southeastern Louisiana University Hurricane Katrina scholarship fund initiated by the university’s Alumni Association and Development Foundation is now approaching $150,000.

      The funds will provide potential financial assistance to nearly700 Southeastern students who have been unable to return to the university, said Southeastern President Randy Moffett.

      Following the hurricane, approximately 1,300 students withdrew from Southeastern due to storm-related personal issues. About half of those students have returned to Southeastern.

      “Britney and the whole family, we love our area, and we know that a lot of people are still hurting after the hurricane,” said Lynne Spears, Britney Spears’ mother. “We wanted to find some ways to help people who were affected. As a parent and educator myself, I want to see these students return to school and complete their educations.”

      “We appreciate the support we are receiving from alumni and other friends of the university,” Moffett added. “Likewise, the contribution from the Spears Hurricane Relief Foundation is very significant in enabling us to help these displaced students. Britney Spears is a celebrity with local roots who cares deeply about her home state and region.”

Spears is from Kentwood, located about 30 miles north of Southeastern’s Hammond campus.

      “A significant number of our students have been unable to return to school,” Moffett said. “Their homes were destroyed or severely damaged, some lost their jobs, and others relocated to various regions of Louisiana or to other states.”

      “We’re concerned about these students and hope that we can make it somewhat easier for them to return to Southeastern by helping defray some of their costs,” Moffett said. “These scholarships will ease some of the financial burden of returning to school for former students who are still dealing with the impact of the storm.”

      Applicants for the scholarship must be former Southeastern students who lived in a hurricane-affected zip code as defined by the state, were enrolled at Southeastern at the time of the storm, and withdrew from the university. Additional information on the scholarship is available from the Southeastern Office of Scholarship Services at 985-549-5116.

      Immediately after the storm, the Southeastern Development Foundation and the Alumni Association began raising money for the scholarship fund, reaching out to previous individual donors and to various philanthropic organizations.

      “We asked our chapter organizations to devote their fund raising activities this year to the Hurricane Katrina Scholarship Fund,” said Alumni Association Director Kathy Pittman. “They have responded enthusiastically, as we knew they would. We hope to raise about $50,000 from the alumni chapters.”

      She said the alumni chapters that have committed to the effort are the Former Football Players Association, the Redstick Chapter, Delta Tau Delta, the athletic support group the FE-Lions, and the Alumni Association itself.

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