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Hans and Donna Sternberg establish largest endowed scholarship in Ogden Honors College history

On Thursday, April 6, in the French House Grand Salon, Hans and Donna Sternberg announced a leadership gift to the LSU Roger Hadfield Ogden Honors College. The donation is the largest one-time scholarship gift and the largest endowed scholarship in the history of the Ogden Honors College. The Hans and Donna Sternberg Endowed Honors Scholarship will strengthen the college’s ability to attract and retain exceptionally talented students at a time when scholarship support is crucial to promoting college access.

"I’m delighted that philanthropy at the Honors College and LSU is beginning to focus more on student scholarships,” said Dean Jonathan Earle of the Ogden Honors College. “I like where we are academically, but we're at risk of losing top students to schools that offer better financial packages. Scholarships like this one will help us to continue attracting the best and brightest from Louisiana and from out of state.” 

The Sternberg family, Baton Rouge business and civic leaders and philanthropists, have been generous donors to the Honors College for decades. Thursday’s gift announcement and celebration was followed by the 2017 Erich and Lea Sternberg Lecture, named in honor of Hans’ parents. The lecture, titled “The Mississippi River Delta: How it Formed, Why it is Disappearing and Why its Conservation is a National Issue,” was presented by Samuel J. Bentley, Erich and Lea Sternberg Honors Professor and Billy and Ann Harrison Chair in Sedimentary Geology and director of the LSU Coastal Studies Institute.

The Hans and Donna Sternberg Endowed Honors Scholarship will be awarded to one student each year, providing the recipients’ attendance at LSU for four years and to offset enrichment opportunities, such as study abroad excursions, service opportunities, internships and research.

In recognition of their gift, the Grand Salon, which qualified the French House for its designation on the National Register of Historic Places, will be renamed in honor of Hans and Donna Sternberg. The elegant room, recently renovated, serves as the central gathering space for the Ogden Honors College and the site of numerous campus events. Its centerpiece, a Baccarat crystal chandelier, was donated by Count Jacques de Clouet of Bordeaux and originally hung in his family’s chateau in Bordeaux, France.

The Roger Hadfield Ogden Honors College engages a diverse population of high-achieving students, tomorrow’s leaders, in a dynamic interaction of outstanding instruction, innovative research and public service. The unique 10-acre Honors campus and residential college community combines historic architecture, cultural significance and modern renovation. The programming and proximity of academic and residential buildings acts as a catalyst for Ogden Honors students to develop their intellectual curiosity and leadership skills and to forge social and intellectual connections with each other, LSU faculty and staff.

The LSU Foundation strives to catalyze transformational support of LSU and advance the university’s academic priorities through cultivating and investing in philanthropic partnerships. To learn more about the LSU Foundation and to make a gift, visit www.lsufoundation.org