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Roger Hadfield Ogden Honors College Cuts Ribbon on Renovated Home

The LSU Roger Hadfield Ogden Honors College today cut the ribbon on its renovated home, the French House. Funded through capital outlay funds, the $5 million renovation completes the vision of a fully modernized Honors campus at the heart of LSU. 

“We are excited to open the newly renovated home to our Odgen Honors College,” said LSU President F. King Alexander. “Having top-notch facilities such as the French House, along with other recent projects like the Journalism Building, the Business Education Complex and the current expansion of Patrick F. Taylor Hall, only help to enhance students’ experience at LSU, and we appreciate the state funding this needed renovation through capital outlay funds.”

“We’re grateful to the people of Louisiana for the renovation of this historic building,” said Roger Hadfield Ogden Honors College Dean Jonathan Earle. “Its beautifully designed spaces are ideal places to learn.  The French House will serve as a model for honors education for decades to come.”

Ogden Honors College Advisory Council Chair Brian Haymon has long spearheaded the charge to renovate the French House. “What we’re witnessing today represents the fruits of more than a decade of labor and persuasion,” said Haymon. “A renovated French House and first-rate Honors College are both integral to the economic development in Louisiana.”

Haymon singled out for special praise the leadership of Rolfe McCollister on the Board of Supervisors and Rep. Franklin Foil in the Louisiana State House for keeping the project moving through the capital outlay process.

The French House will provide Ogden Honors College students with all of the modern amenities available in top-notch facilities across the nation. The new classrooms have been built to fit the seminar-style classes that characterize the Honors curriculum, an old café has been converted into a spacious student lounge and the building now boasts a formal reception area to greet visitors and help students.

The jewel of the French House, the Grand Salon, which serves as a central gathering space, has been upgraded and refurbished in order to protect its historical importance.

"The renovation of the French House is a transformational moment in our education here at LSU," said Ogden Honors College Student Council President Kurt Ristroph. "From the state-of-the-art classrooms to the historical Grand Salon, the new and improved French House offers the perfect setting to grow as students and as future leaders of our state."  

In addition to those previously quoted, other dignitaries and special guests who attended or participated in the ceremony included:

  • Richard J. Koubek, LSU Executive Vice President & Provost
  • Stephen Moret, LSU Foundation President
  • Rolfe H. McCollister Jr., member of the LSU Board of Supervisors
  • Franklin J. Foil, Louisiana State Representative
  • Stephen F. Carter, Louisiana State Representative
  • Rick Edmonds, Louisiana State Representative
  • Roger Ogden, real estate developer and philanthropist
  • Donna Sternberg, Executive Vice President of Starmount Life Insurance Company
  • Grégor Trumel, Consul General of the Republic of France
  • Tony Lombardo, Executive Director of LSU Facility Services
  • Robert Ward, Principal at Cangelosi Ward
  • Tommy Messina, Construction Manager at Cangelosi Ward
  • Lori Prochaska, Architect at Tipton Associates
  • Shane Higdon, Architect at Tipton Associates
  • Zackari Murphy, Ogden Honors Student & 2015 Ogden Leader
  • Andrew Mahtook, LSU Student Body President

Self-guided tours of the French House were offered to attendees following the ceremony.

The French House is the beating heart of the Ogden Honors College, and an LSU landmark. Designed to invoke a French chateau, the French House stands out among the predominantly Palladian style of LSU's architecture. Today, the French House is the main administrative and academic building of the Ogden Honors College, and is part of a bustling Honors Campus at the center of LSU's main campus. Throughout its rich and often dramatic 80-year history, the building has played host to many fascinating figures, from Parisian scientists to World War II Army officers, and has been a home for a wide variety of students, academic departments and historic artifacts.

For more information about the French House or the Ogden Honors College, visit


Contact Allison S. Howell
Roger Hadfield Ogden Honors College