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Photograph: Students attending what do steroids do the 23rd annual post secondary carousel sponsored by the St. Landry Parish School Board held at the Opelousas Civic Center. (Photograph by Freddie Herpin.)

Editor/Consulting Writer

St. Landry Parish High School students came to the Opelousas Civic Center prepared with questions as visions of their futures became a relevant topic Tuesday night.

It was also perhaps one time when senior and junior students from the parish School District seemed glad to have their parents tag along.

While the parents focused primarily on financing post-graduation options, the students appeared more interested in campus life and whether their interests fit course offerings from every state college.

Angela Cassimere, Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment, estimated that over 200 students, some of them pre-registered,  attended the two-hour post-secondary carousel, sponsored for the 23rd time annually by the District.

Most of those attending pre-registered for the recruiting sessions sought out tables representing four-year institutions.

However students also requested information from representatives of technical schools, proprietary schools and various military branches.

There were also plenty of queries for Lavonda Malveaux, a parish resident who represented the Louisiana Office of Student Financial Assistance.

North Central student Kyra Oliney said the presence of having so many individuals available in one place was an almost perfect situation.

“It really helped me a lot. From (The University of New Orleans) I received a lot of details about my major,” Kyra Oliney said.

Chad Jones, LSU-Eunice institutional liaison, said parents asked him a variety of questions.

“The main question is what type of degrees do you offer. Parents also want to know the costs and the (campus) visitation days.”

Jones told Timothy Guidroz, who expressed an interest in video game design,  about a two-year LSUE-degree program in cognitive and integration technology.

Ava Hickman from the MACA in Opelousas, was at the Northwestern State University table, asking about her career choice of veterinary technician.

Port Barre students Dillon LeBlanc and Lauren Meche were also visiting with college recruiters, requesting more information about LeBlanc’s interest in software development and Meche’s desire to major in early childhood education.

District foreign language translator Jennifer Rivera Bell performed a different function at the event,

Bell, an Opelousas High graduate, accompanied several Spanish-speaking students to assist with the students’ inquiries.

“Some are going to college, while others are interested in trades. One came here and is interested in cosmetology. I am helping them with the questions and serving as sort of a bridge for the parents,” said Bell.

Northwest High student Devin Zachary was busy gathering information from various colleges about kinesiology.

With parents Darren and Jennifer Zachary nearby, Devin Zachary said he wants to major in a subject that keeps him connected in sports.

Grambling University advancement recruiter Cecil Holt said students came to him asking the basic questions about attending colleges.

“They want to know about majors, finances and scholarships,” said Holt.

Malveaux said LOSFA used to be a clearing house for the TOPS program, but now the agency handles all information concerning grants, scholarships and financial aid programs.

UNO recruiter Darrington Anderson said some students asked about campus safety, as crime statistics in New Orleans continue to escalate.

“I tell them (at UNO) they are going to a very safe campus located in Gentilly out on the Lakefront. There are a number of programs in place to assist students in addition to a newsletter with information that goes out,” Anderson said.  

St. Landry Parish High School students came to the Opelousas Civic Center prepared with questions as visions of their futures became a relevant topic Tuesday night. (Photograph by Freddie Herpin.)