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Former President Bush to speak at Louisiana College centennial

PINEVILLE, La. (BP)–Former President George H.W. Bush will be the featured speaker for Louisiana College’s centennial celebration Oct. 26, college President Joe Aguillard announced Aug. 22.

“The opportunity to have President George Herbert Walker Bush is an indescribable event in the life of Louisiana College,” Aguillard said in a news release. “His presence on our campus endorses the values and belief system that our college is pledged to fulfill and marks the first time in our 100-year history that a United States president has graced our institution in this capacity.”

Bush is scheduled to address the student body at the weekly 10:30 a.m. chapel service in Guinn Auditorium on the Pineville campus. He also will be the speaker at a scholarship luncheon at the Riverfront Center in Alexandria.

Louisiana College, with an enrollment of 1,100, is affiliated with the Louisiana Baptist Convention.

Aguillard described Bush’s scheduled visit “one of many miraculous events occurring on our campus, a priceless gift to our student body and an acknowledgement of God’s grace over our campus.”

“We invite all of Louisiana to join us at Louisiana College in welcoming one of the greatest living figures in our nation’s history, President George H.W. Bush, to the ‘Pride of Louisiana Baptists,’ Louisiana College,” Aguillard said.

Trustee chairman Tim Johnson said, “This will truly be a red-letter day for Louisiana College.

“For nearly a century, Louisiana College has prepared young men and women intellectually and spiritually to minister to the world. It is monumental to have a world leader, such as former President Bush, acknowledge Louisiana College’s tireless commitment to Christian values and ideals.”

Johnson credited Aguillard, the Louisiana College administrative staff, U.S. Sen. David Vitter and U.S. Rep. Rodney Alexander and others on Louisiana’s congressional delegation for helping arrange the former president’s visit.

“This visit shows the administration and Board’s commitment to excellence as a Bible-based, Christ-centered liberal arts institution of higher education,” Johnson said.

Louisiana College, on its website, recounts that it was founded on Oct. 3, 1906, as the successor to two earlier Louisiana Baptist schools, Mt. Lebanon University and Keatchie Female College. The first, a men’s school founded in 1852 by the North Louisiana Baptist Convention, was located in the community of Mt. Lebanon. The women’s college, founded in 1857 by the Grand Cane Association of Baptist Churches, was located in the community of Keatchie. After various financial struggles, both schools came under control of the Louisiana Baptist Convention in 1899.

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