Gift to LSU College of Music & Dramatic Arts Positions LSU as National Leader in Music Therapy
BATON ROUGE – LSU alumni Ava Leavell Haymon and Cordell Haymon of Baton Rouge have made a $1.2 million gift to the LSU College of Music & Dramatic Arts to fund an endowed chair in music therapy, making LSU a leader in creating such a position. The Haymons’ gift, which will be eligible for $800,000 in competitive matching funds from the Louisiana Board of Regents, will establish the first music therapy program at a public university in Louisiana.
As an endowed gift, providing year-after-year funding in perpetuity, the Ava and Cordell Haymon Chair in Music Therapy enables the College of Music & Dramatic Arts to offer a new degree program in a revolutionary field of study. The Bachelor of Music in Music Therapy will leverage an interdisciplinary approach, enriching the learning experience of Music & Dramatic Arts students by incorporating curricula from the College of Science and College of Humanities & Social Sciences.
The Haymons said of their decision to make this historic gift, “We have a strong belief in art therapies of all kinds, and we’re hoping that this will spread to other departments at LSU and benefit the entire university and also the state.” The Haymons shared additional comments about their gift in a video available online at http://fierceforthefuturecampaign.org/stories/campaign-news.
The LSU Music Therapy program will intertwine with related efforts of local community health partners, including Baton Rouge General Medical Center and The Emerge Center.
“We are incredibly excited for the establishment of a new endowed chair in music therapy,” said Todd Queen, dean of the LSU College of Music & Dramatic Arts. “Music Therapy is a rapidly growing and important area of study, linking across many different academic disciplines and our society. This generous endowment by the Haymon family ensures LSU and our community health partners will be at the forefront of research and techniques in this cutting-edge field.”
Ava Leavell Haymon earned her master’s degree in English from LSU in 1967. Cordell Haymon is a 1968 graduate of the LSU Paul M. Hebert Law Center. The couple has supported LSU philanthropically for more than 35 years.
Gifts like the Haymons’ most recent investment in LSU transform education to improve health and well-being and advance arts and culture. Their historic commitment is part of LSU’s $1.5 billion Fierce for the Future Campaign, the largest campaign for higher education in the history of Louisiana. Fierce for the Future unites LSU’s campuses statewide in pursuit of a common goal: to generate solutions for the people in Louisiana that hold the promise of making profoundly positive impacts around the world.
To learn more, please visit http://fierceforthefuturecampaign.org.
Ava and Cordell Haymon Chair in Music Therapy (video)
Contact Ernie Ballard
LSU Media Relations
LSU College of Music & Dramatic Arts