Community Relations

REIMAGINE

We are committed to REIMAGINE our community by intentionally investing in people, communities and neighborhoods to compel them to grow through providing resources, support and training.

REBUILD

We REBUILD through grants and fundraising to seed strategic initiatives that align with furthering the efforts of economic development, education, health, cultural wealth and city growth.

RECOGNIZE

We RECOGNIZE people, neighborhoods and communities who create or provide impact and promote system-wide change that moves our community to a position of national leader in economic and social progress. 

REVITALIZE

We are committed to the implementation of intentional efforts that are likely to REVITALIZE and lead to measurable increases in access to employment, living wage jobs, healthcare, supportive services, community amenities, transportation, quality and affordable housing while also remaining a strong proponent of these processes.

Timeline
We're making a difference in our communities!

2021

 

Susan Conn and Roger McCurry Education First Federal Credit Union Check Signing SETXFoodbank Check Signing HEB Check Signing NEMS Lunch with Dr. Evans First NEMS Stole Alumni affairs 2  First NEMS Stole2 Senior Engineering Project SETxFoodBankSimpson Keynote2 SETxFoodBankSimpson Keynote3  Rotary Check Signing for Martin Elem Taylor Cox McNair Scholars NEMS Lunch with Dr. Evans SETxFoodBankSimpson Keynote4 Simpson recognized by BISD Board
character day at charlton pollard simpson reads to charlton pollard Nursing Students Engineers Without Borders Aurora Maldonado Internship

2020

  • ExxonMobil donates to Lamar University's Office of Community Relations to open the fourth Cardinal NEST at Amelia Elementary School.
  • Lamar University Softball Team welcomes Charlton – Pollard Elementary reading millionaires and mathletes to the season-opening game. Charlton – Pollard Principal Valencia Greenwood and Counselor/ NEST coordinator, Kayla Wilson, threw out the first pitch.
  • SOAR (Student Occupationally and Academically Ready) launched PILOT Program at Charlton-Pollard's Cardinal NEST. Volunteers from Lamar University students, student-athletes and ExxonMobil volunteer together in small group guidance sessions. Working with the campus’ reading millionaires and mathletes, SOAR guided the students in reading, integrated technology, cultural awareness and inclusion and digital citizenship a curriculum designed and led by Charlton-Pollard's own, Kayla Wilson. 
  • Summer 2020 allowed for a member of the Advisory Committee to share their love of fishing with South Park Neighborhood children. "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime".
  • Cardinals SOAR provide virtual reading (ROAR) and tutoring (ELAR 4th and 5th grades and Math 5th grade). Cardinal SOAR support Cardinal NEST campus needs mondays - thursdays 9am - 3pm.
 SOAR virtual tutoring  exxonmobil 2019 nest at mlk and amelia  first pitch2020 SOAR welcomes charlton pollard reading millionaires and mathelettes to softball season opener Fishing Tourney20201 NHFishingTourney20202. NHFishingTourney3. NHFishingTourney4 NHFishingTourney5 NHFishingTourney6

2019

  • The 4th annual “Day in the Park,” event was held on August 3; it was rescheduled from the initially planned date of April due to a weather event. It was a very successful event, approximately 900 South Park residents participated.
  • The first ever in Southeast Texas "Innovative Learning Lab," a unique learning environment at Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary School was dedicated through a ribbon cutting.  The NEST was designed with former first lady, Nancy Evan's passion project in mind, the restoration of the Student quad as one of her first projects as the first lady. The quad is filled with historical oak trees where Lamar Cardinals go to relax and take in the beauty and peacefulness of the Lamar University Campus. This inspiring, safe and peaceful environment was recreated in the Innovative Learning Labs, sharing this safe, peaceful environment with the "Cardinals of Tomorrow."
  • The Rotary Club of Beaumont adopts the Cardinal NESTs as its their dedicated service project. Rotarians work with community relations staff and Lamar University student volunteers to set up each Cardinal NEST.
  • The Office of Community Relations expands to include Economic Development and Student Access by securing external funding for the development of additional "Innovative Learning Labs," better known as "The NEST," Navigating Excellence Success and Triumph.
  • External funding was secured for the dedication/ribbon cutting of the South Park Community Garden and 20 additional beds were installed for a total of 48. The Community Garden was dedicated in memory of former First Lady, Nancy Evans, and her love of gardening.
  • The Cardinal NEST campuses, Pietzsch-MacArthur, Blanchette Elementary and Charlton-Pollard Elementary Scholars' Mathletes and Reading Millionaires, are recognized by Big Red to all of Cardinal Nation at the football season opener.
  • Mascots, Big Red and LU soar over to the ribbon cutting for their NEST built at Blanchette Elementary,  continuing the program, “Bobcat Today/Cardinal Tomorrow.”
  • Community Relations offers South Park Scholars Student Success Workshops through Innovative Educators and the Office of the Vice Provost for Distance Learning.
  • SOAR is launched! SOAR is Students Occupationally and Academically Ready, a student commission for student access to higher education serving the Office of Community Relations. Lamar University student-athletes and service leaders volunteer through SOAR on all NEST  campuses. SOAR includes members of collaborative partners for NEST campuses allowing students from both BISD and Lamar University to grow in their articulation of transferable career readiness skills while building their professional network.
  • South Park Scholars are offered guest speakers from the community during their student success workshops for the 2019-2020 academic year. Guest speakers for Fall 2019 were Art Simpson, director of Recreational Sports and serves as co-chairman of SOAR; Tony Aguliar, director of Operation and Maintenance for the Beaumont Independent School District and Cindy Halloway, public and government affairs coordinator for ExxonMobil and SOAR Advisory Council Member.
  • Ribbon-cutting is held for the second Cardinal NEST at Blanchette Elementary extending the program, “Wildcats Today/Cardinals Tomorrow.”
  • Ribbon-cutting is held for the third Cardinal NEST at Charlton – Pollard Elementary extending the program, “Eagles Today/Cardinals Tomorrow.”
  • NEST campus principals and NEST liaisons are provided professional development workshops exploring the innovative technology offered in their campus NEST (Innovative Learning Labs) by Micheal Chism, sales consultant with Visual Techniques Inc. (VTI).
  • LU College of Nursing entering freshmen visit NEST campus, Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary School offering dental hygiene programs.
  • Lamar University hosts Beaumont Independent School District elementary and middle school campuses to experience men and women’s basketball season tip-off games. Approximately 3,000 B.I.S.D. elementary and middle school students, teachers and administrators cheer on the Cardinals at each game.
  • SOAR members from Tau Beta Sigma offer “Instrument Petting Zoo Night for all N.E.S.T. Campuses.
  • Alum, Erica Babino, author of “Rolling Into Peace, Speaking in Green,” returned to her alma mater, Lamar University, and the community of Pear Orchard to present her book to principals at Pietzsch – MacArthur, Blanchette and Charlton – Pollard Elementary campuses as well as the superintendents of Port Arthur Independent School District and Hamshire Fannett Independent School District. The book provides an innovative method to develop conflict resolution skills.
  • SOAR completes the Beaumont Independent School District required volunteer training. Lamar University Cardinals are ready to SOAR over to their NEST campuses and support their “Cardinals Tomorrow.”
  • South Park Scholar, Alejandro Gomez, Freshman, Mechanical Engineering major tours ExxonMobil with GSPNP committee member and SOAR advisory council member, Cindy Halloway, government and public affairs coordinator for  ExxonMobil.
  • Norman J. Bellard receives a Distinguished Community Service Award from the National Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi. Nominated by LU Chapter 95 for his dedication to their motto, “Let the Love of Learning Rule Humanity.”
  • South Park Scholar, Aurora Modalin, Junior and social work major, is inducted to LU Chapter 95 of the National Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi.
  • “A Night with the Doctor is hosted at Lamar University featuring Julius Erving, a National Basketball Association Legend as the keynote speaker for the Lamar University Men and Women Basketball Season Tip-Off Banquet.  Julius Erving spoke on the power of mentorship and the value he placed on those from diverse backgrounds that were critical to his development and who he is today. Approximately 600 community supporters were in attendance.
  • Community Relations partners with Lamar University Division of Global Diversity, Inclusion and Intercultural Affairs offered “A Native American Storyteller” to all three NEST campuses
  • Lamar University's staff senate holds book drive for Cardinal NEST campus, Pietzsch-MacArthur, in memory of former First Lady, Nancy Evans, and her dedication to the love of learning. 165 books were collected and donated.

Sout Park Scholar is awarded Phi Kapa Phi membersihp  Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary Students join Big Red and Dr Evans as Cardinal Nation Celebrates Reading Millionaires and mathlettes  Tommy and Pat Frank plaque for their sponsorship with Blanchette Elementary NEST Blanchette ribbon cutting with LU, community volunteers and students south park scholars begin student success workshops  south park scholars begin designing SOAR volunteers SOAR volunteers come together to volunteer at BISD NEST Campuses Tony Aguliar with BISD serves as Guest Speaker for south park scholar success meetings Charlton Pollard Elementary ribbon cuting NEST campus principals and NEST coordinators attend LU hosted technology training LU Nursing students volunteer at BISD NEST Campuses BIg Red Anita Frank and Norman Bellard at men and women Basketball season opening games Tau Beta Sigma student organization volunteers at all NEST Campuses offering Instrument Petting Zoo staff senate donate 164 books to NEST CampusesAlum Eria Babino release book Rolling into Peace Speaking in Green  a day in the park a norman bellard honored by LU chapter of Phi Kappa Phi for Sevice leadership award kite festival a  more families enjoying a picnic at kite festival Dr. Juilus irving and Norman Bellard Office of Community Relations Economic Development and Student Access is approved SOAR coordinates Native American Story Teller at all NEST Campuses 


2018

  • Carindal Nation Welcome the first of the Cardinal NEST initiative Mathletes and Reading Millionaires. The Scholars at Cardional NEST Campuses: Pietzch-MacArthur, Blanchette and Charlton-Pollard Elementary were extended a BIG RED Welcome at the launch of the LU Football Season and first home game. https://www.bmtisd.com/site/default.aspx?PageType=3&DomainID=100&ModuleInstanceID=8393&ViewID=6446EE88-D30C-497E-9316-3F8874B3E108&RenderLoc=0&FlexDataID=8228&PageID=2405
  • The Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee hosted the third annual "A Day in the Park" at Alice Keith Park.
  • Beaumont Independent School District recognized Lamar University as a “Valued Partner in Education.”
  • The Texas Association of School Boards recognized Lamar University’s partnership with Beaumont Independent School District campuses located in the greater South Park community.
  • The city of Beaumont’s concrete street resurfacing project on Jim Gilligan Way was completed facilitating a timely completion between the city engineer’s office and Lamar University.
  • TXDOT completed an exit ramp on Cardinal Drive for direct access to the LU campus at Rolfe Christopher, the future gateway to campus.
  • A formal school/business partnership with Beaumont Independent School District, specifically with Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary and South Park Middle School (located in South Park Community) was established.
  • The Office of Community Relations secured donations from community partners to develop an Innovative Learning Lab, the Cardinal NEST (Navigating Excellence Success and Triumph). The NEST was designed to bring Lamar University students and community partners together to provide career readiness programming through volunteers to the NEST. The intended goal was to innovative space for the campus teachers to use to spark or enhance a love of learning for BISD students.
  • Community Relations hosted the second annual, “Kite Festival and Family Picnic;” approximately 200 community members attended.
  • GSPNP members began hosting every other meeting off-campus in a community forum format in an effort to create resident engagement.
  • Through one of the first community forum-style meetings, it was determined that stop signs at the corner of Highland Avenue and Cardinal Drive feeder road would create a safer intersection.
  • Family Services of Southeast Texas bestowed the GSPNP with the Southeast Texas Family Services Bill Leger Family Advocate of the Year Award.
  • Community Relations expanded programs supporting "Cougar Today/Cardinal Tomorrow." Lamar University students and 2018 Southeast Texas Hispanic Society Queen read to Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary Cougars.
  • Lamar University Veterans student organization serve as keynote speakers for NEST Campus, promoting “Cougar Today/Cardinal Tomorrow” program at Pietzsch-MacArthur.
  • Lamar University faculty member offers a reading program to Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary on the value of service animals to children and the community.
  • Lamar University students volunteer to serve as judges at NEST campus, Pietzsch MacArthur Elementary, hosting the District UIL Competition.
  • Lamar University Department of nursing offers service to NEST campus, Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary School, through Service Learning Project.

Dr. Ken Evans and Norman Bellard are recognized by BISD for Business partnership Announcement for Day in the park lu basketball team participates in the day in the park  Norman Bellard and Teresa Simpson  Greater South Park Partneship Committee recognized for Business Partnership with BISD and NEST Project Ribbon cutting with Pietzsch-MacAurthur Elementary Rotary Volunteers help set up NEST at Pietzsch-MacArhtur Elementary  Audrey Collens joins Big Red for Ribbon Cutting at the NEST Dr. Ken Evans speaks at Dedication of the Community Garden to Former First Lady Nacy Evans  Community attends Kite Festival kite festival picnic enjoyed by families Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park Education First Federal Credit Union Supporting A Day in the Park community members enjoy snacks at the day in the park VITA Volunteers serve South Park Community LU College of Education Student reads to Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary Students lu student group veterans affairs serve as keynote speakers for Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary Veterans Day Program LU faculty member Sara Gubala and serve dog Kennedy ready to Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary Students LU College of Education Students  volunteer at BISD UIL District Meet Department of Nursing Student Volunteer at Pietzsch-MacArthur elementary


2017

  • In 2017, Entergy Texas invested $21 million in reliability improvements in the South Beaumont substation outside of LU’s campus.  This investment helped modernize equipment in the substation to improve reliability in the area. As part of the investments in the substation, Entergy also partnered with the LU to ensure the look of the substation fit with the University's long-term plans for the south campus entry.
  • Susan Conn McCurry and Roger McCurry donated $465,000 LU’s men and women’s locker rooms.  
  • Beaumont Health Coalition announced support for the GSPNP Committee and hosted the second annual Kite Festival and Dive-in Movie Pool Party at Lamar University Vernon Glass Practice Football Field.
  • “Cougar Today/Cardinal Tomorrow” partnership launched between Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary and Lamar University offering a successful education program/pep rally at Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary School; Lamar University senior administrators, athletic staff, cheerleaders and mascots were in attendance and all students, faculty and staff received t-shirts.  
  • Lamar University established the South Park Neighborhood Scholarship for incoming freshman, providing for the full cost of tuition, fees, room, board and books.
  • Several “small victories” were achieved to establish a safer environment in the South Park Community. Diversified events were established to appeal to the Latino population. (Latino enrollment at one of the largest elementary schools in Southeast Texas, Pietzsch-MacArthu, exceeds 40%.
  • The city of Beaumont completes a $1.1 million street resurfacing project in South Park.
  • Distinguished Alumni Susan Conn McCurry and Roger McCurry  a sponsor a Christmas bicycle giveaway at Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary School. Everyone of the 900 students receives a bicycle, approximately a $30,000 contribution by the McCurrys.

Empowerment Zone is established by the City of Beaumont for Greater South Park Community Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the ParkDr. PJ CouchCommunity Attends Kite FestivalDr. Ken Evans and Norman Bellard Awarded Bill Leger Family Advocates of the year Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Susan and Roger Conn-McCurry and Men Basketball celebrate bike donation to Pietzsch-MacArthur Elem Roger and Susan Conn-McCurry celebrate Donation of bikes to ever student at Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary  Dr. Ken and Nancy Evans


2016

  • Lamar University establishes a partnership with Beaumont Independent School District in support of its ROAR program. The reading program begins serving Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary children second-grade students.
  • The GSPNP hosts the second annual Day in the Park in the fall.
  • The City of Beaumont designates the South Park Neighborhood an Empowerment Zone with the goal to promote development, improve the local economy and enhance the quality of life for the citizens. The City of Beaumont also gives additional incentives: https://texasbusinessincentives.com/viewer/975cfb535beb934dc122e988fb7fb6a1/
  • Entergy awards a $75,000 grant for LED lighting for the South Park Neighborhood.
  • LU makes weekly math tutoring at South Park Middle School and Pietzsch – MacArthur Elementary available.
  • Beaumont Health Coalition supports the community by hosting the first ever Kite Festival and Dive-in Movie Pool Party.

Great South Park Community Committee Award for Service to Community    Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park    Former First Lady, Nancy Evans and Norman Bellard Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Dr. Jimmy Simmons and Friends play at Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park    Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park kite festival a


2015

  • The Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee forms and holds its first meeting in March.
  • Susan Conn McCurry and Roger McCurry contribute $1 million for a video board for the Montagne Center.
  • The South Park Neighborhood community garden is established in collaboration with Lamar University's Department of Sustainability.
  • On September 15, the newly established partnership committee hosts the first-ever community engagement to the Greater South Park Neighborhood.
  • Multiple community clean-up events are held.
  • The Texas Department of Transportation initiates ramp reversals and a beautification project on Cardinal Drive.

Dr. Ken Evans and Norman Bellard at A Day in the Park 1 million dollar gift in memory of C.W. and Dorothy Anne Conn by daughter Susan Conn McCurray Mens Basketball Scoreboard South Park Community Members working in the Day in the ParkDr. Jimmy Simmons plays his sax Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Community Clear up Greater South Park community   Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  3Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park    Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park Education First Federal Credit Union Supporting A Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park  Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park Community Members and members of the Greater South Park Neighborhood Partnership Committee  attend A Day in the Park