Vance awarded Deidre Cruse Memorial Scholarship

Staff Writer
Plaquemine Post South
Library Director Dannie Ball, scholarship recipient Jennifer Vance and Friends of the Public Libraries President Bethany Cardinal.

PLAQUEMINE - LSU journalism student Jennifer Vance is the second recipient of the Deidre Cruse Memorial Scholarship.

The fund is administered annually by the Friends of the Iberville Public Libraries, of which Cruse was a long-standing and very active member. She was an award-winning journalist with the Plaquemine Post South for 25 years passed away unexpectedly in February of 2012. The Friends decided to set up a scholarship in her name. $500.00 is granted yearly to a female student in her 2nd year of journalism study. Vance accepted an invitation to the Friends' September meeting during which members shared memories of Cruse.

Vance, originally from Haughton, is a student of the Manship School of Mass Communication at LSU with a concentration in broadcast journalism.

She hopes to pursue a career in sports journalism upon graduating. She is also an active member on campus as a volunteer for VolunteerLSU and works as a writer for an information technology services department on campus.

Upon receiving the award, Vance said, "It is an honor even to be considered and, as a college student, any monetary donation or award makes a big difference." Vance acknowledges Cruse's influence on political journalism saying, "I hope someday to be an inspiration to young women in journalism as she was."

"Deidre was an extremely important member of our organization, we still feel her loss deeply." Friends President Bethany Cardinal stated. "The scholarship is not just a friendly gesture of small-town friends. Her talent deserved a real tribute and her name should live on." noted Friends member Les Ann Kirkland.

The Friends of the Iberville Public Libraries is a non-profit organization dedicated to help support, promote and enhance the Iberville Parish library system, which is composed of the main library in Plaquemine and 7 additional branches located throughout the parish. Their Annual Book Sale is a popular fundraiser. They help sponsor various programs and events at the library throughout the year and provide supplemental monies, which enable the library system to purchase Summer Reading Program books and supplies. The Friends also donate some of the prize monies awarded at the library's annual Acadian Art Show.

The Friends group is actively seeking contributors who wish to add to the scholarship fund. Those interested are encouraged to contact Elizabeth Haynes at Iberville Parish Library Headquarters. She can be reached at 225-687-2520 or ehaynes@state.lib.la.us.