UNO grad student gets $3,000 music award

A graduate student in jazz studies at the University of New Orleans has been named the 2015-16 ASCAP Louis Armstrong Scholar by the New York-based Louis Armstrong Educational Foundation Inc.

The $3,000 award is made to a graduate student in jazz studies who demonstrates excellence in scholarship and creating original works.

Oscar Rossignoli, the recipient of the award, is a native of Honduras and an accomplished pianist and composer in both jazz and classical music. He began studying classical music when he was 6. In high school, he discovered jazz and immediately began writing and performing his own compositions.

Rossignoli earned an undergraduate degree in piano performance at LSU, where he amassed a number of accolades.

Since enrolling at UNO, he has become an in-demand player in New Orleans, performing with Jason Marsalis, Bill Summers, Christian Scott, James Singleton, Brian Seeger, Brad Walker and others.

He will be honored at the ASCAP Foundation’s annual award ceremony in December at Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York City.

Loyola students get funds to study abroad

Loyola University junior Juli Smith is intrigued by Taiwan’s language and culture and has a special interest in studying Taiwanese sign language. Malaika Lucien, also a junior, wants to spend a year studying business and perfecting her French, which she has grown up speaking. Junior Sarah Willey seeks to immerse herself in Rabat, Morocco, studying in both French and Arabic.

Those hopes will become reality thanks to three prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarships awarded to the Loyola students.

The Gilman scholarship program offers awards to students who are receiving Federal Pell Grant funding at a two- or four-year college or university. Since 2001, more than 16,000 students nationwide have used the Gilman scholarship to study in 142 countries. The program encourages students to choose study-abroad destinations outside of Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand.

The three Loyola students were selected from among 860 applicants from 332 colleges and universities across the U.S.

Smith, an international business major, was awarded $5,000 to study in Taiwan during the full 2015-16 academic year. She will study at Providence University.

Lucien, a finance and political science double major, was awarded $5,000 to study at the ESCE, a prestigious business school in Paris.

Willey, a contract major in international development, was awarded $5,000 to study in Morocco.

Study shows Tulane has $1 billion impact

A new economic impact study shows that, as the largest private employer in New Orleans, Tulane University has a more than $1 billion annual impact on the Louisiana economy and a more than $982 million impact in the New Orleans region.

The school generates about 11,800 direct and indirect jobs within the state, including more than 11,500 jobs in the New Orleans area, according to the report, compiled by the New York City economic development firm Appleseed.

“Tulane University has a unique and vital role in the New Orleans community not only as its largest private employer and a major research institution, but also as a significant source of ‘brain gain’ for the region,” Tulane President Michael Fitts said.

“Our students come from across the country and, after completing their studies, many choose to stay to start their own ventures or continue their careers in the region.”

The study calculated Tulane’s economic impact using the university’s fiscal year 2013 expenditures in salaries, purchasing, construction, research funding and operational costs as well as income created by student and visitor spending and ancillary services.