General to address UNO commencement 

Air Force Brig. Gen. Chad Franks, a University of New Orleans alumnus, will be the principal speaker at the university’s spring commencement ceremony May 13 in the Lakefront Arena.

Franks is vice commander of 14th Air Force, Air Force Space Command at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

A native of Metairie and graduate of Archbishop Rummel High School, Franks earned a bachelor’s degree in general studies from UNO in 1990.

He has served 27 years with the Air Force and logged more than 3,300 hours as a command pilot. He has deployed in support of military operations in Iraq and Kosovo. 

The Air Force Space Command is composed of 12,000 personnel with 28 weapon systems at 44 locations around the globe. 

Franks was a member of the Air Force ROTC program at UNO. Upon graduation, he entered the Air Force and has since been stationed at military posts across the country, including the Pentagon, and at Air Force Central Command in Qatar.

Med students raise funds for Camp Tiger

The LSU Health New Orleans Camp Tiger Benefit Auction, a fundraiser supporting a free, week-long summer day camp for children with special needs, will be held March 31.

The event will take place from 7 to 11 p.m. at Club XLIV in Champions Square adjacent to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. A general admission ticket is $50, purchased in advance. 

Camp Tiger is planned, organized, staffed and funded by first-year students at the LSU Health New Orleans School of Medicine. The students’ fund-raising efforts underwrite the cost of the camp, so it remains free to campers and their families. 

LSU medical students plan the benefit auction and volunteer their time to act as counselors and staff for the camp. More than 100 campers are expected to participate this year. The application deadline for the camp is April 7.

Camp Tiger was founded in 1985 by first-year students from the LSU School of Medicine. Since its inception, it has benefited nearly 2,000 children from the New Orleans and Baton Rouge areas.

Delgado partners with auto show

The Delgado Community College Automotive Department is partnering with the Wild Wheels Car Show, to be held March 17-19 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. As part of the partnership, the college will offer a Student Day on Friday, March 17.

The program offers local students the opportunity to learn firsthand about the custom and specialty automotive aftermarket from industry celebrities and leaders, as well as to receive V.I.P. early access to the show.

Last year, more than 350 high school students attended the show, formerly called World of Wheels, on Student Day.

Student Day will begin at 9:30 a.m. with a general meeting featuring short presentations by individuals in the custom and specialty automotive aftermarket.

The students then are given open access to the Wild Wheels show, allowing them to visit with the many vendors and car owners one-on-one before the show opens to the public at 4 p.m. 

The cost for participation in Student Day is $10 per person, which includes all activities and free admission to the show for the weekend.

To RSVP or learn more, contact George Torlage, a Delgado instructor and co-organizer of Student Day, at (504) 913-3721 or

Follow Della Hasselle on Twitter, @dellahasselle.