Nicholls State University and the Lorio Foundation announced in early December a $35,000 donation to benefit Stopher Gymnasium and the Nicholls Volleyball program. With the gift, Nicholls upgraded the sound system in Stopher Gym and added a new volleyball net.
Cam Morvant, chairman of the Lorio Foundation, noted the sound system will benefit all of the programs that take place in Stopher Gym, such as volleyball, men’s and women’s basketball and commencement.
“We look at what is going to be the overall benefit, is it going to benefit a small group or Nicholls as a whole,” Morvant explained. “The university has been very diligent in asking us for things that benefit a large group or large aspect of the campus. This is something they told us they needed, and it was something that we looked at as a board and said if that’s what they need, we’ll help them out. If we can be there to help and benefit the university and make it better, make its students better or make the community better, then that’s what we’re here for.”
The new net was installed earlier in the fall and used for home games against Southland Conference opponents. Nicholls Athletic Director Matt Roan said the net was a necessary addition because it is compatible with the portable court added in 2018.
“With this gift, we have become a better volleyball program,” Athletic Director Matt Roan said. “The players like playing on the portable court because it has much more give. They like jumping off of it and landing on it.”
The Lorio Foundation is a Thibodaux-based nonprofit. The Foundation has donated more than $3 million over the years to improve facilities on the Nicholls campus. They have impacted projects such as the resurfacing of tennis courts, renovating the steps at the Donald Bollinger Student Union and building a pavilion at Ayo Pool. •