NACOGDOCHES, Texas — The 29th annual Nacogdoches County’s Opportunity for a Better Learning Experience banquet will be held at 6 p.m. Monday, March 30, in the Grand Ballroom of the Baker Pattillo Student Center at Stephen F. Austin State University.

Nearly 200 students were invited to attend this year’s banquet, which will honor Nacogdoches County high school seniors who chose a more rigorous recommended or distinguished program of study in their high school courses and completed a service project.

“The members of the Nacogdoches County Chamber of Commerce have long known that their investment in the youth of this county reaps benefits for the city and county,” said Dr. Judy A. Abbott, chair of the education committee at the Chamber of Commerce and dean of the James I. Perkins College of Education at SFA. “Recognizing seniors from across the county communicates to the students and to their family members that this community invests in its youth.”

Students will receive a custom NOBLE Scholar medallion to wear at graduation, as well as a certificate honoring their achievement. NIBCO has generously sponsored the medallions again this year.

Banquet silver-level sponsors include Nacogdoches Independent School District, Nacogdoches Police Department and Two Fifteen Consulting. Banquet bronze-level sponsors include Austin Bank, Texas N.A. – Nacogdoches, BancorpSouth, BXS Insurance, Central Heights ISD, Chireno ISD, Commercial Bank of Texas N.A., Cushing ISD, Douglass ISD, Garrison ISD, Brent and Lorelai Gotcher, Lee Container Corporation, Martinsville ISD, Nacogdoches Area United Way, Regents Academy, Ruckel Insurance and Financial Group, and Woden ISD.

“These Chamber of Commerce members and school districts have gone beyond their chamber membership fees to support the banquet and recognition of seniors every year,” said Barbara Holl, operations vice president for the Chamber of Commerce. “We appreciate their help in rewarding the county’s hardworking scholars.”

A parents reception will be held in the Twilight Ballroom starting at 6 p.m. Light hors d’oeuvres will be served. Representatives from Workforce Solutions, as well as SFA’s ROTC program and other SFA groups, will be available to discuss post-high-school career opportunities and ways to help ensure student success. Parents will then join the students at 6:45 p.m. for the medallion presentation and a keynote address by Dr. Scott Gordon, SFA president.

Nacogdoches County NOBLE Scholars are eligible to apply for one of 25 $1,000 scholarships to SFA provided by Citizens 1st Bank, The Daily Sentinel and Walls Foundation. Other scholarship sponsors include Etech; Fairchild, Price, Haley & Smith; Laird Funeral Home; and SERVPRO of Lufkin/South Nacogdoches County. Students can obtain scholarship applications from their high school counselors, at the banquet or from

NOBLE is a program of the Chamber of Commerce education committee, as well as the local business community. The chamber’s education committee also sponsors Great Expectations, a program that brings local business leaders to county schools to encourage students to take advanced courses, which will better prepare them for the workplace and life. The education committee includes school counselors and administrators, SFA faculty and staff members, and members of the Chamber of Commerce.

For more information about the banquet, contact Holl at (936) 560-5533 or