Starting in 1984 as a small publication, Lamar State College-Orange’s journal of the arts has grown from a small student publication to one including the work of LSC-O’s faculty and staff, as well as members of the community.  Originally a 24-page publication, the journal contains 72+ pages and is now an annual journal instead of a semester publication offered each Fall and Spring. Cardinalview was the original title of the publication and in 1999 was renamed the Cypress Branches when the institution’s name switched from Lamar University at Orange to Lamar State College-Orange.

The Cypress Branches has evolved over the years. The journal was once edited by students but is currently coordinated by faculty member, Dr. Arlene Turkel.  Cypress Branches is no longer just a literary journal but is a Literary/Artistic Journal of Lamar State College-Orange. In 2007, submissions by staff, faculty and community members were encouraged and in 2006 an awards ceremony was instituted so winners could be publicly recognized by the school.

Fall 2016 will bring another step forward for the Cypress Branches. “Branching Out”, an art contest for Orange County and Southwest Louisiana high school seniors, will debut. Prizes for the high school students will include scholarships and award ribbons.  The theme of the contest is “Reading is Simply Everything” and all entries should reflect the theme. Submission deadline is February 1, 2017.

Art teachers and principals will receive information about the contest in August or students can find information on the LSC-O Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/LamarOrange . For more information about the contest, contact Whitney Richard at (409) 882-3955 or whitney.richard@lsco.edu.