Stephen F. Austin State University
|Stephen F. Austin State University|
|Motto||Striving For Personal Excellence In Everything That We Do|
|Established||1921 (classes began in 1923)|
|Type||State university, public|
|President||Dr. Baker Pattillo|
|Provost||Dr. Richard Berry|
|Location||Nacogdoches, Texas, USA|
|Campus||Urban, 406 acres (Main Campus)|
|Colors||Purple, White and Red
|Nickname||Lumberjacks and Ladyjacks|
|Affiliations||Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Southland Conference|
Stephen F. Austin State University (commonly SFA) is a public university located in Nacogdoches, Texas, United States. Founded as a teachers' college in 1923, the university was named after one of Texas' founding fathers, Stephen F. Austin. Its campus resides on part of the homestead of another Texas founding father, Thomas Jefferson Rusk. Stephen F. Austin is one of four independent public universities in Texas (i.e., those not affiliated with one of Texas' six university systems). Coordinates:
Stephen F. Austin offers more than 120 areas of study, including more than 80 undergraduate majors, nearly 60 graduate degrees, and three doctoral programs. Stephen F. Austin offers classes through six colleges, and houses one of only two schools of forestry in the State of Texas (and the only forestry college in the timber-producing East Texas region).
During the 2007-08 academic year, there were 1,732 degrees awarded. Of those degrees, 1,416 (82%) were undergraduate, 301 were post-graduate (17%), and 15 (1%) were doctoral.
In addition to the main campus which is located on 430 acres, the university maintains a 642-acre (2.598 km2) agricultural research center for beef, poultry, and swine production and an equine center; an observatory for astronomy research, an 1,072-hectare (approximately 2,649-acre) experimental forest in southwestern Nacogdoches County and a 25.3-acre (102,400 m2) forestry field station on the Sam Rayburn Reservoir.
Since 2007, Stephen F. Austin has served as the headquarters of the Association for Business Communication. It is also the home of the National Center for Pharmaceutical Crops, which in 2011 discovered a potential cancer-fighting agent from the extract of giant salvinia, one of the world's most notorious invasive species.
- Alton W. Birdwell (1923–1941), for whom Birdwell Plaza is named
- Paul Boynton (1942–1958), for whom the Communications Building is named
- Ralph W. Steen (1958–1976), for whom the on-campus library is named
- William R. Johnson (1976–1990), for whom the SFA Coliseum is named
- Donald Bowen (1990–1991)d
- William J. Brophy (1991–1992) (interim)
- Dan Angel (1992–1999)
- Roland Smith (1999–2001) (interim)
- Tito Guerrero (2001–2006)
- Baker Pattillo (2006–present), for whom the SFA Student Center is named
In tribute to the forestry industry, which is a major component of the area's economy, the men's athletic teams are called Lumberjacks, and women's teams are known as Ladyjacks. All of SFA's athletic teams participate in the Southland Conference which hosts teams from the states of Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Oklahoma. Stephen F. Austin's color is Purple, with red sometimes used as an accent color.
Stephen F. Austin sports teams participate in NCAA Division I (Football Championship Subdivision) for football in the Southland Conference. SFA's football team earned a berth into the FCS playoffs in 2009, which was the first for the university since 1995. The team also earned a playoff berth in 2010, marking the first time in the program's history that the team had reached the playoffs in consecutive seasons. The 2010 season also marked the first time that the school had won an outright conference championship since 1989. Stephen F. Austin's only bowl appearance was the 1973 Poultry Bowl, in which the team defeated Gardner-Webb 31-10 in Gainesville, FL.
- The annual Parents Day is one of the largest student run programs on the campus of SFA. Parents, friends and family members of students visit the campus every fall for a day of activities and school spirit. Parents Day is sponsored by the Residence Hall Association in conjunction with the Housing and Residence Life Departments.
- The University's main rivals are Sam Houston State University and Northwestern State University.
- SFA Rugby Fest is a popular event that takes place every year. Many schools in the region show up to play in this tournament.
- Every year at Homecoming a bonfire is lit by members of the organization that has the most points earned in a series of competitions leading up to the Homecoming celebration. The bonfire is built by the members of Alpha Phi Omega (national service fraternity). Preceding the lighting of the bonfire, a "Torchlight Parade" is held, where students walk through campus with lights to the Homecoming Pep Rally.
- The Student Activities Association distributes Homecoming Shirts by allowing students to trade in other university-affiliated garments. Participants get new SFA shirts, and the used trade-ins are burned in the Homecoming bonfire.
- The Sawyers were created in 1927 as the first men's social organization. In November 1960, the Sawyers adapted Delta Sigma Phi fraternity. They were the first group to have a reserved section in the stands at football games, which was requested by Homer Bryce, for whom the stadium is named. The Sawyers began the tradition of bringing axe handles to the football games and using them as noise makers/spirit sticks. The Purple Haze Inc. copied the idea and tradition of the axe handle in 2002.
- The Student Government Association host its annual Watermelon Bash each summer. Watermelons are iced in the fountain around the statue of Stephen F. Austin in the center of campus, and the university president, deans and other administrators help distribute watermelons slices to students and other members of the campus community.
- It is considered "bad luck" for an undergraduate student to walk through the Old Stone Fort. Rumor has it that if a student does, he/she will not graduate. This rumor, however, has been proven false.
Notable alumni and faculty
Points of interest and notable campus buildings
- Mast Arboretum
- Old Stone Fort Museum built in 1779 by Antonio Gil Y'Barbo, the earliest Spanish settler of Nacogdoches, and was rebuilt on campus. It is now a museum for the public to visit:
- The Planetarium
- The Observatory
- SFA Art Galleries
- Griffith Gallery
- The Art Center
- Ralph W. Steen Library: 
- The AARC, Academic Assistance and Resource Center, is located on the first floor of the Ralph W. Steen Library, and offers free tutoring to Stephen F. Austin State University students: 
- The ETRC, East Texas Research Center, is located for public use on the second floor of the Ralph W. Steen Library:
- The East Texas Historical Association is based on the Stephen F. Austin campus.
- As of June 30, 2009. "U.S. and Canadian Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year 2009 Endowment Market Value and Percentage Change in Endowment Market Value from FY 2008 to FY 2009" (PDF). 2009 NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments. National Association of College and University Business Officers. Retrieved February 5, 2010.
- US News & World Reports
- "SFA earns first NCAA bid, Texas and A&M also in".
- Stephen F. Austin State University
- SFA Athletics
- SFA Alumni Association
- The Pine Log – campus student newspaper
- East Texas Digital Archives & Collections Hosted and maintained by East Texas Research Center at Steen Library