Archive | Student Success RSS feed for this section

Student body president to attend AIPAC conference

13 Jan

Sydni Mitchell - SGA President

Sydni Mitchell, SFA’s student body president and graduate assistant in the Office of Student Affairs Programs, was recently offered a full scholarship to attend the American Israel Public Affairs Committee conference.

The annual conference, set for March 4-6, takes place in Washington, D.C. Mitchell is one of 200 student government presidents nationwide selected to attend, and the scholarship covers all costs for travel and the conference. More information about the AIPAC conference can be found at

Mitchell, a graduate student in the Master’s of Public Administration program, is also a former student member of the SFA Board of Regents.

“We are always thrilled to see our students receive opportunities like this,” Jamie Bouldin, assistant director for leadership and service, said. “Sydni will be able to make so many valuable connections and bring back great experience to use in her involvement at SFA.”


Involvement opportunities showcased at fair

13 Jan

The new year is a great time to take a chance and get involved in something new at SFA. The Involvement Fair is the perfect opportunity to see the wide variety of involvement opportunities available for students.

The fair begins at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 24, on the first floor of the Baker Pattillo Student Center. Student organizations will be separated by categories, and fair maps will be available at the Involvement Center in BPSC 1.204 during the event.

Organizations at the fair will represent academic and professional opportunities, cultural programs, Greek organizations, religious groups, and special interest organizations. There is something for everyone at SFA, and students are strongly encouraged to come explore their options and find their fit.

For more information, contact the Involvement Center at (936) 468-6721.

Former ODK President awarded prestigious scholarship

13 Jan

By Jamie Bouldin, assistant director for leadership and service

Jeff Briggs

Jeff Briggs, the president of SFA’s Circle of Omicron Delta Kappa in 2010-11, was recently awarded an Omicron Delta Kappa Foundation Scholarship.

The ODK Foundation chose 20 students out of more than 140 applicants to receive scholarships to help fund their graduate studies. Briggs, who graduated from SFA in 2011, is a first-year medical student at the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine in Fort Worth and will receive $1,000 toward his studies.

“We were thrilled to hear that Jeff had been awarded an ODK Foundation Scholarship,” Jamie Bouldin, assistant director for leadership and service, said. “SFA’s ODK members are an amazing group of students, and it is always encouraging when their accomplishments are honored by the ODK national office and foundation.”

Omicron Delta Kappa is SFA’s leadership honor society and is housed within the Office of Student Affairs Programs. Students interested in applying for membership in ODK should have a 3.0 or higher GPA and be a junior, senior or graduate student with leadership experience. Applications will be available Jan. 18 at

The Gathering

26 Aug
Student leaders at The Gathering

Student leaders at The Gathering

More than 70 student leaders gathered at SFA’s Piney Woods Conservation Center Aug. 23-24 for The Gathering, a retreat for student leaders from areas across campus to come together to collaborate on how they can work together to make SFA a better place.

Students represented the following areas:

  • Orientation
  • Omicron Delta Kappa
  • Student Activities Association
  • The BIG Event
  • Alternative Spring Break
  • Inter-Fraternity Council
  • Panhellenic
  • Traditions Council
  • Involvement Advisers
  • Student Publications
  • National Residence Hall Honorary
  • Residence Hall Association
  • Multicultural Greek Council
  • National Pan-Hellenic Council
  • Organization of Latin Americans
  • African Student Organization
  • Jack Camp
  • Lumberjack Cultural Association
  • Student Government Association
  • Fashion in Motion
The students brainstormed on issues they saw on campus and how they could make an impact in those areas, and ultimately decided as a group to focus on campus beautification. The students will be meeting regularly to follow up with each organization who committed to helping on this project and how they can move forward to make a difference on campus.
The retreat was put on by the Office of Student Affairs Programs and staffed by representatives from Student Activities, Leadership and Service, Greek Life, Orientation, Student Publications, Multicultural Affairs and Campus Recreation.

What to ‘pack’ in preparation for the big move

12 Aug

This is one of many articles from our Parent’s Newsletter, sent three times a year to parents of new and returning SFA students. To sign up to receive the newsletter, please click here

By Ralph Busby, Director of Counseling and Career Services

The time is at hand for students to leave home for university. Many parents attended orientation, and now all the planning, preparation, and last-minute decisions are almost complete. You may be reviewing your list and checking off items, which certainly brings a sense of accomplishment.

Here are a few last-minute “packing” suggestions for parents of college-bound students:

Help them pack a positive attitude by encouraging them to work hard, do their best and begin the quest from the very first day. It has been my observation that students often become so enamored with their newfound freedom that they neglect to take care of business – go to class and study. It may be that course syllabi state that exams will begin around the third or fourth week of the semester, and students sometimes believe that they can coast for two to three weeks before getting serious about studying. Upperclassmen learned that this plan does not bear fruit. Rather, it may lead to serious stress as students play catch-up when they realize that the first round of exams are closing in.

The second item to pack is a determination to connect with SFA and fellow students. Some students will attend Jack Camp, some will attend Jacks Back Welcome Week and others will just hang out and make friends. Those taking SFA 101 will attend the Freshman Convocation and witness all their fellow students assembled in one place in preparation for the beginning of the year. It will be helpful to encourage attendance at football games, where the excitement about the new year and becoming a Lumberjack becomes contagious. Participating in clubs and organizations is another great way for students to connect with the campus community and make friends. Other activities, such as programs at the Recreation Center, also are available and attract many students.

Another thing to encourage them to pack is the expectation that the transition will go well, but caution them that there may be some difficulties. During parent orientation, we discussed that a preferable tactic is to acknowledge their ability to develop strategies for dealing with difficulties that arise. Encourage your student to refer to the resources provided in the Orientation Handbook and ask questions of residence hall staff, who are always willing to point students in the right direction. The Academic Assistance and Resource Center is open for those needing help with classes, and the Counseling Center can help those feeling overwhelmed by homesickness. There are students, faculty and staff all over campus who are willing to assist.

Finally, pack abundant love. My wife and I concluded “MeMaw and PaPaw Camp” near the end of July and basked in the love and affection of four granddaughters. It is my observation that your children never become satiated with love. Tell them over and over how much they mean to you, how proud you are of them, and more than anything, tell them how much you love them.

Workshops can help students ‘ace’ their first year

12 Aug

This is one of many articles from our Parent’s Newsletter, sent three times a year to parents of new and returning SFA students. To sign up to receive the newsletter, please click here

By Jamie Bouldin, Assistant Director for Leadership and Service

One of SFA’s goals for its incoming students is “achieving college excellence.” To assist in meeting this goal, the Office of the Dean of Student Affairs has created the ACE Workshops, a one-day event designed to equip first-year students with the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in college-level reading, math and study skills.

The ACE Workshops will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 27, beginning in the Grand Ballroom on the second floor of the Baker Pattillo Student Center. Students can sign up by emailing or calling (936) 468-7249.

Attendees will be eligible for door prizes, including two book scholarships from Barnes & Noble, video game systems and SFA gear. Students must attend the entire four-hour block of activities to be eligible for door prizes.

Students will attend two workshops, choosing from “Acing College Math” with Dr. Keith Hubbard, “Acing College Level Reading” with Patricia Foster, and “Acing College Study Skills” with M.E. McWilliams. The keynote speaker is Dr. Lesa Beverly, an associate professor in mathematics and statistics. Lunch is included.

The ACE Workshops are offered only for first-year students beginning their first semester at SFA.