SFA plans MLK Day of Service

13 Jan

NACOGDOCHES, Texas – The Stephen F. Austin State University offices of Student Affairs Programs and Multicultural Affairs will hold the third annual MLK Day of Service beginning at 10:30 a.m. Monday, Jan. 16, in the Twilight Ballroom of the Baker Pattillo Student Center.

The event will partner with the City of Nacogdoches Parks and Recreation Department for service projects at the city’s many parks and recreation facilities. The theme of the event is “Reflecting. Renewing. Leaving a Legacy.” About 150 student volunteers are needed to take part in projects such as park cleanup, painting, and landscaping. Participants will receive a free lunch and event T-shirt.

For the third year, SFA has received grant funding from the Corporation for National and Community Service to support the MLK Day programs. Numerous other colleges across the nation participate in the annual event.

The first MLK Day of Service at SFA in 2010 focused on helping Nacogdoches schools prepare for the new semester. This included painting benches, creating leadership-themed art projects and revitalizing landscaping. The 2011 event focused on projects at nursing homes and senior centers.

“It’s exciting that SFA students can be part of such a widespread movement to remember Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. through giving back to their community,” said Jamie Bouldin, assistant director for leadership and service at SFA. “By focusing on the city’s outdoor areas this year, the entire community will be able to see the impact of our students’ service.”

Bouldin said she hopes students will also pause to think about their own personal legacies, including the impact they will have at SFA and what they will leave behind after graduation.

Participating students will be assigned to teams as they arrive at the Twilight Ballroom. Groups will be chosen randomly to give students the opportunity to work with people with whom they don’t regularly interact. Spots will be assigned on a first-come, first-served basis, so Bouldin suggests arriving as close to 10:30 a.m. as possible to secure a spot.

“We want to accommodate everyone who wants to participate, but once the spots are full, they’re full,” Bouldin said.

Dr. Nina Ellis-Hervey, professor in the SFA human services department and school psychology program, will serve as keynote speaker for the MLK Day of Service opening ceremonies.

Congress passed legislation in 1983 to commemorate the life of civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr. In 1994, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which falls on the third Monday of each January, was named a national day of service and is sponsored by the Corporation for National and Community Service and the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change.

“We are so excited that students once again have the chance to make a difference in the community through the MLK Day of Service,” Bouldin said. “We hope this event continues to grow and benefit the community in many ways.”

In the case of inclement weather, the make-up day for this event will be Saturday, Jan. 21.

For more information, contact Bouldin at (936) 468-1088 or jfbouldin@sfasu.edu.

-SFA-

Contact:

SFA Public Affairs

(936) 468-2605

It’s not too late to turn in volunteer time sheets

13 Jan

By Jamie Bouldin, assistant director for leadership and service

It’s not too late for students to turn in their fall volunteer time sheets. The Office of Student Affairs Programs – Leadership and Service is still accepting records of students’ volunteer service for the summer 2011 and fall 2011 semester.

“Students are encouraged to turn in time sheets twice a year in order to give us an idea of how we’re progressing toward meeting our overall service-hour goal,” Jamie Bouldin, assistant director for leadership and service, said.

Time sheets are available here (http://www.sfasu.edu/studentaffairs/97.asp) and they can be e-mailed to sfavolunteers@gmail.com.

Hours are tracked each year beginning in March. Fall time sheets should include any community service that took place from March 2011 through the end of November 2011. For freshmen or transfer students, this can include hours served during high school or at other universities, as long as you are not receiving credit for these hours for the PVSA program at another institution.

Spring time sheets will track volunteer hours accrued from December 2011 to March 2012.

“Turning in the volunteer hours halfway through the year also helps students keep a more accurate record of their service,” Bouldin said. “When it’s March and you start trying to remember what you did in October, you end up either guessing or just leaving the service off your time sheet. By turning in time sheets now, you only have to worry about tracking your spring hours from this point on.”

The time sheets also help track which students and student organizations are eligible for the President’s Volunteer Service Award. The PVSA honors individuals who serve at least 100 hours and groups that serve at least 200 hours in one year. Honorees are invited to the annual ODK Leadership and Service Awards and given a certificate and pin.

“Students should remember that any amount of service, large or small, is very valuable, and we want to count it all,” Bouldin said. “If a student can only find time to do 10 hours of service each semester, that’s still 20 hours of service over the year that has gone to help their community or someone in need. Plus, if all SFA students found the time to give just a few hours of service, it would add up to tens of thousands of hours. Every little bit counts.”

However, Bouldin said, students have to turn in records of their service in order for the hours to be added to the overall count of SFA’s service hours.

“Even if your time sheet only has what feels like a few hours on it, we encourage you to submit it anyway,” Bouldin said. “It’s still an important and valuable contribution, and we want to know about it.”

Variety of activities offered at Campus Rec

13 Jan

If your student has resolved to improve his or her health or spend more time outdoors, getting involved in campus recreation activities is a great way to do that. SFA’s Campus Recreation Center offers a wide variety of activities for students.

Campus Recreation opens the spring semester with two big events, Zumbafest and Blizzard Beach Party.

Zumbafest is set for 5 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 17, in the Campus Recreation Center Courtyard. Zumba is a fusion of Latin and international music that features high energy dance training to tone and sculpt the body.  This “feel good” workout will leave you energized and ready for more.  Join us and our Zumba instructors for this fun workout!

Blizzard Beach Party is set for 8–10 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 19, in the Campus Recreation Center Courtyard and Outdoor Pool. Come enjoy this festive beach party in the middle of January!  Roast yummy s’mores over our fire pits or take an icy dip during the Polar Bear Plunge in the Outdoor Pool. The large capacity spa will open as well.

Campus Recreation’s Outdoor Pursuits programs have several trips coming up. For more information on any of these trips, contact Outdoor Pursuits at outdoorpursuits@sfasu.edu or (936) 468–6055. Upcoming trips include:

  • Mountain Biking at Tyler State Park  – Feb. 11
  • Guadalupe River Paddle – Feb. 24–26
  • Spring Break at Big Bend National Park – March 10–17
  • Fishing with SFA Bass Club – March 24
  • Easter Trip: Hiking and Mountain Biking in Palo Duro Canyon – April 5–8
  • Easter Trip: Horseshoe Canyon Climbing – April 5–8
  • Sea Rim Beach Trip – April 27–29

There are several important meetings and activities for Intramurals taking place early in the spring semester. These include:

  • General Officiating Meetings – 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 20, in the Recreation Center Meeting Room. This meeting will present officiating employment opportunities and answer questions about officiating.
  • Basketball Officiating Clinic – Jan. 23–26 in the Recreation Center Meeting Room. Learn to officiate basketball! No experience needed. We will teach you everything you need to know. Participants must attend all parts of the clinic.
  • Racquetball Doubles League Registration – Jan. 23–26 in the Recreation Center Lobby.
  • Men’s and Women’s Basketball Registration – Jan. 23–26  in the Recreation Center Lobby.

Campus Recreation offers variety of Homecoming activites

26 Oct

By Katy VanDunk – Promotions and Sponsorships Graduate Assistant

Campus Recreation offers several activities to engage students during Homecoming celebrations.

The Homecoming Tie Dye takes place from 3 to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 26, at the Student Rec Center Courtyard. Students will be able to tie dye a free Campus Recreation Homecoming shirt at the Rec Center.  Shirts will be provided, as well as tie dye instructions. Campus Recreation will wash the shirts after they are dyed, and students will be able to pick them up at the Rec Center until Friday, Oct.28.
The second annual Homecoming 5K Fun Run takes place Saturday, Oct. 29, beginning at the corner of Wilson Drive and Starr Avenue, across from the Tennis Complex. Runners will begin at 8 a.m., and walkers will begin at 8:10 a.m.

On-site registration will begin at 7 a.m.  All proceeds will benefit the Dr. Raymond Lee Worsham scholarship fund for campus recreation.  Prizes will be given to first and second place males and females (SFA associates), first and second place males and females (non-SFA sssociates), first and second overall “guess your time,” largest group participating, and best Homecoming-themed outfit.

For more information, please visit http://www.sfasu.edu/campusrec and click on the Campus Rec Alumni tab.

AlcoholEdu provides education on alcohol usage

26 Oct

By Beverly Farmer – Director of Student Activities

AlcoholEdu for College is a program that is designed to be given to an entire population of students, such as an entering first-year class. This method creates a learning experience that:

  • Motivates behavior change
  • Resets unrealistic expectations about the effects of alcohol
  • Links choices about drinking to academic and personal success
  • Helps students practice safer decision-making
  • Engages students to create a healthier campus community

With several published studies and randomized control trials documenting its efficacy, AlcoholEdu has been a critical building block for addressing the epidemic of high-risk drinking on America’s college campuses.

How well does this program work?  Since 2007, AlcoholEdu has enabled SFA to provide 4,970 students with a baseline of knowledge and decision-making strategies around alcohol use, translating to 12,425 hours of prevention education (based on average course time of 2.5 hours).

In Fall 2010, SFA students reported that AlcoholEdu…

69% – Prepared me to identify and/or help someone who has alcohol poisoning

69% – Helped me establish a plan for responsible decisions around alcohol

88%- Stimulated me to reflect on my personal attitudes and behaviors

90% – Changed my perceptions of others’ drinking related behaviors

The A-Team, a committee made up of faculty, administrators and students, provides educational opportunities throughout the year to help students make wise choices when it comes to their use or non-use of alcohol. This year, the A-Team sponsored an information booth and giveaway at tailgating, manned information tables at the involvement fairs, as well as during the week before Spring Break.  The group has given out more than 5,000 koozies and coasters with information on recognizing alcohol poisoning and the phone number for Driving Jacks, SFA’s safe ride program.

Alternative SFA Homecoming bonfire planned

26 Oct

NACOGDOCHES, Texas – Due to the extreme drought in East Texas, this year’s Stephen F. Austin State University Homecoming torchlight parade and bonfire will be modified to ensure safety without dampening the Lumberjack spirit surrounding the annual tradition.

The torchlight parade, which kicks off at 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28, at the SFA statue, will feature lanterns, glow sticks and other portable lights as opposed to the customary flaming torches. As always, students and alumni will join the SFA spirit teams and marching band as they proceed down Raguet Street and Starr Avenue to the bonfire site on the intramural fields.

The bonfire structure will not be lit this year, but it will be set aglow with electric lights, providing a spirited backdrop for the introduction of the Lumberjack football team and the SFA Homecoming king and queen. The a capella group Nota, season-one winner of the NBC show “Sing Off,” also will perform at the bonfire pep rally, which is scheduled to begin at 9:30 p.m.

“The homecoming bonfire is one of our most cherished traditions; however, we have consulted with local leadership with regard to this matter and are assured that the prolonged drought makes lifting the burn ban inadvisable,” said Dr. Adam Peck, dean of student affairs.

SFA students are sensitive to the fact that Texans have lost homes, businesses and, in some cases, their lives in recent wildfires throughout the state, he said. Members of the Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity, Student Activities Association and Traditions Council are working with university officials to plan an alternative bonfire celebration that allows for the expression of Lumberjack pride and Homecoming spirit without placing the campus or its neighbors in danger.

“I know that our campus community will be disappointed, but I also know everyone will be supportive of this decision because our consideration for others is so engrained in the campus culture,” Peck said. “We look forward to hosting the traditional bonfire and torchlight parade for Homecoming 2012.”

Another aspect of the SFA bonfire tradition, the Burn Shirts, will take on added meaning this year. During Homecoming week, students, faculty and staff are encouraged to discard apparel branded with the logos and names of other universities in exchange for free SFA T-shirts that read “Lumberjack Spirit Burns in My Soul!” This year, the discarded clothing will be donated to Texas wildfire victims.

The SFA Homecoming game against McNeese State University will kick off at 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29, at Homer Bryce Stadium.

Ride in style to the Chief Caddo game at Northwestern State

26 Oct

By Sydni Mitchell – Student Body President

Student Government Association is sponsoring a fan bus for students to ride to the Saturday, Nov. 19, SFA vs. Northwestern game.

The bus will meet at the commuter lot at 9:30 a.m. and will depart at 10 a.m. The bus will leave immediately after the game ends. All students are required to make a $10 refundable deposit when they sign up at the Involvement Center, located on the first floor of the Baker Pattillo Student Center. This deposit will be returned to them, unless they do not show up and do not properly notify SGA first.

All students must purchase their own tickets for the game. These may be purchased through the SFA ticket office on the first floor of the student center.

Seats are limited, so encourage your student to sign up today! For more information please e-mail SGA at sga@sfasu.edu or call (936) 468-3500.