Stephen F. Austin State University (SFA) was founded in 1923 as a teacher’s college and received university status in 1969. The school is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and identifies its mission as being “to provide students a foundation for success, a passion for learning and a commitment to responsible global citizenship in a community dedicated to reaching, research, creativity and service.” It is classed as a Master’s College and University I by the Carnegie Institute.
Stephen F. Austin has academic programs at both the undergraduate and graduate level. There are 7 colleges: the College of Fine Arts and Sciences, the Nelson Rusche College of Business, the James I. Perkins College of Education, the College of Fine Arts, the Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture, the College of Liberal and Applied Arts, and the College of Sciences and Mathematics.
Bachelor’s degrees are offered in a variety of fields within the various academic colleges. Degrees at the bachelor level can be received in areas such as accounting, animal science, art history, communications, criminal justice, dance, English, economics, forestry, geography, geology, interior design, kinesiology, management, mathematics, nursing, physics, public administration, social work, Spanish, and theater.
Stephen F. Austin’s graduate programs offers approximately 40 distinct degrees. These include master’s degree programs in accounting, art, counseling, English, forestry, business, music, education, social work, and chemistry. Doctoral degrees are offered in educational leadership, school psychology, and forestry.
Most Popular Fields of Study
Stephen F. Austin has a School of Honors to recognize the university’s best and brightest. Students who seek admission to the program as freshmen need to meet the following requirements: minimum ACT composite score of 27 (note including writing or minimum SAT reasoning score of 1220 (not including writing). Current SFA students and incoming transfer students must have a minimum 3.25 cumulative GPA. Once admitted to the School of Honors, students will enjoy smaller classes, early registration, have the option of living in a Wisely Hall (a “quiet dorm” with larger rooms), participate in extracurricular activities with other Honors students, and use the computers in the Honors Suite.
The College of Liberal and Applied Arts sponsors an International Studies Minor, with four required courses and a choice of electives. The purpose behind the program is to foster awareness of the vital role that international relations play in today’s world and the world of tomorrow. The English Language Institute helps international students with academic English, conversational English, and the cultural transition that all such students face when coming to the United States.
Stephen F. Austin encourages prospective freshman students to apply during their senior year of high school. Applications can be submitted online. Students enrolled in high school at the time of application will need to have their final, official high school transcripts sent after graduation to the Admissions Office.
As part of their application, students should submit ACT or SAT test scores. As part of being adequately prepared for college-level coursework, students should have completed the Recommended High School Program or the Distinguished Achievement Program requirements. An admissions counselor or high school guidance counselor can work with a student to ensure that one of these requirements has been met.
Students in the top 10% of their class are admitted with no minimum SAT or ACT requirements. Those who graduated outside the top 10% but within the first 25% must score at least 850 on the SAT or 17 on the ACT. Students graduating in the bottom quarter of their high school class can potentially be admitted after a careful review of their academic file.
Transfer students students must have attended an accredited institution and earned an overall GPO of at least 2.0. The university can exercise its discretion as to which credits to accept for transfer. Some programs may have additional requirements and expectations. International applicants must demonstrate both English proficiency and financial ability to cover their expenses while attending SFA. Prospective international students are strongly encouraged to contact the International Programs office for more information.
Students applying to the graduate programs at Stephen F. Austin State University should consult the individual department and/or school to which they are applying for specific application requirements and program deadlines. General requirements that apply to all programs include submission of GRE or other appropriate test scores (such as the GMAT) and a bachelor’s degree with a grade point average of 2.5.
Tuition at Stephen F. Austin State University is competitive and affordable for Texas residents. Students applying from out of state and graduate students have higher costs. By agreement, students from Arkansas and Louisiana pay reduced out-of-state tuition.
Financial aid is available in the form of grants, scholarships, and loans. Work-study programs are also available for eligible students. Students who seek financial aid will need to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) either online or on paper. Federal grants include the Pell Grant, the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG), and the TEACH Grant. State grants include the Texas Public Education Grant (TPEG) and the Texas Grant. Meanwhile, the university makes available the Purple Promise and Lumberjack grants.
A number of academic and departmental scholarships are available; students who graduate in the top 10% of their class, for example, are automatically awarded the Academic Excellence Scholarship. This particular scholarship can be renewed for up to three more years.
Graduate students may also receive financial aid in the form of teaching or research assistantships, including a stipend and a waiver of some or all of their tuition and other fees. Graduate students should consult with their individual department about the availability and requirements of assistantships and fellowships.
Student Financial Aid Details
Student life at Stephen F. Austin includes opportunities to participate and create a sense of community in a diverse range of activities and organizations. There are fraternities and sororities, academic and professional groups, religious organizations, cultural organizations, political groups, along with special interest groups such as the Aikido Club, the Writers’ Guild, and Students for Environmental Awareness.
The College of Fine Arts has gallery shows and exhibits. There are a number of musical ensembles on campus, including bands, madrigal singers, and a chamber orchestra. The Theater Department stages as many as four or five plays each year.
Some of the traditional events that occur annually on campus are Homecoming, tailgate parties at football games, the Watermelon Bash, and SpringFest. The campus is also home to a 19-acre arboretum.
Student Enrollment Demographics
Student Graduation Demographics
Stephen F. Austin is an NCAA Division I School in multiple sports, and teams compete in the Southland Conference. Men’s sports include baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, and track and field. Women’s sports include basketball, cross country, equestrian, soccer, softball, tennis, track and field, and volleyball. The sports teams are supported by a spirit squad, which includes a co-educational cheerleading squad, an all-women’s squad, and a pom squad. The team nickname is the Lumberjacks (women are the Ladyjacks).
Dating back to 1960, one of the university’s most interesting traditions is the annual football contest with nearby Northwest State University of Louisiana, in which the winner gets the 7½ foot wooden statue of Chief Caddo, a legendary Indian chief.
Athletes participate in the NCAA CHAMPS/Life Skills Program, which assists students with transitions to a post-college non-athletic career and encourages community service.
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