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Monday, Dec. 7

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This Week's Calendar

Tuesday, Dec. 8
Men's basketball vs. Henderson State University
7 p.m.
William R. Johnson Coliseum

Wednesday, Dec. 9
Women's basketball vs. Texas Christian University
TBA
Fort Worth

Saturday, Dec. 12
Men's basketball vs. Arkansas Tech University
6 p.m.
William R. Johnson Coliseum

Saturday, Dec. 19
Men's basketball vs. Our Lad of the Lake University
5 p.m.
Shelton Gym

Women's basketball vs. Rice University
9 p.m.
William R. Johnson Coliseum


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"SFA Today" is published by University Marketing Communications Monday through Friday (except for holidays) during the fall and spring semesters, and on Mondays only during the summer. Items must be received by noon prior to the day of desired inclusion.

To submit items to "SFA Today," use the online form or email sfatoday@sfasu.edu. The announcement should apply to a significant number of faculty and/or staff members.

Stephen F. Austin State University
Nacogdoches, Texas
University Marketing Communications | ©2015

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Purple Santa releases 'Nice' list

This year’s SFA Purple Santa Toy Drive was the largest ever!

In total, 63 departments participated, which is 16 more than last year. Because of the generosity of SFA faculty and staff members, more than 778 toys, 123 more toys than last year, were collected. The toys have been donated to Toys for Tots to help children in Nacogdoches have a very happy holiday.

If Santa’s sleigh passed you by but you’d still like to participate, feel free to drop off a toy by 5 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 9, in the Office of the Dean of Student Affairs, Baker Pattillo Student Center, Room 3.105.
 
See which departments made the "Nice List" here.

News & Announcements

Holiday safety tips

As the holiday season fast approaches, the SFA Environmental Health Safety and Risk Management Department would like to remind everyone to have a happy and safe holiday. While decorations bring joy to the home and workplace, they can also be very dangerous if not used correctly. According to The U.S. Fire Administration, the holiday season claims the lives of more than 400 Americans, injures 1,650 more and causes more than $990 million in damage.

By following some simple precautionary tips, the chances of an incident may be greatly reduced.
Read More


Floral display opens this week

A variety of floral designs created by floriculture students in SFA's Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture will be on display from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 10, in the Agriculture Building, Room 118.

The theme for the Fall Floral Design Exhibit is "Fairy Tales." All designs will be available for purchase via silent auction.

SFA Faculty Senate to host new-faculty forum

New SFA faculty members are invited to join the Senate Strategic Planning Committee for the New Faculty Forum, scheduled for 9 to 11 a.m. Friday, Dec. 11, in the McGee Business Building, Room 483. Coffee and donuts will be served at the event.

All new and recently hired faculty members are invited to discuss their semester, how the senate can help them succeed at SFA and voice their concerns to the committee.

The SFA Faculty Senate will host a series of faculty forums throughout the spring semester. The series will focus on topics including assessment, faculty development, policy concerns and more. Committee members include: Dr. J.D. Salas, associate professor of music; Dr. Karen Embry-Jenlink, professor of secondary education; Dr. Kimberly Welsh, associate professor of elementary education; Dr. Joey Bray, assistant professor of agriculture; Dr. Janice Hensarling, assistant professor of nursing; and Dr. Dana Cooper, associate professor of history.

SFA Gardens Lecture Series to feature Dr. Dave Creech

SFA Gardens will host the monthly Theresa and Les Reeves Lecture Series at 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 10, in the Ina Brundrett Conservation Education Building at the Pineywoods Native Plant Center, 2900 Raguet St. in Nacogdoches. Dr. Dave Creech, SFA Gardens director, will present "Special Trees of SFA Gardens."

There are many trees at SFA Gardens that are the largest, the oldest or the only one of their kind, which is a big part of what makes the gardens special to horticulturists across the South. Creech will saunter through a lineup of special trees that are garden worthy, that have stood the test of time, are Texas tough and deserve a bigger place in the landscapes of the South.

The Theresa and Les Reeves Lecture Series is held the second Thursday of each month at the Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture's SFA Pineywoods Native Plant Center. A rare plant raffle will be held after the program. The lecture is free and open to the public, but donations to the Theresa and Les Reeves Lecture Series Fund are appreciated.
Read More

State Rep. John Zerwas to offer SFA commencement address

State Rep. John Zerwas, M.D., will offer the commencement address during SFA's fall graduation ceremonies Saturday, Dec. 19.

Serving his fifth legislative term, Zerwas represents the Texas House of Representatives' District 28, which includes northwestern Fort Bend County, one of the fastest-growing regions in Texas. He serves as chairman of the House Committee on Higher Education and is an advocate for increasing access to higher education and growing opportunities for graduate medical education.

Zerwas earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Houston and his doctoral degree in medicine at Baylor College of Medicine. He has been a physician for more than 30 years and is one of four medical doctors in the Texas House of Representatives. Two of Zerwas' sons, Brandon and John Jr., graduated from SFA.
Read More

SFA Office of Academic Affairs searching for provost, vice president

SFA's Office of Academic Affairs is currently seeking candidates for the provost/vice president position.

A website designed to keep ths SFA community informed about the search is now live. Click here for the latest news.

Screening set for 'Christmas With the Dead'

A special free one-night screening of "Christmas With the Dead" is planned for 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 11, in The Cole Art Center at The Old Opera House, the downtown Nacogdoches art gallery owned by SFA.

Directed by T.L. Lankford, "Christmas With the Dead" is a zombie apocalypse film based on a short story by the same name written by Nacogdoches author Joe R. Lansdale. Lansdale's son, Keith, wrote the screenplay.

It stars SFA filmmaking instructor Brad Maule, who co-produced the film with William Arscott, professor of filmmaking at SFA, and Marion Arscott. Nacogdoches musician and film co-star Kasey Lansdale, daughter of the author, performed much of the film's soundtrack.
Read More


SFA Gala to honor outstanding faculty members

Two outstanding SFA faculty members will be honored during the 27th annual SFA Gala Saturday, Dec. 12, in the Grand Ballroom of the Baker Pattillo Student Center.

The faculty awards presented during the Gala recognize innovation and excellence in teaching and research. Dr. Eric Jones, associate professor of exercise physiology and human performance in the James I. Perkins College of Education, is the recipient of the 2015 Faculty Achievement for Teaching. Dr. Christopher Comer, professor of forest wildlife management in the Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture, will receive the 2015 Faculty Achievement Award for Research.
Read More

Campus Recreation


Registration underway for SFA's annual Chili Cook Off

Think your department has the best chili recipe? Prove it!

SFA Campus Recreation will provide the sampling cups, napkins and tasting spoons from 5 to 7 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 13, at this year's annual Chili Cook Off.

The winning department will be presented with the engraved traveling trophy and will be entitled to all bragging rights. Participating departments also are encouraged to compete in the Holiday Booth Decorating Contest, as well.

Click here to register. Registration forms are due by noon Wednesday, Dec. 9.

Athletics


Men's basketball team's comeback unseats Texas State University, 66-62

The SFA men’s basketball team, without the talents of sophomore guard Ty Charles and freshman Jovan Grujic, found themselves on the losing end of an 11-point deficit in the second half of Saturday’s game against Texas Southern University.

But thanks to seniors Jared Johnson and Thomas Walkup, the 'Jacks were able to power through the slump late in the game to steal a 66-62 victory.
Read More


Bowling team finishes fifth at Sam Houston State University Track Kat Klash

SFA bowlers rallied for a thrilling victory in the final match of the day to place fifth overall at the Sam Houston State University Track Kat Klash tournament. The eighth-ranked Ladyjacks went 8-6 over the three-day event, pushing their overall season record to 24-16.

SFA was ranked fourth headed in to Sunday’s championship bracket, where the team first faced the University of Central Missouri. The squad had impressive showings in the first and third games, then took a 230-189 decision in the fifth to open up a 3-2 lead on the Jennies. UCM rallied for a pair of victories over the final two games, taking the match 4-3 and dropping SFA out of the championship bracket.
Read More


Women's basketball stumbles against Weber State University, 56-46

The SFA women’s basketball team pushed a tough Weber State University team to the limit Saturday afternoon in the University of North Texas Hospitality Hill Tournament finale, but the Ladyjacks ran out of steam in the fourth quarter, resulting in a 56-46 setback. The loss drops the Ladyjacks to 4-4 on the year.

Junior guard Taylor Ross led the ’Jacks with 12 points, grabbing four rebounds, handing out four assists and nabbing two steals. Senior guard Taylor Schippers got off to a fast start offensively and finished with 11 points and four boards.
Read More

Fine Arts

SFA's Schmidbauer Young Artist Competition seeks participants

The application process for the prestigious 2016 George and Peggy Schmidbauer Young Artist Competition at SFA has begun.

Celebrating its ninth year, the Schmidbauer Competition holds the highest standards in artistry and performance. It is designed to attract young high school musicians ages 15 to 18 who are beginning to plan their future careers and are looking at schools that may be best suited toward helping them reach their goals. It is SFA's goal to be that institution, according to Dr. Gene Moon, director of orchestral studies at SFA and of the competition.

This year's strings and piano competition is slated for Jan. 30 in the Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus and is open to any high school violinists, violists, cellists, double bassists and pianists. Applications are accepted worldwide. Past competitions have brought young musicians from South Korea, Russia, Finland and locations across the United States to Nacogdoches to compete.
Read More


SFA's Friends of the Visual Arts hosts First Friday Film Series

Opportunities to attend fine arts events are plentiful on the SFA campus. From concerts and recitals to plays and art exhibitions, there is truly something for every taste and interest in art, music and theatre.

Among the more popular offerings are the free one-night film screenings on the first Friday night of each month, which are presented by the SFA School of Art and Friends of the Visual Arts at The Cole Art Center at The Old Opera House.

Kicking off the spring semester's list of films is Errol Morris' "The Fog of War" at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 15. Described as the story of America as seen through the eyes of former Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara, one of the most controversial and influential figures in world politics, "The Fog of War" shows an insider's view of the seminal events of the 20th century, according to information at errolmorris.com.
Read More

SFA's Latin Lumberjacks to perform salsa-influenced program

SFA's Latin Lumberjacks ensemble will present a concert at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 9, in the Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

The Latin Lumberjacks is comprised of members of the Sound Recording Technology program within the SFA School of Music. Directed by Luigi Lazareno, music faculty member, the group will perform a variety of popular songs in salsa style.

"The purpose of the Latin Lumberjacks is for these students to be exposed to different rhythm styles that are in salsa music," Lazareno said. "All styles must be approached with the appropriate concepts and techniques to play them properly."
Read More

Holiday concert to feature Christmas portion of 'Messiah'

The combined choirs at SFA, along with the Orchestra of the Pines, will present SFA's traditional holiday concert at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 11, in the William M. Turner Auditorium.

A highly anticipated holiday event, the concert will feature the  A Cappella, Choral Union, Women's choirs and orchestra performing Act 1 - often referred to as the "Christmas portion" - of George Frideric Handel's "Messiah," according to Tim King, director of choral activities for the SFA School of Music and director of the performance.

"Since the early '80s, the community has been treated to various productions of the 'Christmas portion,' or Act 1, of 'Messiah,'" King said. "Nacogdoches has come to expect it and has eagerly supported the performance as part of their family's Christmas tradition."
Read More


College of Fine Arts' University Series to feature The 5 Browns' holiday performance

Looking for a unique holiday gift for a friend or loved one? Tickets to see The 5 Browns when they perform in the William M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus just might be the answer to filling the holiday shopping list.

The widely popular sibling pianists will bring their holiday spirit to Nacogdoches performing holiday favorites as part of the SFA College of Fine Arts' University Series at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 18, on the Turner stage.

"Taking your family or a group of friends to see this exciting show would be a great way to usher in the holiday season," said Dr. John Goodall, associate dean of the College of Fine Arts. "This University Series event is sure to put everyone in the Christmas spirit."
Read More

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It isn't always easy to find something beautiful, especially in such a hostile environment as the Louisiana swamps, but that's exactly what happens at Adam's Cypress Swamp Driftwood Family Museum in Pierre Part, Louisiana.

Adam Morales, who runs the museum, makes sculptures from driftwood he recovers from the Atchafalaya Basin, the largest wetland and swamp in the U.S., according to Atlas Obscura. Read more and see photos of his driftwood art pieces in this article.

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