Gov. Perry Honors Legacy of Stephen F. Austin
NACOGDOCHES – Gov. Rick Perry today celebrated Stephen F. Austin’s legacy and contributions to the state by ceremonially signing Senate Bill 596, which prohibits the board of regents from changing the name of Stephen F. Austin State University (SFASU).
“I am confident that the combination of educational excellence, personal accountability and community involvement that has distinguished this university will continue well into the future, which is why it is appropriate to cement the legacy of this school in name form,” Gov. Perry said. “Senate Bill 596 is a simple effort by elected representatives across the state to recognize the university’s heritage, celebrate its accomplishments, and encourage its tradition of excellence.”
Similar legislation was passed in 2007 to prohibit the name change of Sam Houston State University. In the past, colleges and universities have been renamed to reflect their affiliation with a university system or to reflect a changing vision for the mission of an institution.
“Stephen F. Austin was a great Texan, and Stephen F. Austin State University is a great school,” Sen. Robert Nichols said. “By preserving the name of the university we honor both the father of Texas and the tradition of excellence exhibited by the university. I appreciate Governor Perry coming to Nacogdoches to publicly sign this bill and celebrate a part of Texas' heritage.”
Since opening in 1923, SFASU has grown to include six colleges and one of a kind Early Childhood Research Center, with a nursing school opening planned for 2010. Nearly 12,000 students are currently enrolled in the university, with the largest graduating class in university history participating in the spring 2009 commencement.
“I’m proud to join Governor Perry today to stand up for the history and legacy of Stephen F. Austin and the accomplishments of this university,” Rep. Wayne Christian said. “By passing this bill, we are preserving a piece of Texas’ rich history and honoring one of the greatest Texans of all time.”
For more information about SFASU, please visit http://www.sfasu.edu/.
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