Stephen F. Austin State University

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SFA plans MLK Day of Service

January 16, 2013 - SFA Public Affairs

NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin State University offices of Student Affairs Programs and Multicultural Affairs will hold the fourth annual MLK Day of Service beginning at 9 a.m. Monday, Jan. 21, in the second-floor movie theater in the Baker Pattillo Student Center.

The theme of the event is "Legacy Begins At Home." SFA will partner with Habitat for Humanity, Love INC and Keep Nacogdoches Beautiful for service projects at public parks, private homes and a variety of other sites. About 250 student volunteers are expected to take part in projects such as painting and landscaping. Participants will receive a free lunch and event T-shirt.

For the fourth 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.

"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, SFA's assistant director for leadership and service. "By focusing on homes and parks this year, we hope that students will help residents take pride in their neighborhoods."

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

Dr. Robbie Steward, professor and chair of the SFA Department of Human Services, will serve as the keynote speaker during the event's opening ceremonies. She received both her doctorate in counseling psychology and her bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Oklahoma-Norman. Steward also has a master's degree in counseling from the University of Central Oklahoma.

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 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.

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. The 2012 event featured trash pickup and painting at every public park in Nacogdoches.

"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."

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