Stephen F. Austin State University

The SFA Way

S F A Way banner

"…striving for personal excellence in everything we do."

At Stephen F. Austin State University, our faculty, staff, alumni and students believe in doing things "The SFA Way." We expect the best from ourselves and from each other, and we hold each other accountable when we fail to maintain these standards.

Grounded in the five "Root Principles" below, we, the members of the SFA community, strive for personal excellence in everything that we do.

S F A Way Root Prinicples

The Principle of Respect

Lumberjacks command respect and treat others with respect • They are considerate of others and tolerant of differences • They demonstrate respect for those around them by avoiding the use of offensive or profane language • They do not threaten or harm anyone and deal peacefully and civilly with conflict.

The Principle of Caring

Lumberjacks think of the needs of others and seek to improve the quality of life of those around them • They are compassionate, empathic and kind • They respond with humility to those they have helped and freely express gratitude to those who help them • Lumberjacks prepare themselves to become leaders in their communities and workplaces • They dedicate themselves to excellence in their chosen field of study and to using what they learn in the service of others.

The Principle of Responsibility

Lumberjacks do what is right • They persevere in times of adversity • Through self-control and self-discipline, they strive to do their best • Lumberjacks challenge each other to exceed expectations • They are active learners both inside and outside of the classroom • They are reliable; they do what they say they will do • Lumberjacks hold themselves accountable for their decisions.

The Principle of Unity

Lumberjacks are loyal to their friends, family, university, state and country • Lumberjacks stand together against any adversary • They recognize that though we are very different from one another, we are united by the Lumberjack Spirit. Lumberjacks seek to understand the people and world around them • When one lumberjack fails, all fail • When one lumberjack succeeds, all succeed.

The Principle of Integrity

Lumberjacks have the courage to do what is right, even when it is hard or unpopular • They respond to each situation with steadfast values that are not subject to change based on the actions of others • They seek opportunities to practice effective and ethical leadership • Lumberjacks are honest; they do not deceive, cheat or steal • Lumberjacks stand up for those who cannot stand up for themselves • As lifelong learners, lumberjacks are committed to continuously improving themselves.

The SFA Way Award Recipients 2018

Respect: Brandi Derouen, Assistant Director of the SFA Center for Career and Professional Development
Respect: Brandi Derouen, Assistant Director of the SFA Center for Career and Professional Development
Brandi Derouen, assistant director of the Center for Career and Professional Development, joined the SFA team in 2007 as a student assistant. She then served as the administrative assistant for Counseling Services and transitioned to the coordinator role in what was then Career Services. Derouen holds both a bachelor's degree in hospitality administration and a master's degree in student affairs and higher education from SFA.
Caring: Emily Jefferson, Coordinator of Support Services for the Department of Disability Services
Caring: Emily Jefferson, Coordinator of Support Services for the Department of Disability Services
Originally from Newton, Texas, Emily Jefferson is a two-time SFA alumna. She graduated in 2012 with her bachelor's degree in family and consumer sciences and earned her master's degree in student affairs and higher education in 2015. She is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in higher education leadership at Texas A&M University-Commerce. Before joining Disability Services in 2018, she served as assistant director of Orientation Programs.
Responsibility: Amy Smith, Early Intervention Specialist in the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities
Responsibility: Amy Smith, Early Intervention Specialist in the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities
Amy Smith started at SFA in the Judicial Office in 2006 as secretary for the department. In 2007, she was reclassified as administrative assistant for judicial affairs, and, in 2015, she was named the early intervention specialist in the office of Student Rights and Responsibilities at SFA. In 2009, she received the Dean's Excellence Award for exemplary service.

Amy is the case manager for the Jacks Back on TRAC program and works faithfully to assist students to "get back on track" as students and individuals. She also visits with many students with care and concern issues, family problems and medical concerns to help them navigate university policies and procedures.
Unity: Shelly Lackey, Retired Director of Divisional Operations
Unity: Shelly Lackey, Retired Director of Divisional Operations
Before retiring in 2018, Shelly Lackey served as the director of divisional operations for the Division of University Affairs and was responsible for budget preparation and oversight for the division. She had served in that position since 2007 and was employed at SFA for a total of 37 years. She received a Bachelor of Business Administration in general business from SFA in 1985.
Integrity: Tim Lewallen, Assistant Manager of Technical Support
Integrity: Tim Lewallen, Assistant Manager of Technical Support
Tim Lewallen, manager of the Technical Support Center, joined the Telecommunications and Networking Department in 2008 as a Macintosh computer technician and assumed the management position at the TSC in 2010. He previously was a Systems Engineer for SchoolVision of Texas, an Apple Computer Educational Sales Agent. He graduated from Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas, with a Bachelor of Business Administration in computer science.