NACOGDOCHES, Texas - Administrators from Stephen F. Austin State University and Panola College signed an articulation agreement Jan. 12 that will help create a seamless transition for Panola College technical and vocational graduates and students enrolled in these programs to transfer up to 66 hours of coursework to SFA and apply it toward a Bachelor of Applied Arts and Sciences.

The agreement includes a dual admissions process with applications and transcripts being forwarded to both SFA and Panola College at the time the student registers and declares an intention to work toward the bachelor's degree.

"Pending approval from our Board of Regents, beginning in fall 2017, students who have earned an Associate of Applied Science and/or certificate through Panola College's School of Energy are well positioned to pursue this bachelor's degree at SFA with a professional development area in industrial engineering technology," said Dr. Steve Cooper, SFA associate dean of the College of Liberal and Applied Arts and director of the Division of Multidisciplinary Programs, who added that the program will be presented to SFA's Board of Regents for approval.

SFA's industrial engineering technology program is a multidisciplinary grouping of courses stemming from collaboration among the university's College of Liberal and Applied Arts, Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture, and Rusche College of Business.

"This program offers an avenue for Panola College graduates and students to further their education close to home," Cooper said. "Data shows that graduates who hold bachelor's degrees are more marketable and earn higher salaries. When you consider the time commitment for these graduates and students has already, or will already, be reduced due to the transfer of coursework, it just makes sense that this agreement adds value to community and those we serve."

For more information about the program, contact Cooper at (936) 468-6537 or