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    SFA Receives NCAA Athletics Certification
    SFA Director of Athletics Robert Hill
    SFA Director of Athletics Robert Hill

    Aug. 10, 2006

    The NCAA Division I Committee on Athletics Certifications has certified the athletics department of Stephen F. Austin State University following a self study comprised of more than 40 faculty, students and staff members.

    Certification means institutions operate their athletics programs with in the guidelines adopted by Division I membership. All NCAA Division I institutions participate in the NCAA Certification process every 10 years. It marks the second time SFA has completed a self-study (1997) since the NCAA adopted legislation mandating certification in 1993.

    "I am delighted that the university has received full certification, and I am thankful to so many people in the university community who contributed to this accomplishment," said Interim President Dr. Baker Pattillo.

    The purpose of athletics certification is to ensure integrity in the institution's athletics program and to assist institutions in improving their athletics departments. The certification process included a self-study concerning issues of governance and compliance, academic integrity, gender equity, minority issues and student-athlete welfare.

    Dr. Terry Box, professor of English, was the chair of the university steering committee of the self-study. SFA faculty also chaired three subcommittees. Dr. Archie McDonald, chairman and professor of history, chaired the governance and commitment to rules compliance subcommittee. Dr. Ray Eastman, chairman and associate professor of psychology, chaired the academic integrity subcommittee. And the commitment to equity and student-athlete welfare subcommittee was headed by Dr. Suzy Weems, former chairman and professor of human sciences, and Dr. Violet Rogers, dean of the Rusche College of Business.

    SFA participated in an NCAA Peer Review in February, which consisted of faculty and staff from other NCAA Division I institutions. The review team conducted more than 30 interviews. SFA received positive feedback about the university and its athletics department during its peer review.

    "The NCAA certification is the culmination of a tremendous effort by numerous individuals on campus," said SFA Director of Athletics Robert Hill. "It was a total team effort, and it speaks highly of how our department operates. It is a testimony to our staff and coaches."

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