FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 6, 2015
Austin, TX – Today, Senator Robert Nichols and Representative Travis Clardy jointly filed Senate Bill SB 275 and House Bill 602, which would authorize a tuition-backed revenue bond (TRB) to fund a much needed Science, Technology, Engineering, Math (STEM) building at Stephen F. Austin State University.
"It is important to ensure we are providing up to date facilities for students so they can be successful and have the best advantage in their education," said Senator Nichols. "A new STEM building will help SFA to recruit more students into the field and continue its excellence as an higher education institution."
The new STEM building will provide space to support the overall research and outreach mission of the College of Sciences and Mathematics and will include a STEM Research and Learning Center, the Department of Physics, the Department of Computer Science, as well as research labs for K-12 outreach programs.
"I firmly believe we need to give our students and teachers the best resources available to develop a strong workforce for the 21st century," Representative Clardy said. "SFA is a beacon to the rest of the state in education and we need to maintain that top level by encouraging more students to go into STEM related degrees and that starts with the building of this state of the art facility."
The Texas Legislature has not passed a TRB bill in nearly nine years and normally one is passed every other year. This specific TRB bill is supported by the SFA Board of Regents as well as many business leaders in the region due to the job growth it would provide.
"We can't afford to wait another two years to help SFA reach its goal of increasing the number of students prepared for STEM careers," both men added. "The time is now to help SFA continue to lead our great state in this critical area."