Announcements


U staff discount at the NHMU store

Jim Breitinger
Natural History Museum of Utah

Find unique gifts for the holidays at the Natural History Museum of Utah store. From one-of-a-kind Native American and other artisan jewelry to NHMU-themed merchandise, dinosaur merchandise and more, the museum store is a wonderful source for your holiday gifts.

University of Utah staff with an active UCard get 20% off at our store on regularly priced items, and 10% extra off of sale items. U staff arriving can access the store by checking in with our front desk. Invite your U staff friends.

Face coverings are required for all. Discounts run Dec. 1-24, 2020.

Support the U on #GivingTuesday

Rachel Robertson
Annual Giving

#GivingTuesday is a global movement of generosity and change making. Each Tuesday after Thanksgiving, the world celebrates and champions stories and community organizations making a positive difference. This #GivingTuesday we ask you to give back to our University of Utah community.

You can make an immediate impact in our peers and or students’ lives by donating or participating in one of the following below.

Support students and their immediate needs

  • Now more than ever students are in need to get across the line to graduation. 5 – 7 students are applying for student emergency funding a day. Give to the Student Emergency Fund.

Help fight campus food insecurity with the Feed U Pantry

Support our students’ well-being through Huntsman Mental Health Institute (HMHI) Student Wellness Services

Aid staff and faculty members in crisis

Invest in Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion efforts

Spread the word

Whether you make a gift or not, use the hashtag #GivingTuesday to share one of our campaigns on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Instagram. Let us use this season of gratitude and giving as a time to encourage and thank the U’s amazing community of donors!

Post one of the U’s campaign and hashtag #GivingTuesday and tag the University of Utah in your post to help spread the word.

Publish your paper

Hinckley Institute of Politics

a stack of volumes of the Hinckley Journal of PoliticsThe Hinckley Journal of Politics is now accepting submissions for the 22nd edition of our student-run scholarly journal. This is an amazing opportunity to publish your work and be recognized by the larger university community in a collection that is distributed across the state to elected officials and leaders. The journal seeks to publish undergraduate and graduate student papers on local, national, and international concerns that incorporate diverse perspectives.

Submissions should address relevant issues and potential solutions. Papers will undergo a peer-editing process and do not need to be ready to publish upon submission. Learn more and apply here by Dec. 15, 2020.

Final 2020 Academic Senate meeting

Academic Senate

The next meeting of the Academic Senate is Monday, Nov. 30, from 3-5 p.m. The following items will be discussed, among others:

  • Athletics Director Mark Harlan updates
  • A proposal for the Marriner Stoddard Eccles Institute for Economics and Quantitative Analysis
  • ASUU representatives will offer a Resolution on Students’ Wellbeing during COVID-19

The meeting’s agenda is available here. Senate meetings will be held on the Zoom online meeting platform. Senate meetings are public and the university community and others are welcome to join the meeting. If you are interested in joining the meeting, please email the Secretary of the Senate Jane Laird at jane.laird@utah.edu by Nov. 24.

Name changes in campus directories

Human Resources

Beginning January 5, 2021first names in HR systems and the campus directory at the University will automatically display a chosen/preferred first name that an employee or student has on file. While employees and students have previously had the option of updating a chosen/preferred first name in HR systems and CIS, this change makes the chosen/preferred first name the default when possible, as opposed to systems that currently default to a legal first name.

This change will impact Campus Directory, Bridge, Kronos, D-Jobs, etc. A full list of systems impacted by this change may be viewed hereThis change is intended to make it easier to use a chosen/preferred first name at the university, as employees and students will no longer have to ask to override their legal first name in individual HR systems or the campus directory.

This change will occur automatically on January 5, 2021, at which time an employee’s or student’s chosen/preferred first name will automatically display in HR online systems and the campus directory. The only exception will be students who have requested nondisclosure of directory information, as these students will continue to not be displayed in the directory as per their request.

If an employee or student has not updated their chosen/preferred first name in CIS during their time as a university employee and/or as an enrolled student, their legal first name at the time of hire and/or enrollment will be displayed. Employees and students who would like to change their chosen/preferred name should complete the following steps:

Instructions for Employees

  1. Login to CIS and then go to the Change Bio/Demo Info tile
  2. Click on the Edit Preferred name hyperlink
  3. Enter new chosen First name
  4. Click the save button

Instructions for Students

  1. Login to CIS and then go to the Student Homepage tile
  2. Click on the Profile (one with your name) tile and click on the Preferred name type row
  3. Enter new chosen First name
  4. Click the save button

At the University, we respect an individual’s decision to be identified by their chosen first name and pronouns. This is based upon University Policy which prohibits discrimination based upon a person’s gender identity and gender expression.

Employees and students who do not wish to update their chosen/preferred first name do not need to do anything at this time and this change will automatically take effect on January 5, 2021. For any questions about this process, contact your HR Representative, or the Office of the Registrar for student information.

ACT requirement removed for Regents’ Scholarship applicants, class of 2021

USHE Communications

Beginning today, Monday, November 16, the ACT requirement for Regents’ Scholarship (class of 2021) applicants is no longer required. ACT exams were canceled statewide due to the coronavirus pandemic, and cancelations continue to cause disruption to students hoping to apply.

Previously, a minimum ACT composite score of 22 was required to receive the scholarship.

“We hope that removing the required ACT score for Regent’s Scholarship (class of 2021) applicants will help ease the burden the coronavirus pandemic has had on Utah students,” said Dave R. Woolstenhulme, Commissioner of Higher Education. “Our number one concern is student safety and wellness; this ensures that scholarship applicants won’t be negatively impacted by measures taken to protect them against COVID-19.”

Learn more about the Regents’ Scholarship

Health insurance marketplace now open

University Communications

Every year on November 1st, the health insurance marketplace opens up for Utahns to enroll in insurance coverage. Unlike Medicaid, healthcare.gov has an open enrollment period, typically November 1st to December 15th. Outside of that window, enrollees would have to qualify for a Special Enrollment Period (SEP) such as turning 26, getting married or divorced, adopting or having a child, or moving to a new ZIP code.

There is free Marketplace enrollment assistance available—sign up for a free virtual enrollment assistance appointment with Take Care Utah or call 2-1-1 to be connected to free help near you.

Below are common questions asked about the Marketplace and information about where you can learn more.

Why should I enroll in the Marketplace?

Policies allowing young adults to stay on parent’s health insurance until age 26, ACA Marketplace coverage, and Medicaid expansion have all contributed to reduced uninsured rates for young adults.

As a student, you’ve got a lot on your plate, like housing, picking your major, exams, and how COVID 19 impacts you. Having health coverage ensures that while you’re navigating all of this, if you need Mental Health services or if injury or illness befalls you, you’ll have coverage in place to keep you secure.

Who’s eligible?

Marketplace coverage is administered by the Federal Government and is available to individuals who:

  • Live in the United States;
  • Are a US citizen or national (or be lawfully present. DACA does not qualify);
  • Aren’t currently incarcerated; and
  • Aren’t enrolled in Medicare or eligible for Medicaid (see Medicaid eligibility article here).

The amount of help you receive through the Marketplace to pay for your health insurance largely depends on your income and household size.

How can I apply?

The health insurance Marketplace has an open enrollment period from November 1st-December 15th, 2020. Anyone can apply for coverage during this window, or if they’re already enrolled in a Marketplace plan they can review or change their plans from last year.

If you are trying to apply outside of the open enrollment period, and individual must qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.

There are a few pieces of information you’ll need to apply for Marketplace coverage (For comprehensive list of items needed click here):

  • Names, dates of birth, and Social Security Numbers for all those applying;
  • Estimated annual household income (to see if you qualify for a discount); and
  • Information about health insurance offered through your job (if applicable).

There are two key ways to apply for Marketplace coverage:

  1. With nonprofit assistance: Take Care Utah (TCU) is a nonprofit helping indivduals apply for Medicaid, CHIP, and Marketplace coverage for free. TCU is statewide and can help people in several languages. Find free help at org, call 2-1-1 to be referred to someone near you, or book a free virtual enrollment appointment here.
  2. On your own: You can apply for Marketplace coverage online at: healthcare.gov or call 1-800-318-2596

What about benefits?

All plans offered in the Marketplace must cover these essential health benefits:

Plans may also offer additional benefits including:

  • Dental coverage
  • Vision coverage
  • Medical management programs (for specific needs like weight management, back pain, and diabetes)

When comparing plans, you’ll see exactly what each plan offers.

Does Marketplace cost money?

Whether an individual qualifies for subsidies on healthcare.gov really depends on where they fall on the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). Individual’s whose incomes are between to 138% and 250% FPL are eligible for cost sharing reductions and are more likely to qualify for affordable options including plans with $0 premiums and $0 deductibles (incomes highlighted in yellow below).

More than 80% of Utahns enrolled in Marketplace coverage last year qualified for some type of financial assistance, and approximately 2 in 3 healthcare.gov applicants can find a plan with a $10 monthly premium. This sliding-scale cost assistance is available for individuals and families up to 400% FPL.

  Eligible for Cost Sharing Reductions    
Household / Family Size 138% 150% 200% 250% 300% 400%
1 $17,609 $19,140 $25,520 $31,900 $38,280 $51,040
2 $23,791 $25,860 $34,480 $43,100 $51,720 $68,960
3 $29,974 $32,580 $43,440 $54,300 $65,160 $86,880
4 $36,156 $39,300 $52,400 $65,500 $78,600 $104,800

 

For families with more members, add $6,182 for each additional person. 

There are special cost sharing protections in place for American Indians and Alaska Natives—find out what those are here.

If your income falls below 138% FPL, you should apply for Medicaid.

Utah law schools announce full-tuition achievement fellowships

College of Law

Brigham Young University J. Reuben Clark Law School (BYU Law) and the University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law (Utah Law) today announced a collaboration with leading Utah law firms to create the Achievement Fellowships Program. Under this program, students will receive full-tuition awards and access to mentorship activities to attract, recognize and support students who have qualified for admission to law school in the face of significant challenges or hardships.

Durham Jones & Pinegar, Greenberg Traurig, Kirton McConkie, Snell & Wlmer, Strong & Hanni, and Parsons, Behle & Latimer have already committed to support the program, and more firms are expected to join. Thanks to funding from the firms, recipients of the Achievement Fellowship will receive full tuition for each of three academic years beginning with students entering fall 2021. In addition to funding tuition, the firms have committed to mentoring the Achievement Fellows.

“We are grateful that the Utah legal community is making this tangible investment in the diversity of Utah’s law student population as we seek to address problems of social injustice and systemic racism close to home,” said D. Gordon Smith, dean of BYU Law. “Socioeconomic hardship should never be a barrier for bright, aspiring law students. As home to two of the country’s top law schools, and a burgeoning legal and tech community, Utah has a responsibility to foster future legal professionals. We believe this program will broaden the state’s appeal to prospective candidates and enhance the quality of law practiced in Utah.”

“Utah Law is excited to partner with BYU Law and these Utah law firms to launch the Achievement Fellows Program,” said Elizabeth Kronk Warner, dean of  the S.J. Quinney College of Law. “This program will undoubtedly encourage more students from historically underrepresented groups to choose the State of Utah as a destination for law school, elevating professional opportunities for deserving individuals and enhancing the practice of law here in the Beehive State.”

This program provides the Achievement Fellows with the opportunity to interact with leading law firms while enabling the firms to broaden their commitment to diversity and mentorship. “We are honored to join BYU Law and Utah Law to help roll out this new initiative,” said Lee A. Wright, president of Kirton McConkie, which was the first firm to pledge its commitment to this important new program. “We see a social responsibility to take action toward diversification, and we look forward to this opportunity to broaden our firm’s diversity initiatives and law practice.”

In granting these Achievement Fellowships, the law schools will consider a broad spectrum of life challenges, including socioeconomic disadvantage, disability, being the first in their family to attend college, attending under-resourced schools or status as an immigrant or former refugee. Hardships such as homelessness, living in foster care, working multiple jobs or long hours in high school or college, or living in a family struggling with poverty, incarceration, abandonment, physical or mental health issues and/or substance abuse are examples of the types of disadvantages that may be considered when selecting recipients of these awards. In all cases, the reviewing committee will be looking for evidence of personal growth, initiative, perseverance and character development.

To apply for consideration, prospective applicants may visit https://law.byu.edu/departments/admissions/ for BYU Law and https://law.utah.edu/ for Utah Law.

KUER goes big in southwest Utah

Renee Bright
KUER

KUER (NPR Utah) is proud to announce the completion of an ambitious construction project that dramatically expands the NPR member station’s broadcast footprint in southwestern Utah. With a new, more powerful signal heard at 93.9 FM, KUER is now serving listeners throughout St. George, Cedar City and Washington and Iron counties.

“It has been our goal – nearly five years in the making – to be heard in this unique, growing part of the state and to listen to the people who live there,” said KUER Executive Director Maria O’Mara.

Launched in 2016, the project is a part of KUER’s statewide service mission, which seeks to provide high-quality news, information and entertainment to Utahns across the state. The station, which is part of the University of Utah, airs NPR News, state and local stories from KUER News, and the popular weekly program RadioWest with Doug Fabrizio.

“News and information is one of the most important commodities in any community,” said Doug Caputo, a Southern Utah resident and member of KUER’s Advisory Board. “NPR Utah has made a tremendous investment in our region with this new signal and a local news reporter. This is a special place that deserves a special radio station.”

The new frequency, KUQU 93.9 FM, restores NPR programming to one of the country’s fastest growing communities following the exit of Nevada Public Radio from St. George in April 2020. Also, listeners will now hear KUER News stories relevant to Utahns, including those that originate from the station’s Southwest Utah Bureau in St. George.

Staffed by full-time reporter and St. George resident Lexi Peery, the bureau is one of two such initiatives funded by KUER and the national service program Report for America.

“When we opened the bureau in St. George last year, we rediscovered a place rich with untapped storytelling potential,” said O’Mara, noting that KUER previously had a large presence in the area until changes on the local dial shrunk the station’s footprint in 2006. “We are so happy that the St. George community can now more easily hear all that KUER provides.”

KUQU is an FCC-licensed station based at Pine Spring Knoll near Enoch, Utah. KUER installed a new antenna, transmitters and other equipment that greatly increased its existing coverage in Iron and Washington counties. Previously, NPR Utah relied upon low-power translators to serve individual communities – one of which (107.9 FM) will continue to serve Ivins and Santa Clara due to terrain issues.

A capital campaign raised significant funding for the $1.2 million project, with generous support in the form of a lead gift from the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation, and support from the Emma Eccles Jones Foundation and the Florence J. Gillmor Foundation. Final funding

was secured through an appropriation from the Utah Legislature, in addition to donations made by private individuals and local family foundations.

Campus bike shop now open at new location

Claudia Trochez
Commuter Services

The Campus Bike Shop, formerly located at the Annex, has officially moved to 413 Campus Center Drive, across the street from the Utah Museum of Fine Arts. The shop will continue to offer bicycle maintenance services, including tune-up, tire replacement, cable repairs and more.

The original shop opened its doors to the university community in June 2017. Over the last three years, Ted Main, our bike mechanic with decades of experience, successfully repaired hundreds of bicycles with issues ranging from minor fixes to complex upgrades.

Bicycle ridership has increased significantly across the nation since the pandemic began. The shift toward active transportation continues to accelerate as many students, faculty and staff are choosing to bike to campus instead of driving. The Campus Bike Shop supports the growing group of cyclists on campus by providing bicycle repairs and maintenance services at affordable rates.

The Campus Bike Shop is open from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and 12 p.m. through 4 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Call 801-581-6415 to book an appointment.

 

Managing your money & your career

Brooke Adams

The Financial Wellness Center’s last workshop of the semester will feature Jasmine Tillery, founder of Money & Momming, on “The Workplace Transition: Managing your money and career.”

What started as a platform to document her family’s financial journey has blossomed into a blog and business for Tillery, through which she teaches financial literacy, provides 1:1 coaching and creates budget tools to help people stay motivated on their individual journeys.

The workshop is Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2020, from 12-1 p.m. To receive a calendar invite, click here to register. Attendees will be eligible to win Amazon gift cards.

Help stop relationship and sexual violence

McCluskey Center for Violence Prevention

Join us in implementing the strategic plan for the McCluskey Center for Violence Prevention. We have six working groups:

  • Shifting the Narrative: Campus Education Series
  • Affinity Group Curriculum Development
  • Engaging Men
  • Perpetration Intervention
  • Patterns of Perpetration Research
  • Tracking Demands Research

You can read a description of each group here.

Any member of the U campus community—faculty, staff, student—is welcome to participate. No previous experience necessary. To join a working group, please complete the form linked at the bottom of the list of descriptions. Please direct questions to cvp@utah.edu.

Next Academic Senate virtual town hall on Nov. 30

Academic Senate

Do endowment fund investments at the University of Utah balance the institution’s economic, ethical, community and environmental concerns?

The Academic Senate ad hoc Committee for Divestment and Reinvestment Investigation is holding a series of Town Hall meetings (via Zoom) during Fall 2020. This committee is charged with making recommendations to the Academic Senate regarding the balance of endowment fund investments on matters of economic, ethical, community and environmental concerns. The committee hopes that our recommendations will be based on both sound research and feedback from the U community.

The next session will be Monday, Nov. 30, 2020, from 12-1 p.m. Join us to learn more about the ad hoc committee’s charge, the process for Town Hall feedback meetings and to weigh in on the question above.

Use this Zoom link to join: utah.zoom.us/j/97127708532

Written comments by U faculty, staff and students can also be submitted here.

More information about the ad hoc committee and recordings of the previous sessions can be found here.

Women’s Resource Center scholarship

Morgan Aguilar
communications specialist, University of Utah Communications

The Crankstart Foundation has announced they will once again be awarding $100,000 in scholarships to the Women’s Resource Center (WRC) at the University of Utah. This means there is still money available to disburse to students for the Spring and Summer 2021 semesters.

The Crankstart Scholarship exists to assist adult learners, of all gender identities, at the University of Utah who are pursuing their first undergraduate degree.

Scholarship Amount: $1,500 – $2,500/ semester
Applications Due: Dec. 4, 2020

Awards will be offered by January 10, 2021. Students can use this award in Spring 2021 and/or Summer 2021 Semesters.

Requirements:

  1. Have and maintain a GPA of 3.0 or greater (both individual semester and cumulative overall GPA)
  2. Must have a gap of at least five years from your high school to college or in your college education, this gap can be consecutive or cumulative
  3. Be a resident of the state of Utah, as defined by The University of Utah’s Registrar’s Office
  4. Be admitted to The University of Utah working toward completion of an undergraduate degree
  5. Be a matriculated student at The University of Utah
  6. Be working toward first Bachelor’s degree
  7. Preference will be given to those who maintain full-time enrollment at The University of Utah, however, you must be enrolled in at least 6 credit hours to be considered. Courses that are non-credit do not count toward enrollment, additionally, all courses must be at a level 1000 or greater to be considered.
  8. Preference will be given to those with financial need as determined by federal guidelines, so students are strongly encouraged to fill out their FAFSA
  9. Preference will be given to newly matriculating students

Students that are current Crankstart or Osher scholarship recipients are not eligible for the Spring 21/Summer 21 award but will be eligible to apply in Spring 2021 for the following academic year.

Apply here today!

Behind the Scenes reimagined with Ty Burrell

Natural History Museum of Utah

Get Curious! Join NHMU for its annual Behind the Scenes Reimagined. It’s going to be a jam-packed week of science discovery for all ages!

Beginning on November 14, take a deep dive into our online resources.

Then, starting Sunday night, November 15, join NHMU member and actor Ty Burrell of Modern Family, for a five-part webcast event nightly at 7 p.m. that will take you into each of our collections to examine the treasures within and meet the experts entrusted with their care. With more than 1.6 million objects, and scientists conducting ongoing research daily, these collections are the foundation of NHMU and its world-famous galleries.

Click here for more information and the links to join online.

Behind the Scenes Schedule:

  • Sunday, November 15 — Anthropology/Ethnography/Archaeology
  • Monday, November 16 — Vertebrate Zoology
  • Tuesday, November 17 — Botany
  • Wednesday, November 18 — Entomology
  • Thursday, November 19 — Paleontology

We look forward to seeing you — virtually — during this exciting week of discovery!

Mail service changes during the holiday remote education period

Print & Mail Services

Deliveries during the holiday remote education period 

General Stores & Receiving

During the holiday remote education period, many buildings on campus may be closed and unable to accept packages for delivery. We expect that you are already aware of how your department may be impacted during this time and have planned accordingly. Your department may choose alternate delivery options for home delivery, as outlined here. If General Stores & Receiving receive calls for help from carriers attempting to deliver packages to a closed building, we will instruct them to deliver the package to the receiving department. From there it can be picked up by your department in WILL CALL with your University ID, or delivery can be arranged per your request.

When ordering from General Stores during this time period when a building is closed, please ensure you put “WILL CALL” in the special instructions if you desire to pick up the delivery from General Stores and Receiving.

General Stores: 801-581-8671

Central Receiving: 801-581-7409

General Stores and Receiving

253 VRTUSB

1795 E South Campus Dr 253

Salt Lake City, UT 84112

FedEx, UPS, U.S. Postal Service (USPS), and Campus Mail deliveries

University Print & Mail Services would like some information that will allow us to help your department receive mail and packages during the Holiday Remote Education period from November 26, 2020 to January 19, 2021. 

Our questions to you

If your department will be closed or changing hours, please contact Juan Sosa at juan.sosa@utah.edu or 385-290-8878 with your answers to the following questions:

  1. Which departments will be closed and unable to receive FedEx, UPS, USPS, and Campus Mail packages?
  2. When will your department officially close?
  3. When will your department re-open and be ready to resume normal package/mail delivery after the Holiday Remote Education period?
  4. If your department plans to be open part-time, what will your open hours be and how would you like your mail/packages delivered?

Note: USPS can only deliver mail to offices that are open on a regular schedule. If notified, Print & Mail can receive your USPS mail and packages on your behalf. We’ll sort it and hold it at our facility until it is picked up or until regular mail delivery resumes.

What to do if your department is closed

If you work in an area that will be closed and you have a FedEx or UPS package that needs to be delivered or picked up during the Holiday Remote Education period, please read the following instructions: 

If you have a UPS package:

  • UPS will deliver and pick up packages from Print & Mail. You can pick up delivered packages from our lobby (VRTUSB 135) between 8:30 am and 5 pm, M–F.
  • You can drop off processed and ready-to-ship UPS packages at our lobby (VRTUSB 135) to hold for UPS pickup at 5 pm, M–F.
    Please deliver the packages to Print & Mail before 4:30 pm to ensure they are sent out that day.
  • If your package is not ready to ship, please process the package with your UPS account before dropping it off at Print & Mail for UPS pickup. We cannot prepare UPS packages for shipping.
  • Contact UPS directly at 1-800-742-5877 to schedule a pickup with the courier.

If you have a FedEx package:

  • FedEx will deliver and pick up packages at Print & Mail. You can pick up delivered packages from our lobby (VRTUSB 135) between 8:30 am and 5 pm, M–F.
  • Print & Mail can process, prepare, and ship FedEx and SendSuite packages for you at our lobby (VRTUSB 135). To utilize this service, please drop your package off at our location between 8:30 am and 4 pm, M–F.
  • Contact FedEx directly at 1-800-463-3339 to schedule a pickup with the courier.

How to pick up items:

If you need items during the closure period, please note that your mail, packages, and print projects can be retrieved in the following ways:

  • Print & Mail offers a free curbside pick-up service in front of VRTUSB between 8:30 am and 5 pm, M–F.
  • You can pick up items from our lobby (VRTUSB 135) between 8:30 am and 5 pm, M–F.
  • To coordinate an alternate delivery plan, contact Juan Sosa before the closure dates at juan.sosa@utah.edu or 385-290-8878.

Uncollected or undeliverable items will be held at Print & Mail until the Holiday Remote Education period ends on January 19, 2021, or until we’re notified your department or building is reopen.

If you have further questions, please contact Juan Sosa at juan.sosa@utah.edu or call Print & Mail at 801-581-6171.

Travel restrictions extended

University of Utah Communications

The University of Utah is currently restricting all business travel, including having guests on campus, through March 15, 2021. This travel restriction applies to ALL faculty and staff travel, all university-coordinated student travel and all guest/recruit travel. Approved exceptions to this restriction must adhere to all the following procedures:

  • The requesting department must prepare a memo describing reasons travel is necessary at this time and measures to be taken to address safety for the traveler and those who will be in contact with the traveler during and following the trip.
  • The memo must be approved by one of the following individuals:

Main Campus Academic Affairs: Sarah Projansky, associate vice president for faculty, sarah.projansky@utah.edu
Main Campus Staff: Wendy Peterson, deputy chief HR director, wendy.peterson@utah.edu
U of U Health Academics: Dayle Benson, chief of staff for Clinical Affairs, dayle.benson@hsc.utah.edu
U of U Health Hospitals and Clinics Staff: Sarah Sherer, senior human resources director, sarah.sherer@hsc.utah.edu

An exception will require final approval by the cognizant vice president. Exceptions must be fully approved and attached to an approved UTravel Concur Request at least one week prior to the start date of travel.

In-State Travel: We encourage our campus community to be informed about the transmission level assigned to different counties by the state when traveling on university-related business within Utah. We encourage students, staff and faculty to limit travel when a high transmission level is in place and to follow all health protocols, including wearing a face covering, when travel is necessary. We also recommend traveling with one person/household per vehicle.

Personal Travel: We continue to encourage you, when considering your personal travel choices, to follow travel advisories issued by your local and state authorities. If you choose to travel, you may be restricted from returning to work depending upon the specifics of your circumstances. There are things you can do to minimize health risks to yourself and others, such as quarantining before traveling to visit high-risk individuals and checking your health status by monitoring your temperature and other symptoms of COVID-19. There are now a number of commercially available coronavirus test kits that can be used to assess your status.

NOTE: Upon return, ALL individuals are expected to complete and submit a “Returning Traveler Self-Reporting Form” following the instructions linked here. If you have questions regarding this restriction or exception procedures, please fill out the ASK US form.

 

Free HIIT Fridays from Campus Recreation Services

Jess Pechmann
Campus Recreation Services

Looking to proactively de-stress through the rest of 2020? Studies show that just 10 minutes of high-intensity exercise can improve mental focus and clarity. Which we think is something we could all use a little more of! So set a timer or make yourself an appointment, and join us for Free HIIT Fridays @uofucampusrec on Instagram or YouTube throughout the rest of the year. New videos posted weekly.

If you’re looking for a little more than just 10 minutes, consider a day pass an Annual Membership at the Student Life Center. Payroll deduction is available, and with just six visits, you can complete a wellness activity for the university’s WellU Wellness Program.

About us

Campus Recreation Services in The Student Life Center provides a welcoming and dynamic environment to meet the fitness and wellness goals of all university community members. Providing flexible fitness classes that include cardio, strength, mind/body, mobility, as well as virtual, live-streaming and on-demand options — the Student Life Center has multiple offerings to meet any circumstance or lifestyle. A variety of in-person and virtual personal training, and goal-setting workshops are also available. Want to know more about our COVID-19 Safety Protocols? Watch this video or see a virtual facility tour here.

Upcoming dates

  • SENDsations Climbing Competition, Nov. 9-21. Registration details here.
  • 7 Summits Challenge: Win prizes for the most elevation gained through Nov. 24. Details here.

What are your opinions on COVID-19?

Libby Mitchell
managing editor, @theU

There are a lot of unanswered questions about COVID-19. The questions don’t just have to do with the virus itself, but also how people react to the threat of contracting it or passing it to others. Public health officials are trying to understand these reactions in general and the Utah System of Higher Education is trying to gauge the specific reactions of college and university students. To that end they have devised a survey to gather information regarding student thinking involving COVID-19.

We ask that all students take the 10-minute survey prior to Thanksgiving break. It is a series of questions about your feelings on social distancing and mask wearing, any history of symptoms you may have, and any experiences you have had with being testing for COVID-19 in the past year. Outside of four questions about your affiliation to the University all questions are optional and you do not have to answer those that make you uncomfortable. All responses, even those that are mandatory, will remain anonymous.

Please follow this link to fill out the survey.

IRS limits for 2021

Human Resources

The IRS recently announced that limits for employee contributions to 403(b) and 457(b) Plans will remain the same for 2021.  You can contribute up to $19,500 ($25,000 for employees age 50 or older), to both the 403(b) and 457(b) supplemental retirement savings plans.

To increase your deferrals or begin saving now—it’s never too late—log in to UBenefits. Log into UBenefits at hr.apps.utah.edu/ubenefits and click on the Retirement Savings tile.

Find your flu shot!

Human Resources

Health care professionals are strongly encouraging everyone to get a flu shot this year.  Here are some locations:

RedMed employee clinic

University Union Building

Schedule an appointment at https://uofuemployeehealth.appointy.com/

University community drive-thru flu clinic

Weather Permitting – Through December 17

Engineering Building Parking Lot (enter from North Campus Drive)

Tuesdays from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Thursdays from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm (except Thanksgiving)
Saturdays from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm

Pharmacies or your medical provider’s office

More locations will be announced in the future.  Check the UHRM webpage (www.hr.utah.edu) for locations and times.

The cost of the flu shot is covered at 100% by the University’s Employee Health Care Plan.  If you schedule the flu shot in connection with a medical appointment with your provider, you will still pay the office visit copay or coinsurance amount.

Karl Schwede named fellow of American Mathematical Society

Michele Swaner
PR/Advancment, College of Science

Professor Karl Schwede in the U’s Department of Mathematics has been named a member of the 2021 Class of Fellows of the American Mathematical Society (AMS). The Society recognizes members who have made outstanding contributions to the creation, exposition, advancement, communication and utilization of mathematics. Schwede joins 14 other professors in the department who were previously named fellows by the AMS.

“It’s an honor to be named as a fellow of the American Mathematical Society, and I’m grateful for the recognition of my peers in the profession,” said Schwede.

Schwede received his undergraduate degree in mathematics from Whitman College and a Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Washington. Math was originally third on his list of interests in college, but as he took more advanced math courses, his focus changed to mathematics.

Schwede does basic research in mathematics, studying algebra, geometry and particularly singularities. Much of his work is in the setting of modular arithmetic (also known as clock arithmetic), the same setting as much of our modern communication systems. For example, 5 hours after 10 is 3 or 5+10 = 3. “In this area, I have primarily studied singularities of geometric shapes by algebraic means,” said Schwede. Recently, he has begun working in mixed characteristic, which connects the positive characteristic of clock arithmetic with classical (5+10 = 15) geometric worlds.

He joined the U’s Math Department in 2014 as an associate professor and became a professor in 2018. Last spring, Schwede received a Simons Fellows Award in Mathematics from the Simons Foundation.

 

Qualtrics software is now free for the U community

University Information Technology

The University of Utah is pleased to announce that Qualtrics CoreXM is now available at no cost to eligible university faculty, staff, and organizations. Students may request access to accounts managed by their departments or U-affiliated organizations. CARES Act funding is being used to provide the software for free until December 31, 2024.

Qualtrics CoreXM is an online survey tool for collecting and analyzing data for scholarly research, customer satisfaction and loyalty, product and concept testing, employee evaluations, and website feedback.

Please visit this Office of Software Licensing (OSL) FAQ page for access instructions and more information about the agreement. Existing Qualtrics CoreXM customers should continue to sign in to their accounts as usual, and are not required to take any additional action.

If you have additional questions, please contact OSL at software@utah.edu.

MetLife legal plans special enrollment opportunity

Human Resources

MetLife Legal Plans is offering University campus and University Health Academics employees a special enrollment opportunity.  If you have wanted to enroll in the legal plan, but missed the regular open enrollment opportunity, you can enroll between November 2nd and November 20th.  Coverage will be effective January 1, 2021.  The cost is $21.25 per month (paid through payroll deduction).

Additional information about the legal plan is available on UHRM’s website at https://www.hr.utah.edu/benefits/legal.php.

Enroll by calling 800-GET-MET8 (1-800-438-6388).

Coverage will continue into the next plan year (July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022) unless you cancel during open enrollment in May, 2021. 

Five University of Utah faculty recognized for exceptional teaching

Rebecca Walsh
communications manager, senior vice president for Academic Affairs

The University of Utah has recognized five exceptional teachers who increased learning, developed new methods and innovated curriculum this year.

The 2020 Early Career Teaching Awards recognize younger faculty who are changing higher education as they advance in their careers. The Calvin & JeNeal Hatch Prize in Teaching is given each year to an experienced professor who has been recognized for their years of extraordinary instruction and mentorship of students.

“Each of these recipients is undeniably deserving of this honor,” said Dan Reed, senior vice president for Academic Affairs. “The way that they teach and mentor their students leaves an indelible mark on the future attorneys, geologists, writers and business executives we are preparing for the changing world around us.”

This year’s recipients include faculty from the College of Mines, College of Humanities, Honors College and David Eccles School of Business. The Early Career winners are:

Cathy Hwang, an associate professor in the College of Law. Hwang was noted for her personal touch, including collecting bios on each of her students early in the semester, threading her courses with interactive projects and using novel teaching methods such as simulated client letters.

Peter Lippert, an assistant professor in the Department of Geology & Geophysics. Lippert’s nominators noted his efforts to modernize and update every one of his courses. He designed a new undergraduate degree, Philosophy of Science with a Geoscience emphasis, developed an augmented reality “sandbox,” and expanded his college’s architecture rock slab collection.

Christopher Mead, an assistant professor and lecturer in the Honors College. In five years at the university, Mead has revamped the college’s seminal Intellectual Traditions Course, helped to launch the University of Utah Prison Education Program, developed the college’s student library and founded the Honors Beekeeping Club. He also has received the L. Jackson Newell Liberal Education Advancement Award and the Sweet Candy Distinguished Honors Professor award.

Christie Toth, an assistant professor in the Department of Writing & Rhetoric Studies. Toth was recognized for her advocacy of marginalized and minority students, including creating infrastructure to support many transfer students through the university’s partnership with Salt Lake Community College. Toth raised $200,000 in private funding from community foundations and individual donors to support scholarships, fellowships and teaching assistance positions for her students.

The Calvin & JeNeal Hatch Prize

Don Wardell, professor in the Department of Operations and Information Systems, received the Hatch Prize. Over more than 25 years of teaching in the School of Business, Wardell has collected multiple teaching awards—nine in all, including the Brady Superior Teaching Award, the Masters Teaching Excellence Award (twice) and the university’s Distinguished Teaching Award in 2007.

As one of his PhD student nominators wrote:

I consider myself so lucky to have had the opportunity to take courses from Professor Wardell. His teaching has inspired me and significantly shaped who I am today. I often think back to when I was his student and I think about what he did in the classroom that helped me to learn. I try my best to emulate for my students what I believe are his core values…I continue to be inspired by him today and he remains the person I can always rely on for teaching advice.”

The Early Career and Hatch teaching award recipients were honored at the 2020 Commencement. Nominations for the 2021 teaching awards are due December 4.