- UT Austin will host representatives from all UT System academic institutions Jan. 8–9 to discuss the implementation of a system-wide bystander intervention initiative. Attendees will discuss bystander intervention research and collaborate to identify strategies to enhance bystander intervention on each campus. Representatives from UT Austin’s BeVocal program will be present to share their experience starting a similar initiative on our campus. Chris Brownson, Erin Burrows and Ashley Boynton from CMHC and Marilyn Russell with the Office of the Dean of Students will lead the effort.
Housing and Food Service (DHFS)
- DHFS will participate in the new University Docusign initiative. Docusign allows for e-signatures that can be used for our housing contracts, resident assistant work agreements, etc. More information to come once it is launched.
- Campus Utilities has scheduled maintenance work in Jester East and West to replace outdated electrical switchgear. The work will necessitate power outages, which are scheduled for Jan. 5–7 during the winter break. The outage will impact operations at the 24-hour desks in Jester East and West and will affect staff apartments.
- All Food Service managers, assistant managers and chefs completed ServSafe Allergen certification by the end of 2014 in an effort to promote food allergy education and awareness and better serve customers with special dietary needs.
- Food Service collaborated with the Perry-Castaneda Library on its Therapy Dog Study Break event on Dec. 8. Therapy dogs from Austin Dog Alliance were on hand to provide anxiety relief during finals, while DHFS provided 100 infographic flyers with a coupon for a free apple redeemable at DHFS retail locations.
- Jester Java, Cypress Bend and Kin’s Market gave out free cookies, caffeine and carrots Dec. 9–11 to fuel students through late night study sessions going into finals.
- Kinsolving Dining and J2 hosted their annual Holiday Feast with an impressive array of treats. Diners enjoyed carved roast beef, Crescent City chicken, chipotle mushroom tamales, potatoes au gratin, salads and fruit trays. The decorated candy land with German chocolate cake, cheesecake, pear crisp, chocolate bread pudding and eggnog was a huge hit. Enjoy the photos.
New Student Services (NSS)
- NSS recently hired 72 new orientation advisors, 14 returning orientation advisors and four orientation coordinators. The orientation advisors will begin their leadership course on Jan. 20.
- NSS is compiling a database with contact information for all former orientation advisors.
- Approximately 300 new freshmen and transfer students will attend Spring Orientation on Jan. 12.
- Following Spring Orientation, students will have the opportunity to attend Spring Transition Week, a series of workshops to help them transition to UT Austin and meet other new students. Events include leadership-building activities, a workshop on academic success, an activity/info session with Recreational Sports and a bowling night at the Union Underground.
- An open house on Dec. 4 honored former Director Cristi Biggs, who passed away a year ago on Dec. 23. Students and staff, along with current and former orientation advisors, gathered for an informal celebration to socialize and remember Cristi.
- The Leadership and Ethics Institute will host the 4th annual Texas Leadership Summit this February. Talented staff from across the Division is supporting the campus-wide leadership and professional development student conference.
- Student Activities will host the Spring Student Organization Fair for the first time on Jan. 26 to support Spring Orientation organized by New Student Services.
- Sorority and Fraternity Life will accept Sorority and Fraternity Life Awards applications through Jan. 23. Students and organizations advised or supported by Division staff are encouraged to apply.
- The Leadership and Ethics Institute is now accepting applications for the spring session of Leadership Education and Progress (LEAP). This unbeatable opportunity for first-year students regularly features educational presentations from experts across the Division. The deadline to apply is Jan. 22.
- Student Judicial Services, in partnership with the Office of the Provost, the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs, the Center for Teaching & Learning, and the Center for the Skills & Experience Flags, is proud to present Academic Integrity and the Millennial Generation. This interactive faculty conference is designed to reduce academic dishonesty and support an honest and positive learning environment.
- “Looking toward the Future,” the spring Division-wide Staff Meeting, will be held on Jan. 28 in the Texas Union’s Shirley Bird Perry Ballroom from 9–11 a.m. Special guests will include Kevin Kruger, president of NASPA (Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education0, and Harrison Keller, Vice Provost for Higher Education Policy and Research. The 15th Annual Texas Parents Staff Merit Award winners will also be recognized at this time.
- As part of our Strategic Plan goal to develop our staff to their fullest potential, the Division of Student Affairs is hosting two workshops focused on digital identity, career development and social media best practices on Wednesday, Jan. 14. The workshops will be led by Eric Stoller of Inside Higher Ed and are open to all Division staff on a first-come-first-served basis. Online registration is required by Monday, Jan. 12.
Fun and camaraderie were had by all as Division staff gathered to celebrate another successful year at the 2014 Staff Holiday Celebration. Check out the pictures from the holiday photo booth as well as the candid photos and the time-lapse video.
- The Division fielded over 400 media inquiries last year, highlighting our staff as experts and leaders in their fields.
Recreational Sports (RecSports)
- The women’s soccer club ended its season at the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA) National Soccer Championships in Memphis, Tenn. The team lost to the eventual champion, Ohio State, yet was pleased with this year’s finish. It was the team’s third Final Four appearance at the national tournament since 2011.
- Recreational Sports sport clubs handily won the Beat A&M, Beat Hunger food drive by amassing 64,004.2 ounces of food to the Aggies’ 27,745.85 ounces. Together the schools donated over 2.5 tons of food to their local food banks. Thanks to all who contributed.
- Longhorns will keep the Lone Star Intramural Flag Football Trophy for winning the best of three games, 2–1, against the Aggies: men won 33–0, coed won 24–0, while women lost 14–7.
- Recreational Sports’ 2014 biennial Student Survey was tabulated and distributed to full-time staff. Discussions took place for planning purposes and goal setting.
- In an effort to discover the latest fitness trends among students, Recreational Sports released an online survey to ask about preferred fitness activities, services and brands. The first 300 respondents received a $10 gift card to Victory at Gregory Gym.
- Several Whitaker Fields staff members will enhance their skills and knowledge by attending a Professional Grounds Conference in Belton, Texas, on Jan. 13.
- Texas Parents launched the Spring 2015 Texas Parents Student Services Endowment Brick Paver campaign, encouraging parents to make a gift to the endowment while honoring their students with a brick paver laid at the Student Services Building entry.
- The 15th Annual Texas Parents Staff Merit Awards will be presented at the Division-wide Staff Meeting on Wednesday, Jan. 28, to employees in the Division of Student Affairs who personify the Division’s culture of excellence through their partnership, purpose, progress and participation.
- Texas Parents will welcome the parents and families of incoming transfer students at the Spring Family Orientation on Monday, Jan. 12.
- CSR’s Ugly Holiday Sweater Party was held on Dec. 9 as a way for CSR students to relax and say farewell to each other before finals.
- Some of CSR’s support group meetings go on year-round, even when campus is otherwise closed. Head over to the website to see a schedule.
- CSR launched a fundraising campaign on Dec. 3 to establish a CSR Alumni Endowment. The 10 for 10 Campaign aimed to raise $10,000 in the final month of CSR’s 10-year anniversary.
- UHS welcomes David Vander Straten as the new medical director. Reporting to the UHS director, the UHS medical director serves as the chief medical officer on campus, representing the university on all matters related to the health of its student population. Dr. Vander Straten originally came to UHS from Austin-Travis County’s own CommUnity Care.
- During the intersession, UHS organized a full day of continuing education for our medical staff. Topics included eating disorders among athletes and the common causes of and best treatments for lower back pain in our college population.
- Mindful of the Ebola virus outbreak in western Africa, UHS public health and medical professionals are staying engaged with the International Office, Campus Safety and Security, and many other offices to ensure the safety of our students, faculty and staff during this busy travel season.
- UHS staff celebrated the season with an annual ornament exchange party, a lively “white elephant” gift exchange and potluck.
- This is the peak of flu season and UHS sees cases even among individuals who received the flu shot. Be sure to cover your cough, wash your hands often and keep your hands away from your nose, mouth and eyes. Learn how you can prevent the flu.
- The University Unions hosted several finals food options and support for students studying during finals. The Texas Union hosted four days of different foods in the Eastwoods Room and at the Student Activity Center (SAC). Finals, Finals, Finals Fest fed over 400 hungry students who lined the halls 75 minutes early for midnight pancakes. There were also complimentary granola bars, study supplies and blue books distributed throughout the program.
- To assist students with the stress of finals, Campus Events + Entertainment hosted “Chillfest” and had over 1,500 students stop by to participate in stress-relieving activities and entertainment. Check out the photos.
- Campus Events + Entertainment had a record fall semester with over 18,000 attendees for their events.
- Fall events for registered student organizations and departments in the Student Activity Center was up six percent from fall 2013, including various Campus Conversations and President Power’s final State of the University Address.