Minutes from the Health System Academic Research Employee Council meeting on July 19th, 2001

Attendance: Mary-Leigh Thacker, Leigh Ann Bush, David V. Smith, Della Marsh, Jim Stork, John Williamson, Nancy Kriigel, Tammy Snow, Todd Campbell, Kathleen Sagarino, Marie Austin-Johnson, Kathleen Ashe, Brenda Crider, Lynn McCutcheon, Ally Mawyer, Johy Podraza, Anda Webb, Bill Vining, Kanisha Adkins and Jane Adair.

Kanisha Adkins (kla3a@virginia.edu), Deputy Director of the Office of Equal Opportunity Programs (EOP), was our first speaker. The office has a mission to uphold the university's commitment that it doesn't discriminate on the basis of age, citizenship, color, disability, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or status as a disabled veteran or veteran of the Vietnam era. They cannot say that discrimination doesn't occur at UVA, but says that UVA does not condone such behavior and will hear complaints from anyone in the university community (students, faculty, staff, and the public).

The EOP office mission encompasses three areas:

  • Access: For students, this deals with the admissions policies of the University to ensure that prospective students all have an equal opportunity for admission to the University. For faculty and staff, the EOP directly monitors the recruiting and hiring process and offers many e-forms on their web page with suggestions. They offer suggestions as to where ads are placed, the text of the ads, and monitor how offers are made. For the general public, the EOP ensures that the eligibility and conditions for participating in activities at UVA is fair and that handicap access or hearing impaired services are offered, for example.
  • Conditions and Treatment: Everyone involved with the University has a right to fair conditions and treatment as they interact and participate in programs, classes, etc. at the University. If the unfair treatment you are receiving doesn't fall into one of the categories listed in the policy above, then the EOP cannot study it, but they can help the individual seek help through another means (ombudsman, etc.). It must be emphasized that it is impossible to treat everyone the same because we are all individuals, but you can treat everyone fairly.
  • Outreach: The EOP makes an effort to make contact with the University community through various means. They have an interactive web page with many links. They even offer example interview questions and recruiting suggestions on the web page. There are many brochures available on a variety of topics including Equal Access (ADA-Americans with Disability Act), sexual harassment, faculty recruitment, Office of Ombudsman, and Discriminatory Complaint Procedures. The office also offers training programs for your individual groups needs.

The EOP is here for you. To get in touch with them, call at 3-6368 or e-mail to UVAEOP@virginia.edu.

The next speaker was Anda Webb (al6b@virginia.edu), the new liaison for the council from the Provost Office. The Office of the Vice President of the Health System and the Provost office are still in the process of merging. All the details have not been worked out, but she will update us on these developments. It has been decided that the Health System Library will report to the Dean of the School of Medicine. Gene Block is currently the Provost in training. She suggested that we invite him to a meeting, so that we will all become familiar with the duties of the Provost's office and the direction he has for the University.

Each school is working on their plan for a rewards and recognition policy. The policies are due by Aug. 15th. The deans will be distributed all of the plans so that they can see what other sectors of the University are doing as ideas for their own areas. The plans will be reviewed by the Provost office and by Human Resources to ensure that they are fair and reasonable and that a degree of consistency exists across the University.

Graduate students will receive a subsidy beginning August 1st from the University for health insurance. The subsidy is $915/year as long as the student earns $5000/year through teaching, research, etc. The subsidy will pay for the QualChoice white plan, and the student has the option of using the subsidy to upgrade to another QualChoice plan.

Oracle went live, and all departments seem to be online. Some training is still going on but all in all the transition was fairly smooth.

Elections: The employee council held the yearly elections. There are only 2 candidates for the 3 positions, because Stephanie Bingler had to withdraw her name from the pool since both Stephanie and Monte Parsons recently moved to Neurosurgery, and 2 officers can't come from the same department. The 2 people running for officers of the 2001-2002 employee council were Monte Parsons and Terry Moore. Both were elected co-chairs, and will take office at the August 16th meeting.

Bill Vining was next to address the council. He gave us an orientation session on the new Performance Planning and Evaluation plan. He passed out a handbook on the policy which is available at http://www.hrs.virginia.edu/PerfMgt/handbook.html. There is a brochure put together by HR available at the Performance Management Guide web page. It needs to be emphasized that this is a transition year for the performance plan. It will look fairly similar to the previous plan. There is also no funding yet for the plan.

There are 3 main categories of change:

  • Self-Assessment: Everyone is given the opportunity to assess themselves. You may opt not to do the self-assessment. If you do a self-assessment, the supervisor must consider it in the evaluation.
  • Three Ranking Categories: Instead of the previous 5 categories, there are now 3 ranking categories: extraordinary contributor, contributor, and below contributor. The guidelines in the book will help to fairly judge each employee.
  • Supporting Documentation: For a ranking of extraordinary or below contributor, the supervisor must have documented throughout the year specific events to warrant such a ranking. This year there will be a bit of leniency on this portion of the plan, because the plan is coming out so late in the year. The goal is to improve communication between the supervisor and the employee throughout the entire year.

The new compensation system increased the probationary period to 1 year, beginning in Sept. 2000. There is a Probationary Progress Review Form, which is required at 6 months, and it is also possible to extend the probationary period if needed. For all employees, the new performance standards must be made within 30 days of being evaluated this year. There is still an appeal process when an employee is unhappy with the evaluation. The appeal goes to the reviewer of the evaluation. The new system will require that an employee should be evaluated when they leave a position, even if they are going to another UVA position.

There are special sessions to explain the changes to the evaluation system which can be found at http://www.hrs.virginia.edu/PerfMgt/sessions.html

Old Business: A day trip has been planned by the UVA Health System Travel Group on Saturday, October 13th to go to Washington DC for a day of sightseeing and an optional dinner at Hogate's Restaurant and show at the Kennedy Center to see Shear Madness. The seating is limited to 57 seats, so make your reservations now!! Mary-Leigh passed out brochures and will have more available at the next meeting.

New Business: Mary-Leigh is on the Rewards and Recognition Program Committee and wants your suggestions. Please let her know if you have any ideas for the program by e-mailing her at mlt8p@virginia.edu or letting her know at the next meeting.

The minutes were approved for June and the meeting was adjourned.