I hope you and your family fared well during and after Hurricane Irma. We are so fortunate in Jacksonville that the storm was not worse. I realize some of us had more damage than others and are still having to deal with issues caused by the storm, but in comparison to Puerto Rico and other Caribbean islands, we are lucky. Storms such as Hurricanes Irma and Maria, and tragedies such as the shooting in Las Vegas put life in perspective. We need to put our arms around our family and friends and support each other. You need to enjoy each day and make it the best that you can!
I am so proud of the collective efforts of our division in preparing for the storm, working when classes and offices were closed, and cleaning up after the storm. With 28 major buildings and 1,300 acres, that is a huge task. It is especially difficult to be at work when you want or need to be at home preparing personally for the storm. I truly appreciate each person who contributed to our storm efforts. Below are some of the actions our staff took to ensure the University ran like a well-oiled machine.
- Campus Planning Design & Construction
- Notified contractors to secure job sites, removed dumpsters and loose building materials.
- Controller's Office
- Payroll staff and the Controller worked a full day on Friday, Sept. 9 to process payroll for the University.
- Student Financial Services staff responded to the "cashier inbox" (when offices were closed) since the storm happened the week of the first financial aid disbursement of the semester.
- Sent 4,800 bottles of water to Ozzie's for student and staff consumption.
- Dining associates and management worked all the days offices were closed, and the weekend, to ensure students on campus had meals. This includes 45 staff who worked on Friday to make preparations.
- 1,127 meals were served at the Osprey Café on Friday and Saturday. 388 meals served on Tuesday for students, faculty and staff who were on campus.
- 1,000 sandwiches were given to the city of Jacksonville for their first responders.
- Environmental Health &Safety
- Worked with University departments on any hazard identification, assessment and mitigation before opening the campus.
- Worked with the insurance company to identify damages and start the claims process.
- Will work with the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for reimbursement of damages not covered by insurance.
- Information Technology Services
- Academic Technology made preparations before the storm for the safekeeping of audiovisual equipment and checked equipment afterwards to ensure classrooms were operational.
- Enterprise Systems monitored key systems to ensure they remained up and running during the entire event. No production systems were impacted as a result of the storm.
- Network Engineering monitored all network components for events that could create an outage. Two switches were impacted as a result of the storm and were replaced the first day back.
- Systems Engineering continually monitored both data centers during the storm. They responded to a high temperature event Sunday evening and proactively shut down non-production systems to prevent a complete shutdown. All production systems were kept up and running throughout the event.
- Telecommunication Services planned and configured a phone bank setup in Hicks Hall in the event Alumni Hall was not available due to loss of power.
- User Services, prior to the storm, assisted departments in efforts to protect computers and computer labs. No equipment was lost in areas where preventive measures were taken.
- Parking & Transportation Services
- Two shuttles ran on Sunday, Sept. 10 to transfer students from all housing areas to the Fountains.
- Physical Facilities
- Shuttered the Campus Police Department and Physical Facilities offices
- Routine preparation consisting of checking drains and weirs, topping off fuel in equipment and vehicles, checking chainsaws, securing outdoor furnishings, emptying trash compactors, and clearing the Recycle yard by sending accumulated scrap metal to the recycler.
- Physical Facilities tier one responders assessed campus on Monday, Sept.11 and started remedial actions to return campus to full operations.
- Performed facility damage assessments of all campus buildings starting on Monday, Sept. 11 and completed by Wednesday Sept. 13.
- Deployed over 70 staff on September 12-13 to perform campus recovery operations.
- Grounds had two full days of cutting and picking up fallen branches plus a morning of sweeping sidewalks in the campus core to get ready for the return of the students. Recycle and Irrigation crews helped Grounds on the first day.
- About a dozen trees that fell were cleared from plazas, sidewalks and roads. Over thirty fell across the Sawmill Slough Preserve trails. Trail clearing continues in this area.
- Partnered with various campus contractors to make emergency or remedial repairs to campus buildings.
- Procurement Services
- Reached out to the major units on campus charged with the safeguarding of students and/or property (e.g. Physical Facilities, Housing, Athletics) to see if they had everything needed in preparation for the storm and made themselves available should needs have arisen during/after the storm.
- Made sure our campus-wide agreements for goods/services were in place and ready for use. Key staff members took this information home with them in preparation for any needed action.
- Made sure all transactions unrelated to the storm that might be needed right when campus re-opened were completed.
Department Spotlight: Physical Facilities
The Physical Facility Department is the largest single organization on the UNF campus and arguably fields the most diversified and multi-cultural staff of any area. The department has 245 staff members hailing from multiple states within the U.S. and other countries that include Haiti, China, Japan, Jamaica, Netherlands, Korea, Vietnam, Bosnia, Iraq, Russia, Syria and Philippines. The department provides maintenance, landscaping and custodial services for the maintenance and upkeep of campus buildings and grounds year round. The department is well regarded nationally and within the state of Florida as an organization of excellence and participates in a number of professional organizations that promote Physical Facilities on university campuses nationally and abroad. In 2009, the department was awarded for Excellence in Facility Management by The Association of Physical Plant Administrators (APPA) and has been in the top tier of Florida State University System (SUS) schools in sustainability and energy metrics for the last several years.
Employee Spotlight: Vernon Miller
Vernon Miller is a maintenance supervisor for Physical Facilities and has worked at UNF for almost seven years.
What is an
average day like in your job?
My average day consists of making sure all equipment is up and running and work orders are responded to in a timely manner.
What do you
like most about your job?
I like the satisfaction of being able to complete a job without calling a contractor. I like to push myself with the impossible.
What do you
do on your days off of work?
I enjoy spending my days off at home cooking for my family. I always keep an eye on the notifications that come across my phone from the University. I am often the person who meets with contractors when the University is closed.
What is one
hidden talent you possess?
My hidden talent is working with people and making them smile. I also cook pretty well.
What is the
most important thing you have learned while working at UNF?
The one thing I’ve learned from working here at UNF is that communication is a must. I have also learned to be patient, always treat people respectfully and smile.
New Divisional Road Map: Vision, Mission, Values and Goals
I'd like to introduce Administration and Finance's new road map! The vision is the "big picture" destination for our division; what we want to accomplish. The mission is our guiding light for how we get to our destination. Our core values define us in terms of principles and values and are what we will follow while carrying out the activities of the division. Our goals are general statements on what we need to accomplish. All of these parts combined form our strategic plan, or road map, for the next few years. Please review them in the article below or on our division's home page. Please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions.
A&F will be recognized as an innovative steward invested in the administrative and financial success of the University community. We will be proactively sought as a collaborative partner in developing solutions with students, faculty, staff, parents, contractors, vendors and guests.
A&F will work vigorously to understand and balance the financial, administrative and compliance needs of the University. We seek respectful and ongoing relationships to enhance constituent experiences. We serve to protect and enhance the University’s resources.
To fulfill our mission, we will be guided by the commitment to excellence, relevance and accountability through the demonstration of the pursuit of truth and knowledge, ethical conduct, community engagement, diversity, responsibility to the natural environment and mutual respect and civility. We will be mindful that our actions reflect respect and courtesy and our treatment of others will be caring and fair. We will solicit new and creative ideas in order to provide the best services possible. Our demonstration of openness and diversity will engage our individual and collective efforts to recruit and include a diverse workforce at all levels and in all settings.
- A&F will provide students, faculty, and staff with well-run infrastructure and services to effectively carry out the research, teaching, outreach and public service mission of the University.
- A&F will proactively listen to and understand the needs of the University community so that we can more effectively and respectfully solve challenges collaboratively.
- A&F will seek and implement innovative solutions and best practices to support the changing needs and environment of the University.
- A&F will support informed decision making by collecting, analyzing and reporting on data, and leveraging that data to improve performance both within the division and across the University community.
- A&F will be proactive stewards of the University’s resources and services, balancing constituent needs while protecting and enhancing them and ensuring compliance.
- A&F will consistently strive to treat all constituents with civility and respect and seek to improve customer satisfaction.
October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month
Information Technology Services and Communications & Training encourage you to take advantage of a variety of resources and events during the month of October. These activities will give the campus community a better understanding of cyber security and the simple steps to take to protect yourself, your family and our university. The IT Security team will host a Cyber Security Forum on Oct. 17 at 3 p.m. in Hicks Hall that will focus on password/passphrase security. The weekly themes include:
Stop. Think. Connect. Simple Steps to Online Safety: Monday, Oct. 2, to Friday, Oct. 6
Cybersecurity in the Workplace Is Everyone's Business: Monday, Oct. 9, to Friday, Oct. 13
Today’s Predictions for Tomorrow’s Internet: Monday, Oct. 16, to Friday, Oct. 20
The Internet Wants You: Consider a Career in Cybersecurity: Monday, Oct. 23, to Friday, Oct. 27
Protecting Critical Infrastructure From Cyber Threats: Monday, Oct. 30, to Tuesday, Oct. 31
For more information and to get involved with this year's themes and activities, visit the Cyber Security Awareness webpage. Check back often as the page will be updated with new material each week.
John Delaney, our president for the past 15 years, is retiring in May. After 14 listening sessions with faculty, staff, students, donors and community leaders, and reading through the comments from more than 600 people who completed the online survey, the University Board of Trustees approved the position description for the next president. The application process is underway and interested candidates may submit their letter of interest, complete CV, contact information and at least five references to the search firm. In early February, the search will identify eight (more or less) candidates for final interviews. View the announcement and the timeline.
We welcome these new staff members
Thomas Arsenault, Law Enforcement Liaison, TSI - IPTM & PSI Employees
Kevin Blue, IT Network Engineer, Networking Services
Donovan Faustino, IT Systems Engineer, Systems Engineering
We congratulate these staff members who have recently been promoted
Darrell Edmonds, Coordinator IPTM, TSI - IPTM & PSI Employees
John Mark, Manager Student Financial Services, Controller
John Pickett, AV Support Specialist, ITS-Academic Technology
We say goodbye to these staff members who recently left the University
Vashti Arjune, Office Assistant, Parking
& Transportation Services
Sharon Comer. IT Project Manager, Project Management Office
Clartiza Day, IT Project Manager, Project Management Office
Natalie Giancola, Accountant, Controller
Johnny Jones, Custodial Support Worker, Physical Facilities
William Taylor, Senior Floor Care Worker, Physical Facilities
Sher Tapa, Custodial Worker, Student Union-Custodial