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December 2017

Shari Shares 

I want to start by saying Thank You to each one of you for helping make 2017 a successful year for the Division. It would take pages and pages to list all of the accomplishments achieved by our division this year. However, I would like to mention a few:

• Developed a strategic plan for the Division.
• Replaced the student billing system.
• Saved almost $6.3 million from strategic sourcing through Procurement Services.
• Completed the rollout of Canvas and retirement of Blackboard including retention of critical course history and a new solution for managing videos. Canvas is the university’s primary Learning Management System.
• Replaced and upgraded the university’s firewall to enhance and extend protection of the university’s data and network assets from intrusion and disruption.
• Completion of Skinner Jones Hall.
• Effectively negotiated the Food Services Contract with significant enhancements (financial and non-financial) for ten years.  

• Successfully Implemented the Virtual Parking Permit for the campus community. 

We have outstanding employees so nominate your fellow co-worker for a Presidential award. Below is information on the awards.

As this year comes to a close, I'd like to remind everyone to please take a breath before the New Year arrives. Slow down and remember what is most important, the people we love. It is the Little Things that make Life Big! I wish you a joyous holiday season and a happy and healthy New Year.

Below are a few bits of information that I would like to highlight this month and a list of staffing changes.

Department Spotlight: Academic Technology

Academic Technology is one of the five departments within ITS. They seek to support the research and teaching needs of the university's academic departments, especially through the fostering of collaboration between faculty and the other ITS units. Academic Technology includes both audio-visual specialists who provide support for A/V technology in spaces throughout campus and an active faculty member who acts as a liaison between ITS (and other A&F units) and academic departments. The Department seeks to foster innovation through feedback and input from a full range of university stakeholders.

Employee Spotlight: Decato Burke

Decato Burke is the Audio Visual Technology Manager and has been with UNF for more than 20 years. 


What is an average day like in your job?

My average day changes depending on the needs of our UNF community. It varies from providing audio visual technology to state-of-the-art hardware and software enhancement recommendations for our colleges and departments. I also manage the vast number of A/V technology enhanced spaces for our campus and ensure that the equipment is working and up to acceptable standards. The goal is to provide the University community with equipment that can truly assist them in achieving their educational and business needs.


What is your favorite (work) project (past or present) and why do/did you like it so much? 
Recently I was given the opportunity to upgrade many of our legacy classroom spaces from the standard analog to digital high definition technology. This upgrade has provided better image clarity, higher fidelity sound, and has enabled more devices such as tablets, cell phones and media presentation devices, the ability to take advantage of the new technology.


What do you do on your days off of work?  

I like spending time with my grandkids. I would like to believe that they keep me young, at least young at heart.


What is one hidden talent you possess? 

My friends say that my singing voice is not too shabby. I think that they are just being nice, but their input is well received.


What is the most important thing you have learned while working at UNF? 

I have always truly believed that all/most people are good in nature and UNF has reinforced this belief. That is the reason why I am still working here today and enjoying the time that I am allotted.
Decato Burke Employee Spotlight
Decato Burke  

Meal Memberships

UNF Dining services offer a variety of meal memberships that provide diverse and healthy food options at a fraction of the cost. With a meal membership, faculty and staff can swipe their card at any of the 15 dining locations across campus. Perks of a faculty and staff meal membership include:

  • A cost savings up to $2.38 per meal at the Osprey Cafe
  • Multiple uses per meal period
  • Swipe for a guest
  • Good for 1 year from purchase
  • Online balance inquiries
  • Payroll deduction

For more information on how to sign up visit the UNF dining services website.

Excellence Awards Nominations Due Friday, Dec. 15 

Don’t forget Friday, Dec. 15 is the deadline to submit nominations for the fall cycle of the Presidential Awards. Please nominate a staff member who exemplifies excellence or a unit who is providing excellent customer service. Also, consider the Spot Award, which is simple to submit.

1. Presidential Excellence Award for Administrative Employees. This award is given to administrative employees for achievements that demonstrate notable contributions to the University; commitment to excellence, focus, relevance and accountability; and reflect work that is significantly above and beyond the range of the job assignment and performance expectations. Full-time students are not eligible.

1st place for Presidential Excellence Award ¬ Administrative — $2,000 (after taxes)

2nd place for Presidential Excellence Award ¬ Administrative — $800 (after taxes)

2. Presidential Excellence Award for Support, Out of Unit Faculty or OPS staff. This award is given to Support, Out of Unit Faculty or OPS staff for achievements that demonstrate notable contributions to the University; commitment to excellence, focus, relevance and accountability; and reflect work that is significantly above and beyond the range of the job assignment and performance expectations. Full-time students are not eligible.

1st place for Presidential Excellence Award ¬ Support, Out of Unit Faculty, or OPS staff — $2,000 (after taxes)

2nd place for Presidential Excellence Award ¬ Support, Out of Unit Faculty, or OPS staff — $800 (after taxes)

3. Presidential Quality Customer Service Award. This award is granted to any UNF department, office or unit that has contributed to the enhancement of quality customer service at the University; proven exceptional initiative in "going the extra mile" with timely and appropriate follow-up; confirmed responsiveness to the needs of students, patrons or customers; and demonstrated improvement of customer service and satisfaction.

Quality Customer Service Award — $500 to the winning department to be used for a departmental event.

4. Presidential Spot Awards. The Presidential Spot Award is designed to reward someone for an act that seemingly took a simple effort but ultimately will have lasting positive effects on students, faculty, staff, visitors or safety in the workplace. This award enables the UNF community to recognize individuals who have been spotted embracing the University’s commitment to excellence by going above and beyond their daily job expectations. Nominees must be a current administrative, support staff, out-of-unit faculty and regular Other Personal Services (OPS). Director-level positions and above are NOT eligible for this award. Full-time students are not eligible.
Spot Awards — $100 (after taxes) 

The recipients will be publicly recognized during the 2018 Presidential Excellence Awards Luncheon on May 2.  

Payroll Tips

Below are a few tips from the Payroll Office. 

  • Maximize 403(b) and/or 457(b) contributions, as these are pretax funds. Reducing reportable income means a smaller income tax bill.
  • Consider end-of-year charitable contributions that provide tax deductions, if itemizing.
  • If enrolled, to use flexible spending account funds by the end of the plan year. These funds let employees set aside pretax money to offset healthcare or childcare expenses.
  • Review current W-4 form information and submit a new form if their marital status and/or withholding allowances have changed or will change for the upcoming year.
  • With the recent Hurricane Irma that hit Florida and other areas, it is beneficial for employees to keep in mind and claim losses due to a casualty, disaster or theft. Generally, you may deduct casualty, disaster and theft losses relating to your home, household items, and vehicles on your federal income tax return. More information about this topic can be found from the IRS’ website
  • Security Awareness. As the holiday shopping season is upon us and also nearing the tax filing season, there are key steps employees can follow to protect their data:
    • Keep personal data safe. Be vigilant with personal information. While employees are shopping for gifts, criminals are shopping for sensitive data including credit cards, financial accounts, and Social Security numbers. Employees should use strong, unique passwords for each online account and avoid routinely carrying a Social Security card. Avoid unsecured Wi-Fi in public locations while holiday shopping.
    • Avoid phishing emails by data thieves. Learn to recognize and avoid phishing emails, threatening phone calls, and texts from thieves. Employees should never click on links or download attachments from unknown or suspicious email addresses
    • Take steps to protect data after a breach. There are specific things that data theft victims can do after a criminal steals their information. This includes using credit monitoring services, putting a freeze on accounts and resetting passwords.

Presidential Search Update 

John Delaney, our president for the past 15 years, is retiring in May. Below is an update from Dr. Radha Pyati, a member of the search committee. 

  • Approximately five dozen candidates are seriously considering the position. They are a mix of roughly 60% academic and 40% nonacademic individuals.
  • Parker Executive Search hopes to get 8-10 quality candidates, and with our current pace they seem confident we will reach that number.
  • Parker Executive Search has reached out to 600+ individuals, both potential candidates and nominators, and is continuing to talk with numerous potential candidates.
  • What they are hearing from the market of candidates include positives: the success of a long-term president, Jacksonville presents interesting opportunities, and UNF is young enough to create a unique brand. Candidates are asking questions about topics such as our Sunshine laws, the student conduct issues currently in the news, and the performance-based funding metrics. Candidates are diving in and doing plenty of research on UNF. 

Employee Handbook 

UNF's online Employee Handbook is a guide for policies, benefits, governance, health and safety, and general information for employees. Whether you are new to UNF or have worked here a long time, it is a good idea to review the employee handbook periodically.

Our People

We welcome these new staff members

Emily Batt, Student Financial Services Coordinator, Controller

Quang Bui, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services

Kimberly Coppedge, Executive Secretary, Telephone Services

Sabinina Harris, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services

Andrea Taylor, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services

We congratulate these staff members who have recently been promoted 

Danny Bethune, Senior Floor Care Worker, Custodial Services

Decato Burke, Manager Audio Visual Technology, ITS-Academic Technology

Jamie Winegardner, Custodial Supervisor, Custodial Services

We say goodbye to these staff members who recently left the University

Priya Arjune, Accountant, Controller

Bianca DePass, Accounts Payable Receivable Associate, Controller

Kenneth Holmes, Custodial Worker, Physical Facilities

Gia Hunt, Custodial Supervisor, Custodial Services

Christopher Thomas, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services

Terence Thompson, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services