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University, committee look to help faculty and staff

Jul 27, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused University of the Pacific faculty and staff on all three campuses to cope with ever-changing life circumstances—at home and work.

Teaching students through a Zoom feed on a computer screen.

Turning that spare room in their house into an office.

The separation many feel from working apart from their team members.

The stress and anxiety that can accompany so many jobs when the degree of difficulty changes because of the new normal.

President Christopher Callahan is mindful of all of this and more. He recently appointed an ad hoc faculty/staff task force to look at ways to support university employees. They are working to develop events, initiatives, resources and more to help Pacific faculty and staff cope and prosper as they work toward the day when a full return to campus becomes reality.

“We want to have awareness and connectivity with our employees to make sure we are helping them in various ways,” said Linda Jeffers, vice president for human resources, noting the importance of maintaining community on the Stockton, Sacramento and San Francisco campuses.

Members of the task force are:

  • Vice President for University Development and Alumni Relations Burnie Atterbury
  • Assistant Vice President for Human Resources Linda Jeffers
  • Vice President for Student Life Carrie Lovelace Petr
  • Vice President for Enrollment Management Roberta Kaskel
  • Ombudsperson Hector Escalante
  • Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education Edie Sparks

Jeffers said some of the areas considered are employee celebrations, exercise and nutrition, walking groups, gift cards for positive contributions, book clubs or perhaps having the university as a whole read a book.

In addition, employees are encouraged to visit the Human Resources website, which has a “What’s New” section. Highlights include:

  • LifeHealth Online: This convenient way to see a board-certified psychiatrist became effective July 1. Please click here to view more information on the new program.
  • More than 15,000 LinkedIn Learning courses available on Bridge. These include individual courses or training for your department or division.
  • Family resources including, daily art lessons, virtual tours, puzzles, games and academic articles.

Visit the Human Resources website for details and more programs, and watch for opportunities from the faculty/staff committee.

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