Vol. 55, No. 9Ninth Week • Fall Semester • Oct. 15, 2007

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Featured Articles

Health insurance options to change in 2008

Retirement prompts personnel administration changes

Research points to influence of ancient megadroughts on migration of humans out of Africa

Academic mission to be focus of chancellor's second strategic planning dialogue

CampS team to hold kickoff information sessions

Alumna creates women's soccer opportunity fund

Event invites students to explore career options

Behind the Scenes… with the Women's Rugby Club

Shanghai tour previews set for Oct. 15, 23

'It's Your Choice' booklet cover

Important reminders:

• Dual Choice benefits enrollment period,
Oct. 8-26

• Health insurance options teleconference, 11:30 a.m. today

• Benefits fair, 11 a.m.-
2 p.m. today

Health insurance options
to change in 2008
Teleconference today to provide forum for employee questions
Due to significant changes to UW-Eau Claire employees' health insurance options for 2008, UW-Eau Claire Human Resources has scheduled a teleconference at which faculty and staff may ask questions and voice concerns about those options. The teleconference, set for 11:30 a.m. today, Oct. 15, in the Alumni Room in Davies Center, will take place in conjunction with the university's benefits fair, which runs from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Council Fire Room in Davies Center.

The most significant change of which employees should be aware is that Luther/Midelfort/Mayo will no longer be a provider for the Humana Western health insurance plan, said Donna Weber, interim director of human resources. Read the text of a related e-mail message sent Oct. 11 to university employees.

At today's teleconference, representatives from the Department of Employee Trust Funds (DETF, the state agency responsible for the administration of the Group Health Insurance Program) will be available to answer questions and address concerns employees may have about Humana Western and other insurance options. Go to top of page

Retirement prompts personnel administration changes
Following the Oct. 12 retirement of Jan Morse, administrative officer for academic affairs, Chancellor Brian Levin-Stankevich approved several changes in the administration of personnel matters for faculty and academic staff. To implement these changes, the following staffing realignments will be made:

  • Barb Hanson and Bonnie Clark will join the staff of the Human Resources office, where they will continue to have the responsibilities they had in Academic Affairs.
  • The program assistant position currently held by Enid Bahnub will provide support for Interim Associate Vice Chancellor Andrew Phillips.
  • The overall responsibility for administration of faculty and academic staff personnel matters will be in the hands of a staff member in the Human Resources office. Effective immediately, Human Resources Manager Mary Casey will assume these responsibilities on an interim basis until a permanent appointment can be made.
  • Donna Weber, interim director of Human Resources, will provide overall direction for the positions held by Hanson, Clark and Casey.
    More information. Go to top of page

Research points to influence of ancient megadroughts on migration of humans out of Africa

Dr. Kristina Beuning
Dr. Kristina Beuning

New research that documents extreme megadroughts thousands of years ago in Africa may provide an ecological explanation for humans' migration out of Africa during the early Late Pleistocene, said a UW-Eau Claire biologist whose research recently was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

From 135,000 to 90,000 years ago tropical Africa had megadroughts that were more extreme and widespread than previously known for that region, said Dr. Kristina Beuning, associate professor of biology. These new findings, as deduced from the study of sediment cores from Lake Malawi, indicate that Africa was an arid scrubland during the early Late Pleistocene, she said. Full story. Go to top of page

Academic mission to be focus of chancellor's second strategic planning dialogue
Strategic planning logoUW-Eau Claire faculty, staff and students are invited to participate in a strategic planning dialogue about the university's academic mission with Chancellor Brian Levin-Stankevich next Monday, Oct. 22, from 4-5:30 p.m. in the Hibbard Hall Penthouse. The open dialogue will address such questions as:

  • What do we really mean about a more intentional learning experience, and are we ready to make it happen?
  • We say we're committed to excellence, but does that mean the status quo?
  • What is the role of graduate education at UW-Eau Claire?
  • What principles need to drive our financial decision making?

This is the second of two campus dialogues to address issues raised by the recently released strategic planning work group proposals and the subsequent input from faculty, staff and students. An earlier dialogue, held Oct. 10, focused on the campus climate. (Read notes from the Oct. 10 dialogue.) Outcomes of both dialogues will be shared with the University Planning Committee, which will draft the final strategic plan.

Students, staff and faculty are invited to come when they can to the session and stay as long as their schedules allow. Beverages will be provided. Go to top of page

CampS team to hold kick-off information sessions
CampS logoThe CampS Implementation Team will present brown-bag informational kick-off sessions regarding the implementation of PeopleSoft Campus Solutions, the software that will replace UW-Eau Claire's current mainframe-based student administrative systems by fall 2009. The sessions will describe current activities of the project, people and offices directly involved, the implementation approach, and training plans for the campus. Attendees will get a glimpse of what the menu system and screens may look like. Since the change to Campus Solutions will ultimately affect all faculty, staff and students, everyone is encouraged to attend an information session or check the Web sites for ongoing news.

The following sessions are scheduled:

  • Noon-1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 16, Arrowhead Room, Davies Center
  • 10-11:30 a.m. Friday, Oct. 19, Human Sciences and Services Room 202
  • 3-4:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 24, Hibbard Hall Room 206
  • 1-2:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 26, Schneider Hall Room 224.

More ongoing information about the conversion can be found on the LTS Web page, which also has a link to the UW-Eau Claire PeopleSoft Campus Solutions Conversion Web site. Go to top of page

Alumna creates women's soccer opportunity fund

Regi Munro
Regi Munro
(Photo by Roy Pope Photography)

Regi Munro, a 1989 UW-Eau Claire graduate and one of four former students who helped establish women's soccer as a Blugold varsity sport, has established the first endowed opportunity fund for women's Blugold soccer. The fund, which honors her mother, is also the first for a women's sport at UW-Eau Claire.

Women's Blugold soccer coach Sean Yengo said the opportunity fund will provide a welcome supplement to the soccer team's budget.

"This will really help ease the burden of having to fundraise to provide the extras, like a new scoreboard, that the budget just won't allow," Yengo said. "It's just great that Regi had the vision to come forward to help establish soccer as a varsity sport and now is giving back because of her positive experiences at UW-Eau Claire. It's an example of the values we're trying to teach our players." Full story. Go to top of page

Event invites students to explore career options

Possibility Pete
Possibility Pete as '007 Pete'

UW-Eau Claire Career Services will offer a variety of activities Oct. 15-19 during Explore Your Possibilities Week, hosted by that well-recognized campus celebrity, Possibility Pete, starring as 007 Pete in "Mission: Possible."

Some 1,600 students are expected to attend the 60 different career-related workshops being offered from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, Oct. 16-18, in Davies Center. Numerous employers, faculty, staff and invited alumni will talk about majors, careers, ways to get experience now, and the job search. A complete workshop schedule is available online, and preregistration is recommended.

The week's activities also will include a Career Services open house from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, Oct. 15, and Friday, Oct. 19. Full story. Go to top of page

Behind the scenes …

Freshman Denise Fleming in rugby game
Freshman Denise Fleming of the UW-Eau Claire Women's Rugby Club carries the ball in a recent game. (Photo by Rick Mickelson, LTS)

The newest installment in the series "Behind the Scenes …," produced by Learning and Technology Services to provide a look behind the scenes of various aspects of university life, features the Women's Rugby Club.

The Women's Rugby Club is in its 10th year at UW-Eau Claire.

Take an audiovisual look behind the scenes with the Women's Rugby Club. (Slideshow and photos by Rick Mickelson, LTS) Go to top of page

Shanghai tour previews set for Oct. 15, 23
Shanghai skylineUW-Eau Claire professor and Shanghai native Dr. Simei Tong will lead "Between Modernity and Tradition: A Tour of New Shanghai" May 17-25, 2008. Preview sessions are scheduled for 7:30 p.m. tonight, Oct. 15, in Hibbard Hall Room 308 and 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 23, at the UW-Eau Claire Continuing Education office, 210 Water Street. Complete tour information is available on the Continuing Education Web site. Go to top of page


University Bulletin
Published weekly during the fall and spring semesters by the UW-Eau Claire News Bureau. News items and notices should be sent to the News Bureau, Schofield 201, by 10 a.m. Monday for publication in the following week’s issue. E-mail submissions to Julie Poquette at poquetjm@uwec.edu are encouraged. Faculty/staff news items are published on a space-available basis.

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News Bureau
Julie Poquette, Editor, UW-Eau Claire News Bureau, Schofield 201, (715) 836-4741
Diane Walkoff, Editorial Assistant. Updated: October 15, 2007

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