AU CoffeeBreak 6-8-16

Posted on June 8th, 2016 by Emily Tomlinson


CoffeeBreak is an e-newsletter distributed to Averett faculty and staff to keep them up to date on campus activities and information.

Please send information you would like included in CoffeeBreak via this form by 4:30 p.m. Friday, June 10 for a Wednesday, June 15 publication.

cb_spotlightparks_jasonGPS Student Spotlight

Throughout the month, the Graduate and Professional Studies (GPS) admissions team interviews and highlights our GPS students. We hope you will enjoy learning more about these amazing members of our Averett family!

Meet Jason Parks, one of our bachelor of business administration students.

Why he chose the GPS Program: “I chose Averett primarily for its flexibility for working adults. I had several co-workers who are Averett alumni, and they had nothing but good things to say. Their input made me feel comfortable and confident that Averett would be there every step of the way to assist me in attaining my goals.”

What is motivating him to earn his BBA: “There are several factors motivating me to obtain my degree. One factor is financial security. Obtaining my degree would make me more competitive in the job market.”

What keeps him motivated: “My family keeps me motivated. I have a wife, a 12-year-old son, and a 6 –month-old daughter. I want to make the best life I can for all of them. I feel obtaining my degree will put me in a better position to do that.”

Tip for fellow and future classmates: “One tip I would offer is to set a schedule, and stick to it. We all know how time flies as we get older. I have found it beneficial to schedule everything. For example, time for reading, time for discussion questions, time for papers. Everything has a date and time during the week set aside to make sure I stay on task.”



echols_krisA warm Averett welcome is extended to …

Kris Echols ’11, our new system administrator in the IT department. A native of Danville, Kris graduated with his two sisters (they are triplets). During his years at Averett Kris was very busy. He served as SGA president for two years, was a founding member of the Averett Pep Band, sang in the Gospel Choir and served as treasurer for Averett’s Brothers with a Purpose. He comes to us from the CIT Group, where he served as “The IT Guy.” Please welcome Kris and help him feel at home.



ward_karenDear Averett Family,

At the end of the month, we will be saying goodbye to one of our members for almost 26 years. Karen Ward’s last day before retirement will be June 30, which is also the day of the annual President’s Council Summer Cookout. This day will offer everyone a time to speak with Karen, share memories, and wish her well as she moves into this next phase of her life.

Karen has been calm, focused, loyal and devoted to her post. Her work ethic is steadfast, admirable and rare. She has done whatever it takes to do a job well, and she always seeks to help each one of us with any task – regardless of how small or large.

basinger_cyndieAs Karen moves onto her wonderful new journey, our office warmly welcomes Cyndie Basinger to the Averett Family as the executive assistant to the president’s office beginning Monday, June 20.

Cyndie comes to Averett with more than 25 years of experience in higher education, most recently at Guilford College in Greensboro, N.C., where she currently serves as the assistant to the vice president for enrollment management. Before moving to Guilford, she spent the majority of her career at Greensboro College, beginning as the part-time secretary for student activities, to becoming the administrative assistant to the president /director of communications. Additionally, during this time, she earned her BBA from Greensboro.

Please be sure to join me in welcoming Cyndie to the Averett Family.


Tiffany Franks

2512.jpgYancey Named to Board of Directors

Tia Yancey, administrative assistant for the CCECC, has been named to the United Way of Danville-Pittsylvania County’s Board of Directors. Tia currently serves as a commissioner for the Danville Redevelopment and Housing Authority and as a parent advisory member for the iChoose program, an initiative of the Dan River Partnership for a Healthy Community. Congratulations, Tia!

harris_tonyHarris Achieves CCNA

Tony Harris, our network and security administrator, recently passed the CCNA, (Cisco Certified Network Associate) Routing and Switching certification exam. The certification validates a professional’s ability to understand, configure, operate and troubleshoot medium-level switched and routed networks and also includes the verification and implementation of connections via remote sites using WAN. Rock on Tony!

duchaunandtigerandjanetPhillips Tours Europe

Dr. Janet Phillips, assistant professor of music, recently returned from a 12-day European concert tour with the UNCG Touring Wind Ensemble. The group performed to a full house and a very appreciative audience in Dvorak Hall of Rudolfinum, in Prague, Czech Republic, home of the Czech Philharmonic. Other cities included in the performance tour were Bad Ischl and Innsbruck, Austria and Bologna and Rome, Italy. A special highlight of the tour was playing principal flute on Music for Prague, 1968 by Czech composer Karel Husa, for the Prague audience. Husa is now in his 90s and lives in North Carolina. When you see her around campus, ask her about the photo of the man and his dog.

USDOL_SealDear University Faculty and Staff,

As I am sure many of you are aware, on Wed., May 18, 2016, the Department of Labor confirmed President Obama’s executive order concerning the new rules for paying overtime under the Federal Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The new rules will affect essentially all private and public employers (including colleges and universities) and require a review of the Exempt and Non-Exempt (for overtime) status of employees based on a new salary threshold and position descriptions.

Please know that we have been tracking these new rules and analyzing their potential effects and greatest areas of impact for the past year, and we will continue to do so throughout the summer and fall. Kathie Tune will be meeting with university leadership, and then with the areas of greatest potential impact to ensure we understand the needs for what will be overtime, and to help develop plans and policies which will help the university minimize the costs, where possible. We will be meeting with impacted broader groups to review the policies, answer questions and to assist in updating position descriptions for all staff members as we get closer to the implementation date of Dec. 1, 2016.

If you have questions specific to your area, feel free to contact Kathie or me.

Aaron Howell, vice president for business and finance/CFO



main_hallThreat Assessment Team Update

The purpose of the Threat Assessment Team (TAT) is to create a best practice threat assessment operating environment. The TAT exists to facilitate a multidisciplinary, coordinated response to reports of students, employees or other individuals on campus who have engaged in behavior indicating a possible threat of harm to self or other members of the campus community.

The team has been established to:

  • Respond to possible circumstances of violence or threatening behavior;
  • Respond quickly to behavior indicating a potential risk to self or others;
  • Determine if a realistic threat is present and act accordingly;
  • Coordinate and assess information from faculty, administrators, students and local authorities;
  • Notify, within FERPA guidelines, parents, guardians and/or next-of-kin;
  • Identify resources for troubled students and make referrals to appropriate campus and off-campus agencies, including helping with the securing of therapeutic actions such as treatment or counseling; and
  • Periodically assess outcomes of actions taken.

Our Threat Assessment Team, which was created this year and is comprised of faculty and staff, will be meeting this summer to develop an educational piece that will be shared with all faculty and staff at the return of the new academic year. If you have any questions regarding threat assessment, please contact Dr. Carrie Hendrick, chair of the team.

jobs1New Job Postings

Several new positions open on campus have been posted online – costume shop supervisor/ costume designer, technical director/audio engineer and program director for GPS criminal justice: non-tenure track faculty position. For more information, or to apply for any of these positions, click here.

logoLogo Change Coming

This is a friendly reminder that our logo will officially change July 1. This month, make sure you use as much of the old stationary and letterhead as possible. If you need new stationary, go ahead and order it with the new logo. Once the cutoff date is reached, all envelopes and stationary with the old logo can be used for inter-office communications.