Averett CoffeeBreak 12-9-2020

Posted on December 9th, 2020 by Matt Bell

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. For the next CoffeeBreak, please submit by Friday, Dec. 11, for a Wednesday, Dec. 16, publication. This will be the final CoffeeBreak for 2020.


Due to the Governor of Virginia’s recent order limiting all indoor and outdoor gatherings to no more than 25 people, Averett University will not be able to hold Commencement in the way we have been planning. However, we are committed to reinventing this experience and making this milestone as meaningful and memorable as possible.

We have developed a two-pronged approach that includes an in-person opportunity and a virtual component. First, we will livestream a virtual commencement ceremony full of the many graduation traditions on Friday, Dec. 11, at 7 p.m. at AverettCougars.com/live. Then, on Saturday, Dec. 12, we are excited to invite graduates to come to the Averett University E. Stuart James Grant North Campus for an individualized, in-person commencement experience with up to four guests in attendance. The full details can be found here, and this event will also be livestreamed at AverettCougars.com/live2.

Winter Break and Daily Self-Health Checks

Everyone in the Averett University community should continue their daily self-health checks via LiveSafe over the break. This will help us all stay in the habit of daily reporting, as well as help to identify any issues as we near the return of students and employees in January.

If you’ve not yet started reporting via the app, you’ll need to make a few easy setting changes within your LiveSafe app on your mobile device:

  1. Open your app, login and click on the top left menu button with the three lines.
  2. Select “Settings.”
  3. Click “Manage Organizations.”
  4. Select “Add” and search for “Averett University.”
  5. Click “Averett University Employees.”
  6. Enter PIN “2020.” Once those steps are complete, you will now see a grey tab called “Health Questionnaire” at the top of your home screen every time you log in. Please note, if you do not have the app, you may still use the web link found here. If you need help getting the app, click here. As a reminder, if you receive a green check, you are cleared to work on campus. If you receive the red X, please notify Human Resources and your supervisor, department or division chair immediately and forward the email you receive from LiveSafe to your supervisor, department or division chair. You should not report for in-person work if you receive the red X.

For any questions or concerns, please contact Kathie Tune at ktune@averett.edu.

Spring 2021 Check-In Dates

The spring 2021 semester is right around the corner! Check-in dates will once again be staggered, as they were for the fall 2020 semester. Click here to learn more about when check-in will be held for all students.

Friday, Jan. 8
9 a.m. New residential students
11 a.m. New commuter students
1 p.m. New student orientation

On Saturday, Jan. 9, and Sunday, Jan. 10, returning residential student check-in times are 8:30 and 10:30 a.m., and 1:30 and 3:30 p.m.

On Monday, Jan. 11, and Tuesday, Jan. 12, returning commuter student check-in times are 8:30 and 10:30 a.m., and 1:30 and 3:30 p.m.

Important Update in Student Life

Dear Colleagues,

I hope you are doing well as we wrap up this unprecedented semester.

I’m writing today to share an important transition taking place in Student Life. Dean Lesley Villarose has been given a terrific opportunity to become the VP for Student Development and Dean of Students at Gardner-Webb University located in Boiling Springs, N.C. I know you share my excitement that she has been given this opportunity to take on new and expanded responsibilities. In addition to the areas she has overseen at Averett, she will now provide leadership for University Police as well as their Center for Personal and Professional Development which includes all of career services and development.

Her responsibilities at Gardner-Webb will begin around January 11. While she will be greatly missed, our congratulations go to Lesley. We’re grateful for the difference she’s made in countless students’ lives throughout her 10 years at Averett. In addition to supporting our students as dean, Lesley has been involved with numerous significant initiatives around campus including leading the Emergency Response Team, serving on the COVID-19 Campus Team, overseeing Title IX and Threat Assessment, among many others. We know she will take this same giving spirit to GWU.

We are pleased to share Mr. Lee Wilkerson will serve as the acting dean of students while a national search is conducted for a chief student affairs officer this spring semester. He will also continue to serve as director of housing and residence life with support from assistant directors Shelbilyn Boelsche and Johnathan Collins. Lee joined Averett in the summer of 2019 as the director of housing and residence life and brings over 15 years of experience in student life. Lee’s favorite thing about Averett is how passionate everyone is about helping our students. His goal is that all students will be more successful as they become connected with their Averett family, and for students to continue learning outside of the classroom as they make Averett home.

This announcement is being shared with our students, as well. Our gratitude to both Dean Lesley Villarose and to Lee Wilkerson.

With appreciation,

President Tiffany Franks

Same Faces, New Places

We are happy to announce that Mark Sheets has accepted a position as the operations coordinator in our Averett University Integrated Facilities Management Department. As such he will join Bruce, Mike and Laneil as part of the core team. He will also oversee mail and transportation services.

In order to allow Mark to transition to his new position as soon as possible, Event Coordinator Lynnette Lawson will train side-by-side with Mark until he assumes his new duties in the facilities building. Lynnette will take on the duties of executive assistant to the CFO/COO as Don Aungst searches for a permanent executive assistant. Lynnette will continue to serve as the event coordinator during this time.

Please join us in congratulating Mark on his new position, and in thanking Lynnette for offering to assist with this transition.

Important Payroll Deadline

Timesheets are due by 10 a.m. on Monday, Dec. 14.

For salaried employees, you will need to turn in two timesheets; one for the weeks of November 29 to December 12, and one for the weeks of December 13-26. We must have both weeks of timesheets to ensure you receive your paychecks on December 18 and 31 due to winter break. For the week of December 21-25, all salary timesheets will need to have 8 hours listed in the “other” column and the description will be “Holiday.”

Part-time workers will need to complete their timesheets with their work hours as usual, and turn them in no later than Sunday, Dec. 27. Payroll must be processed earlier than normal for everyone to get paid on December 31, so we need everyone to turn their timesheets on time or earlier. Feel free to contact Kristi Phillips or Sandy Isom with any questions you may have. Kristi can also be reached at 791-5613.

Facilities Management: New Leadership and New Tools

Bruce Devlin joined Averett University as director of integrated facilities management services on November 16 and has been busy acclimating himself to campus maintenance, housekeeping and grounds protocols and personnel. He is also an integral part of rolling out a new campus facilities management system, described in more detail below. Please join us in welcoming Bruce to the Averett team!

Later this week you will receive an email with this detailed information about NetFacilities, our new campus facilities management system which includes a maintenance work order ticket system.

  • All faculty and staff will receive a “New User Invitation” email this week from NetFacilities.com.
  • Please immediately open this email and set up your account. It will contain your personal username and password to access the new ticket system, so please do not lose these.
  • The system is simple and easy to use and will alleviate any need to personally contact someone from the maintenance team.
  • We ask that you only call Facilities Management in cases of emergencies, which will be detailed in the forthcoming email. Please do not call or email Mike Fisher or others to report situations or request assistance; all requests for services must be entered into the new system.
  • In the case of outstanding items (formerly reported in another manner), please put them into the system immediately.

For questions or concerns about NetFacilities, contact Bruce Devlin at bdevlin@wffservices.com or Meg Stevens at mstevens@Averett.edu.

Last Minute Gifts Sale – Online Only

Today, Dec. 9, your campus store is having an online sale offering 30% off T-shirts, sweatshirts and hats. Customers must use promo code HOLIDAY30 at checkout.

Averett Celebrates Christmas Virtually

Since we cannot have our usual in-person Arts@Averett Christmas events and performances this year, we are going virtual this December with a series of videos including holiday messages and musical performances. Stay tuned to Averett’s social media channels next week and throughout the rest of the month for some Averett holiday cheer!

Averett Book Club Meeting

The Averett University Book Club will meet Thursday, Dec. 10, at 4:45 p.m. We meet for approximately one hour, currently via Zoom. The book club is open to ALL faculty, staff and students. There is no assigned book as we each share what we are reading. We have learned so much from one another. Please join us!

If you have questions, please feel free to email Penny Hudson, GPS student success coach; Linda Lemery, circulation manager at Blount Library; or Liz Cervantes, assistant director of GPS student services.

Student Book Rental Returns

Students have the following options for returning rental books. They are due back to the campus store by Monday, Dec. 14! Here are the options:

  • Bring them in-person to the campus store.
  • Ship them back to the store by purchasing a label from the store for $7.50.
  • Ship them using the shipping carrier of their choice.

Happy Holidays from the CCECC

In lieu of our usual Christmas card this year, the Center for Community Engagement and Career Competitiveness family wanted to send a video so you can “see” our warm wishes in this COVID-19, socially-distanced world. The video is also viewable by clicking here. Happy Holidays!

Cougar Connection Returns in January, CoffeeBreak Spring Submissions

Monday’s edition of Cougar Connection was the final edition until we return in January. The first edition of the new year will be Monday, Jan. 11. Please submit any information for that edition by Wednesday, Jan. 6.

The last CoffeeBreak of 2020 will be on Wednesday, Dec. 16, and will resume on Wednesday, Jan. 6. Please submit any items for the January 6 publication by Friday, Jan. 1.

Averett Online’s Affordable Education

Do you know a student who wants to start or continue their education, but fears the cost? Averett Online offers an affordable and flexible degree options for all of our students! Our financial aid team is here every step of the way to ensure each student receives scholarships, grants and the loans they need for their education. Click here to learn more!

Classes start: January 13, 2021