Averett CoffeeBreak 3-4-2020

Posted on March 4th, 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, March 6, for a Wednesday, March 11, publication.

Donald Aungst Accepts Position of Vice President & Chief Financial & Operating Officer

We are very happy to announce that Donald Aungst has accepted the position of Averett’s vice president and Chief financial & operating officer. He brings more than 30 years’ experience serving as a vice president and chief financial planning officer in private higher education, 18 of which were with small colleges.

“After an exhaustive national search,” says Averett President Dr. Tiffany Franks, “we found the absolute best person for this position. Don is unassuming and highly personable, and he comes to us with an impressive and proven track record, as well as an enthusiastic commitment to Averett’s mission. He brings everything we want for this important position.

“When you see him on campus, be sure to introduce yourself and tell him, ‘Welcome.’ He is an astute listener who wants to know all of us, and I know you’ll be happy to know him.”

His most recent experiences include serving as vice president and chief financial and planning officer at Mercy College, Upper Iowa University and Susquehanna University. He earned a B.S. in accounting with a minor in computer science from Shippensburg [Pa.] University, and is a certified public accountant. Don and his wife, Peggy, are the proud parents of five children.

I am most grateful for the great work of our search committee – chaired by Professor Brian Turner along with Professor Ginger Henderson, Dr. Timothy Fulop, Coach Danny Miller, Admissions Director Joel Nester and Dean Lesley Villarose. In addition, I want to express appreciation to all the many faculty, staff, students and trustees who participated in the interview process for our finalists.  I anticipate that Don will be with us on campus on or close to March 17.

Please help me welcome Don and his wife Peggy to the Averett family!

With appreciation,


Dr. Hanbury to Tackle Fifth JDRF Ride to Cure

For the fifth straight year, Dr. David Hanbury will be cycling in the 100-mile JDRF Ride to Cure, a charity event benefiting JDRF’s efforts to cure Type 1 (juvenile) diabetes.

Since 2016, he has raised over $8,000 for the cause while cycling in locations across the country, including Amelia Island, Fla.; Tucson, Ariz.; Santa Fe, N.M.; and Sonoma, Calif. This year, he will ride in La Crosse, Wis. Visit his ride page to see his story for the cause to turn Type One into Type None.

Wellness Events

Thank you to everyone who attended last week’s sleep program. If you haven’t already, please attest to your participation in the portal. Today, March 4, week two of the sleep series will be held in the Carrington Conference Room from 3:30-4:30 p.m. Even though it is Spring Break, the University is open so we are happy to be hosting an event.

On Friday, March 13, Tammy Wall will be hosting our Social Wellbeing: Chalk Couture. The themes of the crafts in this event will be spring and St. Patrick’s Day.

Please RSVP to either event by emailing wellness@averett.edu.

Resilience: Women’s History Month Concert

Colleagues, join us for our last Virginia Humanities Convocation to celebrate Women’s History Month and the perseverance of female composers. We have our own Dr. Anne Lewis joining Dr. Julianne Olson who will perform several selections and discuss the transformational role women have in the music arts over the centuries.

The concert will be held in Pritchett Auditorium on Monday, March 9, from 6-8 p.m. Refreshments will be available at 5:30 p.m., and the program will begin at 6 p.m. For more information, click here.

Great Colleges Survey Coming Soon

Averett University has decided to participate in the Great Colleges to Work For Program, a national survey designed to recognize institutions that have built great workplaces. Regardless of whether or not we are recognized, the data we receive will be helpful as we continue the process of creating the best workplace possible. On Monday, March 9, the survey will be distributed to our full-time faculty and staff. If you are included in this sample, you will receive an invitation with details about the program and how to access the survey. This invitation will be sent to you via email from “Great Colleges.” If you receive the invitation, please take a moment to complete the survey.

This is a chance to make your voice heard, and a high response rate helps ensure an accurate representation of our community. The survey is voluntary and completely confidential; our institution will not be able to trace results back to individuals. Your survey will be processed by ModernThink LLC, an independent management consulting firm focusing on workplace quality in higher education. They can be reached at 888.684.4658 or at surveys@modernthink.net.

We encourage everyone’s participation and hope you will take this opportunity to share your honest feedback! Thank you, in advance, for your participation. Contact Kathie Tune or visit www.GreatCollegesProgram.com for additional information.

Fellowship for Students Interested in Government

The Governor’s Fellows Program is an amazing opportunity for students interested in public service to experience firsthand the administration of state government in the Commonwealth.

The program is open to rising seniors, graduating seniors and students enrolled in graduate school. The deadline to apply is Monday, March 9. The program is a full-time commitment, from June 1 through July 31. For more information, follow this link.

Please let the CCECC know if students are selected or interested in being selected.

SET Weekly Events

Spring Fling will be held from Wednesday, March 11, through Saturday, March 14! We look forward to seeing everyone come out and enjoying these events brought to you by the Student Government Association. Let’s have a roaring good time! The events are listed as follows:

On Wednesday, March 11, intramural basketball games will start at 6 p.m. in Carrington Gym. Come out and show support to the teams! For more information, contact Phillip Mitchell at pmitchell@averett.edu.

On Thursday, March 12, a talent show will be held at 8 p.m. in Pritchett Auditorium. Spoken Word Artist, B- Love, will be a special guest host. The first place winner will received $200, the second place winner will receive $100 and the third place winner will receive $50! Come out and see all the talent that your fellow cougars have!

On Friday, March 13, laser tag will be held in Carrington Gym at 8 p.m.

On Saturday, March 14, the Red Carpet Gala will be held at Stratford Conference Center, located at 149 Piney Forest Rd., from 8 p.m. to midnight. Come out and enjoy free food, music, casino games and a photo booth. Suggested attire is formal or semi-formal dress; no jeans. For students needing transportation, they can stop by the Student Engagement Office for assistance. Use this link to RSVP to the event.

Arts in March

The 2020 Arts@Averett season continues, with several events this month.

Dr. Phillips and Friends Concert: On Sunday, March 15, hear Dr. Janet Phillips at West Main Baptist Church at 2:30 p.m. This event is free and open to the public.

Spring Student Art Show: See a selection of student art work at Blount Library March 16-April 20.

Musical Theatre Cabaret: Enjoy hit songs from Broadway’s greatest musicals performed by Theatre Department March 19-21 at 7 p.m. in Pritchett Auditorium. All faculty and staff receive two free tickets, and all Averett students are free. Community tickets are $10 for adults, and $8 for students and senior citizens over 60.

Cancer Awareness Series Coming Soon

A Cancer Awareness Series is coming to our campus on March 25, April 1 and April 8. Brian Price with the UVA Cancer Center will speak on all three topics. You can earn wellness points if you attend.

The first program in the series is on Wednesday, March 25, from 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. in the MPR. Understanding Cancer is an educational curriculum focused on informing community members about the cancer disease. The program provides an introduction to cancer by addressing topics on the disease. These topics include explaining how cancer develops in a person’s body, identifying cancer risk factors and prevention, cancer screening recommendations, cancer diagnosis and treatment options, supporting patient, cancer survivors and caregivers, and interpreting articles about cancer in the media.

The second program is set for 4-7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 1, in the Averett Student Center. “Hitting Cancer below the Belt with UVA Cancer Center and VCU Massey Cancer Center. Let’s Talk: Guts & Butts.” Learn more about colorectal cancer and why early detection is so important, as well as screening options. Try some gut-healthy treats, get connected to community resources and stroll through the inflatable colon for some laughs and my busting conversation.

The final program on Wednesday, April 8, is set for 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. in the MPR.

Finding the Right Health and Wellness Program for You; Nutrition and Exercise – Putting It All Together.  An hour-long program designed to help participants find that right balance of nutrition and exercise that best helps them meet their quality of life goals. At the conclusion of the program, each participant will leave with a basic outline of a health and wellness plan specifically tailored for them.

Contact Kathie Tune, ktune@averett.edu, for additional information.

A Conversation of Purpose

As part of Averett’s strategic plan to grow enrollment in both the traditional and online programs, a four-part series will begin in mid-March to help all of our Averett faculty and staff prepare for this growth. Our sessions will be conducted by Roger Ott who has extensive experience helping colleges and universities grow. He has been working with Averett for a year-and-a-half on multiple projects to facilitate enrollment growth.

What: A Conversation of Purpose to influence the way we view our roles and communication.

Why: These sessions are designed to help us reimagine our roles and understand our impact on students and each other.

Who: All are encouraged to attend.

Where: Blount Chapel

When: All sessions will be held from noon to 12:45 p.m. on Wednesdays March 11, 18, 25 and April 1.

How long: 45 minutes each and attending all 4 sessions is strongly suggested. This will not replace your lunch so feel free to eat either before or after!

RSVP: Please click here

Cougar Golf Classic

Create a golf team with your family, coworkers and friends for the annual URW Cougar Golf Classic. Novice golfers are welcome, because it’s all about a good time with friends and family! Tee times are available for Friday, June 12, at either 8 a.m. or 1 p.m. Come and enjoy the beautiful Goodyear Golf Course and support Averett Athletics at the same time!

There is a $400 entry fee per four-person team which includes 18 holes, cart fees, lunch and apparel. Hole sponsorships are also available if you aren’t into golfing and still want to support our student-athletes. Contact Bren Taylor by email or call 434-791-5677 for more information.

Novel Coronavirus Information

Averett University continues to proactively follow updates around the outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a novel (new) coronavirus, “COVID-19,” an emerging, rapidly evolving situation. Averett’s Communicable Disease Committee is monitoring the outbreak in coordination with state and local health departments, and working diligently to prepare in the event of a more local effect. The Committee will continue to share pertinent information, and a list of FAQs can be found at averett.edu/alert. Should you have additional questions or concerns, please remember we are here to help and be a resource to our students and campus community.

2019 Wellness Incentive Winners

The 2019 wellness incentive winners have been selected. The top three winners were selected based on the most points. Finishing first place and winning a $200 VISA gift card is Susan Rowland! In second place and winning a $100 gift card is Rhonda Reavis. Third place finisher Dana Mehalko also won a $100 gift card. Congratulations to the top three winners of 2019!

To see if you may have won a prize, click here for the full list of winners. Prizes may be picked up in the human resources offices with either Tammy Wall or Kathie Tune.

Summer Internship Opportunities

Did you know there are many summer internships available in the Dan River Region? The Danville Regional Foundation and the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research have announced 2020 summer internship programs.

Please encourage interested students to reach out to the CCECC for additional information.

Thank you

Thank you to everyone for the calls, cards, messages, and other acts of kindness and support shown to me during the time of my mom’s passing. I am truly blessed to work with such caring people.   Your encouragement and thoughtfulness is deeply appreciated during this difficult time.


Diane Gosney


Averett 101: From the Eyes of Freshmen

During every Averett 101 class each fall semester, the students go to the president’s house and enjoy a dinner with Dr. Franks and her husband, Joe. During that time, Dr. Franks asks the students what they love about Averett and if they have any concerns. Throughout the year, we will be sharing some of the comments students shared with Dr. Franks and Joe about Averett!

“Fun campus”
“Smallness of campus – faculty and staff know you by name”
“I like football”
“Meeting new people”
“Diversity of people and classes”
“Welcoming environment”
“Family feel on campus”
“Matthew Mann is so helpful”
“I like the professors here. Welcoming and they help me. Positive feedback”
“Good relationships and sense of community”