Averett CoffeeBreak 6-10-2020

Posted on June 10th, 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, June 12, for a Wednesday, June 17, publication.

Beyond the Pandemic Workgroups Update

The Beyond the Pandemic Workgroups presented their recommendations for each of the four scenarios last week, sharing their tremendous work with President’s Council and other workgroup leaders. More guidance from the state is forthcoming, and is helping inform the important decisions PC is making in concert with the workgroup recommendations. We have now moved into finalizing plans for each of the following areas:
– Health/safety practices;
– Re-entry of employees;
– Re-entry of students;
– Re-entry of visitors;
– All things teaching/learning;
– Procurement of PPE and related supplies;
– Facilities; and
– Communications.

For anyone wanting a copy of the Coronavirus Looking Forward Progress Report that provides an overview of Steps 1, 2 and 3 of the process, email Cassie Williams Jones at cwjones@averett.edu.

Humphries Earns Ph.D.

Communication faculty member Zach Humphries recently earned his Ph.D. from the School of Communication and Information at Kent State University. The program within the school is titled: Media, Technology, and Society. Congratulations to Dr. Humphries!

Please Take Note! IT Network Upgrades and Storage Concerns

On Friday, June 19, from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., we will be upgrading components of our WiFi system. This upgrade will result in sporadic WiFi connectivity disruptions.

After the upgrade is complete, all WiFi devices connected to any one of the wireless networks will be required to “forget” the connection and then “join” it once again. (Please see Forgetting and Joining Wi-Fi.)

We apologize for the disruptions. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Kevin Lipscomb at klipscomb@averett.edu.

Optional Virtual Visits with Dr. Franks

Please feel free to join me by Zoom on Fridays June 19 and 26 from 11 a.m. to noon if you would like to connect, have questions or want to visit with your colleagues. This optional time can’t make up for our informal visits in the hallways or at games or events, but it is one way we can try to keep in touch.

Email Cyndie Basinger at cbasinger@averett.edu for questions.

Dial-in number (US): +13017158592,,94658377149# or +13126266799,,94658377149#
Meeting ID: 946 5837 7149
Join online: https://averett.zoom.us/j/94658377149


Resources on Racism and Equity in the Classroom

During the virtual chat with Dr. Franks last week, the open conversation regarding current events and race relations led to the mention of several tools that may be beneficial to share. As we seek to listen, learn and improve ourselves, here are a number of resources that may be helpful.

Lenora Billings-Harris, renowned public speaker, diversity strategist and author, has graciously shared with us the recording of a recent forum she led on racism, along with a list of suggestions, tips and resources for helping eliminate racism in ourselves and in organizational culture. For both, click here.

In addition, Dr. Jamie Stacy spoke about a self-assessment tool in support of an equitable learning environment. The Equitable Classroom Practices Observation Checklist was originally developed in Montgomery County, Md., as part of a response to disproportionately high drop-out rates, especially among black males. The tool is used widely throughout the United States, and is highlighted in a 2017 Hanover Research report titled, “Closing the gap: Creating equity in the classroom.” The tool is a great way to reflect upon one’s own instructional practices. To access the checklist, use this link. To learn more about the Hanover Research report, use this link. To learn more about the research behind the practices outlined in the checklist, access this link.

The Health Advocate Benefit for Health Plan Participants

Health Advocate is a service provided by our health plan sponsor (CICV) at no cost to the plan participant. They support you and your eligible family members with a wide range of health and insurance-related issues. Call them with any health or plan related questions at 866-695-8622, by email or via their website specifically designed for members of the Virginia Private College Benefits Consortium.

They serve many needs such as medical diagnoses, research quality providers, second opinion options and questions concerning medical bills, benefits coverage and more.