Averett University CoffeeBreak 8-16-2023

Posted on August 16th, 2023 by Bill Dyer

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, August 18, for a Wednesday, Aug. 23, publication.

Welcome Back, Rodney

The Division of Student Life is proud to welcome back Rodney Countryman as the director of Residence Life, effective August 21. Countryman will continue to provide strategic leadership for programs, services and operations that will enhance the Averett residential student experience.

Please join us in welcoming Rodney back to his full-time role.


Staff Enhancements in Institutional Advancement

The Office of Institutional Advancement (IA) would like to congratulate Kim Losee on her updated role. Kim now serves as a Development Officer specializing in direct mail, social media, and strategic Annual Giving communication pieces. Kim has been with Averett since November 2022, serving as coordinator of alumni relations and annual giving. She came to Averett from the Danville YMCA where she served as the annual campaign administrator and as a personal trainer. Kim has shown exceptional dedication and a strong commitment to fostering meaningful connections with our alumni community. Her efforts have led to increased engagement and support from our alumni, contributing significantly to the growth of our annual giving initiatives.

As a development officer, Kim will take on a more strategic role in Institutional Advancement. We look forward to witnessing her continued success and positive impact on Averett.

Also, Shane Brogden has joined the IA team as the development marketing and communications specialist. A proud Averett alumnus from the class of 2014, Shane’s profound connection to our institution is marked by his active involvement in campus life, having served as a dedicated member of student government, the University newspaper and as a prominent student ambassador. With a rich professional background spanning nine years as marketing director at God’s Pit Crew, Shane brings a wealth of expertise in crafting compelling narratives, designing captivating visuals and generating impactful media content across various platforms.

In his capacity within the Office of Institutional Advancement, Shane will create marketing and communications materials that not only spotlight and elevate the Averett experience, but also strategically amplify opportunities for sharing our institution’s narrative and communicating the profound impact of Averett.

Congratulations, Kim, and welcome, Shane!

Pegram Completes Blockchain Professional Certificate

During summer 2023, Dr. Ernest Pegram completed with a 95.5% average a series of Blockchain courses leading to an IBM Professional Certificate. According to Pegram, businesses, governments, banks, central banks, industries and organizations are exploring and developing Blockchains. Dr. Pegram says, “I have researched, studied, and presented on Blockchains from an academic, theoretical, scholarly level. Participating and completing IBM’s Professional Certificate Program allowed me to complement my research and gain insights from a practitioner, business, and industry leader prospective of developing and building Blockchains.”

Congratulations, Dr. Pegram!

Welcome Counseling Services Intern

Anna Naomi Hall will join Averett as a counselor intern beginning August 22. Anna will provide counseling and mental health outreach to traditional students. Her office will be located in Counseling Services next to the Student Success Center and she will be here Tuesdays and Wednesdays 8:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. and Thursdays 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.

Anna graduated in 2022 from Christopher Newport University with a degree in social work with minors in leadership studies and childhood studies. She is a second-year counseling student at Longwood University pursuing her master’s in clinical mental health counseling. She has experience in working with individuals in intensive in-home and community-based settings.

Welcome, Anna!

Academic Support Tutorial Services

Averett University’s CRLA-certified tutoring program will begin tutoring services Wednesday, Aug. 30. The tutoring calendar, to begin scheduling, will open Friday, Aug. 18. Students can schedule tutoring services by accessing this link: https://AverettSuccessCenterScheduling.as.me/

Averett’s tutoring program focuses on high-need subject areas, to include, but not limited to, mathematics, writing, business and science support; there is also an emphasis on generalist study support for all introductory classes. Approximately half of the employees are trained peer tutors; the other half are trained professional tutors.

For additional information, please contact Holly Kilby at [email protected]; you may also email [email protected].

Oh those I-9s…

Thank you all for your diligence in supplying updated information for the I-9s that were submitted during COVID under the rule that a visual inspection (VI) of the documents could be delayed. The VI waiver has come to an end and now we must be compliant by Thursday, Aug. 31. We are working through the lists and making great headway.

Please know that any and all new hires moving forward must have their I-9 documents viewed by Cathryn Estes in Human Resources (or Pam Paynter or Kathie Tune) once they have been uploaded to Paylocity. Cathryn can assist with questions concerning the process. Remember, the visual presentation is a federal requirement for employment and not a suggestion. Cathryn can be reached at [email protected].

August Book Club Pick

The votes are in. “The Awakening” by Kate Chopin has been chosen for the August book club meeting in Mary B. Blount Library. The meeting will be held on Thursday, Aug. 31, from 5-6 p.m. The full text of “The Awakening” is available online in Project Gutenburg. (The Project Gutenberg eBook of The Awakening and Selected Short Stories, by Kate Chopin) There will be an option to join the meeting remotely through Zoom. For more information, please visit the library website: About – Book Club – Library at Averett University (libguides.com) Happy Reading!

New Faculty/Staff Perk: $4 Lunches

Averett University Dining Services has announced a new perk for Averett faculty and staff: A $4 lunch. All full-time faculty, staff and graduate assistants are eligible for this new program at the Cougar Den. The special rate will be cash or credit in the beginning, then there will be a way to purchase online and use your ID.

Cougar Den Hours:

Weekday Hours (Monday – Friday)
Breakfast: 7:30-10 a.m.
Lunch: 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
Dinner: 5-9 p m. during the fall

Weekend Hours (Saturday – Sunday)
Brunch: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Dinner: 5-8 p.m.


Jut’s Café Hours:

Monday – Friday: 7:30 a.ml–10 p.m.
Saturday – Sunday: 7:30 a.m.-Midnight
Sunday: 8:30 a.m.-10 p.m.

The Spread Hours

Monday – Thursday: 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
Friday – Saturday: 4 p.m.-Midnight
Sunday: 4-10 p.m.


Event Request Form

Please continue to fill out the Event Request Form for all meetings and events on campus. If you do not have access to the University Event Calendar on Outlook, please contact [email protected].


Nominate Now for the Golden Bagel Award

The Golden Bagel is an Averett University employee of the month award. Implementing a monthly employee recognition program can have a powerful effect on Averett University. The criteria to select an employee for the Golden Bagel Award should include impeccable work performance and creating a respectful, fun and overall positive working environment. You can pick anybody each month to win the award. Please submit your nomination to [email protected].

Get in Your Submissions for Cougar Connection

Cougar Connection, the weekly newsletter for Averett University students, returned this week. Make sure you submit information for the newsletter by Wednesday each week. The deadline for Monday’s edition is end of day today, Aug. 16. To submit an entry, please click HERE.

SharePoint Training

IT is offering SharePoint training conducted by Tahsha Harmon, independent IT contractor, during the month of August. Attendees will learn how to use SharePoint for document sharing, real-time collaboration, and how it integrates with the suite of Office 365 apps. Attendees will also preview and learn how to navigate the new Averett intranet built on the SharePoint platform.

Training is offered for all Averett employees. You may sign up for a training session using the following link to a Microsoft SharePoint Training Form: https://forms.office.com/r/swUWgBfRSc.

Save your seat now. Contact Tahsha Harmon at [email protected] for any questions regarding SharePoint training.

Let’s Get Engaged, Cougars!

Dr. Franks has awarded each employee 16 hours of service time for the academic year. You can volunteer at your child’s school, voter registration stations, at your church or a community event, for example.

If you would like to volunteer and need suggestions, contact the CCECC for volunteer options. To use these hours, you must have permission from your supervisor and log your hours in Paylocity. Hours can be used in 1-16 hour increments. Once you complete the information below, you can save the form for your records. To highlight your volunteer experience, please upload a photo to share with the campus.

For questions, contact Director of Community Engagement and Outreach Tia Yancey at [email protected] .

CCECC Events Calendar and Updates

As the fall semester fast approaches, the CCECC is excited to offer a full slate of events for faculty, staff, and students. To see the calendar, click CCECC Calendar of Events. If you have any questions, please let us know. Specific details for each event will be sent closer to the event date.

We have also updated our annual one-pager, CCECC Info Page, which overviews our services, outcomes and contact information. Please reach out with any questions or ideas you may have about how we can partner.

Updated Tuition Remission Policy

The waiting period for employees and their dependents has changed from one year to no waiting period. Please see section VI of the updated policy. The final version is listed here for your reference and has been placed in the Policy Library on SharePoint (the new AU intranet).

Tuition Remission Benefit Eligibility
The tuition remission benefit is an opportunity for eligible employees and their dependents, as defined in this Policy, to attend classes at Averett with 100% of the tuition paid by the University, subject to the requirements and limitations outlined in this Policy. This benefit is available immediately after an eligible employee begins work at Averett. To receive the tuition remission benefit, the process outlined in the accompanying Procedures must be completed.

Eligible employees and dependents who take courses under this policy are subject to all requirements and restrictions that apply to University students, as published in the University catalog.

Contact Kathie Tune at [email protected] for additional information.

Testing Center Services

Instructions for accessing Testing Center Services.
1. For Make-Up Testing, students should utilize the Student Success Center scheduling site: (https://averettsuccesscenterscheduling.as.me/schedule.php). The options for scheduling testing are at the bottom of the page. Students should include information about what class they are testing for, as well as professor contact information. Tests are administered upon professor approval.
2. For accommodated testing (for students with disabilities), the designated students are individually sent a specific link to a Google Form; this form is to be completed at least 48 hours before a scheduled test, to provide time to obtain the test, reserve the space, and secure a proctor. Again, tests are administered upon professor approval.
3. Note that testing will continue to occur on the top floor of the library this semester.
4. All other questions should be addressed to Isaiah Amos ([email protected]), Testing Coordinator, or Holly Kilby ([email protected]), Assistant Director

Benefits Questions?

As we are settling in for the Fall 2023 semester, the HR office wanted to make sure our contact information is available to you for any HR questions.
– Kathie Tune, chief HR officer: [email protected]
– Pam Paynter, HR operations manager and benefits coordinator: [email protected] (Pam is working remotely at this time; however, she is a wonderful resource for all of your on-boarding and benefits questions.)
– Cathryn Estes, HR  graduate assistant: [email protected] (Cathryn is learning everything about HR and specializes in I-9s and on-boarding as well.)

Contact us with your questions.

Water Challenge Update

Today is the last day to register for the Water Challenge.

Here is the portal link https://www.webmdhealth.com/VPC/

Once you are in, there will be a prompt in the middle of the screen that take you through the sign up steps.

Good luck and have a great rest of your week!