Averett University CoffeeBreak 8-2-2023

Posted on August 2nd, 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 4, for a Wednesday, Aug. 9, publication.


Faculty Farewells and New Department Heads

Please wish Drs. Melanie Lewis and Charles Wuest all the best as they depart Averett for new endeavors.

Dr. Lewis, chair of the health and sport science department, has long had a goal of moving into higher education administration and will now serve as the dean of health and public services at Alamance Community College in North Carolina.

Dr. Lewis started at Averett in 2010 and was named director of the department in 2017 after being granted tenure. She has served on numerous faculty and institutional committees through the years and was named Outstanding Faculty Member of the Year for 2020-2021.

Dr. Wuest will be leaving Averett at the end of the summer session to be the director of programming in the English department at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas.

He joined Averett in 2015 as an assistant professor of English and was granted tenure in 2018. In his time here at Averett, he has served as the director of the honors program, a member of several faculty committees and is currently the department chair for English.

We wish them both all the best as they move forward in their careers, and are grateful to those who will be stepping up to lead the two departments.

Congratulations to Thomas Underwood and Doug Wohlstein, instructors of health and sport science, who will co-chair the department, and to Dr. Jennifer Hughes, assistant professor of English and honors program director, who will chair the English department.

Athletics Communications Wins Four National Contests

Averett University’s Athletics Communications Department recently received a combined four awards from the College Sports Communicators’ annual contests. Averett won three awards in CSC’s Creative and Digital Design Contest and one award in the Fred Stabley Sr. Writing Contest.

In the 2022-23 Creative and Digital Design Contest, Averett won third place nationally in the Spring Statistical Milestone Graphics (College Division) category for its social media graphic commemorating women’s lacrosse graduate student Elizabeth Peasley breaking the NCAA’s all-time goals scored record. The graphic was designed by Assistant Director of Athletics Communications Ashley Thornton and Director of Athletics Communications Drew Wilson.

Averett also collected two national awards in the Pregame/Hype Video (College Division) category. Student creative Deon Batts won sixth place for his Averett men’s basketball intro video and also collected ninth place in the category for his Averett softball intro video. Thornton assisted the photo shoot for the men’s basketball video. Averett has collected five awards in CSC’s Creative and Digital Design Contest since 2020.

Wilson also earned recognition for the second year in a row in the Fred Stabley Sr. Writing Contest. Wilson’s story on Averett’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee hosting a Black History Month Gallery Walk placed second in District 3 in the Social Justice/Diversity & Inclusion category. In the Fred Stabley Sr. Writing Contest, Averett’s district includes schools of all divisions in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. In total, there were 395 entries over eight categories for this year’s contest. All stories had to be published within the 2022 calendar year.

NEO Friday

New employees, don’t forget your orientation this Friday, Aug. 4, from 11 a.m.- 1:15 p.m. at the President’s Suite at the Frank R. Campbell Stadium on North Campus. Looking forward to seeing you all then!


August Opening Coming on Monday

Join your fellow faculty and staff as we celebrate the new academic year on Monday, Aug. 7, beginning at 10 a.m. in the Grant Center at Averett’s E. Stuart James Grant North Campus. We will conclude with this portion of our events no later than 12:30 p.m.

  • Our program will kick off with a hearty brunch and time for fellowship at 10 a.m. in the Grant Center. (We encourage you to sit with colleagues whom you may not have had the opportunity to get to know before.)
  • After brunch, we will meet and welcome those who are new to Averett and hear from our colleagues about many developments underway, in addition to a few other special and imaginative all Averett community highlights.
  • Then, starting at 4 p.m., President Tiffany Franks and Joe are excited to host you and your loved ones for an Averett Family Celebration with festive food and drinks at the President’s home, 500 Hawthorne Dr.

For questions, contact Morgan Farmer at [email protected] or 434-791-5826. We look forward to opening the 2023-2024 Academic Year with each of you!

Last Call for Photos!

Don’t forget to send a photo of your summer vacation, home projects, family gatherings or relaxation time (with you in the picture) that may be used during our August Opening event by Friday, August 4, to Bill Dyer at [email protected].


Reminder: Employee Active Shooter Training

The Emergency Response Team has been working to secure emergency trainings for the campus community. On Wednesday, Aug. 9, in partnership with Danville Police Department, we will host an active shooter training session with all Averett employees from 9-11 a.m. in Pritchett Auditorium. Please plan to attend.

Averett University’s Cougar Business Fest 2023

Averett University’s Center for Community Engagement and Career Competitiveness (CCECC) would like to invite you to register for our annual Cougar Business Festival on Tuesday, August 15, from noon to 3 p.m. on Main Campus in the Carrington Gym. Click the QR Code to register.

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 23-24 Calandar 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.

The Time is NOW! Submit your Averett ID Card Info

We are working on implementing a new card access system across several buildings on Main Campus. The hours the doors are currently unlocked by key will remain the same, but for employees wanting access to their offices after hours will need to use their ID to access their buildings. This system will help secure our campus, making it a safer environment for students, employees and visitors. If you have not completed this task yet, please do so as soon as possible.

  • If you have an ID card that looks like this on the back, please click this LINK and follow the instructions to enter the correct number from the back of your Averett ID card (as shown below, circled in red). This is NOT the same as your Averett ID number, which may be three, four or five digits (typically five).
  • If you DO NOT yet have your Averett ID or you DO NOT have this version of the Averett ID card (one that DOES NOT have the above numbers on the back), use this LINK to upload a photo and request a new card.

Employees will be notified when new ID cards are ready for pick up.

Want to be a certified driver for Averett?

In order to be a certified driver for Averett University, please click Driver Certification Flyer 23-24 and follow the instructions on the flyer.


Water Challenge Update

The Water Challenge is here! (for real this time 😊)

Once you are in the wellness portal you will see a prompt in the middle of your screen to sign up for the Water Challenge. Please reach out if you have any questions! [email protected] Also, don’t forget your FREE water bottle.

Good luck and have a great week.