Staff Voice

Newsletter of the UC Davis Staff Assembly

Apr. 17, 2015  |  Issue #176
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What's Below 

Take UC staff engagement survey  |  Staff Assembly brewing team  |  Order TGFS lunch tix by Apr. 22  |  Vote on Staff Assembly bylaws  |  Interdepartmental brewing competition  |  New campus voice mail service  |  Ombuds Office online resources  |  Thermal feedback for Facilities Management  |  Volunteer at TGFS & TGFS logo contest  |  Free bike safety check  |  TGFS tennis tourney  |  Events - Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day, Interviewing with Confidence, Arboretum plant sale, PAB quarterly meeting, Stride for Aggie Pride, Staff Assembly Apr. meeting, staff forum for University of 21st Century, family picnic at Six Flags

From the Chair  

UC Staff Engagement Survey - If you got it, please take it

""UC wants to learn more about what its non-represented (policy-covered) staff thinks about working at the university. On Mar. 30 (with the last reminder sent Apr. 14), over 2,300 UC Davis staff received an invitation from a third-party research company, Towers Watson, (specifically, from to take this very important systemwide survey on staff engagement. If you received the survey and have already taken it, thank you. However, as of today, only 39 percent of UC Davis staff polled have spent the roughly 15 minutes needed to complete the survey. By comparison, the Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources has a 51 percent response rate and UCSB is at just over 48 percent. Come on Aggies, we can surely do better, and now staff who received the survey have until Apr. 24 to provide input that is critical to the work of UC Davis Staff Assembly and other groups working to improve the staff experience on campus. The last engagement survey was conducted in 2012 and the current survey will assess how far we've come in improving several key areas for staff, such as career development, performance management and workplace collaboration. Read a Dateline article about the survey, which highlights some of the efforts initiated following the first survey, including the Career Development Resource Showcase we held on Mar. 31 and communications focus groups that wrapped up yesterday.
Staff Assembly Brewing Team
""We didn't lose, but apparently the judges weren't huge fans of the West Coast IPA members of Staff Assembly's brewing team submitted for the inaugural UC Davis Interdepartmental Brewing Competition (read more below). However, spoken like true second-to-last-place finishers, winning isn't everything and we had fun. What we came away with, was getting closer as a group, cases of pretty good beer, and another glimpse at how successful, friendly interdepartmental competitions can be. Of course, not everyone is into beer; maybe your thing is baking cookies, making salsa, knitting, growing a garden, or one of the multitude of things our diverse staff likes to do. Staff Assembly would like to help people from different parts of campus meet each other and give people within departments an excuse to get competitive, while sharing something they enjoy.

My question to you: if Staff Assembly was to put together an interdepartmental competition later this year, what would you like to see organized? And yes, this could also include the sporting events we unfortunately couldn't take on for TGFS. Share your ideas via SurveyMonkey
Lina C. Layiktez
Chair, UC Davis Staff Assembly

Get your TGFS lunch tickets

Tickets must be ordered by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Apr. 22

catering logosThe full TGFS menu has been released and lunch tickets are now available for staff ($2) and student staff ($10). While all staff are welcome to attend TGFS and enjoy the activities and entertainment, eating at the event requires a pre-purchased ticket. Meal tickets are not being sold at the event and we are unable to serve anyone without a ticket. 

Full details about the ticket ordering process are posted on the TGFS site. If you're ordering tickets for colleagues in your department, we encourage you to consult them on their entree preferences, which both ensures they get what they want, and enables us to provide the caterer an accurate menu count. We have six burrito options for staff to choose from: chicken, beef, vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free (chicken or vegan). Unfortunately, given the size of the event and the number of meals we need to serve, we cannot take special orders for preferences and/or food allergies.

Important ticket dates:

  • Last day to purchase meal tickets is Wednesday, April 22 before 5 p.m.
  • First day to pick up tickets is Thursday, April 30 at 12 p.m.
  • Last day to pick up tickets is Wednesday, May 6 before 5 p.m.

Yay or Nay on proposed revisions to Staff Assembly bylaws?

Cast your vote before 1 p.m. on Friday, May 1

Staff Assembly's Executive Committee is proposing several changes to its bylaws (e.g., changes to the Executive Committee, and conflict resolution and committee attendance policies), which we believe will improve the overall management of your Staff Assembly. All staff have the opportunity to cast a "thumbs-up" or "thumbs-down" vote before the poll closes at 1 p.m. on Friday, May 1. All voting will be conducted through SmartSite and results will be released in the May 1 edition of the Staff Voice. A complete summary of proposed bylaws changes and the link to SmartSite are available on the Staff Assembly site.

If you have any questions about the proposed bylaws revisions or trouble accessing SmartSite, please send an email to

A successful first-year interdepartmental brewing competition

""In an effort to bring together UC Davis employees and to help build new bridges between departments, Charlie Bamforth, Professor of Brewing Science, and Hampton Sublett, Administrative Reorganization and Transformation, volunteered their time to organize the inaugural UC Davis Interdepartmental Employee Brewing Competition. They set forth some basic rules and spread the word, and let teams self-organize and brew their beers offsite, within specific style guidelines (i.e., West Coast IPA or Brown Ale). On Apr. 9, with the help of volunteers Erica Aichwalder, Trina Giardino, and Leah Sullivan, they hosted an event at Sudwerk Brewery and Restaurant, where UC Davis brewing students and professional brewers from the region judged the submissions. Approximately 150 employees, from 24 different teams and over 50 campus departments, attended to mingle and sample the various brews. The event was a true mixer, drawing technologists and business people, academics and administrators; all vying for the title of best-in-class and all-important bragging rights. However, more importantly, the event helped create connections among staff summed up best by participant Brian Donnelly with Application Development & Data Administration, “I've met several people tonight that I’ve been exchanging emails with for years, but have never met in person; this has been great.”  In the end, the teams from the Center for Comparative Medicine and Academic Technology Services took top prizes in the West Coast IPA and Brown Ale categories respectively.

Who knows, this just might become an annual event. View photos from the event.

Campus moving to new voice mail service

Set up your new voice mail account by May 15

""After May 15, our current voice mail system will be gone. It was installed before smartphones existed at UC Davis and analog landlines were the norm. New voice mail accounts can be set up during the conversion window: Apr. 27 - May 15. Information and Educational Technology's Communications Resources is leading this effort to convert the approximately 4,000 affected staff and faculty accounts. With the change, comes increased capability, including the ability to retrieve messages via your email or a website. IET has published an article in TechNews and created a printable flyer that has all the information you need to successfully convert your voice mail before May 15.

Conflict Management News and Notes

by Susan Kee-Young Park
Ombuds/Director, Office of the Ombuds

When you don’t have time to visit the Ombuds Office...
""If you're having problems with someone at work or dealing with a stressful work environment, but can’t make time just now to visit the Ombuds Office for help, all is not lost. The Ombuds Office has online resources that may take the edge off.
The Ombuds Office website has a “Tips & Strategies” section that provides information on how to transform conflict, deal with really stressful or unstable workplace situations, respond to critical supervisory feedback, as well as keys to effective communication, and how to make an effective apology. In the “Tips & Strategies” section, under the “More Strategies” tab, you'll find links to “A Step-By-Step Checklist for Difficult Conversations” and a terrific video by UC Davis Psychology Professor, Alison Ledgerwood discussing “Getting Stuck in the Negatives (and How to Get Unstuck).”
Sometimes, after someone or something gets on your last nerve, all you may need is a few minutes to relax and take your mind off the situation so that you can cool down. If you can’t get away from your desk, you might want to spend a few minutes looking at a paced sequence of landscape photographs of the UC Davis campus. It’s a nice place to visit even if you aren’t under a lot of stress!
Of course, if you’d like to talk through what’s going on and identify options for dealing with your issues in a confidential, safe space, please call to make an appointment with an ombuds at (530) 219-6750. We would be happy to help.

Facilities Management wants your feedback

The Energy Feedback Team of Facilities Management has a new tile on myucdavis called Thermal Feedback. Simply search for the Thermal Feedback tile, add it to "MyView" and provide feedback that Facilities Management can use to identify future energy projects and/or remedy comfort issues on campus. They've been receiving feedback since October, but 75 percent of that feedback is coming from students - they'd like staff input, too.

t-shirtTo receive an infographic on what the Energy Feedback Team does with your feedback, subscribe to their mailing list. If you like what they're working on (and want one of these t-shirts), email Project Developer, Kiernan Salmon, at to participate in a round of user testing.

Administrators needed to serve burritos at TGFS

TGFS admin volunteerIn keeping with the tradition of administrators volunteering to serve food and drinks at TGFS, administrative personnel are asked to sign up for one or more food service shifts at TGFS. We'll provide the aprons and gloves, and you provide the top-notch service. If you're not available to volunteer, feel free to ask a colleague to serve in your place.

TGFS logo contest entries due Monday, Apr. 20

The TGFS planning committee welcomes original artwork from staff for this year's TGFS logo contest. All staff will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite logo at the TGFS celebration on May 7. The winning logo will be featured on all TGFS materials in 2016. Logo contest rules are available on the TGFS site and questions can be emailed to

Did you know...

Free bike safety check at Spring Bike Fest - Apr. 29

bike fest flyerThe inaugural UC Davis Spring Bike Fest will be held from 11 a.m. - 1:30 p.m., Wednesday, Apr. 29 at the UC Davis Farmers Market on the Quad.
Bring your bike to the event and let the UC Davis Bike Barn mechanics give it a free safety check and make some basic adjustments. If you need a more involved tune-up or significant repairs, they'll have coupons available for future service.

This kick-off event for May is Bike Month and Work it Week (part of Physical Activities Month) will also offer information on bike safety resources available on campus and the chance to sign up for May is Bike Month. Free bike lights and other prizes will be available from the UC Davis Police Department, TAPS and Davis Bicycles.

TGFS Tennis Tournament - register by Apr. 30

tgfs tennis logoThe TGFS Tennis Tournament is scheduled for Saturday, May 2 at the Marya Welch Tennis Center on the Davis campus. Play starts at 9 a.m. and the tournament format will be men's doubles, women's doubles, and mixed doubles. Registration is $10 and closes Apr. 30. Registration instructions and tournament details are posted on the TGFS Tennis Tournament site. Questions can be directed to tourney organizer Joe Patrocinio, Evolution and Ecology, at or (530) 752-1559.

For information about the cancellation of other TGFS sports, please see the update posted on the TGFS site.

Mark your calendar

take our daughters and sons to work day image
Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day
Thursday, Apr. 23  |  Event registration is open now
The 23rd annual TODS celebration is a great opportunity for your children to see how our UC Davis community functions, instructs, learns and grows. TODS exposes children to what a parent or mentor does during their workday, as well as provides interactive educational experiences that might just spark a lifelong interest. TODS is open to kids, ages 7-12. Children under 7 and over 12 are also encouraged to spend the day with their parent(s), with supervisor approval and in accordance with the additional stipulations posted on WorkLife and Wellness' TODS site. Release time is appropriate with supervisory approval and full details on TODS activities, event registration rules and information, and contact information is being posted to the TODS site.

Interviewing with Confidence

Friday, Apr. 24  |  12 - 1 p.m.  |  Heitman Staff Learning Center
Interviews are sources of anxiety for almost everyone and yet most promotional or developmental career moves require performing well in an interview situation. Workshop instructor and career counselor, Constance Stevens, will provide tips and techniques to help you prepare by identifying best practices, anticipating what you will be asked and handling difficult questions. Equipped with the information from this workshop, you will feel more confident in your next interview. This session is part of Staff Development and Professional Services' Career Catalyst Brown Bag Series and pre-enrollment is not required.

Arboretum Plant Sale

Saturday Apr. 25  |  9 a.m. - 1 p.m.  |  Arboretum Teaching Nursery
The Arboretum's spring plant sales offer the area’s largest selection of attractive, drought-tolerant, easy-care, region-appropriate plants including California natives and Arboretum All-Stars.
Arboretum plant sales are open to the public, but members receive 10 percent off their purchases; new members receive an additional $10 off as a thank you for joining. Not a member? Call ahead or join at the door.
The event is free to attend and free parking is available in nearby lots. For more information and directions, visit the Arboretum's calendar of events or call (530) 752-4880.

Police Accountability Board, Quarterly Meeting
Wed., Apr. 22  |  4:30 - 5:30 p.m.  |  Memorial Union - MU II
The UC Davis Police Accountability Board (PAB) invites staff to its quarterly meeting where updates will be shared and public comment welcomed.

The board was formed to develop and promote accountability, trust and communication between the broader UC Davis community and the university's police department. The board’s membership includes representatives from various campus constituency groups, including Staff Assembly. PAB members will work with independent investigators from the Office of Compliance and Policy to review complaints and make recommendations to the UC Davis Chief of Police regarding charges of officer misconduct.

More information about the PAB and filing a complaint is available online at, by emailing, or calling 752-6550.

5k Stride for Aggie Pride
Sunday, Apr. 26  |  9 a.m.  |  UC Davis Quad
Run or walk, either way, proceeds will go to the ASUCD Scholarship endowment and We Are Aggie Pride, which provides scholarships to students in need. The 5-kilometer (3.1-mile) stride, organized by students and staff, begins on the Quad, winds through campus and the arboretum before ending up back at the Quad. Students, faculty, staff and members of the general public are invited to participate. Online registration is under way and runs $5 (everyone aged 12 years and under), $7 (students aged 13 years and older) and $20 (everyone else). The full schedule, a registration portal, and details for the day of the stride can be found on the Stride for Aggie Pride site. Questions can be directed to Artem Trotsyuk at or Heather Zoller at

Staff Assembly April Board meeting

Tuesday, April 28  |  12-1 p.m.  |  Plant & Environmental Sciences, Room 2005
We've invited Adam Napolitan with Strategic Communications to attend our upcoming board meeting and discuss the soon-to-be-released online campus calendar and its functionality and applicability to a variety of campus departments. There will be time for questions and discussion.

If you’d like to get involved with Staff Assembly and participate in these types of conversations, email Nathan Ellstrand, Staff Assembly Membership Chair, at

Staff Forum for the University of the 21st Century
Monday, May 4  |  12 - 2 p.m.  |  Student Community Center
The Chancellor and Provost have launched a strategic visioning process to position UC Davis as the University of the 21st Century and they want to hear your dreams and aspirations regarding the future vision of the campus over the next several decades. Led by Steve Currall, Chancellor's Senior Advisor for Strategic Projects and Initiatives, this forum is an opportunity for staff to participate in a discussion about their vision for UC Davis for the next 40 years. Light refreshments will be served. Please visit the Envision the University of the 21st Century site for more information. If you have any questions, comments and messages, they can be sent to or (530) 752-7272.

six flags tickets
UC Davis family picnic @ Six Flags Discovery Kingdom
Saturday, July 25

Tickets for this year's UC Davis Family Picnic are $40 (free for kids under 2 years old) and include park entry, an all-you-can-eat lunch, parking, and face painting for the kids (or young at heart). This year, tickets can be purchased from the Six Flags booth at both the Davis and Sacramento campus TGFS events as well as an additional date on both campuses. If you can't make any of those dates, tickets can be purchased online without paying a service fee. Full details and ordering instructions are available on the UC Davis Family Picnic flyer. Email with any questions.

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