April 24, 2014

Campus Dining Updates

Campus Dining Serving Schedule

As we approach the end of the school year Campus Dining facilities will begin closing for the summer. The Faculty and Staff Dining Room will remain open through Friday, May 2. However, other dining rooms at Seacobeck will close earlier in the week. For details on the closing schedules of other Seacobeck dining rooms and our retail dining facilities, please check the dining website at www.umwdining.com.

Have a Heart to Stop Hunger

The “Have A Heart, Stop Hunger” campaign is currently being sponsored by Campus Dining through May 2. Dining guests are invited to make donations to the Sodexo Foundation to help fight hunger in the United States. One hundred percent of your donations go directly to programs that help feed children and families – no administration fees! For every dollar you donate we will post a heart in our dining facilities with your name on it. If you wish your donation to be tax deductible, you may make your donation by check, made payable to the Sodexo Foundation. Help us plaster the walls with hearts and feed lots of children! Donation boxes are at campus dining cashiers. For more information contact Rose Benedict at rbenedic@umw.edu.

Volunteer for Midnight Breakfast

Campus Dining is seeking volunteers to assist in serving a free breakfast to students on Monday, April 28, the first night of exams. Although it is popularly known as the “Midnight Breakfast”, it is actually served between 11 p.m. and 12:30 a.m., with door prize drawings occurring at 11:30 p.m. and midnight. Students love seeing their professors and administrators behind the serving line in chefs’ hats and aprons dishing up scrambled eggs, and it’s a lot of fun for everyone. To volunteer please contact Rose Benedict at rbenedic@umw.edu by noon on Monday, April 28.

Got Misspellings and Broken Links? Help is on the Way!

If you’ve seen me present to any of the faculty, staff, or administrative groups on campus you’ve probably seen the graphic below depicting broken links and spelling errors throughout the UMW website.

SiteImprove visualsThis image is from an August 2013 demo of a tool called SiteImprove.

I’m happy to announce that as of April 1, UMW has the full-fledged version of this amazing tool. As it does its job and finds website problems, we will send automated reports out to site managers campus wide. Some of you will start seeing these reports as early as May 1.

potential misspellings shown on a SiteImprove report

Potential misspellings are shown with a yellow highlight.

You will then have precise pinpointed information about problem areas of your website (see example). SiteImprove will highlight in bold visual detail any spelling errors that may exist. Yellow highlighting for potential misspellings, red highlights for confirmed misspellings.

What’s next?

The system has built a dictionary for UMW that allows us to indicate false-positives, such as acronyms, user names, and proper names. We are slowly working through upwards of 4,000 potentially misspelled words in the dictionary and will continue to hone those results.

confirmed misspelling shown on a SiteImprove report

Confirmed misspelling displayed with a flashing red highlight.

Feel free to email webmaster@umw.edu with any false positives you encounter so we can be sure to address them in a timely manner.

As users are added to the system and we start to see progress toward correcting these “low hanging fruit” issues, we will begin sending out other reports:

  • search engine optimization opportunities
  • accessibility compliance issues
  • deeper user behavior analysis
  • and more.

What does this mean to me?

SiteImprove report screen showing a broken link.

Broken links are easier to find and fix.

If you’re managing a website on umw.edu, it means you will start receiving automated reports with actionable improvements you can (and should) be making on your site. And you won’t have to go this alone! Starting in the fall, we will hold brown-bag lunches in order to provide group training and discussion sessions for site managers. But don’t wait till fall to start improving your site. Whenever you need assistance, drop us a line at webmaster@umw.edu.

How often will I get a report?

At first, once a month. If you prefer, we can increase frequency to weekly. Just email webmaster@umw.edu and we’ll make the change.

What if the report is going to the wrong person?

Just email us at webmaster@umw.edu. We’ll be happy to straighten things out.

I’m committed to making the UMW web site more viable and accessible. Remember that we’re here to provide support as you work to enhance your presence on the University’s largest public facing communications and recruiting resource.

Students Present Research

Three University of Mary Washington political science students presented research papers at the Virginia Social Science Association Annual Meeting at Richmond on Saturday, April 19.

The students and their papers are:

Mariah Young, “Social Construction of Target Populations: Testing the Media’s Framing during Disasters;”

Amber Reeves, “I Think This Is From the Onion: A Study in Media Credibility Using the AP Logo;” and

Colin McElhinny, “Beyond the Water’s Edge: Public Opinion and U.S. Foreign Policy.”

The students began working on these research projects in the political science research methods classes offered by Professors Chad Murphy and Stephen Farnsworth.

UMW Community Makes Blood Drives a Success

Giving blood at the Stafford campus is becoming second nature for the UMW community.

Since 2011, Kevin Caffrey, senior associate registrar, has worked with the American Red Cross to plan and host six blood drives at the Stafford campus, collecting a total of 108 pints of blood.

During the most recent drive on April 10, the Red Cross collected 18 pints.

“We had about 25 people show up to donate – including staff and faculty from Graduate Admissions, Student Accounts, the Writing Center, Facilities and Services, and the College of Business. We also had students from both the College of Education and College of Business stop by to donate, as well as members of the local community and family of staff,” said Caffrey. “Everyone needs blood and donors and supporters make all the difference.”

Stay tuned for details on the next drive.


Sustainability Tip of the Week

After what can only be described as a brutal, brutal winter, it’s nice to finally find ourselves walking into work on warm sunny mornings. With this lovely change of weather comes an opportunity to practice some sustainability at work. Namely—packing your lunch for work. How does packing your lunch help with sustainability? Well, I’m glad you asked so I will tell you.

By opting to bring your lunch from home as opposed to going out to buy something each day, you’ll cut down on the garbage that is generated from take-out containers, napkins, plastic cups, plastic spoons, plastic forks, the infamous plastic “sporks”—you name it. You’ll also reduce the amount of exhaust fumes that are generated from taking your car out for those short two mile drives back and forth to nearby restaurants and fast food places. Not only is driving short distances bad for the environment, it is also bad for your car. You’ll also be practicing economic sustainability as packing your lunch from home will almost always cost you less money than it does to buy your lunch from a restaurant. Moreover, you’ll have quality control over the ingredients that you use to prepare your lunch. Spring is a great time of year to prepare healthy, vibrant meals and snacks from fresh ingredients–spicy southwestern salsa and chips, roasted garlic hummus with pita bread, fresh fruit salad—the delicious possibilities are endless. With the time you’ll save from traveling off campus each afternoon, you’ll gain the opportunity to go for a walk, read a book, or talk with co-workers or students. Reduce waste, reduce pollution, save money, boost your health, cultivate new, meaningful, personal connections with people – all from bringing your lunch to work! Plus, it’s a great opportunity to pull out your He-Man or Strawberry Short Cake Lunchbox from the attic. And if you’re going to make a commitment to bring your lunch to work, remember to use reusable containers and cutlery, as well as a thermos or reusable water bottle.

The President’s Council on Sustainability plays a critical role in shaping administrative goals and objectives relating to campus sustainability, and reports regularly to the President’s Cabinet outlining recommendations and the university’s progress in areas of sustainability. Tuesday, April 22 is Earth Day and the PCS will be presenting a panel from 4 to 5 p.m. in Lee Hall 411, before moving to the Lee Hall Terrace from 5 to 6 p.m. Please stop by to learn more about the PCS and sustainability on campus as well as in your everyday lives.

Save the Date for Employee Appreciation Day

Employee Appreciation Celebration - May 12, 2014.  Visit the Human Resources website for more information.

The Nature of Insight: An Evening with Gary Klein, May 12

FredTech May 12 eventFredTech and the Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce invite you to The Nature of Insight: An Evening with Gary Klein on May 12 at 5:30 p.m. at The Silk Mill. Registration required by calling (540) 373-9400 or emailing sheri@fredericksburgchamber.org. Click the flyer to learn more.

Phi Beta Kappa Inducts New Members

The University of Mary Washington chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, Kappa of Virginia, recently inducted 46 students into the chapter.  Phi Beta Kappa is the nation’s oldest academic honor society.

Members of the Kappa Chapter of Virginia at the 2014 induction ceremony.

Members of the Kappa Chapter of Virginia at the 2014 induction ceremony.

Phi Beta Kappa was founded at the College of William and Mary in 1776 and has since upheld the principles of freedom of inquiry and liberty of thought and expression, sponsoring activities to advance the study of the humanities, the social sciences and the natural sciences. The society invites the most outstanding arts and sciences students at America’s leading colleges and universities for membership.

The UMW chapter, Kappa of Virginia, selects its members based on rigorous scrutiny of students’ academic achievements as demonstrated through grade point averages.

New members of Kappa of Virginia include:

Benjamin Blalock

Kathleen E. Busch

Danielle P. DeSimone

Danielle C. DeVille

Emily M. Farnsworth

Shannan M. Feight

Elisa Fuhrken

Tabitha Glinski

Gabriella Graham

Elizabeth Green

Charlotte Hageman

Felicia Hamn

Claire Harrington

Elizabeth Henry

Phillip Hitt

Max Huemer

Alicia Izaguirre

Katherine Johnson

Eun-Mi Ju

Anna Kania*

Erin Keener

Celeste Kelly

Jared Kline

Katie Lebling

Catherine LeBouton

Emma Leheney

Daniel Lipscomb

Ellynn Loftus

Sarah R. Marzec

Paige H. R. McKinsey

Melissa Mittelman*

Jerome M. Mueller

Sidney A. Mullis

Emma C. Oestreicher

Leanna J. Papp

Lauren I. Pettengill

Robin R. Ramey

Jordan W. Reece

Hannah W. Riddle

Alexandra M. Ritter

Brittany Scites

Brittany Simmons

Kimberly Slater

Mollie E. Welty

Margaret Wilder

Kaylee L. Wilsher


Important Dates from HR

Be sure to mark your calendars.

April 18: Deadline  for University Recognition Awards nominations

April 23: Administrative Professional Day lunch is in the Faculty Staff Dining Hall 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.  We will treat our Admin Professionals to a free lunch to say Thank You for all you do for UMW.

April 24: Take Our Sons & Daughters to Work Day

April 30: Deadline for choosing Hybrid Retirement option

May 1- 23: Open Enrollment for Healthcare. Look for information from DHRM at your home addresses and more UMW announcements

May 12: Employee Appreciation Day picnic is in Ball Circle 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.  Look for more details in the coming weeks.

May 12: .Summer Flex and Dress Schedule begins and ends on  August 11.

Want to Support Expanded VRE Service?

The National Association of Railroad Passengers is working to bring the enjoyable and affordable VRE trains to Fredericksburg JUST FOR YOU! If the VRE Board sees that there is enough support and demand for this, it just might happen! With more vocal support, permanent weekend and expanded weekday VRE service might become reality! Fill out the pledge below to show your support.

Click Here to fill out the pledge. It will take about 30 seconds. Questions? Please contact Maxime Devilliers at mdevilli@mail.umw.edu