June 28, 2016

University Staff Senate


Volume 1: Issue 1


News from Staff Senate

University Staff Senate (USS) has developed this newsletter to be issued quarterly to keep staff informed of the committee's activities. We hope you like the enhanced branding on USS email communications.

About the USS

USS has representation on the University Leadership Council (ULC) and participates as a full voting member. President Lovell meets monthly with the chair and attends a USS meeting annually. USS has representation on several campus committees such as the Master Planning Steering Committee and its working groups, Campus Climate Study Working Group, Academic Integrity Counsel, MU Police Department Advisory Board, Food Service Supplier Advisory Committee, the 100 Years of Marquette Basketball University Engagement Committee and the Wellness Committee.

Message from the Chair

Dear Marquette University Staff,

Now that Marquette University’s class of 2016 has graduated, I hope you are all enjoying the summer.

I am very proud of the USS committee members, how together USS built the foundation of the committee. Going forward it will be an effective means of communication and shared governance between all staff and senior administration. I want to thank the USS committee members for all of their creative and innovative ideas and hard work. USS is currently working on several exciting initiatives.

I am grateful for my experiences on the University Leadership Council (ULC) and the executive leadership training provided through the Leadership Circle activities. I can’t thank the senior administration enough for their acceptance, kindness, and respect that they extended to me. I am appreciative of President Lovell’s time that he dedicated to meeting with me as USS chair. It allowed us both to get to know each other and work together effectively as a team.

Graduation is symbolic of transition and this year’s commencement was especially meaningful to me. It was an honor to process in with the ULC and be seated on the stage with them. It marked the upcoming transition of my leadership of USS to a new chair. Leading USS has been such an extremely gratifying experience.

On behalf of USS, I am pleased to announce that Dr. Laura Abing, Senior Communication Specialist in University Advancement, will begin her term of service as chair at the annual organizational meeting in August. She has been serving as the vice-chair of USS for the past two years as well as on the Campus Climate Survey Working Group. Laura is very excited to take on the responsibility.

It has been an honor serving as your USS chair.

Sherri Lex

Save the date

Dr. Michael Lovell 24th president of Marquette University has endorsed the 2016 Summer Picnic and it has been scheduled for Monday, August 8, 2016. lnvitation to follow.

Reminder! Elections and Nominations

It is election time for University Staff Senate (USS), and there are open positions available. Please consider serving and/or nominating people whom you think will effectively serve as a representative. USS nominations will be held electronically. Submit your nomination soon!

Nominations will be accepted through June 29, 2016. Please consider participating in USS.

Committee Initiative

Together with University Academic Senate, USS developed the Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion Awards to recognize one faculty member and one staff member who demonstrate exemplary leadership and have shown an ability to put the ideals of diversity, equity and inclusion into practical action. The inaugural Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion Award winners are Dr. Cheryl Maranto, chair and associate professor of management (faculty), and Paul Milakovich, associate vice president for advancement services (staff).

Subcommittee Initiatives

Communication Subcommittee

USS built its new interactive website to share important committee information and communicate with all staff. If you know of specific committees that you think would benefit from having staff representation, please submit them through the Questions and Comments link on the website for review.

Staff Development and Service Subcommittee

Project Night-Night continues, and the Volunteer Committee just delivered another 150 totes for a total of about 7,000. The group is looking for donations - especially blankets and stuffed animals (new or like new – no beanie babies) and books.

Other projects for fall and winter include a hat, scarf and mitten drive for MPS, shelters and homeless around the Marquette area. We also will conduct our annual Giving Tree, where we are matched with those in the community that need gifts. The number of people taking names has decreased of late and we could use some more people to help out.

Work Environment Subcommittee

USS developed a web-based program called Marquette Momentum to collect ideas from staff, faculty and student employees that: (1) would enhance the climate and culture at Marquette, (2) can be easily implemented in a short period of time, and (3) would require minimal resources and administrative bureaucracy. President Lovell introduced the idea last February at a USS meeting as one way to practice shared governance with all employees. Ideas that gain USS support will be taken to the ULC for consideration.

Our History

The history of the University Staff Senate (USS) is rooted in the history of two separate entities that eventually merged.

The Committee on Staff (COS) was established in October 1981, with formal approval of its bylaws in February 1982. The COS served as a liaison between Marquette's support staff and the administration, encouraging university improvements at the policy level.

The Marquette Chapter of the American Association of University Administrators received approval of its proposal to create the Committee on Administrators (COA) in March 1982. The COA advocated on behalf of university administrators, promoting professional development, communication, collegiality and other issues related to overall welfare.

After Marquette University decided to refer to all non-faculty employees as staff, a joint committee including representatives from the COS and COA drafted bylaws in August 2012 to form a combined group known as the University Staff Assembly (USA). In April 2013, elected representatives of what was formally known as the USA held their first meeting as a combined unit. The group has evolved significantly since then.

In 2014, the USA chair became the first staff member in Marquette history to receive a regular seat on the University Leadership Council (ULC) and the opportunity to meet monthly with the university president.

President Lovell attended a USA meeting on February 19, 2015—the first time a Marquette president had ever attended a meeting with a group representing non-faculty employees.

The USA formally changed its name to the University Staff Senate (USS) in May 2015, paralleling the faculty shared governance entity known as the University Academic Senate.

The USS is regularly included on university-wide committees, having representation at master planning and strategic planning meetings as well as a role on the Strategic Innovation Council.

Members of the USS look forward to continue serving the best interest of all Marquette staff.

Your Staff Senate Representatives:

Laura Abing, Melody Baker, Steve Blaha, Jan Harwig, Sheila Kershek, Sarah Kordsmeier, Nicholas La Joie, Sherri Lex, Sue McKeon, Mary Minson, Lisa Olson, Chris Perez, Sara Pforr, Mark Simonson, John Sweeney and Carol Trecek


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