UA Emergency Management Begins Alert Notification Testing

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Beginning the week of Oct. 31, the UA Alerts Notification System, part of the Emergency Management system, will be testing the voice mail and text messaging capabilities of the mass notification provider, powered by Blackboard Connect. You will receive a “test message.” Remember, this will be just a system test. The test message will remind you that if an emergency occurs, the university will use every  means possible to inform students, staff and faculty of what’s happened and what actions are appropriate.

For best results, Emergency Management encourages you to update your “personal profile” prior to the tests. To update your information, follow the steps outlined below on “Your Alert Profile.” These instructions take you through the process of updating your profile within Blackboard Connect, so you can receive messages from the UA Alerts Notification System.

Update your profile

Step A - Access your profile for the first time

  • Go to the UA Alerts website: http://www.alaska.edu/uaalerts
  • Click the orange button and provide your UA username and password and click “Login.” Contact your campus help desk if you need assistance with the login process.

Step B – Check for pre-loaded contact information

  • To save data entry time check to see if any of your data was preloaded.
  • Select “Click Here” and proceed.
  • Select one of your pre-loaded campuses.
  • Select “Yes, this is mine” next to the pre-loaded data you want brought over into your UA Alerts Notification profile.
  • Click “Submit” when done.

Step C - Add or edit your contact information

  • Select the “Add Device” link to add a phone number, email address, or text messaging number.
  • Each time you ”Save” you will be prompted to update your subscription preferences. You can either “Do it Later” or select ”Yes, take me there.”

Step D - Subscribe to Alerts

  • Click”Subscriptions” in the left-hand navigation panel.
  • Check the box beside each Institution name with which you are associated to receive notifications for that location.
  • Click “Save”.
  • Edit your delivery preferences. Click “Save”.
  • On the menu in the upper right-hand corner, click “Sign-Out” and close the browser.

Frequently asked questions can be found at http://www.alaska.edu/uaalerts
Please contact ua-alerts@alaska.edu for additional information or assistance

The UA Alerts Notification System sends official information about emergencies that may disrupt university operations or threaten the community. The system is a NOTIFICATION mechanism and not a warning system. In the case of an emergency, the university will use every best means of trying to inform students, staff and faculty about what’s happened and what actions are appropriate.

The University communicates through email, websites, public media, and social media. This multi-modal solution is called the UA Alerts Notification System.

K-12 Outreach Office Awarded Federal Funds for a Climate Education Project in Northwest Alaska

UA’s K-12 Outreach Office has received a grant from the U.S. Department of Education to improve Alaska Native student knowledge of Inupiat and Yup’ik ways of knowing about climate, and to increase Alaska Native student science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) competency. The Raising Educational Achievement through Cultural Heritage (REACH) project will serve 2,871 K-6 students and 237 elementary teachers at 15 sites in northwest Alaska’s Bering Strait School District.

REACH will provide year-round professional development augmented by ongoing mentorship from Native Elders, scientists, and master teachers. Each summer, teachers will receive 2 weeks of immersive indigenous and western instruction related to climate. Throughout each school year, summer professional development will be transferred to classrooms by teachers field-testing REACH curricular resources. REACH curriculum will be loaded with current, place-based cultural and STEM content on climate change, and infused with evidence-based best practices for indigenous education. Teachers will earn up to 7 UAF continuing education credits annually for full participation in the project.

REACH project goals are to:(1) improve student STEM achievement in high-poverty, persistently lowest-achieving schools; (2) increase the number of effective teachers, training them in culturally relevant STEM instruction proven to increase student achievement; and (3) prepare Native youth to become leaders in developing solutions to climate issues in school and in the real world.

Fate Receives Shirley Demientieff Award

Governor Sean Parnell on Oct. 18, presented the 2012 Shirley Demientieff Award to Mary Jane Fate at the Alaska Federation of Natives (AFN) convention in Anchorage. The award is given each year at AFN by the governor of Alaska for advocacy on behalf of Alaska Native women and children.

Fate, an Athabascan born in Rampart, was a founding member of the Fairbanks Native Association, Tundra Times Newspaper, the Institute of Alaska Native Arts, and is past president of the North American Indian Women’s Association. The first woman co-chair of AFN, and a director on the Alaska Airlines corporate board for 25 years, Fate served as a University of Alaska Regent, and as the only indigenous member on the U.S. Arctic Research Commission during her term.

“Mary Jane, your life is a positive example of how we each can make a difference wherever we are,” Governor Parnell said. “You are an Alaska Native leader who has led and advanced the health and safety of Alaska Natives. And while accomplishing so many firsts, you have also always been there for those in need.”

Fate was the first Alaska Native woman to serve on the Alaska Judicial Council.

Web Time Sheet Project Begins Testing

Statewide Pilot Group is 'Kicking the Tires'

Contributed by Carolyn Weaver

This week the Web Time Sheet Project (WiTSE) began its first “real-world” testing of the new web time sheet tool for exempt (salaried) employees. A group of users in the OIT and the Statewide Human Resources offices were selected to “kick the tires” of the new tool.

In November and December, the exempt time entry process is scheduled to be rolled out to pilot groups at all of the campuses in two phases. The first phase is targeted for November 4 through December 1, and the second targeted for December 1 through December 29. Participants in these pilots will be contacted directly.

“The main part of the development is completed,” says project manager Carolyn Weaver. “Now the project team will be rolling out the tool to our pilot groups at each campus over the next few weeks. The testing provided by these users is essential to us in determining if any final tweaks are needed to the tool and to the documentation before the final roll-out to all employees. That’s why we really encourage and appreciate the feedback we receive from our pilot groups…it’s such a tremendous help.”

On the Web Time Sheet Entry (WTE) web page, the project team has posted a demo of the new entry tool for exempt employees, along with instructions and reference documentation for employees, time sheet approvers, and time sheet reviewers.

Based on user feedback from the first pilot group, updates to the tool will be made, and then a second group of pilot participants will be added to complete the testing. These testing periods allow time to fully gauge the system’s ease of use and functionality, especially during the holiday season when a larger percentage of employees usually take several days of annual leave.

The final roll-out to all exempt employees is scheduled for the first quarter of 2013. Before and during the roll-out, each campus Human Resources office will be contacting employees and their time sheet approvers regarding how to obtain training and when they can begin to use the new system.

More information is available on the Web Time Sheet Entry (WTE) web page here

Questions and/or comments are welcome, and can be emailed to syhr@alaska.edu.

Alaska, Yukon Will Work Together to Develop Mining Industry Training

Under a Memorandum of Agreement signed October 11, Alaska and Yukon will cooperate on training opportunities for jobs in the mining industry.

Labor and Workforce Development Commissioner Dianne Blumer and University of Alaska Associate Vice President of Workforce Programs Fred Villa represented Alaska. Yukon Minister of Education Scott Kent and President of Yukon College Karen Barnes represented Yukon.

“Alaska and Yukon have some very similar workforce needs. With this agreement, we can work together to coordinate and develop world-class training to fill these needs,” Commissioner Blumer said. “Both the University of Alaska and Yukon College have specialized mine training programs that can benefit from coordination.”

The Alaska Department of Labor’s latest industry forecast indicates the state will add almost 500 jobs in mining and support activities by 2020, and will need to fill hundreds more to replace workers who retire or change occupations.

The agreement is an outcome of the Alaska-Yukon Intergovernmental Relations Accord signed by Gov. Sean Parnell and Yukon Premier Darrell Pasloski in June, which focuses on promoting beneficial job training, energy production and economic development.

“There is mutual benefit for Yukon and Alaska to share mining-related educational programming and information,” Education Minister Kent said. “This Memorandum of Agreement provides an opportunity for further cooperation in the pursuit of our similar needs and interests.”

SAA Highlights

For information on the most recent SAA meeting click HERE...
(The Highlights do not represent the official view point of the University of Alaska and are not edited by the Office of Public Affairs.)

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