Message from the Vice President
November 9, 2023
Fall 2023 is proving to be an exciting time at Oregon State University. There is the energy of a record number of students starting a new academic year on our campuses and online. There is Beaver Football, with an excellent 7-2 record, currently 12th in the College Football Playoff standings, along with all the other exhilarating sports on the fall calendar. And—my personal favorite—there is a new strategic plan at OSU! It’s big and bold. It will be a challenge to effectively implement all the elements of the new plan. But I believe that if we continue to work together in open and innovative ways, our community can achieve this ambitious vision for prosperity widely shared.
I hope you can make time to attend President Murthy’s investiture and the launch of the new strategic plan on Friday, Nov. 17 (details can be found at https://leadership.oregonstate.edu/president/presidents-investiture). I want every member of the Division of Finance and Administration team to understand how the job you do in your unit is helping advance the outcomes of OSU’s strategic plan. We have resources to help make that clear, like the division’s DEI action plan and the DFA Framework for Success, both discussed in more detail in the news below. We have a new tagline for the division that makes our collective role pretty clear—“DFA supports OSU every dam day!” And if you’re still not sure how your work contributes to the university’s broader goals and mission, I encourage you to talk to your supervisor and explore the question together.
One of our colleagues who is contributing at OSU and beyond is Mark Zandonella, CAPP, Interim Director of Transportation Services. Mark was recently published in Parking and Mobility Magazine. In his article Take the “Deferred” Out of Maintenance, Mark writes about how OSU’s Transportation Services team decided to take control of its own destiny by developing a 25-year year preventive maintenance plan for more than 60 asphalt parking lots. The lessons Mark shares about planning and perseverance can be applied far beyond the transportation industry, so I hope you’ll take a few minutes to read the entire piece.
Obviously, the transportation team isn’t alone in deserving recognition for doing excellent work. That’s why the Division of Finance and Administration offers multiple ways to share appreciation for each other’s efforts:
- The DFA Hurray! system amplifies your quick note of gratitude when someone makes your day. These notifications are a great way to let people know their work is valued. Each month, DFA Hurray! recipients are entered into a drawing for a prize, and recipients are highlighted in winter and summer news issues.
- The quarterly news issues also include a roundup of “kudos” stories about employee excellence that we receive from partners across OSU. Scroll down to read the latest words of thanks and prepare to get inspired!
- DFA senior leaders get an opportunity to express their gratitude for staff in person at our regular division-wide events throughout the year. Save the date for the Winter DFA All Staff Holiday Event on Dec. 14 from 11 am to 1 pm (includes lunch, games and celebration).
- DFA Annual Awards are back and better than ever! Read more below about how DFA employees will be recognized for outstanding work that occurred between Dec. 2022 and Dec. 2023. Nominations are easy to submit through Dec. 5, 2023.
I am pleased that we will have a new colleague on the DFA leadership team in December, when Brent Gustafson, OSU’s new associate vice president for budget and resource planning, officially arrives. You can learn more about Brent’s background in the update below. As you join me in welcoming Brent to the DFA team, please also help me express our shared gratitude to Toni Doolen, dean of the University Honors College, for serving as interim AVP BRP since May 2023 while we conducted a national search. Our division has greatly benefited from Toni’s partnership. Despite her incredibly busy schedule, Toni has generously offered her assistance as Brent gets acclimated at OSU.
Before you start reading the collection of DFA stories below, let’s take a moment to salute veterans and active-duty staff who have served in the U.S. military. Division senior leaders and I recognize and thank DFA veterans for their contributions and commitment to OSU, our communities and our nation. This year, we are able to highlight the stories of a few of those folks at the Veterans of DFA website.
I wish you all the best as fall turns to winter, and you read the impressive collection of DFA stories below…
Fall 2023 News from DFA Units
The DFA All Annual Awards have relaunched this year! The deadline to nominate a DFA colleague for an award is Dec. 5, 2023. More information regarding the 7 different awards, nomination criteria, and links to the nomination forms can be found here. All nominees will be recognized and cash prizes awarded at the Spring 2024 DFA All Staff Meeting. Every DFA employee is eligible to nominate and receive nominations, so please get to it! (Hint: Check out the quarterly news issues and DFA Annual Reports for reminders of all the great work we’ve accomplished together.) Questions regarding the awards and the nomination process can be directed to Andrea McDaniel.
Kudos (noun): /ˈk(y)o͞oˌdäs,ˈk(y)o͞oˌdōs/ - praise and honor received for an achievement
From time to time, our campus partners are so impressed by the work of people in the DFA that they reach out to the leadership team to give a shout-out about their excellent experience. Sometimes the stories reflect work of our team on are big, multi-faceted projects and sometimes they are about more everyday work, but they always involve someone exceeding expectations. (In addition to these external kudos, division employees can use the DFA Hurray! system to share notes of recognition with colleagues.)
We’re sharing the “kudos” stories below as examples of how your division colleagues are putting the DFA guiding principles into action. As you go about your daily work, whatever your specific projects or decision points are, one or more of these principles will be useful to helping you determine the best course of action.
- Generate effective results through structured and inclusive decision-making.
- Convey and confirm intent and respect for all OSU community members through communication and engagement that is responsive, clear and transparent.
- Improve effectiveness and efficiency through process consistency balanced with flexibility.
- Provide for OSU community members’ success through community safety, support for well-being and respect for all.
- Ensure the long-term success of the university through proactive stewardship of resources in alignment with OSU’s strategic plan.
- Balance innovation and compliance through active assessment and management of risk.
- Remove barriers to success and expand access to services through clearly defined and integrated policies, standards and processes.
- Improve the satisfaction of OSU community members through empowering employees with appropriately delegated decision-making authority.
Widad Ahmed, Accounts Payable & Travel Accounting Technician with the Controller’s Unit – Widad, part of the vendor management team, was able to prevent a fraudulent actor from gaining access to a large OSU vendor’s system record after an emailed request to update banking information. OSU’s chief information officer commended Widad’s actions, and said he appreciated the “material improvements [the team has] made for OSU” to reduce the risk of fraud.
Widad acted in alignment with OSU’s vendor change management protocols, which allowed for immediate identification of this illegitimate request to update banking information.
Wadid’s actions remind us that oftentimes we need to take individual responsibility to apply our shared institutional policies. We can help ensure the success of the university through proactive stewardship of resources in alignment with OSU’s strategic plan. Keep up the great work, Wadid!
Jane Waite, Senior Associate for Social Justice Learning and Engagement with University Human Resources – A Financial Aid leader commended Jane for the way she developed and delivered an “outstanding training” to help the team address some challenges, saying, “it was fantastic and…we are so grateful to have incredible people like you who are willing to spend their time and energy to help us serve students and each other better.”
Jane offers a longstanding example of how we can provide for OSU community members’ success through community safety, support for well-being and respect for all. Thaks for your ongoing leadership, Jane!
Anne Gillies, Search Advocate Program Director with University Human Resources – An OSU participant in the Search Advocate Foundations series commended Anne for developing a program that “is robust, helps us challenge bias and strategies in a way that was approachable AND helped me feel that we really would be able to do this.” The person compared Anne’s training very favorably against their previous equal opportunity hiring workshops at a different institution.
Anne also received a kind message from a leader at the School of Journalism at the University of Arizona, who recently took the Search Advocate workshop with a colleague. She noted how much they learned and thanked Anne “for sharing this enormous gift across the country... it is and will continue to make a difference.”
Anne continues to demonstrate how important it is to convey and confirm intent and respect for all community members through communication and engagement that is responsive, clear and transparent. Excellent work, Anne!
Dan Harlan and David Horn, Radiation Safety Officers with Environmental Health and Safety – Daniel and David were commended by a radiation safety colleague at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO) for going out of their way to offer assistance as their counterpart at Scripps took an extended medical leave. The SIO manages a very active radiation program for its fleet of research vessels and researchers working around the world, including two vessels currently docking at Newport, Oregon.
As a Sea Grant Institution, OSU was able to share the necessary expertise through David and Dan’s coordination, which allowed SIO researchers to continue their work with radioisotope elements. They ensured inventory was delivered, waste containers were provided, waste was offloaded at the end of the cruise, and radioisotope stock and samples were returned to the researcher’s home institution. Dan stated that “David’s creative and proactive work with SIO’s group made all the difference.”
Dan and David’s outreach and appropriately delegated decision-making authority allowed them to improve the satisfaction of ocean-based researchers across the scientific community. Great job, Dan and David!
Candice Vasallo, Recruitment Specialist with University Human Resources – A leader from the Office of Audit, Risk and Compliance commended Candice for providing a great deal of support in the hiring two new senior auditors.
With their expert staff member unexpectedly out, the OARC needed some extra help navigating the recruitment process. Candice was recognized as “a great partner” who helped move the process forward quickly. The OARC leader appreciated Candice’s “responsiveness to questions and the efficient way you processed the necessary information to move forward with the recruitments.”
Candice demonstrates how we can remove barriers to success and expand access to services through clearly defined and integrated policies, standards and processes. Thanks for the great work, Candice!
Katie Vorderstrasse, Assistant Director with Insurance and Risk Management Services – Katie was recognized for her excellent work and teamwork by the AVP of Finance and Controller for her worked with the Financial Strategic Services team to collect documentation for OSU's FEMA and SAIF Worker Safety Fund claims relative to COVID.
The leader said Katie “made heavy lifts seem doable” by standing up a process and providing clear, concise instructions. Katie “showed patience, perseverance and professionalism during a stressful time and over a sustained period.” Her hard work paid off and OSU recently recovered just over $1.5 million.
Katie’s work is a great example of how we can balance innovation and compliance through active assessment and management of risk. Thanks for your excellent contributions, Katie!
On Dec. 4, Brent Gustafson will begin his appointment as OSU’s new Associate Vice President for Budget and Resource Planning, following a national search. With nearly twenty-five years of experience in budgeting and financial management in both public and private higher education leadership roles, Brent brings strong analytical and strategic financial skills and experience to OSU. I have every confidence that Brent’s collaborative, transparent and inclusive approach to budget policy, strategy and execution will be a tremendous asset as the university works to advance its bold new strategic plan.
In his role as vice president for finance and administration at Hamline University, Brent has been responsible for collaborating to develop financial strategies and multi-year budget plans, working with university leadership and its Board of Trustees to navigate the challenges of a private university in the current higher education environment. Previously, he served for ten years as the chief financial officer for the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Minnesota, which has a budget model similar to OSU, where he oversaw a $270 million budget, led 35 finance staff and coordinated with 500 faculty to support nearly 15,000 students.
Prior to his career in higher education, Brent was budget director for Dakota County, Minnesota, the state’s third largest county, where he helped redesign the budget process around County Board priorities and strategic objectives. He also improved financial practices at the county, which helped obtain an upgraded credit rating. Brent also served in leadership roles in both the executive and legislative branches of Minnesota state government, shaping and managing the budget development process and serving as a strategic advisor to state policy makers. Brent earned his Master’s degree in Public Policy at Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government and holds a B.A. in Political Science and Social Studies from Hamline University.
Toni Doolen has generously served as Interim AVP for Budget and Resource Planning since May 2023, while continuing her role as Dean of the Honors College in a dual capacity. Toni will support the Budget and Resource Planning team until Brent comes on board, and will enable a smooth transition. Toni has helped the DFA make tremendous strides in our work, including through projects to refine the university’s budget model and develop financial management tools for university leaders.
Jason “Jase” Skaar joined the Procurement, Contracts and Materials Management team on Oct. 16, 2023. Jase brings with him a wealth of experience from over 10 years serving the University of Texas, where he also completed his undergrad in Civil Engineering with an Environmental Science focus.
Jase has previously held roles such as Environmental Health and Safety, Operations, Safety Specialist, and Maintenance Technician. At OSU’s Campus Recycling operation, Jase will oversee strategic objectives focusing primarily on creating and implementing efficient waste management programs.
Outside of his professional commitments, Jase is a passionate advocate for the outdoors. Along with his spouse, he enjoys an abundance of activities including fishing, wildlife observation, and overlanding. Please join the Materials Management team in welcoming Jase to Oregon and the OSU community.
Congratulations to Toni Doolen, Dean of the Honors College and Interim Associate Vice President for Budget and Resource Planning, for being named the 2023 recipient of the Society of Women Engineers’ Suzanne Jenniches Upward Mobility Award Endowed by the Northrop Grumman Corporation. This award honors an individual who identifies as a woman who has succeeded in rising within their organization to a significant management position such that they are able to influence the decision-making process and has created a nurturing environment for others in the workplace.
Thank you, Toni, for serving as an inspiration to women leaders across Oregon State University!
Thanks to ongoing work by the Sustainability Office, part of UFIO, OSU has been recognized as a Top Performer in the 2023 Sustainable Campus Index, ranking fifth for Coordination and Planning, with a score of 100%. OSU was also recognized for having one of the highest STARS data accuracy rates during the recent reporting period, with a score of 97.56%. A publication from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE), the Sustainable Campus Index recognizes top-performing colleges and universities overall and in 17 impact areas, as measured by the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS).
This is impressive work! The UFIO team has been continually recognized for excellence in the sustainability field for more than a decade.
The division’s DEI Advancement Committee continues its work to expand the awareness of diversity and inclusion in our units, explore paths that increase feelings of belonging among DFA employees, and help make our division an Oregon employer of choice. The group, headed by Christine Atwood (PCMM) and Keahi McFadden (UFIO), are currently working to develop recommendations around a few initial priorities that unit leaders and their teams may want to use incorporate the division’s DEI action plan as they implement strategic and operational projects in their units.
Here is a glimpse of a few of the initial priorities currently being developed by subcommittees:
- Create resources for exploring DEI through basic foundational knowledge, supports for learning and self-assessments.
- Create opportunities for more unit level employee appreciation.
- Share resources for best practices and guidelines for search committees.
- Establish peer-to-peer support for new employees at time of hire.
The committee will share more details and seek input about the specific ideas, projects and resources being developed within these priority areas as information comes available. In the meantime, committee members are also learning new skills together through educational workshops created by the Office of Institutional Diversity. To date, the group has studied Dialogue Skills for Conflict & Cooperation and Foundations for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: Social Identity & Socialization. Education like this prepares committee members to think holistically as they recommend updates to the DFA’s policies and practices.
Senior Leaders’ DEI Book Club
In October, the DFA senior leaders launched a new diversity, equity and inclusion book club as a shared way to advance an important division priority. Vice President Mike Green selected The Empowered University by Freeman A. Hrabrowski III for its inspiration, focus on leadership, and relevance to higher education priorities and principles. Senior leaders meet monthly and discuss a list of questions designed to elicit ideas generated from their readings that could be implemented in the Division of Finance and Administration.
In a time of rapidly changing circumstances, the Framework for Success is working to enable DFA units to identify deliberate shifts and evolutions that can improve our operations while advancing division-wide strategic priorities and supporting the university community’s broader goals.
Fall 2023 is a very exciting time in the Division of Finance and Administration as we wrap up the initial implementation stage of the DFA Framework for Success and move to the ongoing development, maintenance and oversight of the Framework program. To maintain this work, Vice President Green charged a team of F4S Champions, selected for their subject matter knowledge and positional responsibilities.
The Framework for Success Champions Team will play a critical role in the Division of Finance and Administration to:
- Reiterate OSU’s core values and the DFA Guiding Principles as a foundation of the division’s work;
- Help employees see how their individual work efforts impact the DFA’s strategic priorities and, ultimately, OSU’s goals and mission;
- Reduce barriers between units and between people, and provide employees with a common language, a unified direction and a sense of belonging to a broader community;
- Create attention and discipline around intentional continuous improvement activities.
DFA Framework for Success Unit Champions
The Unit Champions’ role is to advocate, steward and manage the Framework for Success within their work unit or department to ensure consistency in its application and evolution. They represent their unit or department on the F4S Champion Team and serve to:
- Gauge the performance of unit metrics, providing updates on the health and progress of unit, and monitoring the unit’s engagement with the Framework.
- Actively engage as a member of the Champions Team to understand and inform guidance, training and effective change support and communications.
- Act as a liaison for information and understanding about how unit teams are thinking about and interacting with the Framework; represent the individual unit’s perspective and needs among the team; and share learning and information with unit leaders and across the division.
F4S Unit Champions are assigned by DFA senior leaders based on their position in the unit, and because they have a both a passion for operational excellence and a curiosity for why things happen. Framework Champions will learn to employ a systems perspective and understand the interconnections of work across units.
DFA Data Storyteller
The DFA Data Storyteller is a new role within DFA IT that will work with functional units as a central resource to assist with data collection and maintenance, analyze and visualize metrics outcomes, and help to evolve unit metrics as needed over time. The Data Storyteller serves as a technical and tactical subject matter expert to assist unit metrics teams in their work.
Framework for Success Champions Team Lead
The Framework for Success Champions Team Lead is responsible for advocating, stewarding and managing the Framework for Success across the division. The Champions Team Lead will:
- Convene the F4S Champions Team on a regular basis, supporting engagement with and across all units.
- Coordinate the Champions Team to oversee and maintain the operation of the F4S program.
- Develop and implement change management and communication plans with input from Unit Champions, and provide guidance and training related to those plans.
- Collaborate with DFA IT optimize reporting, monitoring and process automation around data collection and metrics reporting.
The F4S Champions Team Lead also serves as liaison with the DFA Senior Leadership Team, providing updates on the health and progress of the Framework, and coordinating closely with division-level strategic planning, performance reporting and communication efforts. The F4S Champions Team Lead, currently Melanie Rose, is assigned by the vice president for finance and administration.
You can download the full F4S Champions Team charge and find a current list of team members at the updated F4S website.
Student Account Services in the Controller’s Unit has been engaged in a set of university-wide initiatives to assist students with their financial planning for college, called the Student Financial Readiness & Success program. The program is a collaboration among multiple OSU offices, including Financial Aid, the Registrar, Admissions, and the Center for Advancing Financial Education (CAFÉ) hosted by the College of Business.
The Student Financial Readiness and Success program intends to:
- Support students anywhere within OSU to successfully complete a degree or credential at Oregon State while connecting them to resources to help manage costs.
- Provide clear, transparent information to students about the costs of college, payment deadlines and strategies to approach budgeting.
- Offer expanded support and educational resources surrounding financial literacy and wellbeing.
The program has three initial pillars to meet these goals: Expanded payment plan options, which includes displaying tuition, fees and anticipated financial aid at least 4 weeks earlier than before; updating student account threshold policies to identify financial needs earlier; and providing students with access to financial literacy education.
The entire Student Accounts team, including student employees, have contributed to the communication, service and the successful accomplishment of project milestones. The team has offered numerous informational webinars, utilized BeaverHub for critical communications to students, seen an increase of over 100% in payment plan enrollment, and developed targeted assistance plans for continuing students to adjust to the new account threshold requirement.
More details about the program can be found at the Registrar’s website: https://registrar.oregonstate.edu/financial-readiness-success
In early October, the Office of Budget and Resource Planning posted the final fiscal year 2024 Shared Responsibility Budget Model (SRBM). The FY24 SRBM allocates $728.9M of resources to the E&G units on campus and includes over $56M in funding to support strategic initiatives approved by university leadership. The final version of the FY24 Corvallis E&G budget model can be found at: https://fa.oregonstate.edu/budget/budget-model. The Budget Office team greatly appreciates all staff who helped to build the FY24 E&G budget—it is truly a community-wide effort!
The Administrative Modernization Program (AMP) team is forming! Associate Director Trey Sisson and Teagan Mclachlain, marketing and communications specialist, joined Executive Director Heather Riney and Rachel Polisher, administrative assistant, on the team in October. Job advertisements for the AMP Organizational Change Management Lead and an AMP Human Resources Program Lead have been posted. Recruitment for the AMP Finance and Budget Program Lead position will begin soon.
The AMP Steering Committee held its first meeting at the end of October. Chaired by Tim Carroll, Dean of the College of Business and reporting to the Provost and Executive Vice President along with the Vice President for Finance and Administration, the AMP Steering Committee provides oversight and guidance for the full system of projects for the duration of the organization-wide implementation.
OSU leaders announced in October the decision to proceed with an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system called Workday. The choice was made in full consideration of the feedback of our community and included a careful review of the industry-leading products with help from an independent national advisory firm, and a comprehensive OSU technology/enterprise architecture assessment. Workday provides cloud-based software specifically addressing the evolving needs of higher education institutions, as well as the needs and aspirations brought forward by the OSU community. Read the community announcement about Workday.
The AMP team is working closely with Jennifer Koehne and Brian Kinsey in Procurement, Contracts, and Materials Management (PCMM) to contract with partners who specialize in organizational change management, business process improvement and implementation of ERP systems. Those partners should be onboard in November, December, and early next year, respectively. Additionally, the AMP team is working with Procurement and Contracts to leverage cooperative contracts that negotiate for staff augmentation services in support of AMP. AMP will also take another big step in the planning process by presenting guiding and design principles at its next boot camp for senior leaders in December.
The University Human Resources Benefits team was hard at work throughout October hosting Open Enrollment Benefits Fairs at the Corvallis and Cascades campuses. They also arranged and hosted two Flu Shot Clinics at the Corvallis campus with one clinic including Covid vaccines. The clinics assisted 2,000 employees with flu vaccines, covid vaccines or both.
In collaboration with other mid-Willamette Valley employers, University HR hosted a free employee multi-cultural networking event on Oct. 18 at the University of Oregon to facilitate belonging in the community. Hello Mid-Valley events help employees with diverse identity characteristics to build community and connections.
Save the date! The next event UHR will host is the Say Hey Event with the Portland Partnership for Diversity on Feb. 27, 2024 at 5 pm in the OSU Alumni Center. Typically, 400-600 employees and employers attend these events, often in Portland, and OSU is excited to host it for the first time here in Corvallis.
Pictured – UHR Administrative Assistant Megan Kilgore and Erik Chavez, Undergrad Student Employment Specialist, at a vaccination clinic.
The Controller’s Unit Financial Accounting and Reporting team, led by Mark Fryman, took on new responsibilities in recent months.
GASB 96 SBITA Compliance – To comply with federal regulations, the FAR team was required to change the way long-term contracts are accounted for on the university’s balance sheet. It was a heavy lift for this small team to implement what are known as GASB 96 regulations that now treat long-term IT subscription leases (such as those for cloud-based software) as intangible assets that depreciate in value over time. The process required a lot of research and analysis to identify these types of vendor relationships, and the team established a new database to start tracking OSU’s over 150 existing SBITA contracts. FAR worked with partners across the DFA and University IT, including the University Shared Services Enterprise (USSE), DFA IT, Procurement and Contracts, and Financial Strategic Services. FAR was proactive in its communication and coordination among impacted units.
OSU Financial Statement Reporting – As part of a transition from USSE, the Financial Accounting and Reporting team fully took on responsibility for developing the university’s annual financial reports, after running parallel processes with USSE for the FY22 report. It is critical that OSU’s financial statements are accurate, since they are used by the Board of Trustees, the state’s Higher Education Coordinating Commission, national credit rating agencies, students and families to assess OSU’s financial health and sustainability. By directly managing the process of developing financial statements, the university benefits from streamlined information sharing, better operational effectiveness and greater coordination with external agencies. OSU recently hired Trina McGaughy as its internal oversight expert for financial statements.
Administration of FOAPA Accounting Program – As part of this change, Trina also took on management of the FOAPA Chart of Accounts, an accounting system for tracking OSU’s expenses and revenues, which was previously handled in the Office of Budget and Resource Planning, allowing for more coordination and visibility. The chart of accounts is closely intertwined with the creation of financial statements, so handling them in one place greatly improves effectiveness and efficiency, while reducing possibilities for error or miscommunication. A FOAPA Committee, led by Charlotte Rooks, which includes representatives of various accounting areas from the Budget Office and Controller’s Units, continues to regularly vet, coordinate, integrate and widely communicate changes to the chart of accounts, which can result in a range of impacts on accounting processes across the university.
Those registering for alcohol service during university events will notice the registration form has a new look and feel. The Insurance and Risk Management Services team, led by Christina McKnight, has updated the platform and added additional questions on the registration form in effort to streamline the process, to improve efficiency, and to help units comply with the university standard on alcoholic beverages and OLCC requirements. All existing requirements remain the same, including the need to register events for alcohol service 21 days prior to the event.
OSU Surplus Property, led by Rae DeLay, is an invaluable and essential partner in identifying and preserving the College of Agricultural Science’s artwork. For over four decades, CAS has been at the forefront of STEAM education with artwork on display throughout the state. Many pieces were acquired before database tracking and others still were casually donated to various offices and programs. OSU Surplus has helped CAS and Art About Agriculture identify and preserve many important pieces that otherwise may have been lost. In January, OSU Surplus recovered six original watercolors by Tom Allen from the Cordley Hall renewal project. This discovery inspired Art About Agriculture to invite the program’s originating coordinator to participate in a solo exhibition of his work in Strand Gallery (440 Strand Hall). The exhibition features watercolors recovered by OSU Surplus, now part of the Art About Agriculture Permanent Collection, alongside paintings on loan from Tom Allen.
Helping over 5,000 new students move into their new homes on campus takes a village! So, Materials Management, UHDS, and Facilities partnered up and covered their waste management bases to ensure new OSU students had the proper education and signage to recycle correctly, with staff in place to guide their usage of the grounds, and more personnel available to service trash and recycling receptacles across campus during this high-volume time.
Through collaborative efforts, the university partners were able to recycle massive amounts of cardboard and polystyrene (Styrofoam), which keeps dumpsters clear and our environment cleaner. A huge thank you goes out to volunteers and everyone involved in making Move-In Day a success.
The Department of Public Safety hosted an open house event on Oct. 13, aligning with OSU’s Family Weekend.
DPS welcomed nearly 100 visitors during the event, which featured donuts, tours of the public safety facilities and 529 Garage bike registration. Attendees also lined up for virtual reality training demonstrations, prizes, DPS swag and, most popular of all, visits with Cedar the Wellness Dog.
Pictured – OSU students hang out with Cedar at the DPS Open House.
Environmental Health and Safety is launching a new employee awards program that will give student workers and staff an opportunity to recognize their peers for contributing to a safe workplace culture at OSU.
The Beaver Safety Champion awards will have two categories – individual and group. The individual award will include a $250 monetary prize and a framed certificate. The group award will be a catered lunch (up to $500 value) and a Beaver Safety trophy.
Awards will be presented on an annual basis starting on University Day 2024. All recipients must be OSU employees (student, faculty or staff). Nominations are open year-round and winners will be selected in April. For more information, visit https://ehs.oregonstate.edu/beaver-safety-champion-award.
In March 2020, the federal government issued nationwide emergency and disaster declarations in response to the emerging COVID-19 pandemic, making available funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Insurance and Risk Management Services regularly tracks such declarations, which are typically for incidents related to natural disasters like hurricanes, wildfires, flooding and severe storms. In April 2020, Insurance and Risk Management Services filed a request for FEMA Public Assistance (PA) funding for expenses that OSU would incur from responding to the COVID-19 public health situation.
Over the last three years, Katie Vorderstrasse, Assistant Director of Insurance and Risk Management Services, led the efforts to recover eligible expenses under this FEMA PA project and partnered with other DFA units, notably Financial Strategic Services, the Controller’s Unit, and Budget and Resource Planning, to capture and document expenses related to COVID. This effort was a huge undertaking as departments across the university were involved, the number of purchases was very large, and not all purchases were eligible for federal reimbursement. In fact, there were changes in eligibility in the middle of the disaster period. Despite the challenges, the DFA teams developed a process together to organize, document, and respond to information requests from FEMA about the expenses. The request for reimbursement of eligible expenses was submitted in several batches as part of the claims process. As a result of phenomenal teamwork throughout DFA on this project, OSU recovered over $1.5 million dollars.
After a summer under construction, Student Legacy Park has reopened with several significant improvements.
The project was overseen by UFIO’s Project Delivery team to provide safe, comfortable and updated recreational facilities for students to enjoy. Facilities at Student Legacy Park are used for recreational sports, intramural sports and more. Maintaining our outdoor recreational facilities is key for both improving our current student experience and attracting prospective students to OSU as well.
The fields have been completely resurfaced with new synthetic turf, cork infill and a cushioned, elastic layer. The east field was updated with removable rugby goals. Repairs were made to the perimeter fencing.
The Student Legacy Park track was resurfaced with a textured spray coating. The basketball courts were also resurfaced along with the indoor and outdoor tennis courts. Tennis court windscreens were replaced and new shade structures were installed in the central plaza.
Improvements to the sand volleyball courts are set to be completed by December. Updates there will include new synthetic turf, a concrete shaded area with a drinking fountain and water bottle fill station, and an ADA-accessible viewing area.
When the R/V Taani arrives in Newport in 2024, it will have an improved dock to call home. The OSU Ship Operations Dock Renewal project removed and replaced a the portion of the dock dating to the 1960s, located at Hatfield Marine Science Center. The College of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences operates the dock and provides CEOAS's fleet and visiting vessels with access to the Pacific Ocean.
UFIO’s Capital Project Delivery team managed this construction project, along with the assistance of the Ship Operations staff. The dock now has increased load capability and improved infrastructure and will allow OSU to better and more safely support research at sea.
The event gave OSU faculty and staff an opportunity to connect with the university’s regular suppliers and internal university departments who offer goods and services to the campus community.
Over 200 people attended and learned about service providers and suppliers from over 60 vendors, including 11 MWESB vendors (Minority, Women Owned, Emerging Small Business).
The showcase, which was cancelled during COVID closures, received a great response from both exhibitors and attendees. Gretchen Cuevas, executive assistant for the associate vice president for research integrity, said “I appreciate the opportunity to connect with so many vendors in one place, plus I got to learn about offerings I would have never known about, providing me the opportunity to expand our pool of purchase and service provider options.”
HR Service Delivery, the self-service system that offers employees an easier and more efficient human resources experience, was launched for staff at the OSU-Cascades campus on Sept. 12, 2023. This service enhancement occurred around the time that the OSU-Cascades HR team became fully integrated within University HR. The newly integrated team is focused on providing a high-quality employee experience at all OSU locations.
The HR Service Delivery launch was a collaboration between DFA IT, University Human Resources and University IT, and brought streamlined onboarding, offboarding and employee service offerings to the OSU-Cascades campus.
A new Onboarding experience was recently added to the university-wide HR Service Delivery system. This software module provides users such as supervisors and new employees the ability to see their to-do list at a glance, and reduces duplicate work between UHR, employing units and individual supervisors.
The Enterprise Project Portfolio Management Office, now led by Executive Director Tami Aders, is part of the Division of Finance and Administration. It oversees a portfolio of programs and projects across the university that support the university’s strategic plan.
This update covers the array of projects related to business processes and systems, students and faculty, and research operations being managed by the EPPMO:
- Administrative Modernization Program-related projects
- Business processes and systems projects
- Academic and student-related projects
Administrative Modernization Program-related projects
Data & Integration Hub Project
The Data and Integration Hub Project (DIHub) is a core foundational project for the Administrative Modernization Program (AMP). It will develop and implement a modern system to support the integration of common data between technology systems at OSU. Phase 1 of this project is completed and has been closed.
The project team is currently developing the scope and deliverables for phase two of the project with the executive sponsors.
Non-Student Billing and Receivables Project
The Division of Finance & Administration and University Information Technology are co-sponsoring a multi-year project to support billing and receivables at OSU. Many colleges and units across OSU send invoices and collect fees related to events and operations. The goal of the Non-Student Billing and Receivables project is to standardize, simplify and modernize non-student billing and receivable operations across OSU, with specific objectives around improving the customer experience, reducing costs, increasing revenue realization, improving internal controls/risk management, and enhancing decision-making.
The project team has completed the deliverables possible at this time. This information will be used as part of a new implementation that will be prioritized as part of AMP. Operational work and analysis will continue within the Controller’s Unit supported by DFA IT. Phase one and two are being closed out with the project sponsors in early November.
Non-Credit Learning Management System (LMS) Project
Phase 1 of the Non-Credit Learning Management System project was to centralize compliance-related trainings for both employees and volunteers across OSU to increase accessibility. The team has delivered current and future state process journey maps and a preliminary business requirements document. This information will be used as part of a new LMS implementation that will be prioritized as part of AMP.
Phase 2 of the project is now underway, focusing on professional and continuing education training and delivery. The project team has completed a current state assessment of current practices with a focus on pain and gain points, has developed a desired future state, and documented the requirements associated with a central learning management system. This phase is anticipated to be complete in mid- November 2023.
Roles @ OSU
The Roles @ OSU project seeks to develop a framework for university-defined roles that will be shared and leveraged across the university. These roles will be used to govern the level of access to Enterprise applications and services. This will include the identification and definition of roles for a set of prioritized systems and applications, and development of a methodology to create, store, maintain, and sustainably govern roles.
As of Oct. 20, 2023, the project sponsors have directed the project team to work with OSU Enterprise Architecture to publish the role taxonomies developed and use the other completed project deliverables as launch points for role definition in other projects independently.
Smart Access Program
The Smart Access program enables a foundational capability to provide appropriate access to data and systems to secure OSU's digital assets wherever they may be, in alignment with OSU's IT Strategic Roadmap. The Smart Access Program is being managed in two parts: the Identity Management System project and the Endpoint Management project.
The Identity Project, focused on updating OSU infrastructure and identity management ecosystems, launched Phase 2 in mid-July, focusing on onboarding critical applications. Phase 2 of Identity project is utilizing an iterative approach with four planned releases to implement various identity and access management capabilities.
- Release 1 - delivered script and report automation. Scripts were implemented for username changes, duplicate user handling, and user report generation including new hires, active users, inactive users, orphan accounts, and terminated users.
- Release 2 - delivered application integration for Zoom, Azure AD, and Box. This included connecting the applications, reconciling accounts, synchronizing attributes, and configuring deprovisioning. Additionally, scripts were updated to leverage Saviynt for deprovisioning and notifications.
- Release 3 - onboarded Azure Active Directory and DocuSign applications into Saviynt.
- Release 4 (ongoing) - will implement an access review pilot for privileged Azure accounts and onboard ServiceNow.
Phase 3 of the Identity Project is currently being defined for a mid-November kick off.
The Endpoint Management Project of the Smart Access Program will enable IT professionals to secure and manage devices to ensure they are properly patched and updated regularly. The project will also implement common tools across IT units at the university. The team maintains focus on delivering robust services today while proactively improving infrastructure, expanding platforms, and aligning to strategic goals.
Business Processes & Systems Projects
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal law prohibiting discrimination on the basis of disability. In 2021, the provost charged an ADA31 Task Force to survey Oregon State University’s (OSU) policies, programs, and systems in place to support a culture of inclusion and compliance with the ADA and make recommendations for improvements. The EPPMO is providing project management services to the ADA31 Initiative by supporting the initiation, planning, coordination, monitoring and reporting of efforts assigned to campus units involved in the initiative.
Recent accomplishments and ongoing efforts include:
- Released the third quarterly report for activities completed between July 2023 – September 2023 activities.
- Evaluating the initiatives that will be completed and ongoing as of January 2024. Establishing a framework for ongoing support for units with ongoing initiatives.
For additional information, please visit the ADA 31 website.
Building Access Project
The goals of the Security & Building Access Project are to improve the security of all Corvallis campus buildings, which contributes to safety on campus for students, staff, faculty and visitors. The current scope of the project includes access controls, security alarms, security cameras, and policy development.
The project team is being organized and will develop a project plan in partnership with campus stakeholders.
Grad School to Slate
The Graduate Admissions to Slate Implementation will migrate graduate admissions applications and review processes from Salesforce to Slate. This strategic move aims to unify Slate's use throughout all admission levels (undergraduate, professional, and graduate) covering application processes, reviews, customer relationship management, and communications. This endeavor aligns with OSU's 2023 IT strategies, focusing on creating a resilient, cloud-native IT environment, streamlining digital work experiences, and redesigning student interactions with the digital realm.
OSU anticipates substantial benefits by adopting Slate as its system for admissions customer relations management (CRM), including a consistent yet customizable application experience, reduced technical debt, enhanced applicant experiences, and streamlined operational efficiency. This project not only ensures OSU's competitiveness in the higher education marketplace, but also fosters a collaborative and efficient IT environment, benefiting students, faculty, and staff while advancing their commitment to digital excellence.
UHR Volunteer Management
This project aims to standardize the volunteer tracking and monitoring process between a university-wide administrative unit and the volunteer service units. Currently, volunteer service units manage separate elements of required processes (e.g. applicable background checks or agreement forms). The objective is to create a structured centralized volunteer tracking and monitoring process that will be adopted by all volunteer service units.
The project is in its planning phase and will begin to move quickly over the coming months. The initial phase focuses on a pilot implementation of the centralized technology platform by January 2024 with Intercollegiate Athletics, with the remainder of the university moving to this platform throughout spring and summer 2024. The subsequent project phase will emphasize training, onboarding, and change management.
USSE Payroll Reporting Services (PRS) unit will dissolve June 30, 2024. Several universities in Oregon currently use USSE PRS to pay and report payroll tax and benefits and each university will now be responsible for these activities. USSE PRS is holding various training sessions with the universities through February and activity hand-off is expected in mid-Spring 2024.
Academic and Student-related Projects
Oregon State University launched the Beaver Hub to internal users on June 23, 2023. Phase 2 (Develop & Structure) is underway. This phase focuses on developing a university-wide approach to support communication and engagement with current students. Initiative Teams with representatives from across the university are developing guiding principles and supporting materials for the following: Train & Support, Unit Onboarding, Coordinated Communications, Live Chat, Chatbot, Texting, System Inventory, and Backlog and Operations. Ongoing efforts to refine the Student Success Hub (SSH) tool from a technical perspective continue. Current efforts are focused on advisor relationships integrations and resolution of calendar sync issues.
For additional information, please visit the project website. https://uit.oregonstate.edu/beaver-hub
Common Course Numbering
In 2021, the Oregon Legislature passed Senate Bill 233 requiring the Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) and community colleges and universities listed in ORS 352.002 to improve academic credit transfer and transfer pathways between Oregon’s public community colleges and universities. The bill directs the HECC to establish a 15-member Transfer Council with representation from Oregon’s public universities, community colleges, and from secondary education.
Recent accomplishments and ongoing efforts include:
- Transfer Council and HECC approved 2023/24 courses in areas of Math, Writing, Statistics, and Communication were successfully implemented in OSU systems and are currently reflected in the OSU Catalog for the 2023/24 academic year.
- 2024/25 Transfer Council Faculty Subcommittees resumed meetings in September 2023 (following a summer break from meetings) across the state to align courses in areas of Math, English, Psychology, and Business. It is anticipated that Faculty Subcommittees will be providing proposals for Transfer Council and HECC consideration in November 2023.
- The CCN OSU Core Team resumed meetings this academic year to plan operational and organizational change management activities required to successfully implement the 2024/25 CCN courses, once approved by the Transfer Council and the HECC. The Core Team will follow the same implementation activities and efforts that were utilized to successfully implement the 2023/24 courses.
General Education Implementation
In October 2022, the Faculty Senate voted to approve the new General Education Curriculum proposed by the Baccalaureate Core Reform Committee. This action updated a 30-year-old academic curriculum by reducing its size and improving its legibility for all students, introducing a new course category to support students’ transition to OSU, adding a sequence of touchpoints to incorporate career-readiness, and expanding instruction fostering understanding of diversity, equity, and inclusion. This curriculum recognizes both the value of aligning with the state’s Core Transfer Map—which facilitates seamless transfer among Oregon higher education institutions—and creating a distinctive and high-quality foundation for OSU’s degree offerings.
Recent accomplishments and ongoing efforts include:
- The Organizational Change Management (OCM) committee continues to provide open and transparent updates to stakeholders, established a new Core Education website, https://coreeducation.oregonstate.edu/, and is starting to develop other training/informational materials for campus stakeholders for rollout in 2024.
- The Policy & Process and the Operations committee are working to ensure appropriate workflow and guidance is in place for colleges submitting courses for Core Education. The committee is available to provide support and clarify questions in the process. Tracking the progress of course submissions throughout the cycle of the Installation Plan is underway with consistent updates to OSU College stakeholders.
- The Pedagogical Support and Development committee successfully launched the required training in September for faculty developing courses for the new Foundational Core curriculum. The committee is currently focused on developing specialized training required for DPO, Seeking Solutions, Transitions, and Beyond OSU that will be available in Winter and Spring 2024.
- The Operations committee has staffed a team of articulation experts in the Office of the Registrar that is focused on managing the transition of general education articulations from the old Baccalaureate Core to the new Core Education.
- Launch date for new general education curriculum is scheduled and on track for Summer 2025.
Minority Serving Institution Task Force
The Minority Serving Institution (MSI) Task Force project is a strategic initiative aimed at positioning OSU for MSI status. As our student demographics and the state of Oregon continue to evolve in terms of race and ethnicity, it is essential that we adapt to better serve our diverse student body and their communities.
At present, the MSI Task Force project is in its initial planning phase. The project team is developing the project charter and organizing the project. In the coming months, the focus will be data gathering, research, conducting a gap analysis, and collaborating with stakeholders.
Nov. 17: Celebrating and Investing in Oregon State’s Future
Celebrate the investiture of President Jayathi Y. Murthy and the launch of OSU’s next strategic plan.
Friday, 17 November 2023
Save the Date! DFA All Staff Winter Meeting
Registration opens soon for the DFA All Staff Winter Meeting. Join Vice President for Finance & Administration Mike Green and DFA senior leaders as we celebrate each other and the start to the winter season filled with joy and appreciation!
Thursday, Dec. 14, 2023
Save the Date! Say Hey Multi-cultural Networking
University Human Resources will sponsor a multi-cultural networking event called Say Hey to be held at OSU, in partnership with Portland Partnership for Diversity. Feb. 27, 2024 at 5 pm.
Monthly University Budget Conversations
The year’s the first University Budget Conversation, held on Oct. 12, garnered 120 attendees via Zoom. The topic was the “FY24 Shared Responsibility Budget Model.”
For the full schedule and information about past conversations, visit https://fa.oregonstate.edu/budget/budget-conversations.
UHR’s FYI Fridays are back!
Every Friday, faculty and staff are invited to explore engaging topics presented by campus partners that are passionate about making a difference at OSU and beyond. These short, free, (often remote!) sessions are intended to expand your horizons and foster connections within our vibrant community. Register for one, some, or all of these upcoming FYI Friday sessions, and learn something new!
- Oct. 27, 12:00-1:00 (remote) – Cybersecurity and You! (& what OSU is doing to protect you!)
- Nov. 3, 1:00-1:45 (remote) – Earthquake Preparedness / Family Care
- Nov. 17, 12:30-1:30 (Corvallis Campus) – Beyond Fair-weather Friendship: You Can Bike Commute in Fall and Winter
- Dec. 1, 12:00-1:00 (remote) – Supervision of Employees – Professional Development, Growth, and Support
- Dec. 8, 12:00-12:30 (remote) – How to Submit a Course Proposal in CIM
- Jan. 26, 12:00-1:00 (remote) – Global Engagement Resource Highlights
FourSight Mindset Reveal Workshops in Fall Term
Creativity is an essential skill that is innate in all of us – but each of us will approach a challenge differently. Do you know what your problem-solving preferences are, or how to leverage the thinking styles of others? Register for an upcoming workshop and find out how to overcome barriers and increase successful collaboration! Note: A $40 fee covers the course materials.
- December 12, 10:00-12:00 (Corvallis Campus)
Schedule a group! This program is also available upon request to OSU teams of 12 or more – contact email@example.com for information.
Core Curriculum for Managers & Supervisors
Core Curriculum for Managers and Supervisors is a multi-day training program for all Oregon State University managers, supervisors, and lead workers. At the end of this course, learners will have a solid understanding of the principles and policies that apply to our employees; know how to navigate within the space of talent management activities; recognize when, and how, to provide equal opportunity & access to employees; and be familiar with the OSU resources and responsibilities relating to employee health, safety, and wellbeing. Register for an upcoming series!
- Fall 2023: November 14-17, 8:15-12:00 (remote)
- Winter 2024: February 26-29, 8:15-12:00 (remote)
- Spring 2024: May 7-10, 8:15-12:00 (remote)
New UHR Coaching Website for Leaders!
UHR’s Learning & Development site now features a new Organizational Development & Coaching Consultation Services webpage for OSU leadership! Highlighted internal services include information about HR Strategic Partners, and leadership programs tailored to meet the needs of the OSU leader. External resources include a directory of bios for distinguished executive coaches available for consultation, as well as external development opportunities tailored to leadership in Higher Education.
New! Learn more about OSU’s new mental health and well-being benefits through Lyra
Lyra Health offers a range of services, including access to a network of experienced and culturally responsive mental health professionals, therapists, and counselors who are available for in-person and virtual appointments. Their platform also provides resources for self-guided support and emotional well-being tools to help you and your family members manage stress and improve your overall mental health.
This service is available to Oregon State University employees, and we encourage you to take full advantage of the resources provided by Lyra Health to support your emotional well-being. For more information you can watch a short video here.
Lyra will be hosting the following informational sessions via Zoom, mark your calendars to learn more:
- November 13, 12PM: OSU + Lyra: Lyra 101 General Employee Information Session