News and Notes

A Newsletter for Faculty and Staff of Idaho State University

November 14, 2008 — Vol. 24 No. 39

The new Energy Systems Technology and Education Center at the College of Technology was launched Nov. 7 with the help of (from left to right) Jon Warner, Partners for Prosperity Board of Trustees chairman; U.S. Senator Mike Crapo; Juan Alvarez, deputy director of management at the Idaho National Laboratory; ISU President Arthur C. Vailas, Ph.D., U.S. Rep. Mike Simpson; and Cedric Black Eagle, vice chairman of the Crow Nation. ESTEC is focused on training a new generation of energy-systems technicians to work on the power-generation industry. (ISU Photographic Services)

In this Issue

New ISU HRSA grant to better prepare nurses for rural practice

Practicing nursing in rural communities isn’t the same as practicing in cities. A four-month rural nurse residency is being developed at Idaho State University to improve patient care and increase nurse confidence. The U.S. Health and Resources and Services Administration funded a three-year, $711,104 grant to prepare nurses in a five-state region. Idaho State University will (read more...)

ISU College of Pharmacy students provide 2,500 flu shots this season

Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter sat on the edge of his desk and slipped off his shirt as Idaho State University third-year pharmacy student Whitney Bennet prepared to administer an influenza vaccination Nov. 7.“I’m a cowboy so I’m not about to tell you if it hurt,” he joked after the shot, but quickly added the vaccination (read more...)

Regional benefits seen as ISU’s new Energy Systems Technology and Education Center debuts

The new Energy Systems Technology and Education Center (ESTEC) at Idaho State University officially opened Nov. 7. A press conference was held at 9 a.m. in the Barbara J. Marshall Rotunda at the L.E. and Thelma E. Stephens Performing Arts Center, followed by a ribbon cutting at ESTEC, located in the newly renovated Industrial Crafts (read more...)

ISU nursing graduates net 100 percent pass rates on national exams

The Associate Degree Registered Nurse (ADRN) program at the ISU College of Technology recently received notification that 2008 graduates of the ADRN program have achieved a 100% pass rate on the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX—RN). Also, the Practical Nursing program graduates have also achieved an overall pass rate of 100% on (read more...)

Qwest donates $1.6 million of data-networking equipment to College of Technology

Qwest recently donated approximately $1.6 million worth of data-networking equipment to Idaho State University’s Information Technology Systems program. That gift was announced at a press conference on the ISU campus on Oct. 29. ISU College of Technology students will use the equipment to learn how to build and repair modern telecommunications networks. “Qwest’s generosity and foresight in making (read more...)

Faculty/Staff Update

Mary Sherwood of Athletics is retiring after working at ISU for 19 years. She has worked in Athletics for 12 years, and before that spent seven years at University Bookstore. The campus community is invited to a retirement reception for her from noon to 2 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 21, in the Bennion Room on the north side of Holt Arena.


Employee Training Opportunities: The Office of Human Resources is conducting online training on diversity and the proper disposal of hazardous materials (hazmat). Over the next few months, employees will receive an invitation by e-mail with directions on how to take this training on Moodle.
The two training sessions take only 20 minutes total time, and should be easy to complete for every employee. There also will be additional training in the near future on sexual harassment, discrimination and customer service. For further information, contact Stacey Marshall, HR training specialist, at x3081.

With the 2008 holiday season approaching, the University community is reminded of the previously announced holiday schedule and University closure plans.
In addition to the Universitywide closure on Dec. 25, and having employees take Dec. 26 as a comp day, the University will be closed the week of Dec. 29 to allow staff to enjoy the holiday week. Employees have been encouraged to save up vacation and/or comp time to use during the holiday closure. Employees who are not required to work will use accrued vacation or comp time for Dec. 29, 30 and 31.
As an allowable exception to normal procedure, employees may elect to use leave without pay in lieu of vacation for any or all of these three days. Those without available vacation or comp time will be on leave without pay. Employees are asked to clearly note on their timesheets the use of vacation or leave without pay. New Year’s Day will be observed on Jan. 1, 2009, and Jan. 2 will be taken as a comp day.
Closure is mandatory except in special situations that require the appropriate vice president’s approval. Exceptions could include: public safety; mailroom, to receive U.S. mail; admissions, to accept new students; registration processing; research and animal laboratories as necessary. Employees are encouraged to discuss specific requirements with their supervisors. The appropriate vice president will determine which departments are required to be open and staffed during any or part of the holiday closure.
Questions concerning specific situations should be directed to an employee’s immediate supervisor, director or dean. Departments required to remain open shall submit a staffing plan to the appropriate vice president for approval no later than Dec. 5. A copy of the approved staffing plan must be forwarded to Payroll and the Office of Human Resources.
For further information, contact the Office of Human Resources at x2517.

From the controller’s office: Due to the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, month-end for November and December will be Nov. 26 and Dec. 24. Deposits must be brought to the cashier’s office on those days no later than 2 p.m. That will allow personnel to process the deposits and close business, enabling them to enjoy the holidays. For more information, contact Melissa Romriell at x2900.

TIAA-CREF offers individual counseling sessions in which employees can discuss their personal financial situations with a TIAA-CREF consultant on a confidential basis. Consultants will be available to discuss investing in such financial solutions as mutual funds, brokerages, life insurance and annuities.
Individual counseling will:
• provide objective advice and asset allocation based on individual needs;
• show how to obtain a personalized, actionable plan;
• recommend funds to keep you on track to and through retirement;
• review retirement income options.
Counseling sessions can be scheduled on Tuesday, Dec. 9, in the Pond Student Union Snake River Room; and Wednesday, Dec. 10, in the Selway Room. Register online, or call (866) 842-2907.