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UB Reporter


Updated March 26, 2015

Sign up for UB Community Day

Published October 2, 2014

UB faculty, staff and students can join community residents and organizations to work on high-impact neighborhood projects as part of UB Community Day on Oct. 25.

The day will start with a complimentary breakfast at 9 a.m. at Allen Hall, South Campus. Participants will be driven to worksites around UB’s South and Downtown campuses, where they will perform such tasks as cleaning up parks, working in community gardens, general yardwork and other related projects. 

Shuttles will transport volunteers back to Allen Hall around 1 p.m. for a free lunch. T-shirts will be given out, and a free raffle will be held with prizes that include an Xbox One, iPad Air, Bluetooth speakers, USB thumb drives, UB gear and UB prize packages.

A team from UB’s REV UP program will handle signups and hand out gear to volunteers.

Family members of participants, including children age 16 and older, are invited to take part in the event, including the free meals and raffle.

UB Community Day is sponsored by the Office of Community Relations.

Those wishing to participate are asked to register online by 5 p.m. Oct. 22.

For further information, contact Matt Kopalek at 829-6147 or

PSS conducting survey of staff needs

Published October 2, 2014

The Professional Staff Senate is surveying its members to assess their needs and concerns in order to better inform the group’s activities.

The group’s last survey was in 2007 when the number of professional staff members at UB numbered about 2,000. The number of staff has grown to more than 2,900 today, and PSS officers feel it’s again time to get input from staff in order to provide direction to the PSS regarding committee work, programs, speakers and professional development, among other activities.

Professional staff members are urged to complete the short survey by Oct. 10. Feedback will be compiled and shared at the PSS’s general membership meeting on Oct. 16.

That meeting, which will be held at 3 p.m. in the Center for Tomorrow, North Campus, will feature as guest speakers Teresa Miller, vice provost for equity and inclusion, and Linwood Roberts Jr., associate director for community relations.

The meeting also kicks off the PSS’ Professional Clothing Drive, which aims to provide professional attire to those in need so that they can join or rejoin the workforce. New or gently used professional clothing can be brought to the meeting or to one of three donation sites: Office of Resource Planning, 549 Capen Hall, North Campus, or the Office of Community Relations’ South Campus office at 101 Allen Hall, or its Downtown Campus office in Suite 201 of the Downtown Gateway building, 77 Goodell St.

Donations will be accepted through Oct. 31.

For more information about the clothing drive, contact Laura Barnum at

Enroll in Flex Spending Accounts

Published September 25, 2014

Open enrollment opens Oct. 6 for New York State Flex Spending Accounts, which allow state employees to pay for certain expenses with pre-tax dollars.

Employees who are enrolled for 2014 must re-enroll to continue benefits in 2015.

The Health Care Spending Account lets employees set aside any amount — from $100 up to $2,500 for the 2015 tax year — to pay for health care expenses that are not reimbursed by health insurance or other benefit plans. These include medically necessary medical, hospital, dental, vision, hearing and prescription drug expenses for employees, their spouses and their tax dependents.

The Dependent Care Advantage Account allows workers to set aside up to $5,000 for eligible child care, elder care or disabled dependent care expenses that are necessary for the employee and his or her spouse to work.

The open enrollment period for 2015 runs from Oct. 6 through Nov. 7.

Participants can enroll online or by calling 1-800-358-7202.

ISSS offers workshops for staff

Published September 18, 2014

The Office of International Student & Scholar Services is offering two workshops to help staff members who interact with international students.

“Appointing International Students: Immigration Documents, I-9 Requirements, Etc.” is designed for employees who need to interpret international students’ immigration documents in order to appoint them as UB employees and sign off on their I-9 forms.

It will be held from noon to 1:15 p.m. Sept. 22 in 216 Norton Hall, North Campus. Presenters are Amanda Brown of the International Employment Tax Unit at UB and Ellen Dussourd, assistant vice provost and director of the Office of International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS).

The second workshop, “Responding to the Needs of International Students: Tips for Staff Members,” will help UB employees understand and interact with international students. Participants will learn strategies used by international students, the reasons why students employ various strategies and best practices for effective communication and understanding.

The workshop will be presented twice — from noon to 1:15 p.m. Oct. 1 in 280 Park Hall, North Campus, and from 3:30-4:45 p.m. Nov. 4 in 107 Capen Hall, North Campus. Presenters are Dussourd and Eric Comins, coordinator of programs for ISSS.

Meeting set on transit issues

Published September 11, 2014

UB employees who support the idea of connecting the North and South campuses via light rail are encouraged to attend a meeting being held on Sept. 30 on the South Campus.

The meeting, a review of public transportation alternatives for the corridor connecting Amherst and downtown Buffalo, will take place at 4 p.m. in 100 Allen Hall.

It is presented by Transit Options Amherst-Buffalo, a study of public transportation for the UB North Campus/South Campus corridor sponsored by the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority. Meeting organizers will discuss the evaluation criteria they have been using, their screening process and the results so far.

Options could include improvements to current bus service, bus rapid transit or an extension of Metro Rail service.

For more information, visit the Transit Options website.

UUP plans open house

Published September 4, 2014

The Buffalo Center Chapter of United University Professions, the union representing UB faculty and professional staff, is having an open house next week to show off its new offices in Suite 108 The Commons, North Campus.

The offices moved from Crofts Hall earlier this summer.

Officers of the Buffalo Center Chapter and other union representatives will meet visitors from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday and discuss their role in the union. Drawings for prizes and desserts will be available.

Visitors are asked to RSVP to 645-2013 to ensure there is enough food.

EAP offers workshops for caregivers

Published September 4, 2014

UB’s Employee Assistance Program is offering a free lunchtime workshop series designed to help faculty and staff members who are caring for aging or ailing family members.

The “Caring for Others Brown Bag Series” will take place from noon to 1 p.m. in Park Hall, North Campus, on five consecutive Tuesdays, beginning Sept. 16 and running through Oct. 14. Topics range from dementia and Alzheimer’s disease to palliative care to the basics of the Medicare prescription drug benefit.

For more details and to register, visit EAP’s program registration website.

EAP also offers a monthly support group for caregivers. Sessions are held on the third Tuesday of the month, beginning in October, from noon to 1 p.m. in the conference room of the HRD Building, located on Sprague Road between Crofts Hall and the Beane Center on the North Campus.

Those interested in attending should RSVP to Susan Bagdasarian at 645-8167.

Humanities Institute to hold grant-writing workshop

Published August 28, 2014

The Humanities Institute will host an external grant-writing workshop from noon to 3 p.m. Sept. 12 in 280 Park Hall, North Campus.

The workshop is designed to support faculty members’ applications for external grants and fellowships. Participants will learn strategies from an experienced grant writer and evaluator, exchange ideas with other grant seekers and receive specific feedback from peers if they choose to pre-circulate a draft application essay.

Draft proposals may be at any stage, from preliminary sketches to finalized applications.

Those interested in attending the workshop should RSVP to Jinhee Song by Sept. 8 and indicate whether they would like lunch. Participants who wish to receive feedback on a draft application essay should send the draft by that date as well.

Questions may be directed to HI Executive Director Libby Otto.

Class of 2018 Participates in UB's Pharmacy Practice White Coat Ceremony

Published August 20, 2014

One hundred and thirty-three students took their first, public step toward becoming pharmacists today when they participated in the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences’ annual White Coat Ceremony.

The White Coat Ceremony, held in Lippes Concert Hall in Slee Hall, North Campus, symbolizes passage into the initial stages of the profession of pharmacy practice and represents a contract for excellence in providing compassionate patient care.

The event also highlights the importance of scientific scholarship and emphasizes the highest principles of moral, ethical and legal conduct. UB PharmD students taking part in this tradition are welcomed to begin study among the ranks of pharmacy professionals.

During the “calling of the class,” students were called to the stage individually and presented with their coats while their hometowns were identified by Karl D. Fiebelkorn, senior associate dean for student, professional and community affairs, and associate professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice.

Danielle Crotty, PharmD ’12, staff pharmacist, North Shore LIJ Huntington Hospital, gave the keynote address.


Save money on transit passes

Published August 14, 2014

UB faculty and staff, depending on their bargaining unit, may be eligible to take part in NYS-Ride, a program that allows state employees to pay for certain work-related transportation — including mass transit — expenses on a pre-tax basis.

NYS-Ride allows employees to save money by purchasing their transit passes — including NFTA passes serving all Metro bus and Metro Rail lines in Erie and Niagara counties — through pre-tax payroll deductions. The savings could be as much as 40 percent, depending on the purchaser’s tax bracket.

Visit the NYS-Ride website to determine eligibility and to sign up for the program.

NYS-Ride is sponsored by the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations as a result of collective bargaining and administered by WageWorks Inc.