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A Publication of UHD Public Affairs
April 26, 2010
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TopToday at UHD.....

First of six UHD Community Forums on new name scheduled at noon and 5 p.m.

Shuttle buses available for those attending UHD Northwest Open House.

UHD Dance Marathon plans Comedy Night here April 29.

UHD Community Forums begin today: Choosing a New Name

Name Change logo

Please join us for open forums of UHD community members - students, faculty, staff and administrators - today through Thursday, April 29, as we discuss the choices for renaming the university. 

The meetings will be:
  • Noon - 1 p.m. and  5 - 6 p.m.; today, C-100, Commerce Street,
  • Noon - 1 p.m. and  5 - 6 p.m.;Tuesday, April 27, C-100, Commerce Street,
  • 5 - 6 p.m.; Wednesday, April 28, N-1099, One Main, and
  • Noon - 1 p.m., Thursday, April 29, C-100, Commerce Street
Come express your own perspective and hear the perspectives of others in a dialogue designed to help us find common ground when making this important decision. The discussion is sponsored by the Center for Public Deliberation and the Office of Public Affairs. For information, contact Sue Davis, executive director of Public Affairs, at

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Shuttles available for UHD Northwest Open House on Thursday, April 29

UHD will provide bus service for faculty, staff and students who want to attend the UHD Northwest Open House scheduled  from 3 to 8 p.m. Thursday, April 29, at the Lone Star College-University Park campus at State Highway 249 and Louetta.

Visitors can tour the campus and see UHD's remodeled space, which includes 1 1/2 floors of the University Center Building.

Two buses, each with a 23-passenger seating capacity, will run from 2 to 9 p.m. April 29 to accommodate students, faculty and staff. The schedules follow:
  • Bus 1 - Leaves UHD for Lone Star at 2, 3:30 and 5 p.m.
                 Leaves Lone Star for return trip to UHD at 6 and 8 p.m.
  • Bus 2 - Leaves UHD for Lone Star at 2, 4 and 6 p.m.
                 Leaves Lone Star for return trip to UHD at 7 and 9 p.m.
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UHD's International Business Association tours Port of Houston; more events on tap this semester

Port Tour

Members of UHD's International Business Association (IBA) and the University community toured the Port of Houston with Anisul Islam, professor of finance, accounting and computer information systems, and port officials April 16. The visit  included a management presentation and a catered lunch aboard the MV Sam Houston, which ferried the group along the Houston Ship Channel where participants could view international trade activities first hand.

Islam, faculty sponsor for the IBA, frequently hosts field trips and speakers of interest to business students and others, including this week's visit from Joe Ringer, senior business development officer for Export-Import Bank of the United States. Ringer  will speak at 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 28, in Room B-113 of the Shea Street Building. The event is free and open to the public. Email Kimberly Gonzales to register, and get details from the attached flier. Islam's field trip to the Federal Reserve Bank Houston Branch is scheduled for 9 a.m. to noon Tuesday, May 4.

Business students
UHD Dance Marathon hosts Comedy Night on campus April 29

The UHD Dance Marathon group plans a Comedy Night at UHD at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 29, in the Wilhelmina Cullen Robertson Auditorium.

Entry is $5 per person for this event, one of several the Dance Marathon group has been hosting to raise money for the Texas Children's Hospital Children's Miracles Network. Three comedians will perform for an hour and a half. A flier is available here.

Those interested in helping UHD Dance Marathon raise funds can sign up here.

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UHD joins Federal Direct Student Loan Program in Fall 2010

Starting with the fall 2010 semester, UHD is joining thousands of other U.S. higher education institutions in the Federal Direct Student Loan Program, meaning students with federal Stafford, Grad PLUS and Parent PLUS loans will borrow their funds from the federal government instead of from multiple private banks and credit unions.
UHD's participation in the Federal Program will have little visible impact on students and their families. However, having one lender - the U.S. Department of Education - will make the process much more efficient for schools and borrowers.

The change necessitates only minimal action on the part of students (and parents who wish to borrow through the PLUS program), who need only to sign a new Master Promissory Note (MPN) and complete Loan Entrance Counseling if they haven't done so already. Students can visit to complete the MPN and Loan Entrance Counseling process.

As part of direct lending, the Stafford direct loan is exactly the same in terms and conditions, interest rates and loan fees as the FFEL (Federal Family Education Loan). The Grad PLUS loans and Parent PLUS loans will benefit from a lower interest rate of 7.9 percent, as compared to 8.5 percent in the FFEL program.

Federal direct loans offer other advantages, such as more flexible repayment plans, easier tracking and a greater possibility of loan forgiveness for students who perform public service after graduation.

Most loans will remain with their current service provider.  However, due to the sale of loans to the U.S. Department of Education, the Office of Student Financial Aid highly encourages students and families to pay very close attention to mailings from their loan provider. Letters with repayment information were sent to those who were affected by the sale.

Borrowers can also track their federal loans online through the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS). Visit Direct Loans FAQ  for more information.

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Earth Day celebrated recycling, human power and free hugs

Bicyle display Earth Day

UHD's Cycling Club was one of many groups on campus to host information and demonstration booths during Thursday's Earth Day celebration. From cycling and other human powered sources of energy to musical entertainment and food, Earth Day combined entertainment with lessons on how to better nurture planet Earth.

                          Music Earth Day
Musical entertainment on a sunny South Deck provided a perfect setting for Earth Day 2010.

                                             Free Hugs Earth Day
Earth Day information tables were as varied as their creators' imaginations. One enterprising Earth Day presenter figured free hugs were a great example of human powered energy and a globe-saving philosophy.

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Academic Assessment hosts AIM Reviewer Training session April 28

The Office of Academic Assessment will host an Assessment Information Management (AIM) Reviewer Training session from 3 to 4 p.m. Wednesday, April 28, in Room A-717.

Academic Assessment will offer four additional workshops and seminars from now until the end of the Spring 2010 semester. These sessions are open to faculty, department assessment coordinators, deans and department chairs. Register for assessment training at the links below. For questions or to schedule individual sessions, please call 713-226-5594. Upcoming sessions include:
  • AIM Reviewer Training
    3 to 4 p.m., Wednesday, April 28. Register here.
  • Closing the Loop
    3 to 4 p.m., Thursday, April 29, A-711
    3 to 4 p.m., Tuesday, May 4, N-1099
    9 to 10 a.m., Tuesday, May 18, N-1099. Register here.
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First Aid, CPR certifications will be offered in two-day sessions
This semester's final CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) and first aid certification courses will be offered in the next two weeks, starting with first aid classes April 29-30 and CPR classes May 6-7.

Register now through UHD Sports & Fitness for these American Red Cross Training classes, which provide certification for one year. UHD students, faculty and staff pay $5 for the training, and classes are limited to the first 15 people who pre-pay. For more information on these sessions, click here.

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Admission information sessions set for ACP/MAT students in Urban Ed

Students interested in joining the University of Houston-Downtown's special master's program to prepare high school teachers can attend one of two ACP/MAT (Alternative Certification Program, Master of Arts in Teaching)  information sessions on the admission requirements from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 4 to 5 p.m. Thursday, April 29, in Room 414 of the Commerce Street Building.

The deadline to apply for the fall 2010 semester is June 1. A flier on the information sessions is available here. For more information, contact Anjoo Sikka, professor in UHD's Department of Urban Education, or LeAnna McCowan, MAT program advisor, or call the College of Public Service Advising Center at 713-221-8906.

Secondary Educators Engaged in Quality Urban Education (SEEQUE) is funded by a nearly $300,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Education and represents UHD's innovative approach to preparing teachers to work with high school students. These teacher candidates gain valuable teaching experience while earning teacher certification and a master's degree.

"Within the first year of the graduate program, teacher candidates can be designated as 'highly qualified,' which allows them to seek employment as a teacher," said Sikkka, project director.

To earn the designation as "highly qualified," students must complete required coursework and pass the grades 8-12 teacher licensure exam. UHD faculty Sikka and Ron Beebe received the grant in October 2009.

For the complete story, see the news release.

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Help support National Police Week, get blue ribbons from UHD Police 

National Police Week ribbon
The University of Houston-Downtown Police Department invites the UHD community to pick up a complimentary blue ribbon to show support for National Police Week May 9-15.

The number of ribbons is limited so get yours as soon as possible. Ribbons are available at the UHD Police Department headquarters, Room 118-North, or the parking office at 354-North.

The blue ribbon tradition started several years ago when a group called Concerns of Police Survivors encouraged the general public as well as police cruisers to fly blue ribbons from their car antennae during National Police Week. The resulting sea of blue shows support for police officers on the street and for those who have lost their lives in the line of duty.

UHD Police thank the University community for its continued support.

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Hispanic Awareness Fest included bull riding, music, food and more

Bull Riding at Hispanic Awareness

UHD's Hispanic Awareness Festival Wednesday had something for everyone, with bull riding and dancing on the South Deck and
Tex-Mex food, music and speakers inside. The April 21 festival benefited the Hispanic Scholarship Fund.

Cheerleading clinic, tryouts set for April 27 and May 1

Tryouts for UHD's Cheerleading Squad are coming up May 1 and to help interested students prepare a clinic is scheduled for 7 p.m. April 27 in the Student Life Center.

To be eligible, students must be enrolled in a minimum of 6 credit hours in the fall of 2010, must be in good academic standing with a GPA of at least 2.0, must attend team practices and games, must have a positive attitude and be a team player and be responsible for appropriate team fees upon making the team.

Preregister here or email Coach Kayce Hall at A flier is available here.

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Summer service-learning project offers stipend for students

A summer service-learning project with a stipend of $500 to redesign the Texas Campus Compact (TXCC) Web site is available.

This would also be excellent for an internship, said Jean Dewitt, UHD Director of Community Engagement. Two students with a background in computer science or graphic arts will be selected from member institutions and may be geographically separated as they will work as a virtual team.

The new site should incorporate use of technology to include videos, pod casts, social media, and interactive navigation. Deadline for proposals is May 21. For more information contact Dewitt at

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Order commencement regalia now

Spring 2010 Commencement is at 6 p.m. May 17 and faculty who plan to participate must place orders for regalia no later than April 30.

After April 30, an additional fee of $10 will be added to orders for rush shipping. No rental order placed after May 7 can be guaranteed for delivery. Rental regalia orders will start arriving at the bookstore the week of May 10. Faculty will be notified when items arrive. Prepayment is required and can be made via cash or major credit card with valid identification. The regalia rental fees are as follow:
Rental Fees:
Masters Unit Complete                                                                  
(Includes cap, gown, tassel, and hood)              $ 60.98
Masters Unit Breakdown
(Includes cap, gown, tassel, only)                      $ 30.98
Masters Hood Only                                              $ 29.98
Masters Gown Only                                            $ 25.98
Doctorate Unit Complete                                           
(Includes cap, gown, tassel (gold), and tam)     
(Gown includes suede stripes on the sleeve)    $ 109.98
Doctorate Unit Breakdown
(Includes cap, gown, tassel, hood only)             $ 68.98 
Doctor Hood Only                                              $ 33.98
Doctor Gown Only                                            $ 29.98
8-Corner Tam Hat Only                                    $ 40.98
For additional information contact Gregg McDonald, Herff Jones College Division, 281-353-2774 or Fax 281-353-2957. This is new contact information.

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Career Services has internship info and opportunities at jobs4gators

Career Services has numerous internship opportunities available through jobs4gators. 
 If you know a student looking for an internship for summer or fall, encourage them to register with jobs4gators. Here are just a few companies looking for UHD students for internships: St. Luke's, MD Anderson, Vision Faith Media, Crossroads, Baylor College of Medicine, City of Houston, Harris County Dept. of Homeland Security, Port of Houston and many more. 
If you are a faculty member and would like access to jobs4gators, please contact the Career Services office at 713-221-8980 or .

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Career Services internships and employment opportunities

Career Services has several internships and employment opportunities available. Here is just a partial list to share with students:

ARES Corporation - Engineer
Bank of America/Merrill Lynch Wealth Management - Merrill Lynch 
    Wealth Management Internship
Bikes Online - Operations Rep
Boy Scouts of America -  District Executive, entry level
BPSOS, Inc. -  Disaster Case Management Program Manager
Corporate Collaborations - Senior Specialist, Controls & Policies
Council for Environmental Education - Summer Intern
Dominos Pizza - Upper Management Paid Internship
Fort Bend ISD  - Applications, Senior Applications, Sharepoint and
    Web Programmers
Houston A+ Challenge - Performance Coach
Lamar State College, Orange - System Support Specialist
Literacy Advance of Houston - Bilingual Program Coordinator
McConnell Jones Lanier & Murphy LLP - Entry Level Staff Auditor
Missouri City Municipal Court - Internship
Professional Golf Ball Services - Accounting Assistant
Reliant Park - Cashiers and Parking Attendants
Smith and Associates - Human Resources Clerk
Student Conservation Association - Conservation Collaborative
    (HCC) Coordinator
Texas Department of Banking - Financial Examiner V-VII
TPI Staffing - HR Systems Coordinator, HR Administrative Assistant,
    VP Audit, Inside Sales, Website Developer, BAS General
    Manager, Engineer-Field Service, Embed. Software, Sim. Software
Univision Radio - part-time Board Operator KQBU and part-time
    Traffic/Continuity Coordinator

For more information or to apply for these internships and employment opportunities, students should visit the jobs4gators Web site. Career Services has nearly 200 positions in its database. 
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IT Training for Faculty-Staff-Alumni

Register for IT training opportunities at the links below.  To schedule a one-on-one appointment or other assistance, please call 713-221-8200.

Blackboard Learning Management

           1 to 2:30 p.m. - SoftChalk Lesson Builder Using Go To Meeting
          Wednesday April 28
          10 to 11:30 a.m. - Turnitin
         Friday, April 30
          9 a.m. to noon - Blackboard: Open Lab

Database Management
           Tuesday, April 27
           1 to 2:30 p.m. - Access: Basics

Internet Applications
           Thursday, April 29
            2 to 3:30 p.m. - Survey Monkey

See all current IT training available

The Skyline eNews is produced daily by the Office of Public Affairs and you will receive the Skyline eNews via email while you are a UHD employee. We update our email list weekly. The eNews is a University faculty and staff newsletter and is designed to keep employees informed of university activities, policy changes, human resources issues, business office information and security information.

The deadline for submitting items is 9 a.m. the day before publication. Past issues are archived on UHD's Web site. The archive link is in the lower right column.   

We are always interested in your activities. Let us know at least 24 hours in advance so we can include your event in the Skyline eNews. We also try to photograph University activities, but we need to know when and where your event is taking place. Email or call Public Affairs at 713-221-8010.
In this issue
Today at UHD
UHD Community Forums on new names this week
Buses available for University community attending UHD Northwest Open House
IBA toured Port of Houston and Houston Ship Channel
UHD Dance Marathon hosts Comedy Night April 29
UHD joins Federal Direct Student Loan Program
Stories from previous Skylines
Earth Day celebration featured music, info booths and more
Academic Assessment hosts AIM Reviwer Training
First aid, CPR certification training available in next two weeks
Information sessions set for ACP/MAT students in Urban Education
Honor National Police Week with a blue ribbon
Hispanic Awareness Festival included food, music and more
Cheerleading clinic and tryouts
Summer service-learning project
Order commencement regalia now
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