Skyline News header
A Publication of UHD Public Affairs
Nov. 10, 2010
Submit news items to
TopComing up at UHD.....

UHD will test its emergency text messaging system on Friday.

The Faculty Awards Selection Committee is accepting nominations for faculty awards in Teaching, Professional/Institutional Service, and Scholarship/Creativity.

Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS) is unveiling MyTRS, the new online access portion of the system's website in November.


Urban Education's collaboration wins

Statewide Star Award in Austin

AUSTIN   -- The University of Houston Downtown, Lone Star College-Cy Fair and Lone Star College-Kingwood together won one of four Star Awards from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Tuesday, Nov. 9, for a collaborative, teacher-education degree program that provides students with a seamless transition from the community college to the university while working with school district partners.

"This award showcases a wonderful collaboration between three institutions of higher education," said Mary E. Smith, coordinating board assistant deputy commissioner for Academic Planning and Policy as she introduced 11 finalists at the organization's 10th Annual Star Awards Ceremony luncheon.


She said reviewers chose the four winners from a pool of 65 nominated programs. Star Awards recognize exemplary contributions toward closing the higher education gaps that challenge Texas residents including increasing the college-going rate of residents, improving college graduation rates and helping more students complete degrees.

Beth Pelz, dean of UHD's College of Public Service that includes the Department of Urban Education, said, "This award recognizes that our approach is innovative, replicable and effective. Ultimately, our faculty has made this program a success."

of Spanish. Read more here.

Kendall discusses her new book at Arts and Humanities Tea at 3 p.m. today

Yvonne Kendall, associate professor of music, will discuss her upcoming book on French Renaissance Dance music at the Arts & Humanities Tea at 3 p.m. Wednesday Nov. 10, in room 1070-S, One Main Building.


The talk is entitled, "The Dancing Priest:  Musicology and Renaissance France." The Arts and Humanities Faculty Tea Series is hosted by Raquel Chiquillo, associate professor of Spanish.

Kendall discusses her new book at Arts and Humanities Tea at 3 p.m. today

Yvonne Kendall, associate professor of music, will discuss her upcoming book on French Renaissance Dance music at the Arts & Humanities Tea at 3 p.m. Wednesday Nov. 10, in room 1070-S, One Main Building.


The talk is entitled, "The Dancing Priest:  Musicology and Renaissance France." The Arts and Humanities Faculty Tea Series is hosted by Raquel Chiquillo, associate professor of Spanish.

Community Involvement Center plans events recognizing Citizenship Week

Join the Community Involvement Center for two events next week in honor of Citizenship Week that highlight what it means to be a citizen of Houston.


Monday, Nov. 15,

11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

UHD Coffeehouse

Brown Bag Lunch: "Why I like Houston and how I got here"

Bring your lunch and we will provide the drinks and cookies for a discussion about citizenship. 


Thursday, Nov. 18,

11 a.m.

UHD Auditorium

A Panel: The Citizenship Process from Application to Oath

Join us for a great presentation and discussion as we partner with the League of Women Voters, the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service and the National Association of Newly Elected Officials to discuss the citizenship process.


A flyer is available here.

Skyline Qatar
Mohsen Mobasher visits with Cultural Enrichment Center Director Jane Creighton before his presentation.

Mobasher discusses impact of globalization on Qatar

The Cultural Enrichment Center sponsor a lecturer, "Qatar: A Country in Transition and Paradox," by Mohsen Mobasher, UHD associate professor of anthropology and sociology. Mobasher spent last two years in Qatar teaching and conducting fieldwork on the impact of globalization on Qatari society and culture. Mohsen has published a book on globalization and several articles on Middle Eastern immigrants and refugees in the United States


First Fallapalooza Music Fest features student, area music groups on Nov. 11

The first Fallapalooza Music Fest will be from 5 to 11 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 11, on the North and South Decks and Portico at the One Main Building..

Student Activities and Events is sponsoring the event and staff members hope the Music Fest becomes a tradition. Groups representing a variety of musical styles will perform so everyone should find something of interest. The event will also include food and a cash bar. The following bands will be performing:

5:15pm - 6pm

 North Deck - Jimbo Herrera

 South Deck - Franchise and Yung

6:15pm - 7pm

 North Deck - Rory Jagdeo

 South Deck - Tuerka

7pm-8:15pm - 1st Headliner

 South Deck - Liz Vaughn


     North Deck - Night Flight

     South Deck - The Blue Notes

9:30pm - 11pm - 2nd Headliner

     South Deck - A-19

Exclusive Fallapalooza T-shirts will on sale for $10 throughout the fest. Get one during SAE's pre-sale for $9 starting at 8 a.m. Monday, Nov. 8, in the SAE Office in room 204-S, One Main Building. 

Event information will be posted on campus and a Facebook page has been set up at

Contract Administration Training available in class sessions Nov. 10 or 11

Fall Contract Administration Training will be offered in two sessions from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 10, or from 2 to 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 11, in room 1099-North, One Main Building.

To register for the Wednesday session, the course code is UHD037, Session #0012, and the Thursday session course code is UHD037, Session #0013. A flyer is available here.

The training class is designed for all individuals involved in the contracting process.  The training will:

  • Cover what's new regarding contracting,
  • Cover key contracting policy requirements, 
  •  Address issues regarding noncompliance and 
  • Review areas that typically raise questions.

Topics covered include:

  • New to the Contracting Process
  • Updating of Policy
  • MySafeCampus Overview
  • Overview of Contracting Process
  • Basic Contract "No Can Do's"
  • FAQ's
  • Quick Walk Through the Contracting Process
  • Key Things to Remember
  • Question and Answer Period

Refreshments will be served. Please register at by Tuesday, Nov. 09. For information, contact LaShonda White at 713-223-7928 or email her at

UHD will test Emergency Text Messaging System on Friday, Nov. 12

UHD will conduct a test of its emergency text messaging system on Friday, Nov. 12. UHD will use the text messaging system and other communication tools to keep the University Community informed in case of a serious emergency.

Please take the time now to register your cell phone to receive emergency text messages.   If you have not previously opted in to the system, you may do so by going to and clicking on the UHD Students or UHD Faculty & Staff button on the right-hand side of the page.

Many faculty, staff and students have already signed up to receive emergency text messages. If you have already opted in, no further action is required at this time.

When you receive emergency text messages, standard text messaging charges apply as defined by your plan and cell phone service provider.


Last day to spend TexFlex dollars is Nov. 15 and to submit claims is Dec. 15

If you were participating in TexFlex program for Plan Year 2010 (fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2010), please do not forget these key dates:


         Nov. 15,  - Last day to spend TexFlex dollars for Plan year 2010

         Dec. 31,  - Last day to submit claims for Plan Year 2010


For your last year's TexFlex account balance information, please call PayFlex at 866-353-9839.  


Sports and Fitness sponsors workshop of 'Do I Have to Exercise' at noon Nov. 17

The Sports and Fitness Center is sponsoring the workshop, "Do I Have to Exercise?" at noon Nov. 17 in room 1099-N, One Main Building.

The workshop is free to UHD students, faculty and staff. It is possible to lose weight without exercising, however, do you know the reasons the USADA, doctors and fitness professionals all recommend physical activity, including exercise as part of your daily life? There are many health benefits to exercising including recovery from an injury to decreasing your risk of certain diseases and many more. Participants will walk away from this workshop with useful tips for successful exercise programs. A flyer is available here.

To reserve a spot for this workshop please visit,


Social work, psychology discussion session planned for Wednesday

A discussion session with psychology and social work degree majors and professors will be at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 10, in room 602-N, One Main Building.

First-year students interested in these two fields are especially encouraged to attend. Pizza will be served. For information contact JoAnn Pavletich, associate professor, at or Stacie Defreitas, assistant professor, at for information. A flyer is available here.


Intramural Bowling Tournament set for Nov. 23; register now in Sports & Fitness

The UHD Intramural Bowling Tournament will be held on Tuesday, November 23 at 6pm at Lucky Strike Lanes in Houston Pavilions located in downtown.  The location is easily accessible on the MetroRail via the Main Street Square Station from UHD.  Entry fee is $5 per person and is open to all UHD students and employees. 


There will be three divisions:   

1.       Men's Competitive

2.       Women's Competitive

3.       Just for Fun


You will need your UHD ID.


To see register by the deadline of Nov. 22, please see the following link for more information. Bowling link:


Psi Chi schedules Psychology Graduate School and Career Workshop Nov. 11

Psi Chi will sponsor a Psychology Graduate School and Career Workshop from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 11, in room A-405 in the Academic Building. The workshop will include several psychologists from different disciplines speaking about their respective fields.  Psi Chi will induct new members immediately following the workshop.

Please email Psi Chi President Arthur Vallejo at or Psi Chi Advisor Ruth Johnson, assistant professor, at for more information.
IBA sponsors field trip to Chevron

The International Business Association will tour the Chevron Building from 8:30 a.m. to noon Friday, Nov. 12, followed by presentations and discussions with Chevron officials.


The deadline for registration is 5 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 9. Registration is required and includes light lunch from noon to 1 p.m. in room B113-B, Shea Street Building.


IBA members are free and receive preference but must register in advance. Non-members are $10.  For additional information see the linked flyer.


The trip is organized by Anisul Islam, professor, on behalf of the IBA. For information contact him at

Work/Life program vendors discuss insurance, pre-paid legal services

Liberty Mutual and Prepaid Legal Services, Inc., UHD's two newest Work/Life program vendors, will present an overview of their discounted services for UHD employee Thursday, Nov. 11, in the Special Events Center, third floor, Academic Building.

Liberty Mutual's plan provides discounts to faculty, staff and retirees on auto and home insurance, and Pre-Paid Legal Services, Inc. will offer access to legal services for a low monthly fee. For additional information, plan to attend one of the sessions below. Employees may also meet from 2 to 3 p.m. privately with one of the vendor representatives. No prior registration required.


Overview of Liberty Mutual Discounts

                10 a.m.

11:20 a.m.

 12:40 p.m.


Overview of Pre-Paid Legal Services, Inc.

10:40 a.m.


1:20 p.m.


One-On-One With Company Reps

2: to 3:30 p.m.


Snacks and door prizes available.


UHD generally does not, nor is it obligated to, screen, monitor, or restrict the vendors participating in UHD's work-life program, nor does participation of a vendor in UHD's work-life program constitute UHD's endorsement of the business or the products/services offered by the participating vendor, nor would UHD be liable for any claims any individual participant in UHD's work-life program may have against any participating work-life vendor, or as a result of that individuals participating in the work-life program.  In other words, please personally review the products, services, and prices offered by the work-life vendors and make your own personal informed decision about whether to utilize the products or services offered by the particular vendor. 



Stories from previous Skylines

Faculty Awards Selection Committee is accepting faculty awards nominations

The Faculty Awards Selection Committee is accepting nominations for faculty awards in Teaching, Professional/Institutional Service, and Scholarship/Creativity. 

Send all nominations to Lisa Morano, associate professor, Department of Natural Sciences (N609), or via the NS Department office (N813) no later than Tuesday, Nov. 30.

Please see the attached call which includes the nomination form at the end.


Teacher Retirement System members can now access accounts online

Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS) is unveiling MyTRS, the new online access portion of the system's website in November.

Members will now be able to plan for retirement, keep track of their personal accounts and receive communications from TRS online. Active TRS members will receive a temporary user ID and password with their annual statements in November, which will provide them with access to MyTRS.

When members receive their user ID and password, TRS encourages them to visit MyTRS and complete the registration process. Registration for online access through MyTRS will not require members to enter their full social security numbers online. Members can change their temporary password with one of their own choosing. New TRS members can still register for MyTRS by visiting the TRS website.     

Once registered, TRS members will be able to:

         Obtain a personalized retirement estimate using unaudited data on file with TRS.

         View and/or print a copy of their most recent annual statements.

         View their account balance, including current year contributions received to date by TRS.

For more details, please visit the TRS website at or call them toll free at 800-223-8778.


Third T.E.A.C.H. lunch session is Nov. 17

The third Trading Education And Classroom Hints (T.E.A.C.H.) lunch sponsored by the Quality Enhancement Plan Committee will be from 11:30 - 1 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 17, in room 612-N, One Main, on "Differentiated Instruction for the College Classroom", moderated by Lisa Morano, associate professor, and Jon Aoki, assistant professor.Deadline for registration is Nov. 15.


The T.E.A.C.H. lunches are designed to promote faculty engagement and cooperation in improving pedagogy and teaching effectiveness for the benefit of UHD students. At these lunches, interested faculty hold discussions concerning, but not limited to: encouraging student participation in class, problem-based and inquiry-based learning strategies, effective exam design, use of technology in the classroom, SACS assessment, and the challenges and rewards of teaching to a diverse student population.


 Interested faculty from departments other than Natural Sciences that wish to attend should contact Jerry Johnson, assistant professor, ( or Morano ( for a reservation by Monday, Nov, 15. Lunch will be provided to attendees that reserve in advance.

Student Veterans invited to march in city's Veterans Day parade Nov. 11

The UHD Veterans Student Organization has been invited to march with the Lone Star Veterans Association in this year's Veterans Day parade Thursday, Nov. 11.

Interested student veterans should meet at 10 a.m. at City Hall for the opening ceremony. UHD's Manager of Veteran Services Michael Record will depart at 9:30 a.m. from UHD. Records asks students planning to attend to contact him in advance. Activities have been planned throughout the day.

UHD's Veterans Services Office will offer breakfast in the morning and pizza in the afternoon for student veterans. The Veterans Services Office is located in room 244-S, One Main Building. Call 713-221-8622 for information.

If student veterans would like to become members of the LSVA, more information is available at the organization's website  

Sports and Fitness is accepting entries for Nov. 11 Badminton Tournament

The Sports and Fitness Department is now accepting entries for its Intramural Badminton Tournament scheduled for 3 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 11, in the Student Life Center.

The tournament has a $5 entry fee and is open to all students, faculty and staff. Spectators are encouraged to attend.

For those interested in participating in the tournament, please visit more information and to register. Information is also available at the Sports and Fitness Department by calling 713-221-8225.

International Education & Citizenship Week will run Nov. 15-18

International Education Week

November 15-18



Monday (11/15): Global Awareness Day (How much do you know about the world?) Academic Building, 3rd Floor.

Coffee House: 11:00 a.m. -12:30 p.m.:  Sponsored by the Community Involvement Center

                Citizenship Brown Bag Lunch [How I Got to Houston and What I Think about it.]

                Ticket Booth area: Test Your Global Awareness - win prizes!

                Auditorium, 11:30 a.m.:  Music performance from Northern Spain;

12:00 p.m.:  English Language Institute panel discussion -- Cross-cultural Expectations.


Tuesday (11/16): Studies Abroad Fair (where do you want to go?) Academic Building, 3rd Floor.

                Auditorium, 11:30am - 12:45pm: Panel discussion - Work & Study Abroad Panel Discussion

                Coffee House: FBI Recruiter

                Ticket Booth area: Studies Abroad Trips


Wednesday (11/17): Cultural Activities (listen to a foreign beat) Academic Building, 3rd Floor.

Ticket Booth area (11-12)

Yvonne Kendall's demonstration of Flutes from Around the World

Kiran Parthasarathy performance of Karnatak music of India         

Coffee House (12-1): Crocket Elementary School Children performance


Thursday (11/18): UHD's International Community (the international in your own backyard)

Academic Building, Room A-405, 6:30 pm: Sponsored by the Cultural Enrichment Center - Hispanic Film Festival showing of Madeinusa.


Ticket booth area: Internationally-themed Student Organizations and UHD International programs (Cultural Enrichment Center, Ethnic Studies & Film Studies Minors, Foreign Languages)

Auditorium, 11 am: Community Involvement Center - Immigration and Naturalization Panel

Career Services plans week of activities recognizing Career Development Month

 In conjunction with Career Development Month, Career Services is holding its first "Career Services Week" Nov. 15 to 19. 

Events start off with an open invitation to students to visit the Career Services office, room 340-N, One Main Building, anytime on Monday to ask questions, gather materials, sign up for workshops  and enjoy the snacks.See attachment.

Students can attend career-related workshops covering a different topic each day (see flyer) Tuesday through Thursday.  Career-related door prizes will be given out each day, with a grand prize drawing on Friday.  Prizes sponsored by: Al's Formal Wear, JCPenney, Wal-Mart, Target and UHD Bookstore.

UHD's online eservices portal will get new name on Nov. 22

OnlineUHD's online portal to eservices, UOnline, will become MyUHD on Nov. 22.

 The access to UHD services will not change, only the name and look of the login. Changing the name will pave the way for UHD to better group and market online degrees and classes under a UHD Online umbrella later this academic year.

During the next few weeks, individuals across campus will be working to make the switch on web pages across the university. 

Texas Renaissance Festival discount tickets available to UHD employees

The "Texas Renaissance Festival" festival is being held 9 a.m. to dusk though Nov. 28, Saturdays and Sundays only (with the exception of the Friday after Thanksgiving).

Employees may purchase tickets at the 'Group Ticket' rate. The discounted rates are $15 for adults and $6 for children (5 yrs - 12 yrs). The ticket handling fee of $1 per ticket will be waived. To receive the 'Group Ticket' rate, you must use our discount code UHS-1488 and must purchase tickets in advance via credit card by phone or fax.

To place an order by phone, call 1-800-458-3435. To place an order by fax, use the attached form and fax to 1-936-894-2391. Orders are accepted Monday-Friday 8am-5pm. Your tickets will be mailed to you so please make sure you purchase your tickets in advance. For complete details, pleasevisit

If you have any questions, please contact Bobbie Horack, Work/Life Coordinator, at or 713-222-5318.

Back to Top

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 Vista



3 - 4 p.m. - Blackboard: Communication Tools

Thursday, Nov. 11

1 - 2:30 p.m. - Blackboard: Mail, Calendar, and Who's Online


 Friday, Nov. 12
10 - 11 a.m. - Blackboard: Assignments

Tuesday, Nov. 16
1 - 2 p.m. - Blackboard: Assessments
Wednesday, Nov. 17

2 - 3 p.m. - Blackboard: Gradebook Set-up

Thursday, Nov. 18

1 - 2:30 p.m. - Respondus: StudyMate

Friday, Nov. 19

10 a.m. - 12 p.m. - Respondus Open Lab


See all current IT training available

The Skyline eNews is produced Monday, Wednesday and Friday during the school year 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 website. 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
Coming up at UHD
First fall music festival planned
Mobasher lectures on Qatar and sociology
Student veterans invited to Veterans Day activities
Enter now for badminton tournament
UHD's online portal gets new name
Discount Texas Renaissance Tickets available
IT training classes available
Join us on Facebook
UHD Facebook graphic
UHD is on Facebook at Become a fan and connect to other University Facebook pages.
Quick Links