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A Publication of UHD Public Affairs
Dec. 17, 2010
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TopComing up at UHD.....

Access to the Xpressions voice mail system via phone or e-mail, internally and from off campus, will be unavailable between 4 a.m. and 8 a.m. on Sunday, Dec. 19 for maintenance.

UHD's 49th Commencement exercises will be held at Minute Maid Park at 10 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 19. The 'green' event can be viewed live on the internet. See story below.

The HUB Vendor Show will be open until 1 p.m. today in the Buffalo Bayou Room, A-300, Academic Building.

The deadline to enter the Staff Council Office Decorating Contest is today. See story below.

Registration continues for UHD's first online Winter Term which runs from Dec. 27, 2010, to Jan. 14, 2011. See story below.

Xpressions voice mail system will be unavailable early Sunday morning

Access to the Xpressions voice mail system via phone or e-mail, internally and from off campus, will be UNAVAILABLE between 4 a.m. and 8 a.m. on Sunday, Dec. 19 for maintenance. 


Please note that this will impact the voice mail system ONLY.  Telephone services will remain operational. If you have any questions or need more information, please call the Help Desk at ext. 3000 or 713-221-8031 or email

HUB Vendor Show set for Friday in A-300

The UHD Purchasing Department is sponsoring the HUB Vendor Show from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Dec. 17, in the Buffalo Bayou Room, A-300, Academic Building.

The show is a way to introduce UHD departments to Historically Underutilized Businesses so they can include HUBs in their procurement opportunities. The vendors will give away door prizes so bring business cards for a chance to win the drawings.A flyer is available here.

Submit Plan Year 2010 TexFlex claims by Dec. 31; TexFlex is 'use it or lose' program

Time is running out to file your TexFlex claims for Plan Year 2010:

  • You have until Dec. 31 to file claims for reimbursement.
  • Plan Year 2010 claims include eligible health or day care expenses from Sept. 1, 2009 through Nov. 15, 2010.
  • TexFlex is a "use it or lose it" program. If you don't use your account money, you'll forfeit that money. Don't wait until Dec. 31 to file these claims-you might need to submit additional documentation.
New federal Over-the-Counter rule starts Jan. 1 for reimbursement in health insurance plans

Starting Jan. 1, 2011, a new federal law requires a doctor's prescription for reimbursement of certain over-the-counter medicines and drugs. Check out our new OTC rule quick facts and FAQ resource.

For more detailed information, check out the TexFlex section of the ERS website or call PayFlex at 866-353-9839.

ESO adds new vendors to the Work/Life Employee Discount Program

Employment Services and Operations has recently added new vendors to the Work/Life Employee Discount Program.


With the Holiday Season in full swing, many of you may be traveling by air. If you are parking at Bush Intercontinental Airport or Houston Hobby Airport, the Parking Spot, offers UHD staff and faculty a 25 percent discount.  If you sign up for their complimentary UHD Spot Club Exec discount card by Jan. 31, you will get two free days of parking pre-loaded on it. These two days do not expire and will remain on your card until you use them. The card is also programmed with your 25 percent discount.


In the Katy area, THAI SPICE Asian Gourmet at 1420 South Mason Road offers a 10 percent discount off your food purchase. You must present your UHD ID card.


And lastly, if you are in the market for buying or selling your home, Just Home Savings at 7322 Southwest Freeway, Suite 750, offers UHD employees and their family members the following discounts:

  • 20 percent cash rebate each time you buy and/or sell a home
  •   20 percent discount on lender closing fees with PrimeLending, a PlainsCapital company
  • Discounts on Van Line/Moving Services

(Sample rebate: $200,000 home purchase, the participating Realtor earns $6,000 (3 percent commission) x 20 percent = $1,200 cash rebate.)


For more information on these and other discounts available to UHD faculty and staff, please visit the Work/Life website or contact Bobbie Horack, Work/Life Coordinator, at or 713-222-5318.

Area's first 'green' Commencement ceremony can be viewed live via the internet Dec. 19 

UHD's 49th Commencement exercises will be held at Minute Maid Park, home of the Houston Astros at 10 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 19, where more than 1,500 students will receive bachelor's and master's degrees.

The ceremony can be viewed live via the internet at .

This ceremony is one of the first "green" commencement ceremonies in the Greater Houston area.

Caps and gowns students are wearing are made of recycled plastic, and organizers say each cap and gown is made of 25 recycled plastic bottles - bottles that didn't get sent to a landfill.

In addition, UHD continues its tradition of using paper with 10 percent recycled content and soy-based ink for the commencement program.  Electronic copies of the program will also be available online today for those who view the ceremony over the Internet.

UHD students can donate their caps and gowns at the end of today's ceremony, and UHD will make arrangements to donate them to a local school.

UHD staff members expect Commencement attendance to top 15,000 as family and friends turn out to watch their loved ones cross the stage in recognition of their obtaining a college degree.

Holiday contest
Last year's Best of Show was the College of Public Service.

Staff Council sponsors holiday Office Decorating Contest; entries due Dec. 17

The Staff Council is sponsoring an Office Decorating Contest with multiple categories and the deadline to enter is Dec. 17.

Departments can enter for the office decorations or their door decorations, but not both. Office decorations will be judged on the categories of most creative, most traditional, most humorous, best door and best theme.

Email entries to Michelle Henninghaus at with the following information:

-          Contact name and extension,

-          Department and room number and

-          Door or office decoration theme

Judging will be held throughout the day Monday, Dec. 20, and the winners will be announced Tuesday, Dec. 21. A flyer with photos of last year's winners is available here.

Stories from previous Skylines
UHD is moving to paperless billing for spring semester

UHD's Office of Student Accounting and Cashiers will no longer mail paper fee bills starting with the spring 2011 semester in an effort to become more environmentally conscious and cost efficient in these challenging economic times.

Fee bills for the Spring 2011 semester will only be available electronically. Fee bills for winter 2010 semester will be mailed to the address on file, but are now also available for electronic viewing. 

To see their fee bill online, students can go to the UHD website at and click on the myUHD logo in the upper right corner of the home page or enter Select the My Payment option, View Account Summary, Select Semester and then View Fee Bill. A flyer is available here.

Responses to Budget Discussion now available online

Responses to UHD's Budget Discussion are now available online on the President's web pages,

UHD President Bill Flores asked the UHD community to consider two questions:

Do you have a good idea about how the university can (a) cut costs, (b) generate additional revenue, or (c) become more efficient?

Have you encountered any practice or requirement in the university (at department, college or university level) that makes no sense to you or seems redundant or unnecessary?

He then asked people to send ideas and comments to Those suggestions are now available at

SLOAN-C International Conference on Online Learning webcasts available for viewing

UHD  faculty and staff can access video archives of the 16th annual SLOAN-C International Conference on Online Learning held in early November.

UHD's Academic Technology Committee and Information Technology Department secured the licensing to make it available to the UHD community.

The conference focused on the latest in research, effective practices, and promising new technologies for online learning.  This year many conference sessions were webcast and those webcasts were archived and made available for viewing through Nov. 1, 2011. The webcasts include:

  • Retaining Online Students
  • Colleges for the 21st Century: The New Ecology of Learning
  • Are You Experienced? Determining Online Teaching Readiness in Newly Hired Faculty
  • Recent Large Scale Research on Online Learning Effectiveness
  • Measuring Student Retention in Online Courses

If you are interested in viewing any of the webcasts, please click here.  To return to the archived webcasts at anytime, consider bookmarking the webcast page within your browser. 

Also note, if your computer does not have an application called "Silverlight" you will be required to download and install the software before proceeding. To install Silverlight, follow the onscreen instructions or click here for complete step-by-step instructions for viewing the webcasts and installing Silverlight

Please call the Help Desk at 713-221-8031 or Technology Learning Services at 713-221-8200 if you are unable to view the webcasts.

ESO offers Star12 Training options for UHD employees at a discount

 Has your professional development budget suffered due to the current financial environment?  STAR 12 has cut membership prices for UHD's staff and faculty down to $150 per employee for a 1 year unlimited STAR 12 membership.


This membership includes unlimited training for 1 year for the following:

         Public Seminars

         Web and Audio Conference

         E-learning & archived Web conference

         Stephen Covey collection

         Tracking & Reporting (can be set up by department heads)


For an additional $30 per person, you can add MINDLEADERS, which includes 300 of the most popular E-Learning courses available.


If you wish to join, have questions, or need additional information, please contact Bobbie Horack, ESO Coordinator, at 713-222-5318 or

WinterTermGraphicRegistration continues for UHD's first online Winter Term

UHD will hold its first online Winter Term from Dec. 27, 2010, to Jan. 14, 2011.

Currently enrolled UHD students will be able to take one course during the session, and registration for Winter Term will open today.

For more information, go here.

Here is the  list of courses list of courses for the all-online Winter Term:

    ACC       3303    Cost Accounting
    ACC       3304    Accounting Information Systems
    BA          3300    Business Cornerstone
    BA          3301    Legal Environment of Business
    BIOL       4220    Intro. to Genomics and Bioinformatics
    CIS         1301    Introduction to Computer Based Systems
    CJ          3301    Criminology
    CJ          3306    Crime and Delinquency
    CJ          3311    Ethics of Social Control
    CJ          3317    Race and Crime
    CJ          3318    Sex Crimes
    CJ          4314    Women and the Criminal Justice System
    COMM   3302    Argumentation and Debate
    COMM   3314    Research in Communication Studies
    COMM   4380    Field Experience in Communication
    CS          1305    Introduction to Computer Technology
    ENG       1318    Intro. to the Study of English Grammar
    ENG       3302    Business and Technical Report Writing
    ENG       3318    Studies in English Grammar
    FIN        3302    Business Finance
    HUM      3301    Foundations of Western Culture I
    HUM      3310    Cultural Criticism
    MATH    3321    Math Concepts I
    MGT      3301    Management of Organizations
    MKT      3301    Principles of Marketing
    PSY       3302    Principles of Educational Psychology
    PSY       3305    Adolescent Psychology
    PSY       3310    Psychology of Women
    PSY       3311    Biological Psychology
    SCM      3308    Purchasing Management
    SOC      4390    Child Abuse
    SOSE    3320    Assessment and Evaluation of Children
    SPAN    3301    Spanish Grammar and Composition
    STAT    3309    Statistical Analysis for Bus. Applications
    STAT    3311    Statistical Analysis for Natural Science

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

Monday, Dec. 20 
2 - 3:30 p.m. - Softchalk: Lesson Builder

Tuesday, Dec. 21

1 - 2 p.m. - Blackboard: Customizing Your Blackboard Course

Wednesday, Dec. 22

10 - 11 a.m.- Blackboard: Managing Course Content

Classroom Tools

10 - 11:30 a.m. - Useful Classroom Gadgets

Microsoft Excel

Thursday, Dec. 23

10 - 11:30 a.m. - Excel Basics


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
Xpressions voice mail will be down for maintenance
HUB Vendor show is today
TexFlex claims are due Dec. 31
New OTC medical reimbursement rules start Jan.1
ESO adds new Work/Life Employee Discount vendors
First 'green' Commencement available live on internet
Deadline is today for Staff Council holiday decorating contest
UHD moves to paperless billing for spring
Responses to Budget Discussion available
SLOAN-C Conference webcasts available at UHD
Check out Star 12 training options
Registration continues for UHD's first online Winter Term
IT Training schedule
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