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March 28, 2011
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UHD's fourth annual Gender Studies Conference, "Framing Gender," will be from 2  to 9 p.m. Monday, March 28, in the Special Events Room, A-300, Academic Building, featuring the research of students working in a variety of disciplines.

The International Business Association will host Abdulaziz Al-Attar of the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation from 2:30 to 4 p.m. Tuesday, March 29, in room B-117, Shea Street Building.

The Student Government Association is sponsoring Town Hall meetings from 1 to 3 p.m. in the Cullen Robertson Auditorium, Academic Building, and from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in room B-110 in the Shea Street Building on Tuesday, March 29.
Freshman essay contest winners announced

Sigma Tau Delta, the international English honor society; the Freshman Composition Program and the Freshman Convocation Committee have announced the winners of the spring semester freshman essay contest.   


This contest was the second phase of the freshman essay contest conducted in the fall as part of Freshman Convocation.Winning students wrote their essays in English composition courses fall semester and submitted them to contest organizers in February.


"We want to congratulate all the participants for taking out the time and putting in the effort to contribute to this universitywide event," said organizer JoAnn Pavletich, director of composition and associate professor of English. "Deciding to submit an essay was itself an act of success and all students who participated deserve our congratulations."   


First place winners will receive $400 in book vouchers; second place winners will receive $200 in vouchers; third place winners will receive $100 in vouchers and those receiving an honorable mention award will receive vouchers for $50. 


English 1300 winners:

First Place:  La'Mia Bradshaw, "Bullying."

Second Place:  Ikhlas Musa, "The Importance of Teachers Understanding Cultural Differences."

Third Place:  Pablo Rivera, "The Master Plan."

Honorable Mention:  Vincent Elizondo, "Confidence."


English 1301 winners:

First Place:  Moin Marediya, "Texting While Driving."

Second Place:  Crystal Mouton, "What Can Unite Our Divided Country?"

Third Place:  Alejandro Madrigal, "Equality for Success."

Honorable Mention:  Zitlalit Andriano-Rodriguez, "The Connection of Innocence, Racism, and Power, from Shelby Steele's View."

Honorable Mention:  Jack Weisberger, "Respect Is Not Easily Earned."



English 1302 Winners:

First Place:  Elena "Kate" Walker, "Fairy Tale Endings for a Young Girl in Danger."

Second Place:  Lluvia Flores, "Mosque at Ground Zero."

Third Place:  Reyna Valdez, "Censorship:Violation of the Right to Free Speech."

Honorable Mention:  Ali Fazal, "Rotting Apple:The Simultaneous Rise and Fall of an Empire."

Honorable Mention:  Rodney Jenkins, "The True Origins of HIV/AIDS."



Pavletich also thanked the following instructors who encouraged and assisted students: Santiago Lopez, Dagmar Scharold, Crystal Guillory, Yvonne Guillory-Welch, Catherine Alexander, Harbeer Sandhu, William Brown,  Antonio Garcia, William Waters, Sandra Dahlberg, Guiliana Lund, Carolyn Rubin-Trimble and Merrilee Cunningham.

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President Flores schedules Spring Budget Town Hall Meeting for March 30

President Bill Flores will hold a Spring Town Hall Budget Meeting from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 30, in the Cullen Robertson Auditorium, third floor, Academic Building.

He will discuss UHD's budget and proposed reductions. All faculty and staff are invited to the Town Hall meeting.

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SGA sponsors two Town Hall meetings

The Student Government Association is sponsoring Town Hall meetings from 1 to 3 p.m. in the Cullen Robertson Auditorium, Academic Building, and from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in room B-110 in the Shea Street Building on Tuesday, March 29.


SGA leaders said the meetings are designed to offer students a forum to communicate with University administrators. The topics of discussion will be higher education budget cuts and the impact those cuts could have on tuition and student services.  


Refreshments will be provided. A live webcast of the meeting will also be available online.

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CAB hosts annual poker tournament

The Campus Activities Board (CAB) will host its annual Poker Tournament from 5 p.m. to midnight, Saturday, April 9 in the Special Events Room, A-300, Academic Building.


Buy-in is $10 and prizes will be awarded to the top 7 winners. The Grand Prize is an iPad. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Houston Area Women's Center.


Email for more information. A flier is available here.

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Student, alumni production of 'You Can't Take It with You' opens April 1

The UHD student and alumni production of "You Can't Take It with You," the 1937 comedy by Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman, will open at 8 p.m. Friday, April 1, in the O'Kane Theatre.


This story about the Sycamore family and its unforgettable characters can also be seen at 8 p.m. April 2, 7, 8 and 9 as well as 3 p.m. Sunday, April 3. The student matinees are 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 6, and Friday, April 8.


Tickets cost $3 and are available at the University cashier's office on the third floor during regular business hours and at the theater door 30 minutes before each performance. Come see the talents of UHD students and alumni as they bring to life this time-proven classic of the American theater.  

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IBA hosts Kuwait Petroleum Corp. representative March 29

The International Business Association will host Abdulaziz Al-Attar of the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation from 2:30 to 4 p.m. Tuesday, March 29, in room B-117, Shea Street Building.


Al-Attar will discuss the Kuwait Petroleum Corp. and the international oil market. The presentation is free and open to the University community. Al-Attar has worked in international oil sales and market research. He has conducted economic studies and he worked for OPEC on behalf of Kuwait as a fiscal policies analyst. He now heads Kuwait Petroleum's Houston office.


For more information, contact Anisul Islam, professor and IBA advisor, at or IBA President Gebran Charbim at

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Gender Studies Conference features student research March 28


UHD's fourth annual Gender Studies Conference, "Framing Gender," will be from 2  to 9 p.m. Monday, March 28, in the Special Events Room, A-300, Academic Building, featuring the research of students working in a variety of disciplines.  


A complete schedule and additional information is available here.  


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Stories from previous Skylines
Annual Fine Arts Festival features visual and performing arts April 4 to 10

The University of Houston-Downtown Department of Arts and Humanities' annual Fine Arts Festival April 4 to 10 will include theater productions, visual art, concerts, UHD alumni presentations, a film screening and a bilingual community story hour. (A flier is available here.) 


The UHD student production of "You Can't Take It with You" has a nominal admission fee. All other events are free and open to the public. Event dates, times, and locations on UHD's campus, One Main St., follow. The Festival is sponsored by UHD's O'Kane Gallery, O'Kane Theatre, the Cultural Enrichment Center, and the Office of the President. To read more... 

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Place orders now for graduation regalia

Spring Graduation will be held Saturday, May 21, and faculty who plan to participate and do not own their own regalia can rent items from the bookstore.


Orders placed before May 2 should arrive the week of May 9, and bookstore staff members will notify faculty by phone and email to pick up regalia at the bookstore. Orders placed after May 2 will be subject to a $10 late fee for rush shipping. The bookstore cannot guarantee delivery of orders placed after May 16.


The UHD Bookstore requires prepayment for all orders and accepts cash and all major credit cards with valid identification. Orders can also be charged to a University department PCard or purchase voucher with prior departmental approval.


Any items left with the bookstore on Friday, May 20, will be available at the ceremony on Saturday, May 21, in the faculty reception area.  


Contact bookstore staff members Bill Schaub or Britney Ikner at 713-221-8145 for more information. 


The regalia rental fees are as follows:


Master's Unit Complete - $60.98

(Includes cap, gown, tassel and hood)

Doctorate - $109.98

(Includes tam, gown, tassel and hood)  


Individual Piece Prices:


Master's Cap, Gown, and Tassel - $30.98

Master's Hood only - $29.98

Master's Gown only - $25.98

Doctorate Cap, Gown, Tassel, and Hood - $68.98

Doctorate Hood only - $33.98

Doctorate Gown only - $29.98

8-sided Tam - $40.98

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Students sign in for employment research workshop as Jovanni Williams, instruction reference librarian assists.
Career Services and the Library hosted presentation on researching employers
The UHD W. I. Dykes Library and Career Services hosted a presentation, "Researching Your Future Employer: How to Prepare for Career Fairs and Interviews," Wednesday, March 23, in room N-412, One Main Building.


Job seekers often don't realize they should thoroughly research a company or organization before attending a job fair or an interview. The Library and Career Services teamed up to provide students with an informative, hands-on presentation on how to most effectively research a company's history, current events, who's who, products/services, challenges and opportunities. For more information, call Career Services at 713-221-8980.

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Moldova delegation discusses human trafficking with social work students


Jo Bailey, left, Bachelor of Social Work Program Director, introduces a delegation from the Republic of Moldova to students Thursday, March 24, for a discussion on human trafficking. The delegation visit was sponsored by YMCA International Services. The delegation included individuals who deal with human trafficking including a Moldovan judge, attorneys and a United Nations representative. The group was in Houston to see how Houstonians deal with the problem and crime of human trafficking.   

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Reception set for Willie Mae Dawson

A reception honoring Willie Mae Dawson, accounts payable technician II,  who is retiring after 32 years of service will be from 3 to 5 p.m. Thursday, March 31, in room N-420, One Main Building.


Refreshments will be served. A flier is available here. Her last day is also March 31. 

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Hale awarded second Navy fellowship
Trevor Hale

Trevor S. Hale, an associate professor of management science in the Management, Marketing, and Business Administration Department in UHD's College of Business will return in May to Naval Base Ventura County in Port Hueneme, Calif., to continue research he started there two years ago.


Hale is assisting the Navy in finding ways to reduce its carbon footprint and its overall energy expenditures.


"I am looking forward to returning, and I think it will benefit the country and my future students," Hale said. "Some of my most interesting research looks at how we can harvest and store energy from ocean waves."


His prestigious Senior Faculty Fellowship provides Hale with valuable classroom examples of how government agencies apply business principles.

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Strategic Planning Group Update

March 23, 2011


To:           The UHD Community


From:      Michael Dressman, Chair, Strategic Planning Group


As promised in late February, the Strategic Planning Group is publishing a set of proposed goals and metrically stated University objectives for the next ten years.


These goals were derived from last year's "Good to Great" meetings and recent conversations between President William Flores and the Strategic Planning Group. The metrics are based on various published and proposed targets that UHD vice presidents, deans, department chairs, Faculty Senate leadership, staff and students have brought forward.


We share these goals and objectives now with the larger University community for comment, proposed modification, and shaping, leading to eventual adoption of these or similar ones as our strategic-planning statement.


In addition, as you read these proposed goals and objectives, the President and the Strategic Planning Group challenge each area of the University to start imagining strategies and steps that could be taken in your part of the University that could lead to achieving these institutional goals.


For now, please send your comments directly to me at I will share them with the Strategic Planning Group, and we will compile and distribute the suggestions back to the campus. I draw your special attention to the sixth goal where the metrics are the least well developed. We need some measurable statements there. I will also look into using the Blackboard Vista site for campus discussions so there can be additional give and take on these issues.


Here are the Proposed Strategic Planning Goals and Metric Objectives:


I.              Increase enrollment.


From 13,000 head count in Fall Term 2010 to 15,400 by Fall Term 2015

From 15,000 head count in Fall Term 2015 to 18,000 by Fall Term 2020

From 125,800 semester credit hours in Fall Term 2010 to 150,000 by Fall Term 2015

From 150,000 semester credit hours in Fall Term 2015 to 175,000 by Fall Term 2020


II.             Improve retention and student success.


Improve retention from year one to year two for FTIC students (First Time In College) by 3% a year. To do so would move our retention rate for first-year students from 60% to 73% by 2020.


III.            Increase our graduation rates.


Six-year graduation rate (FTIC) from 11.4% in 2010 to 35% in 2020

Four-year graduation rate (for students entering with 30 semester credit hours) from 29.8% in 2010 to 45% by 2020

Two-year graduation rate (for students entering with 60 semester credit hours) from 52.5% in 2010 to 75% by 2020


IV.            Increase the number of community-relevant programs.


During the next ten years, UHD colleges and departments will develop and bring forward 30 degree proposals for consideration on campus: 15 bachelor's degrees and 15 master's degrees.

By 2020, UHD, having fully developed degree proposals and worked them through the UH System, will have introduced 10 new degree programs: four bachelor's degrees and six master's degrees.


V.             Expand financial resources.


The grants through the Office of Sponsored Programs, which now total just less than $3 million a year, will increase to $10 million a year by 2015 and to $22 million a year by 2020.

UHD will undertake a comprehensive capital campaign that will begin in a silent phase in 2013, will be announced in 2016 (or so), and will culminate with a total of $50 million to $75 million in 2020.

UHD will increase alumni giving, which is now less than 1%, to 5% by 2020.

UHD will increase its endowment, which is now at about $14 million, to $35 million by 2020.


VI.            Ensure an infrastructure that will support these goals.


Every year for the next ten years send ten new faculty or staff members (that is, people who have never attended such a meeting before) to a national meeting on assessment, recruitment, or retention.


Cut costs and improve productivity by 1% each year for the next 10 years.


Improve the UHD classroom use (SUE) score from 58% to 75% by 2015 and to 80% by 2020.


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UHD provides additional parking at San Jacinto Parking Lot  

In response to student requests, UHD has arranged for additional downtown parking for UHD students, faculty and staff.


Additional parking is now available for students, faculty and staff at North San Jacinto Street and Allen Street. There are 84 parking spaces in the far northeast corner of the AMPCO Parking Lot set aside for UHD. Spaces reserved for UHD have the word "RESERVED" painted in each space. Parking Enforcement and the UHD Police patrol the lot to provide safety and security.


The shuttle bus service also picks-up and drops-off from this location. Shuttles run from the Daly Street Lot, to the One Main Building, to the Commerce Street Building, corner of Franklin Street and Fannin Street, to the San Jacinto Lot, to the Shea Street Building and back to the Daly Street Lot.


The UHD Police patrol streets and parking lots near the University 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

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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 Vista

Tuesday, March 29

1 - 2 p.m. - Wimba Classroom

Wednesday, March 30

10 - 11 a.m. - Blackboard: Gradebook Setup

Thursday, March 31

10 - 11:30 a.m. - SoftChalk Lesson Builder



2 - 3:30 p.m. - TaskStream: e-Portfolio


See all current IT training available

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The Offiice of Public Affairs produces the Skyline eNews Monday, Wednesday and Friday during the school year, 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
Freshman essay contest winners announced
President Flores plans Town Hall Meeting
SGA sponsors Town Hall meetings
CAB plans poker tournament
Spring play opens April 1
IBA hosts Kuwait Petroleum representative
Gender Studies Conference is today
Fine Arts Festival is April 4 to 10
Order commencement regalia now
Career Services, Library hold job research workshop
Moldova delegation discusses human trafficking
Dawson retirement reception March 31
Hale receives second Navy fellowship
Strategic Planning Group update
UHD provides additional parking
IT offers training classes
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