Technology entrepreneur and PayPal founder Peter Thiel delivers Tate Lecture Oct. 21, 2014

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Technology entrepreneur, investor and philanthropist Peter Thiel will visit SMU Tuesday, Oct. 21 to deliver 2014’s second Willis M. Tate Distinguished Lecture Series.

Thiel will offer his insight and opinion on current events as moderated by political analysts and Tate Series veteran David Gergen. Continuing the 33rd season of Tate Lectures, Thiel and Gergen will give The Tolleson Lecture at 8 p.m. in McFarlin Auditorium.

ThielDefining a new era of fast and secure online commerce, Thiel started PayPal in 1988 and served as CEO until 2002 when he took the company public. In 2004, Thiel made the first outside investment in Facebook, where he continues to serve as a director. The same year he launched Palantir Technologies, a software company that harnesses computers to empower human analysts in fields like national security and global finance. Additionally, Thiel is a partner in Silicon Valley venture capital firm Founders Fund and has provided initial funding for LinkedIn, Yelp, Airbnb, SpaceX and dozens of other successful technology startups.

Thiel also serves as a philanthropist through his work with the Thiel Fellowship and Thiel Foundation. While the Thiel Fellowship ignited a national debate by encouraging young people to put learning before school, the Thiel Foundation works to advance technological progress and long-term thinking about the future.

411YBdZVAPL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Recently, Thiel has published novel Zero to One with Blake Masters. Zero to One presents an optimistic view on the future of progress in America. Introducing a new way of thinking about innovation, Thiel encourages his readers to ask the obscure questions that lead to finding value in unexpected places.

All SMU students, faculty and staff are invited to the Turner Construction/Wells Fargo Student Forum segment at 4:30 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom. Doors open at 4 p.m., and seats may be reserved online.

The evening lecture is sold out. However, SMU students can go to the basement of McFarlin Auditorium at 7 p.m. with their SMU IDs for possible seating on a first-come, first-serve basis.

> Learn more about the 33rd Tate Lecture Series
> For additional information, contact the SMU Tate Series

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SMU continues to monitor Ebola information

SMU remains in close contact with national, state and local health agencies to closely monitor information related to the Ebola virus. The University’s health and safety protocols, as well as resources for travel and other activities, have been outlined in a message to University parents and through the SMU News homepage.

Please monitor these links for updates, as well as important information SMU is sharing with parents and students.

> See the University statement from SMU News
> Read more from the SMU Parents blog

 

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Sports: Men’s Soccer makes return to NSCAA/Continental Tire Division I Coaches Poll

Screen shot 2014-10-15 at 10.19.02 AMMen’s Soccer: The men’s soccer team continued their last-minute heroics when first-year defender Bryce Clark scored his first career goal with 19 seconds left in overtime to lift his team over Temple 2-1 on Saturday, Oct. 11 in Philadelphia. The win completed a 2-0 week for the Mustangs that landed SMU in the NSCAA/Continental Tire NCAA Division I Coaches Poll for the first time since 2012, checking in at No. 21.

Clark and fellow freshman defender Jared Rice were honored by the conference as Defensive Player of the Week and Rookie of the Week, respectively. The two were pivotal on both sides of the field, helping the Mustangs to a shutout and a 0.47 goals-against-average last week. clarkandriceRice tallied two saves in the Memphis game, and Clark scored the winner against Temple.

Playing in their first game as a ranked team in two years, the No. 21 Mustangs blanked Central Arkansas 7-0 on Wednesday, Oct. 15 at Westcott Field. Six different Mustangs scored as they tallied the most goals in a game since a 8-0 win over Centenary in 2006. SMU will try to hold on to its top spot in the American Athletic Conference when they face No. 24 USF on Saturday, Oct. 18 at 7:00 p.m. CT at Westcott Field.

Screen shot 2014-10-17 at 9.49.33 AMMen’s Basketball: The men’s basketball team came in at No. 22 in the preseason USA Today Coaches Top 25, announced on Thursday, Oct. 16. The Mustangs will face three preseason top-25 teams in the 2014-2015 campaign: No. 13 Gonzaga (Nov. 17), No. 15 Connecticut (Feb. 14 & March 1) and No. 23 Michigan (Dec. 20). The season begins at Moody Coliseum on Nov. 14 when SMU hosts Lamar.

Women’s Tennis: The women’s tennis team went undefeated and claimed seven championships at the Collin College Fall Open in Plano, Texas on Oct. 10 and 11. Sophomore Mary Wright tallied three singles wins over the weekend and leads the Mustangs with eight wins this season.

Juniors Vaszilisza Bulgakova and Hristina Dishkova and sophomore Dasha Sharapova all advanced to the round of 32 in singles at the USTA-ITA Regional Championships on Thursday, Oct. 16 in Waco, Texas. The round of 32 begins Friday, Oct. 17.

Football: SMU looks to pick up its first victory of the 2014 season against Cincinnati on Saturday, Oct. 18 at 2:30 p.m. CT at Ford Stadium. The Mustangs are coming off a 45-24 loss to East Carolina, in which they set offensive season-highs in total offense (390), passing yards (339), touchdowns (3) and first downs (20). When the two teams met last November, SMU’s comeback fell short in a 28-25 loss in Cincinnati.

SMU Athletics is launching an “Oktoberfest” ticket package for the next two home games that includes a ticket to either the Cincinnati game or the Memphis game on Saturday, Oct. 25, a sausage on a stick and a t-shirt for just $20. Fans can purchase the package here. All ticket packages for the final four home games are available at SMUTickets.com.

Ray SchoenkeFormer SMU offensive lineman Ray Schoenke was chosen for induction into the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame, the selection committee announced Wednesday, Oct. 8. The 2015 Enshrinement Weekend will take place Jan. 23-24, 2015 in Oahu, Hawaii. A Wahiawa, Hawaii native, Schoenke was a football letter winner from 1960-62 and earned First-Team All-Southwest Conference and Academic All-American honors in 1962. He participated in the 1961 East-West Shrine Game and the 1962 Hula Bowl before being drafted in the 11th round by the Dallas Cowboys in the 1963 NFL Draft. Schoenke bounced around a couple of teams before a 10-year stint with the Washington Redskins. In 2002, he was named one of the top 100 players in Redskins history.

Women’s Swimming and Diving: The Mustangs return to the pool to host the 21st annual SMU Classic at the Westside Natatorium in Lewisville, Texas on Friday, Oct. 17 and Saturday, Oct. 18. SMU’s competition includes four top-25 finishers from the 2014 NCAA Championship: USC (5th), Louisville (15th), NC State (16th) and Miami (21st). The Mustangs finished 20th at the NCAA Championship and second in the American Athletic Conference behind Louisville.

Volleyball: The bright side of SMU’s 3-1 road loss to Tulsa on Wednesday, Oct. 17 was senior Caroline Young’s return to the front row. Young posted her fourth double-double with 10 kills and 10 digs. With the loss, the Mustangs’ record falls to 15-4 and 4-3 in the American Athletic Conference. SMU hosts East Carolina on Sunday, Oct. 19 at 1:00 p.m. CT in Moody Coliseum.

hegartyFreshman Katie Hegarty started for Young in the front row in a 3-1 win over Houston on Friday, Oct. 10 and recorded 11 kills and hit .300 in her first start. Young played only the back row after an ankle injury took her out of a match against Memphis and recorded nine digs and three aces. Abbey Bybel led the Mustangs with 13 kills.

seifertThe Mustangs capped off the weekend with a 3-2 win over Tulane on Sunday, Oct. 12 in Moody Coliseum. The win was the 300th victory for coach Lisa Seifert. Bybel and Hegarty led the team in kills with 14 and 11, respectively.

Women’s Golf: Junior Jenny Haglund’s 3rd top-10 finish of the year helped the Mustangs to a 4th-place finish at the Betsy Rawls Invitational at the University of Texas Golf Club in Austin, Texas. She finished 5-over for the tournament and tied with four others for 6th place. UNLV and Tulane shared the tournament title at 31-over. Baylor trailed by three strokes at +34, and SMU followed in 4th at +36. The Mustangs begin their final fall tournament on Sunday, Oct. 26 at the Briggs Ranch Golf Club for the UTSA-hosted Alamo Invitational.

Women’s Soccer: The women’s soccer team was defeated 3-1 by UConn on Sunday, Oct. 12 at Westcott Field. The Mustangs sported pink jerseys for their annual “Kick For A Cure” game in support of breast cancer awareness. SMU got out to an early lead when sophomore Kelsey Gorney netted her first goal of the season in the 11th minute. The Huskies scored the equalizer in the 24th minute, and found the back of the net twice more before halftime.

SMU’s slump continued, dropping their fifth decision in six matches in a 1-0 loss to Cincinnati on Thursday, Oct. 16. An early second-half goal in the 47th minute was all the Bearcats needed. The Mustangs attack picked up in the second half, but they could not find the back of the net. SMU continues their road trip to Greenville, North Carolina to take on East Carolina on Sunday, Oct. 19 at 1:00 p.m. CT.

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Tips, tricks and training on the menu at SMU’s 2014 Tech Day Wednesday, Oct. 22

From iPads in the classroom to social media for the workplace, SMU’s Office of Information Technology will offer a full day of free training during Tech Day 2014 on Wednesday, Oct. 22.

Sessions featuring University subject matter experts and special guest speakers from Adobe and Apple are scheduled from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom and Forum.

All sessions are free and open to SMU faculty, staff and students; no registration is required. Seats are limited and will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Topics include:

> Learn more at SMU OIT’s Tech Day 2014 homepage

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Calendar Highlights: Oct. 16, 2014

b1830bce49be4c75ad18f2a0ce3f98f5World Changing 101: SMU Hegi Career Development Center presents World Changing 101: Why Should You Do Public Service? Featuring representatives from Teach for America, Peace Corps, CityYear and CitySquare, guests will explore how public service experiences apply to future careers. The event will take place Thursday Oct. 16 at 5:30 p.m. in the Annette Caldwell Simmons Hall, Room 138. For more information contact Devon Skerritt or visit the event webpage. 

Comini Lecture Series: The Comini Lecture Series presents “Oracle’s Signs (and Sounds): An Iconographic Exploration of the Ancient Andean Gods’ Images.” Guided by Marco-Curatola-Petrocchi, Professor at the Catholic University of Peru, the lecture will examine how Andean deities “spoke” to their priests. The event will take place Thursday, Oct. 16, 5:30 p.m., in the Greer Garson Screening Room. For more information call 214-768-1222.

Music at Meadows: SMU Organist and Professor of Harpsichord and Organ, Larry Palmer presents “Scarlatti’s Cat.” During a short program on the Museum’s Oldovini Organ, Palmer will play the 1762 instrument built for the Cathedral of Evora in Portugal. The performance will take place Thursday, Oct. 16, 5:30 p.m., in the Virginia Meadows Galleries. For more information call 214-768-4677.

Museum Evening Lecture: The Meadows Museum hosts “Into the Realm of the Imaginative: The Portraiture of Zuloaga, Goya and El Greco.” The evening lecture will examine portraiture, an artistic genre in which all three artists made great achievements. The event will take place Thursday, Oct. 16 at 6 p.m. in the Bob Smith Auditorium. For more information call 214-768-4677.

Larry Palmer. Professor of Harpsichord and Organ.

Larry Palmer. Professor of Harpsichord and Organ.

Meadows Wind Ensemble: The Meadows Wind Ensemble presents “The French Connection.” Featuring a menu of works by composers who share a “connection” to France, the program will also honor faculty artist and professor Larry Palmer as he celebrates his 45th year at SMU Meadows. Tickets are $7 for SMU faculty and staff. The event will take place Friday, Oct. 17 at 8 p.m. in Caruth Auditorium. 

SMU Football: SMU Mustangs will play Cincinnati Saturday, Oct. 18, 2:30 p.m., at the Gerald J. Ford Stadium.

Meadows Museum Art Activity: The Meadows Museum hosts “Drawing from the Masters.” Providing an opportunity to explore a variety of drawing techniques, guest artist Ian O’Brien will lead participants through the Meadows Museum‘s galleries. Attendance is limited to 20 and offered on a first-come, first-serve basis. Drawing materials will be available, but participants are encouraged to bring their own sketchpads and pencils. The activity will take place Sunday, Oct. 19 at 1:30 p.m. in Meadows Museum. For more information, call 214-768-4677.

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SMU names 2014 DAA, Emerging Leader Award winners

Alexandra Dillard Lucie

Alexandra Dillard Lucie ’05 will receive the Emerging Leader Award at SMU’s 2014 DAA Awards ceremony on Thursday, Nov. 13.

SMU will honor four leaders in philanthropy, business and civic life with the highest honor the University can bestow upon its graduates. The 2014 Distinguished Alumni Awards dinner and ceremony begin at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 13 on the Main Quad.

The 2014 Distinguished Alumni are Mary Brinegar ’69, president and CEO of the Dallas Arboretum; Frank M. Dunlevy ’71, vice chair of the investment bank Cowen and Company; and Dr. John Frank Harper ’68, clinical cardiologist with Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas and 2012 recipient of the Dedman College Distinguished Graduate Award.

Alexandra Dillard Lucie ’05, corporate merchandise manager with Dillard’s, a family business founded by her grandfather, will receive the University’s Emerging Leader Award. The honor recognizes the outstanding achievements of an alumnus or alumna who has graduated in the last 15 years.

> Read more about SMU’s 2014 Distinguished Alumni and Emerging Leader

During the ceremony, past DAA recipients will be honored as Centennial History Makers as part of SMU’s ongoing Second Century Celebration. The 2014 honorees include:

  • James A. Baker ’53, ’58 †
  • Paul M. Bass Jr. ’57 †
  • David M. Bates ’75, ’78
  • George W. Bramblett Jr. ’63, ’66
  • Gary T. Crum ’69
  • Linda Pitts Custard ’60, ’99
  • Nancy McMillan Dedman ’50
  • James Lindsay Embrey Jr. ’45, ’47 †
  • Craig T. Enoch ’72, ’75
  • Larry R. Faulkner ’66
  • James B. Gardner ’55 †
  • Antonio O. Garza Jr. ’83
  • Frederick B. Hegi Jr. ’66
  • Rick Herrscher ’58
  • Zan W. Holmes Jr. ’59, ’68
  • Karen Parfitt Hughes ’77
  • Eddie Bernice Johnson ’76
  • Darrell M. Lafitte ’54
  • Jerry LeVias ’69
  • William H. Lively ’65
  • Craig R. McKinley ’74
  • Malcolm S. Morris ’68
  • Stephen Mulholland ’60
  • John W. Nieto ’59
  • Jeanne L. Phillips ’76
  • Gary E. Pittman ’53 †
  • Richard Ware ’68
  • Joe T. White ’70
  • A. Cecil Williams ’55

For more information, visit SMU’s Distinguished Alumni Awards homepage or call 214-768-4468.

Read more about this year’s DAA honorees from SMU News
Find a list of past DAA recipients at the SMU Alumni site

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SMU Basketball set to host ‘Midway Madness’ at the State Fair of Texas on Monday, Oct. 13, 2014

Midway MadnessBasketball: Both the men’s and women’s basketball teams will host “Midway Madness” at the State Fair of Texas on Monday, Oct. 13, from 10 a.m.-7 p.m. The Mustangs will set up a SMU-branded basketball court on Lone Star Boulevard outside the Texas Hall of State. Contests begin on the court at 10:30 a.m. and continue throughout the day with an autograph session from noon-1 p.m.

The men’s team began practice on Monday, Oct. 6 in preparation for their season opener against Lamar in Moody Coliseum on Friday, Nov. 14 at 8:30 p.m. The game is part of a doubleheader that begins with the women’s team tipping off against Northern Colorado at 6 p.m.

Screen shot 2014-10-10 at 8.52.35 AM

Equestrian: The SMU equestrian team climbed back into the National Collegiate Equestrian Association poll as the 9th-ranked program after an upset over then-No. 8 Texas A&M at Sleepy P Ranch on Saturday, Oct. 4. The Mustangs face defending national champions and No. 1 Georgia on Sunday, Oct. 26 at Sleepy P Ranch.

DechambeauMen’s Golf: Junior Bryson Dechambeau won the Erin Hills Intercollegiate in Erin, Wisconsin, on Tuesday, Oct. 7, and the team finished second behind No. 9 UCLA. The Mustangs held the top spot for a portion of the day, but could not hold off the Bruins. Dechambeau’s victory is the second of his career after a win at the inaugural 2014 American Athletic Conference Championships. SMU is back in action on Monday, Oct. 27 at the Royal Oaks Intercollegiate in Dallas.

Women’s Golf: The SMU women’s golf team claimed a 7th-place finish at the Schooner Fall Classic on Monday, Oct. 6 in Norman, Oklahoma, with a one-under final round. Junior Jenny Haglund led the Mustangs at five-under and tied for 4th in the field. The Mustangs travel next to Austin for the Betsy Rawls Invitational, hosted by the University of Texas. The event begins on Sunday, Oct. 12.

Agnes SjostromCross Country: Sophomore Agnes Sjöström was named the American Athletic Conference’s Women’s Cross Country Athlete of the Week for her 2nd-place finish at the Notre Dame Invitational on Friday, Oct. 3. The race featured 20 schools and 165 runners. Her time of 16:17.7 set a personal record and ranks as the 2nd-fastest 5K time in SMU history. Sjöström finished just eight seconds behind New Mexico senior Charlotte Arter. The Mustangs finished 8th place overall.

volleyballWomen’s Volleyball: SMU split their weekend American Athletic Conference road matchups over the weekend with a win on Friday, Oct. 3 over Cincinnati and a loss to Memphis on Sunday, Oct. 5. The Mustangs knocked Cincinnati from the unbeaten ranks in the conference with a 3-1 win. Memphis took advantage of an injury to senior Caroline Young, defeating SMU in three straight sets. The Mustangs return home to host Houston on Friday, Oct. 10 in Moody Coliseum at 7 p.m.

Football: The Mustangs fell to No. 22 East Carolina, 45-24, in the Pirates’ American  debut on Saturday, Oct. 4 in Greenville, North Carolina. SMU finished with a season-high 390 yards of offense, led by junior Garret Krstich’s 339 passing yards. Krstich threw two touchdown passes to NCAA Football: Southern Methodist at East Carolinajunior Darius Joseph and kept the Mustangs in the game until late in the 4th quarter. After a missed field goal that would’ve trimmed the Pirate lead to 35-27, ECU scored 10 unanswered points in the final half of the 4th quarter. SMU enters a bye week before Cincinnati visits the Hilltop on Saturday, Oct. 18.

Men’s Soccer: Junior John Lujano was the hero in a 1-1 draw against UCF on Saturday, Oct. 4 in Orlando, Florida. Ahead 1-0, the Knights were signaled for a foul in their own penalty box with just seconds remaining. Lujano stepped up and converted the penalty kick to tie the game. The goal was Lujano’s second converted penalty in as many games. First-year goalkeeper Michael Nelson made five saves and was named to the American Athletic Conference weekly honor roll for the second time this season. He has a 1.08 goals-against-average and has tallied 26 saves this season.

Men's Soccer

The Mustangs extended their American Athletic Conference unbeaten streak to six matches with a 2-0 win over Memphis on Wednesday, Oct. 8 at Westcott Field. Freshman Jared Rice tallied a pair of assists and leads the team with five assists this season. The Mustangs are 5-0-1 in their last six games after a rocky 1-3 start. SMU is 2-0-1 in American play and sit atop the conference table. The team’s next game is Saturday, Oct. 11 at noon against Temple at Westcott Field.

lauryn boddenWomen’s Soccer: The SMU women’s soccer team went 0-2 in their Florida road trip with a 3-0 loss to No. 22 UCF on Friday, Oct. 3 and a 2-1 loss to USF on Sunday, Oct. 5. Senior goalkeeper Lauryn Bodden  made her return to the net on Friday after missing the first 11 games to injury. Bodden made five saves against UCF and a career-high 11 saves against USF. The Mustangs carried a 1-0 lead into halftime against the Bulls, but surrendered two goals in the final 15 minutes.

rikki clarkeThe Mustangs rebounded against Temple at home on Thursday, Oct. 9 behind senior Rikki Clarke’s winner in the 20th minute. The goal was the first of the season for the four-year starter. Bodden had four saves in the game, all coming in the final 13 minutes with the Owls attempting to force overtime. SMU returns to action on Sunday, Oct. 12 for a noon tilt against UConn at Westcott Field.

Women’s Tennis: Junior Hristina Dishkova tallied two wins in the final day of the HEB/Under Armour Invitational in Waco, Texas on Sunday, Oct. 5. Dishkova finished the weekend with five overall victories. The Mustangs return to the court Friday, Oct. 10 in the Collin College Fall Open.

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SMU to honor global and local human rights champions with inaugural ‘Triumph of the Spirit’ awards Wednesday, Nov. 12, 2014

Eliana Elias

Eliana Elias

Peruvian champion of indigenous women’s rights Eliana Elias and global-minded local educator Bhavani Parpia will be honored at SMU Wednesday, Nov. 12 as the first two recipients of Embrey Human Rights Program Triumph of the Spirit Awards. The awards carry a combined $30,000 in funding for the recipients made possible by an anonymous supporter of SMU’s undergraduate human rights program.

The inaugural Triumph of the Spirit event will include a 7 p.m. dinner in the Martha Proctor Mack Grand Ballroom and 6 p.m. courtyard reception. The evening will feature interviews with Elias, Parpia and other human rights leaders, a mix of music and spoken-word performances and mixed-media art by past and present Embrey Human Rights Program students.

Bhavani Parpia

Bhavani Parpia

Reserved tables and individual tickets for the event are available at various sponsorship levels. For details, visit SMU’s Triumph of the Spirit ticketing page, call 214-768-3241 or contact Bradley Klein.

The Triumph of the Spirit Awards aim to “reward people doing great work for others, sometimes at great risk to themselves,” says Embrey Human Rights Program Director Rick Halperin. “The awards represent a microcosm of life-changing work being done locally and around the world on issues affecting everyone. The awards also are meant to give us all hope that change can be made even by small steps of awareness and action.”

Elias and Parpia were selected for Triumph of the Spirit Awards from among several dozen human rights defenders nominated for providing selfless work on behalf of individuals and communities. The award selection committee, comprised of 19 SMU faculty and staff members, University alumni and regional community leaders and activists, chose Elias and Parpia for work best exemplifying the missions of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Embrey Human Rights Program.

Global Award/$25,000 recipient: Eliana Elias

Eliana Elias has worked more than two decades in the Peruvian Amazon and other rural areas to engage and empower indigenous women and activists about their human rights.

As an expert in intercultural communications for social change, Elias has helped hundreds of non-governmental organizations and indigenous groups develop ways to strengthen leadership, education, health and conservation initiatives.

In 1998, Elias co-founded Minga Peru, an award-winning model geared to improving communication, gender equity and social change. Since then her work has been recognized and rewarded by groups including the Clinton School for Public Service in Arkansas, the Global Philanthropy Forum, Funders without Borders, Family Funders and Funders for Human Rights.

Regional Dallas Award/$5,000 recipient: Bhavani Parpia

Montessori teacher Bhavani Parpia is founder of the educational nonprofit ConnecTeach, helping underserved communities in South Asia and the Middle East improve the quality of education for hundreds of thousands of children one teacher at a time.

Parpia also serves as district world languages coordinator for the Hurst-Euless-Bedford Independent School District (HEB ISD), where she develops and oversees Arabic, Chinese and Hindi programs.

Before joining HEB ISD, Parpia founded the Primary School at North Hills Preparatory in Irving. Under her leadership, North Hills was ranked 13th-best performing school in the United States, and in 2013 she received the World Affairs Council International Educator of the Year award.

Written by Denise Gee

> Read the full story from SMU News

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Check in at SMU’s 2014 HR Fair Wednesday, Oct. 15

Stock image of 'Good Health, This Way' freeway signVendors from SMU’s medical, legal, life insurance and retirement plans will be on hand to discuss your options at the University’s 2014 Human Resources Fair on Wednesday, Oct. 15.

You can learn more about health and savings plans, as well as the new LegalGUARD and PrivacyARMOR option, from 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballrooms.

Flu shots will be available at the SMU Health Center station, and therapists from Dedman Center Recreational Sports will be on hand to provide chair massages. In addition, fitness instructors from the Center will give demonstrations of GroupX classes in Small Group Training, Zumba, Boot Camp and yoga.

Visitors can also check out Centennial Hall, the interactive exhibit in the Hughes-Trigg lower level featuring high points in SMU history and spotlighting faculty, staff, student and alumni excellence.

Visit SMU Human Resources online

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SMU’s 2015 Open Enrollment set for Oct. 11-31, 2014

Benefits U logoA new pharmacy benefit administrator, restored prescription coverage with the CVS and Walgreens chains, and a new option for legal and identity protection are among the changes coming during SMU’s 2015 Open Enrollment. University faculty and staff members will be able to make benefits changes for 2015 from Saturday, Oct. 11 to Friday, Oct. 31, 2014.

The open enrollment period is the only opportunity for SMU employees to make changes to benefits elections for the coming year, except for qualified life event changes.

For 2015 open enrollment, you must take action if:

  • You want to make changes to your current coverage, including adding or dropping dependents.
  • You want to enroll in LegalGUARD/PrivacyARMOR for 2015.
  • You want to participate in one or both of the Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) or the Health Savings Account (HSA) in 2015. You must re-enroll in the FSAs or the HSA even if you participated in 2014.

If you do not make any changes during open enrollment, your 2014 elections will continue for the upcoming calendar year, except for contributions to the FSAs and the HSA.

The University’s $2,500 deductible option will increase to a $2,600 deductible option to meet the Internal Revenue Service’s minimum deductible requirements for High Deductible Health Plans. The family deductible will increase to $5,200. SMU will continue to offer the $1,000, $2,000 and $5,000 deductible options.

Medical premiums for all University plans will increase 4.5 percent – less than half the national healthcare inflation average of 10 percent.

All copays will remain the same for all plans in 2015, including Primary Care Physician (PCP) and specialist office visits as well as emergency room and Urgent Care Center (UCC) visits.

> Find more information in SMU’s 2015 Benefits Guide, coming soon to smu.edu/hr

Prime Therapeutics will replace Express Scripts as SMU’s pharmacy benefit administrator in 2015. The University was able to negotiate an expanded network offering that will once again include CVS and Walgreens. In addition, preventive vaccines administered at an in-network pharmacy will be covered 100 percent with no copay, under all four medical options.

SMU’s DFW-area network of retail pharmacies will include, but not be limited to, chains such as Costco, CVS, Kroger, Sam’s Club, Target, Tom Thumb, WalMart and Walgreens. In addition, many locally owned, independent pharmacies throughout the area are included in the network.

Prime Therapeutics is integrated with BlueCross BlueShield of Texas. Plan members will now have one customer service number and one online portal (BCBSTX) for all medical and pharmacy information.

You will receive a new BCBSTX ID card in December. Please provide your new ID card to your pharmacy before they process any 2015 refills or new prescriptions. Let the pharmacist know that your plan has a new pharmacy administrator and ask that your record be updated. If you have auto-refills at your preferred pharmacy, please be sure the pharmacy updates your record right after the first of the year. You will continue to use your existing ID card for all prescriptions filled until Dec. 31, 2014.

Express Scripts will send mail-order prescriptions (with refills remaining) to Prime Therapeutics on or before Jan. 2, 2015. After this date, log on to MyPrimeMail.com or call the 24-hour automated PrimeMail Refill Center at 877-357-7463 to request refills.

NOTE: Express Scripts cannot transfer mail-order prescriptions for compound medications or controlled substances to Prime Therapeutics. You must request a new prescription from your doctor.

If you need a new prescription, ask your doctor to send a prescription electronically via e-prescribe or fax to 877-774-6360. You can also fill out the PrimeMail order form and mail your new prescription with your preferred method of payment.

> Learn more about Prime Therapeutics from their website

During Open Enrollment, full-time and part-time benefits-eligible employees will have an opportunity to enroll in the new LegalGUARD and PrivacyArmor plans for 2015. Although the plans are administered separately, they are available as a bundled arrangement for $27.45 per month. By bundling the plans, SMU is able to offer comprehensive legal and identity protection benefits for an affordable monthly premium.

The LegalGUARD Plan, administered by LegalEASE and underwritten by Nationwide, provides access to quality legal services and protection from the high cost of legal fees. LegalEASE also connects participants with the right attorney when a need arises.

The LegalGUARD Plan covers the plan member, his or her spouse or domestic partner, and unmarried dependent children up to age 19 (or up to age 25 if a full-time student).

The PrivacyArmor Plan, administered by InfoArmor, provides a comprehensive and proactive defense against identity theft, with a focus on identity monitoring. InfoArmor is capable of identifying anomalies indicative of fraudulent behavior up to 90 days sooner than credit monitoring.

The PrivacyArmor Plan covers the plan member and his or her spouse or domestic partner.

> Register for a LegalGUARD and PrivacyArmor info session

SMU uses a secure online open-enrollment application available through My.SMU.edu. To make your benefits elections for 2015:

  • Enter your My.SMU.edu user ID and password as you normally would to review your pay statement.
  • Click Benefits in the Employee Self-Service navigation on the right, then choose Benefits Enrollment to access your personalized Open Enrollment record.
  • Be sure to read all instructions carefully before making elections for 2015.

More information on vendors and plan changes will be available at SMU’s 2014 Human Resources Fair, 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 15 in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballrooms. Vendor representatives will be on hand to answer questions about your options.

In addition, SMU Human Resources has scheduled a series of information sessions from Monday, Oct. 13 to Tuesday, Oct. 21 designed to help faculty and staff members better understand the medical plans and other resources available to them. Visit smu.edu/hr and tap “Educational Sessions” to RSVP online for the “Understanding Your Benefits: Every Choice Counts” session of your choice.

> Consult SMU’s 2015 Benefits Guide on the web, coming soon to smu.edu/hr

Related:
> Check in at SMU’s 2014 HR Fair Wednesday, Oct. 15
SMU’s Fall 2014 flu shot clinics now in session

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