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Explore ‘Hidden Scripts’ with the Cultural Intelligence Initiative at SMU

The Cultural Intelligence Initiative at SMU (CIQ@SMU) is offering faculty, staff and students opportunities this summer to examine the cultural identities and languages that shape interactions.

CIQ@SMU will present “Hidden Scripts,” a seminar that explores how geographical, age, gender, political, economic, racial and sexual identities affect how individuals collaborate with others and make decisions. The seminar is from 10 a.m. to noon June 21, July 18 and August 31 in Umphrey Lee Center.

Campus community members may register online for the June 21, July 18 or August 31 seminar here.

“Faculty, staff and students have provided input and inspiration that have shaped ‘Hidden Scripts’ since we piloted the seminar earlier this spring,” says Maria Dixon Hall, senior advisor to the Provost for cultural intelligence and associate professor of corporate communication and public affairs in Meadows School of the Arts. “Participants in ‘Hidden Scripts’ will discuss concepts including cultural identities and affinities, and how these narratives can support or hinder our abilities to work and learn with one another.”

> Learn more about CIQ@SMU: smu.edu/ciq

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas in negotiations with Texas Health

SMU’s medical plan administrator, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX), is negotiating new contracts with Texas Health Resources and Texas Health Physicians Group (Texas Health). BCBSTX is seeking to negotiate an agreement with Texas Health that will keep health care costs down and protect access to Texas Health doctors and facilities. However, the parties have not yet agreed to contract terms.

If an agreement is not reached, Texas Health will no longer be part of our medical plan’s BCBSTX network as of April 1, 2018.

BCBSTX is mailing members a postcard that summarizes the status of negotiations and will provide updates online at www.bcbstx.com/texashealth2018. SMU and BCBSTX will notify you in the event an agreement is reached before April 1.

If no agreement is reached before April 1, you and your covered dependents will not receive in-network benefits if you use a Texas Health facility, doctor or other provider starting in April, unless you are currently receiving treatment. If you choose to use a Texas Health provider after April 1 and there is no agreement in place, you will be responsible for a significant out-of-network portion of the cost for care.

However, you will continue to have access to more than 25,000 in-network doctors and 60 in-network hospitals in North Texas. If you would like to know your options for in-network care, log on to Blue Access for Members for personalized search results. You also may text the word “THR” to the number 33633 to gain quick access to updated information and the in-network provider finder.

If you are currently in treatment with a Texas Health provider and plan to receive care in February or March, this potential network change will not affect coverage. If you or a covered family member are in active care for an acute condition or life-threatening illness, you will be eligible for continuation of care by your current Texas Health provider, on an in-network basis.

UPDATE: If you are past the 13th week of pregnancy, you also will be eligible for continuation of care by your current Texas Health provider, on an in-network basis.

If you have any questions, please email benefitsu@smu.edu.

By | 2018-03-05T14:01:13+00:00 February 26, 2018|Categories: News|

SMU to offer new training on harassment and discrimination prevention

SMU is committed to maintaining a work and learning environment free from discrimination and discriminatory harassment, including sexual misconduct and sexual assault. In keeping with this commitment, the University has made arrangements for employees to participate in a new automated training program called “Harassment and Discrimination Prevention.”

The program outlines the current law on discrimination, the University’s policies and procedures for reporting discrimination, and recommendations for prevention.  The new tutorial updates and combines two tutorials that previously were offered, “Stop Harassment and Discrimination” and “Eliminating Campus Sexual Violence.”

All employees will be required to complete “Harassment and Discrimination Prevention” every three years.  Employees will be notified of their assignment date by email from SMU’s training vendor with instructions on how to access the tutorial online.  Employees will have 90 days from date of assignment to complete the course.  The non-supervisor version of the program takes approximately 60 minutes to complete while the supervisor version takes approximately 90 minutes.  The self-paced module may be paused and restarted until completion.

Questions about this tutorial may be directed to the Department of Human Resources (HR) at DevelopU@smu.edu. Questions about SMU’s nondiscrimination policies and procedures can be directed to the Office of Institutional Access and Equity (IAE) at accessequity@smu.edu.

By | 2018-02-20T17:04:32+00:00 February 20, 2018|Categories: News|Tags: , |

SMU remains weapons-free under ‘campus carry’ law

SMU prohibits the possession of any dangerous weapon (either openly or in a concealed manner), or facsimiles of dangerous weapons such as water guns or toy guns and knives, on all University property, athletic venues, passenger transportation vehicles and any groups or building on which University activities are conducted.

Student-owned sporting firearms or other weapons (including all BB and pellet guns) are the responsibility of the owner and must be stored at an appropriate location off campus.

SMU has been a weapons-free campus since at least 1994. See smu.edu/policy for the full policy.

Any violation of this policy is considered a serious offense. If you have questions about this policy, please contact the SMU Police Department at 214-768-3388.

SMU has opted out of “campus carry,” Texas Senate Bill 11

In accordance with Texas Senate Bill 11, also known as the “campus carry” law, SMU opted to ban concealed handguns on campus after discussion with the campus community.

When the law goes into effect August 1, 2016, SMU will remain a weapons-free campus.

The open carry of handguns or other firearms on Texas university campuses continues to be prohibited.

Read more about SMU’s decision to opt-out of Texas Senate Bill 11 online here.

signConcealed handguns prohibited

Pursuant to Section 30.06, Penal Code (Trespass by License Holder With a Concealed Handgun), a person licensed under Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code (Handgun Licensing Law), may not enter this property with a concealed handgun.

Prohibidas las armas de fuego ocultas

Conforme a la sección 30.06, de código penal (traspasar portando armas de fuego ocultas), personas con licencia bajo del sub-capítulo h, capítulo 411, código de gobierno (ley de licencia de armas), no deben entrar a esta propiedad portando armas de fuego ocultas.

A health and safety message from President Turner

SMU President R. Gerald Turner sent the following message to students, faculty and staff on August 25, 2014:

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff,

Welcome to the start of what promises to be a memorable Centennial year on the Hilltop. I wish each of you success as you pursue your academic, professional and personal goals.

Toward that end, it’s imperative that every member of our community play a role in maintaining a healthy and caring campus environment. All of us must be familiar with SMU policies, procedures and resources supporting that environment.

For this reason, I ask every student, faculty and staff member to read the online booklet “Live Responsibly,” which you can access on the SMU Live Responsibly website, smu.edu/LiveResponsibly. It addresses sexual misconduct and alcohol and substance abuse, which are serious health and safety issues at universities across the country, including SMU. Undergraduates also will be receiving a printed copy of this booklet in the mail to review and keep during their time at SMU.

Please carefully read the information provided about SMU’s Title IX (Sexual Misconduct) policy, and contact Title IX Coordinator Samantha Thomas in the Office of Institutional Access and Equity with any questions at 214-768-3601. It should be understood that SMU will vigorously pursue its policies and support state and federal laws. The federal law, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, prohibits all forms of sexual misconduct, including sexual assault. Sexual assault also is a crime under Texas law punishable by imprisonment. SMU will not tolerate sexual misconduct in any form.

In the event of an emergency, including sexual assault or a medical emergency due to alcohol or drugs, SMU community members are urged to immediately call police and seek medical care for themselves and others. Please find more information about SMU and community resources available to help students in the Live Responsibly booklet and online.

In addition to SMU Police and the Title IX Coordinator, other SMU resources include trained confidential counselors at Counseling and Psychiatric Services and the Chaplain’s Office. The Center for Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention, the Office of the Dean of Student Life and the Women & LGBT Center also are here to support you. I encourage you to contact these resources to learn more about efforts to prevent sexual misconduct and substance abuse, and to attend the training and education programs offered throughout the year.

If faculty or staff members receive reports of sexual misconduct from students, please follow the procedures outlined on the Live Responsibly website, including notifying SMU’s Title IX Coordinator as soon as possible. If faculty and staff have non-emergency concerns about a student’s health or well-being, they can be shared confidentially through the Dean of Students’ Caring Community Connections online form.

To “Live Responsibly” at SMU means treating one another with care and respect and knowing how to get help in times of need. As the academic year begins, I urge each of you to be informed about health and safety, and to Live Responsibly.

R. Gerald Turner
SMU President

By | 2014-08-25T13:58:05+00:00 August 25, 2014|Categories: News|

SMU supports national effort on sexual misconduct prevention

The U.S. Department of Education announced May 1 that procedures regarding sexual misconduct and harassment are being examined at 55 higher education institutions. (Read the announcement.)

The University announced in a statement that:

“SMU applauds the U.S. Department of Education’s efforts to eradicate sexual violence on college campuses and to provide universities with additional tools to combat sexual assault. Our goals are the same.

“The matters under review by the Education Department have been investigated by SMU and predate our University task force review of sexual misconduct policies and procedures. The University has been aggressive in putting into practice wide-ranging new procedures to inform and protect our students, to provide prompt and effective resolution of complaints, and to hold violators accountable while treating all students fairly.

“SMU continually reviews and updates its programs in comparison with national benchmarks, and we are pleased that the White House also has made these matters a priority for all American universities. No issue is more important than the health and safety of our students.”

(more…)

By | 2014-05-06T11:09:30+00:00 May 2, 2014|Categories: News|

SMU Weather Update: Classes to resume Monday, Dec. 9

SMU will resume normal operations and class schedules Monday morning, Dec. 9, at both its main Dallas campus and at SMU-in-Plano.

We ask our community to continue to exercise caution and heed safety warnings. While SMU Facilities Services personnel are working to clear ice from campus walkways, be prepared to seek an alternative path if unsure of your footing. Also continue to avoid walking under trees as accumulated ice melts.

Please observe the following precautions:

  • Please use extreme caution. Don’t try to carry anything that isn’t necessary while walking.
  • Avoid inclines and ramps where possible.
  • Don’t take unnecessary risks: If you think you may need assistance in getting from your car to your building, consider reaching out to someone in your work area prior to, or as you arrive, on campus.
  • Be aware that ice may still fall from trees and slide from roofs of SMU buildings. Use caution.
  • Report unsafe conditions to the Facilities Services Service Request Center at 214-768-3494; after hours, call SMU Police dispatch at 214-768-3333.)

For those who feel travel to campus Monday morning would be an unreasonable safety risk, please contact your supervisor or department head to discuss possible options, and students should contact their professors in advance.

Please also see the SMU Inclement Weather Policy.

 

By | 2013-12-08T18:28:09+00:00 December 8, 2013|Categories: News|

SMU Aware: Thursday evening SMU-in-Plano classes cancelled

SMU is monitoring weather conditions in North Texas.

Thursday evening classes at SMU-in-Plano have been cancelled due to inclement weather. Thursday evening classes will be held as scheduled on the main campus.

Any decision to close or delay opening Friday, Dec. 6, will be communicated by 6:30 a.m. Friday in the following ways:

  • An e-mail message will be sent to all students, faculty and staff.
  • A recorded message will be available at 214-SMU-INFO (214-768-4636). Please do not call the SMU Police Department.
  • Closing announcements will be posted on the SMU homepage at www.smu.edu, via SMU’s Twitter feed at twitter.com/smu and at facebook.com/smudallas

News media will be notified; however, SMU sources will be the most reliable.

SMU’s goal is to maintain the normal operations and educational processes of the University while remaining sensitive to safety concerns. Therefore, if SMU remains open, faculty, students and staff should report to their classrooms or offices as usual. If someone lives in an area that is affected by bad weather and feels that travel to campus would be an unreasonable safety risk, that individual should contact his or her supervisor or department head to discuss options, and students should contact their professors. For staff members, an absence when SMU is officially open can be taken as vacation leave. Emergency service personnel are expected to report to work in any case to keep essential services and operations functioning.

If SMU closes:

Dining Services on the main SMU campus
Dining services will be available even when the University closes because of inclement weather. Find information about hours of operation for SMU Dining Services online and on Facebook.

Fondren Library on the main SMU campus
When the University closes for inclement weather, Fondren Library expects to be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Please check for any schedule changes on the CUL homepage.

SMU-in-Plano and other locations away from the main SMU campus
Separate decisions regarding closings or cancellations will be made for the Plano and Taos campuses. Those campuses are not automatically affected when the main campus is closed, or they may be closed when the main campus is not, depending on local conditions. Consult smu.edu for information.

By | 2013-12-06T05:25:56+00:00 December 5, 2013|Categories: News|

SMU Rises into Top 50 of Kiplinger’s Best Values in Private Colleges

Dallas Hall

SMU ranks No. 46 in Kiplinger’s new listing of the best values among private U.S. colleges. SMU’s ranking is up 23 places from 2012. The Kiplinger rankings are based on the cost to attend school, the financial aid available, student indebtedness, admission rate and yield, graduation rates and the academic support available to students.

By | 2013-10-17T16:08:59+00:00 October 17, 2013|Categories: News|Tags: , |

SMU Alert Update: Information regarding campus lockdown

SMU was locked down briefly the morning of Friday, May 10, in response to a potential threat.

After learning at approximately 8:35 a.m. about a potentially armed man in the vicinity, near Greenville Avenue and SMU Boulevard, the SMU campus began emergency actions. As the suspect’s location was being tracked via cellphone signal, SMU began locking exterior doors to campus facilities and notifying building managers of the possible threat.

At 9:06 a.m., the campus locked down. Students, faculty and staff were notified by alerts via text, phone, e-mail, social media and website. The lockdown ended at 9:16 a.m. after Dallas Police arrested the man on Mockingbird Lane east of US 75 (Central Expressway). The campus was informed to return to normal activities.

There is no indication that the suspect ever entered the SMU campus, west of Central Expressway. The University acted out of an abundance of caution based on information provided regarding the possible proximity of the suspect to campus. SMU appreciates the fast action of Dallas Police in apprehending the suspect.

Classes have ended for the semester, but final exams are in progress. SMU is making arrangements for students whose exams were interrupted to have them rescheduled.

SMU Counseling and Psychiatric Services (CAPS) offers students access to round-the-clock psychological counseling. Students may call 214-768-2277 for information or visit the SMU Health Center, 6211 Bishop Blvd., during clinic hours (Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.). After clinic hours, a mental health professional will be on call.

By | 2013-05-10T12:10:26+00:00 May 10, 2013|Categories: News|
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