Save the Date

SMU celebrates Veterans Day with luncheon, Toys for Tots collection Friday, Nov. 10, 2017

Arc of Service banner, Maguire Center Veterans Day Luncheon 2017, 800px

SMU will celebrate its veterans from across the generations at a luncheon in their honor on Friday, Nov. 10, 2017. The SMU Veterans Day Celebration, “Arc of Service,” will take place noon-1:30 p.m. in the Martha Proctor Mack Ballroom, Umphrey Lee Center.

President R. Gerald Turner and U.S. Military Veterans of SMU will provide remarks recognizing the contributions and achievements of University service members. SMU Trustee Emeritus Milledge A. (Mitch) Hart III will deliver the keynote.

SMU Veterans pinThe luncheon will also feature live entertainment from the Meadows School of the Arts Brass Quintet, as well as the annual presentation of SMU Veterans lapel pins (pictured right).

In addition, the event will serve as a collection point for the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve’s annual Toys for Tots drive. All members of the SMU community can drop off new, unwrapped toys and other holiday gifts for underprivileged children and teens. (Toys for Tots prefers not to accept realistic-looking toy weapons or gifts that include food items, according to the organization’s FAQ.)

Organizers are compiling a service slideshow featuring photos of SMU veterans. If you have photographs taken during your service period and would like for them to be included in the presentation, please send the photos and your service dates to the Maguire Center.

The event is presented by SMU’s Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility. Thanks to a generous gift, Veterans Day luncheon tickets are complimentary for all SMU faculty, staff and students.

The Center also invites families, friends and loved ones of campus veterans to attend. Please RSVP by Monday, Nov. 6, 2017.

Attendance is free – but seating is limited, and registration is required. Sign up at the link below, or contact the Maguire Center, 214-768-4255.

> Register at Eventbrite to attend SMU’s 2017 Veterans Day luncheon

Fall back: Change your clocks on Sunday, Nov. 5, 2017

Stock photo of a clock with sweep handsExtra sleep and early sunsets are back: Daylight Saving Time ends at 2 a.m. this Sunday, Nov. 5, 2017.

Don’t forget to set your clocks one hour earlier in observance of Standard Time. In addition, check your home and office computers and other electronic devices to be sure they’re displaying the correct time.

For help with your office computer clock, contact SMU’s Office of Information Technology (OIT).

By | 2017-11-08T14:34:24+00:00 November 2, 2017|Categories: News, Save the Date|Tags: , , |

’Tis the season for 2017 SMU holiday cards – preorder by Friday, Nov. 10

SMU Holiday Card 2017, 400 pxThe holidays are approaching quickly, and now is the time to preorder your 2017 SMU holiday cards. Quantities are limited, so place your order by 3 p.m. Friday, Nov. 10, 2017. If you are paying by personal check, your payment must be received by this deadline.

This year’s card features an image of Dallas Hall taken during the University’s Celebration of Lights, with “Season’s Greetings” on the front and the greeting “Wishing you and yours holidays that are Merry and Bright” on the inside. Cards can be ordered with a blank signature line or with “Southern Methodist University” preprinted.

The cost is $1.50 per card, sold in packages of 25, with envelopes. Cards are scheduled to arrive Wednesday, Nov. 22, and can be collected in G02 Perkins Administration Building. You will receive an e-mail notifying you when your cards are ready for pick-up.

For more information, contact Karen Hart in SMU Public Affairs.

> Find details, more views and an online order form at the SMU Development and External Affairs website

SMU’s 2018 Open Enrollment period takes place Oct. 11-31, 2017

Benefits U logoUniversity faculty and staff members are now able to make benefits changes for 2018. This year’s SMU Open Enrollment period is set for Wednesday, Oct. 11 to Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2017.

> Review SMU’s 2018 Benefits Guide online

Benefits-eligible employees have the opportunity to choose a new plan at the $2,000, $2,700 or $5,000 deductible levels, or simply remain in their current plan. The deductible for the $2,600 High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP) will increase to $2,700 to meet the Internal Revenue Service’s minimum annual deductible requirement for HDHPs. There is no need to re-elect this plan if you wish to continue the plan into 2018.

Medical premiums will increase by two percent for 2018, significantly less than the 8% national average.  There will be no increase in Dental or Vision premiums.

As of Jan. 1, 2018, SMU’s Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX) plans will include MDLIVE Virtual Visits. The service provides 24/7/365 access to board-certified physicians for non-emergency medical care through phone or video consultation.

SMU employees on University health plans also have access to SurgeryPlus, as announced in August. This supplemental benefit provides negotiated costs and management for hundreds of non-emergent procedures.

Also effective Jan. 1, 2018, parents may enroll their unmarried dependent children in the Dental Plan through age 25, regardless of student status. BCBSTX will no longer request student certification for these enrollees.

Get your flu shot for free during SMU’s Fall 2017 clinics

The open-enrollment period is the only opportunity for SMU employees to make changes to benefits elections for the coming year, unless you have a qualified life event such as marriage or the birth of a child.

For 2018 Open Enrollment, you must take action if:

  • You want to make changes to your current coverage, including adding or dropping dependents (eligible dependents include legal spouses and children).
  • You want to participate in one or both of the Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) or the Health Savings Account (HSA) in 2018. You must re-enroll in the FSAs or the HSA even if you participated in 2017.

In order to comply with the reporting requirements of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a Social Security number (SSN) is required for every individual enrolled in the SMU Medical Plan. If you have a spouse or dependent child enrolled in the plan, it is important that you enter a SSN for each.

> Find more information in SMU’s 2018 Open Enrollment homepage

SMU uses a secure online open-enrollment application available through To make your benefits elections for 2018:

  • Log in to as you normally would to review your pay statement.
  • Click or tap Employee Self Service from the dropdown menu in the top navigation bar, then click or tap the Benefits box
  • Choose Benefits Enrollment from the left sidebar to access your personalized Open Enrollment record.
  • Be sure to read all instructions carefully before making elections for 2018.

You will receive a confirmation statement summarizing your 2018 benefits elections in early December 2017.

> Learn more from the SMU Human Resources homepage:

By | 2017-10-11T13:27:56+00:00 October 11, 2017|Categories: News, Save the Date|

Mark your calendar: SMU’s 2018 Open Enrollment takes place Oct. 11-31, 2017

Benefits U logoSave a date to review your healthcare plan: SMU’s 2018 Open Enrollment will take place Wednesday, Oct. 11 to Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2017. University faculty and staff members will be able to make benefits changes for 2018 during this period.

SMU Human Resources (HR) will send out open enrollment information during the coming days. Faculty and staff members are encouraged to become familiar with the University’s health plans and review their options carefully to choose the plan best for them and their families.

> Visit SMU Human Resources online:

By | 2017-10-05T15:10:05+00:00 October 5, 2017|Categories: News, Save the Date|

Staff Celebration and Convocation scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017

The SMU Staff Association, in collaboration with the Office of Operational Excellence, has created a new Staff Celebration and Convocation program honoring SMU staff excellence. The ceremony is for all SMU staff members and will take place at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017 in McFarlin Auditorium.

President R. Gerald Turner will give his traditional State of SMU address as the keynote during the event. University Registrar John Hall, SMU’s longest-serving staff member, will be the featured speaker.

Staff members who have achieved 25 years of service to SMU will be honored, as well as the 2017 Presidential and Loretta Hawkins Award recipients. The ceremony with also recognize staff members who have continued their SMU service beyond 25 years, and previous Presidential and Loretta Hawkins Award recipients.

A reception with light refreshments will precede the ceremony at 10 a.m. For more information, visit the SMU Staff Association website.

Plan to get your free flu shot during SMU’s Fall 2017 clinics

Stock photo of man receiving shotThe SMU Health Center has announced its schedule of free flu shot clinics for September-November 2017, with the first session set for Tuesday, Sept. 19 in the lobby of Dedman Center for Lifetime Sports.

Clinics will take place at various locations around the main campus, as well as the East Campus and SMU-in-Plano. All clinics are open to students and benefit-eligible faculty, staff, SMU retirees and retiree spouses.

> Keep up with the latest flu information at

Update your vaccination during the following days and times at these locations. If you can’t make it to a clinic, you can get a free inoculation at the Dr. Bob Smith Health Center on a walk-in basis.

  • Tuesday, Sept. 19 – 2-6 p.m., Dedman Center for Lifetime Sports lobby
  • Wednesday, Sept. 20 – 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Dedman Center for Lifetime Sports lobby
  • Thursday, Oct. 5 – 2-6 p.m., Law School Pit, Underwood Law Library
  • Monday, Oct. 9 – 1-4 p.m., Loyd All-Sports Center
  • Tuesday, Oct. 17 – 1:30-3:30 p.m., Expressway Tower, East Campus
  • Thursday, Oct. 26 (HR Fair) – 10 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Hughes-Trigg Student Center
  • Wednesday, Nov. 1 – 3-6 p.m., Building 3, SMU-in-Plano

> Dallas County influenza resources and updates available at

The University offers free flu shots for all SMU students and benefit-eligible faculty, staff, retirees and retiree spouses. To keep your clinic visit as short as possible, take these steps:

> Find statewide resources at

SMU Woman’s Club plans reception with President and Mrs. Turner Sept. 20, 2017

SMU Woman's Club logo

The SMU Woman’s Club invites current and prospective members to its first event of the 2017-18 academic year on Wednesday, Sept. 20.

President R. Gerald Turner and Gail O. Turner will host a wine-and-cheese reception at their home from 5-6:30 p.m., where President Turner will provide a state-of-the-University update.

Founded in 1915, the SMU Woman’s Club currently has more than 100 members and coordinates several cultural, social and philanthropic events throughout the academic year. The club is open to all faculty and staff members, as well as wives of faculty and staff members.

For more information on membership requirements, contact Renee Moore Hart ’07, ’17.

> Learn more at the SMU Woman’s Club Facebook group

By | 2017-08-24T16:26:51+00:00 August 24, 2017|Categories: Calendar Highlights, News, Save the Date|Tags: , , |

Tune In: Watch SMU’s 103rd Opening Convocation live, Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017

President R. Gerald Turner will deliver the opening address, “World Changers Shaped Here,” at SMU’s 103rd Opening Convocation. The ceremony beings at 5:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017 in McFarlin Auditorium.

SMU Board of Trustees Chair Michael M. Boone ’63, ’67 , Faculty Senate President Paul Krueger and Student Body President David Shirzad will also give remarks. The Meadows Convocation Chorus, directed by Pamela Elrod Huffman, will provide music, accompanied by Sarah England.

The entire Convocation will be streamed over the internet via Click or tap the screen below to watch. The broadcast begins one hour before the ceremony starts.

> Download a PDF of the 103rd SMU Opening Convocation program

SMU Physics will project solar eclipse into Dallas Hall Rotunda on Monday, Aug. 21, 2017

SMU physics professors have devised a remarkable way to watch next Monday’s historic solar eclipse: They will use mirrors to turn the historic Dallas Hall Rotunda into a giant viewing chamber.

Weather permitting, Associate Professor of Physics Stephen Sekula will host for students and the public a homebrew viewing tunnel attached to a telescope on the lawn of Dallas Hall. The total eclipse of the sun will take place on Monday, Aug. 21, 2017. The Rotunda event is sponsored by SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences and the Department Physics.

The Rotunda image and the viewing tunnel will provide crisp images of the eclipse, and also correspond to NASA’s recommendation to avoid looking directly at the sun, Sekula said. Both methods eliminate the need for certified glasses to avoid eye damage. A surge in demand has made authentic safety glasses hard to find.

“There’s no sense risking your vision, and so this way you can come out and enjoy the eclipse without damaging your eyes,” he said.

Dallas is in the secondary shadow of the eclipse, not the primary shadow, so the region will not see the total phase of the eclipse, but rather 75 percent coverage.

“That’s still quite spectacular,” Sekula said, noting that peak viewing will be around 1:09 p.m. The partial eclipse begins in Dallas at 11:40 a.m. and ends at 2:39 p.m., according to NASA.

Wherever you and your students view the 2017 solar eclipse, don’t forget to observe these safety protocols, shared by SMU Health:

On Monday, Aug. 21, a historic total solar eclipse of the sun will be partially visible in North Texas from about 11:40 a.m. to about 2:40 p.m.  NASA offers recommendations for safely viewing the event because of the potential dangers it poses to eyesight if precautions are not taken. Please see for information.

SMU Dedman College Solar Eclipse Event
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