SMU’s Tuition Benefit Request Has a New Look…

We have created an easier to use form that also helps with academic program information.   Here are some of the new features:

  • tuitionRequest by Academic Year – no longer have to choose each term!
  • Dependents and Spouses name will automatically show on your request – no longer have to find their SMU ID numbers!
  • Academic calendars dates are now visible
  • One click to see past years tuition benefit requests


Once you have been accepted into an academic program, request your tuition benefits and choose the academic year.   HR will follow your account for the entire academic year, and award the benefit.  Remember the academic year starts with fall term and ends with summer summer one or two or combined.

The tuition benefits request page will also allow you to see if there are any holds on your account.  In addition, we will email with you each term about the status of your tuition benefits award.

Go to Access.SMU>Self Service>Benefits>Tuition Benefits

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CVS & Walgreen Pharmacies Are Out-of-Network Effective January 1, 2014!

As a reminder, effective January 1, 2014, CVS and Walgreens pharmacies will no longer be in the SMU Health & Wellness Plan pharmacy network administered by Express Scripts. If you currently use CVS or Walgreens to fill your prescription medications, it is time to select a new pharmacy for 2014!

Why is SMU Making This Change?
By removing the CVS and Walgreens pharmacies from the network, other pharmacies have agreed to lower discounted rates. As a result of this change, the University and SMU faculty and staff will save over $1M in prescription costs over the next 3 years.

Which Pharmacies Will Remain in the Network?
There are over 450 in-network retail pharmacies in DFW, including (but not limited to) chains like Costco, Kroger, Sam’s Club, Target, Tom Thumb, and Wal-Mart. In addition, many locally owned independent pharmacies throughout DFW are also included in the network.

How Will You Move Your Prescriptions to a Network Pharmacy?
If you recently used a CVS or Walgreens pharmacy to fill a prescription, you will receive a letter from Express Scripts by early next week, identifying three in-network pharmacies closest to the pharmacy you last used. If you prefer to search for a pharmacy on your own, click here for detailed instructions.

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November is Diabetes Awareness Month!

FallDiabetes… if you don’t live with it yourself, then it’s likely you have a family member or friend who does.  This November during National Diabetes Month, ask yourself if you’re at risk of type 2 diabetes and take steps to prevent it.  Diabetes affects 26 million Americans, with 19 million people diagnosed and 7 million undiagnosed.  Plus, an estimated 79 million American adults aged 20 years or older have prediabetes, which puts them at high risk for developing the disease.

Click here for more information about diabetes from the Centers for Disease Control.

Click here to access a workbook to assist with managing diabetes.

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Apply for the Spring Naturally Slim Class Now!

Man on scaleInterested in losing weight and improving your overall health? Consider applying for our free Naturally Slim class! The online application is open until November 26.

The class will meet in person for the kick-off session the first week of February, but the remainder of the program will be provided online. Participants can watch the weekly video at their convenience and receive support via email from our Naturally Slim counselor.

This program is open to benefit-eligible employees. Recent lab results are required to apply. If you need to get a screening, Human Resources has added two days of screenings on November 20 and 21, 2013. Previous participants are not eligible to apply. The program will be provided for free if participants complete the program requirements.

Applicants will be informed about the status of their application the week of December 10, 2013. The 10-week program will run from February to April.

Why should you do any of this? Read on….

The Health Scare in America

  • Approximately 4% of the U.S. population incurs 60% of the country’s medical claims.
  • The United States spends a higher percentage of its GDP on health care than any other industrialized nation on the planet.
  • The United States has the highest overweight and obesity rates of any other industrialized nation on the planet.
  • The increase in weight is linked to an increase in the production of diseases of affluence such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s, cancer, and other lifestyle-related maladies.

Take Control and Manage Your Health Getting a health screening is the first step in monitoring and managing your health. If you do have significant risk factors such as high cholesterol, high triglycerides, high blood sugar, high blood pressure, and/or obesity, then we encourage you to talk with your medical provider and consider applying for the spring Naturally Slim class or using other wellness resources including joining Wellpower, getting confidential health coaching from our Baylor health coach, or engaging a personal trainer through Dedman Center. SMU has many resources to help you reach your wellness goals, so get started today!

Healthy U HRContact us at if you have questions.

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Welcome to Our Newest Employees Who Attended SMU & You on Sept. 25

The following employees attended SMU & YOU, an element of the Total Orientation Process at SMU.  During this workshop, they learned about the culture, mission, and values of the University community.  Please welcome them to the University!


From left to right:

Back Row:  James Kessenides, Ben Lippe, Susan Harris, Bobby Williams, Skyler Johnson, Katherine Glunt, Jon Horton,Lindsay Koch, Karen Milligan, Catherine Winnie, Junjie Ma
Middle Row: Colleen Durkin, Jennifer Bradford, Gentry Beck, Irma Skaggs, Beatriz Rios- McKee, Susan McAllister,
Front Row: Amy Hultquist, Katherine Woods, Beth McKnight, Desiree LaPointe, Briget Murphy
Not pictured: Kristin Fant

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Choosing Healthy Tour of RFoC at Umphrey Lee

Lauren Hickman, RD/LD, is the new dietitian for SMU Dining Services and is currently offering free tours of the dining hall, highlighting healthy options. It is called the “Choosing Healthy Tour.” During this tour, Lauren will go into depth behind each food station, explaining how you can get the most out of the offerings in “Umph”.


Lauren hopes to help you make informed decisions about what you are eating and help you understand how many healthy offerings can be found in your very own dining hall! Email to register for one of these sessions:


  • Sept. 25th at 10:00a and 3:00p,
  • Sept. 30th at 10:30a and 2:30p, or
  • Oct. 1st at 10:30a and 2:30p

For questions regarding the tours or anything nutrition-related, you can email Lauren or call her at 214-768-4349.

Wellpower Credit SMU-WellPower-Logo
Participants in Wellpower’s Amazing Challenge can award themselves credit for a wellness seminar by attending one of these sessions. Because these sessions mostly fall in the fourth week of September when we’ve already submitted our activities for the month, participants may log the seminar in October if needed. To log the seminar, go to and login to the website. Click on the myProgress tab and scroll to the bottom bonus points section. Find the wellness seminar item and click the radial button to award yourself the points. That’s it! Be sure to log your month’s activities by the 25th of each month.

Questions about Wellpower? Email .


Stay up to date on the latest events by following us on Facebook.

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Welcome to Our Newest Employees Who Attended SMU & YOU

The following employees attended SMU & YOU, an element of the Total Orientation Process at SMU.  During this workshop, they learned about the culture, mission, and values of the University community.


From left to right:

Front Row:  Kathy Silva, Yanet Castillo, Dawn Levy, Kim Mckissick
Middle Row:  Topeka Small, Steve Curitore, Devon Skerritt, Cassie DuBay, Hollie Gardner, Bailey Guthrie, Megan Schaedel, Daniela Balderas, Sarah Crookston
Back Row: Scott Baker, Kyle Noesen, Patrick Coleman, Lilly Cates, Skylar Kempel, Rebecca Sherman, Alex  Munoz,  Jill Witt, Chris Gaut, Claire Piepenburg, Julius Jenkins




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Update Your Business Information for the 2013-2014 Directory

The 2013-2014 Directory of Students, Staff, and Faculty will be published soon.  Please ensure that your business address and telephone number are correct in Access.SMU by Friday, September 6, 2013.  Visit the Department of Human Resources website for information on how to update your contact information, including your business address, phone number, and preferred name.

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SMU’s EAP Offers Tips for Your Child’s First Day of School


The start of a new school year brings excitement and nervousness for both a parent and child. From finding the perfect outfit for the first day of school to getting back into the swing of school work and preparing lunches, getting back into a routine can be stressful and exhausting for parents and children alike.

Children may need help dealing with the stress that can occur when a routine changes. When a child’s routine has changed they might become forgetful and exhausted more quickly. As a parent, you might be worried about your child’s safety and emotional well-being. There are things you can do to help you and your child prepare for getting back into a routine with the start of school.

Planning ahead will make it easier for both of you. Many school districts will provide you with information on what to expect for sending your child back to school.  There might been new changes to the school or a new teacher that is starting.

Some of the feelings that your child might be feeling could include:

  • Separation anxiety from a parent or caregiver
  • Nervousness about school work
  • Worried about who he or she will sit with at lunch or play with at recess
  • Nervous about being picked on by another child

Here are a few ways that you can help your child ease back into a school routine.

  • Be positive.  If your child is nervous to return back to school and is struggling with being away from the rest of the family, talk to your child and reassure him or her that you will all be there upon returning from school. Offer to tape a family photo to a note book or pack one inside a backpack.
  • Communicate and talk. Be sure to talk to your child about what to expect in his or her new class and what he or she might be learning through the school year.  Offer to help with any homework or questions that might come from new subjects being covered.
  • Encourage new friendships. Children can become nervous and anxious when thinking about who is in their class and who will be there to play during lunch and recess. Encourage your child to make new friends during the first few weeks of school. Most schools do not allow children to pick their classes and they will need to make friends with others that are in their class. Talk to your child about new relationships and how lifetime friends can evolve from being in class with someone.
  • Start a routine early. Many children will be given flexibility to stay up past their “school night” bedtime during the summer. It might be helpful to start getting back to a routine a few weeks before school starts. This will help your child adjust to a schedule and ease back into a routine.
  • Set homework and curfew rules. Before school starts, plan a homework and curfew schedule. Set clear rules and expectations and ask for your child to participate in creating some of the rules.
  • Have fun. Preparing for school usually includes shopping for new school supplies. Something that can help excite your child is by making this a fun tradition. You can also organize your child’s room before returning back to school for the year. Make this into a fun activity. This is a good way to encourage your child to practice different organization skills which might help with getting back into good habits at school.

Contact us:
Your program provides access to tools and other resources online. You can also call us directly to speak to a professional counselor who is available everyday at any time to provide confidential assistance at no cost to you. Visit us online at

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Magellan’s EAP Offers Tips for Sending Your Child to College


Sending a child to college is a big transition for the entire family. This is true whether it’s your first child attending college, or your last child—and you’re facing an “empty nest.” Even if you have a child who isn’t going away to college, attending any form of schooling after high school can be overwhelming and challenging for the child and the family.

Being supportive, available and understanding are some of the best things that parents can do to help their child through this transition.  Here are a few tips that can help both parents and the child transition into a college routine.

  • Discuss practicalities in advance. Before the young person leaves for school or begins studies at a local school, take some time to talk about how to handle basic everyday concerns. This can include things like staying healthy, cooking, following a budget, doing laundry, personal banking, and auto maintenance.
  • Learn about the rules and the available services at the school. Study the college or university’s website and catalog materials. This way you’ll know about policies such as tuition due dates, class drop deadlines, and grade point average requirements. Also learn about the services available at the school and where they’re physically located, from health and wellness to counseling.
  • Keep in close contact. Be there for your child by maintaining regular contact through visits, phone calls, emails, texts and/or video chats. Let your child know he or she can call you for help at any time.
  • Trust your child. You’ve done your job; now let them do theirs. Try to give your child room to make some decisions and mistakes on his or her own. If first semester grades are less than stellar, remember that it takes time for your child to adjust to the new environment.
  • Set up for success. Talk to your child about the multiple demands that he or she will face. Discuss ways to set priorities, follow up on responsibilities and the importance of a positive attitude.
  • Have a discussion about money Talk to your child about the importance of spending money wisely. Set clear expectations and discussion different options such as getting a part-time job.
  • Plan new activities for yourself before your child starts college. To compensate for your child’s absence, plan to make some positive changes. Get involved in new ways at work, take some classes, expand your exercise plan, or find a volunteer opportunity in the community. Think positively about the extra time and energy you’re likely to have to devote to things that interest you.
  • Get support if you need it. If you’re struggling with this new change in the family, seek counseling and support from your program.

Contact us:

SMU’s Employee Assistance Program provides access to tools and other resources online. You can also call us directly to speak to a professional counselor who is available everyday at any time to provide confidential assistance at no cost to you.

Visit us online at

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