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

SMU revises University Policy Manual regarding sick leave, bereavement; changes are the first wave of a comprehensive update

Benefits U logoSMU’s Department of Human Resources is undertaking an overall review of its policies in Chapter 9 of the University Policy Manual. The first major changes will allow newer employees to make immediate use of accrued sick leave and create a formal procedure for taking bereavement leave.

“While previous updates typically have been driven by regulatory changes, Human Resources felt it was time for a comprehensive review,” says Jeff Strese, executive director of human resources.

As of Tuesday, July 1, 2014, the University has eliminated a rule stipulating that new hires be employed by SMU for six months before they can use accrued paid medical absence leave, says Amy Sample, assistant director of human resources for compensation and records management. “No one plans an illness, and this policy change recognizes that,” she says, adding that the update is also consistent with the University’s efforts to promote prevention and wellness in the campus community.

> See SMU Policy Number 9.21: Paid Medical Absence for Staff (log in with your e-mail address and password)

In addition, SMU has created a new procedure to account for leave taken after the death of a family member. Employees may take up to three paid days of bereavement leave during each bereavement period. After the first three days, additional paid hours will be drawn from accrued medical absence leave. If and when these hours are depleted, the hours will be drawn from accrued vacation time.

These changes reflect current best practices among the University’s peer and aspirant institutions, as well as in other industries, says Sample, who is managing the Chapter 9 update project.

See SMU Policy Number 9.39: Staff Bereavement Policy (log in with your e-mail address and password)

The Department of Human Resources sought the advice of several campuswide stakeholder organizations to formulate the first wave of policy updates. Representatives of groups including the SMU Staff Association, the Faculty Senate, the Office of Institutional Access and Equity, the Council of Deans and the President’s Commission on the Status of Women contributed to the final changes.

“We’ll continue to reach out to these representatives as we complete our updates to Chapter 9,” Strese says.

Other updates published on July 1 include minor language changes to the following sections:

  • 9.8 Pre-Employment Screenings
  • 9.12 Personal Conduct
  • 9.13 Corrective Action for Staff
  • 9.16 Termination of Employment
  • 9.28 Tuition Benefits
  • 9.31 Duty to Report Suspected Child Abuse

A comprehensive update to Chapter 9 of the Policy Manual should be completed by the end of the 2014-15 academic year, Sample says. The last major update took place in June 1994, when the Policy Manual was brought online.

News about future changes will be posted in the SMU Forum.

> Bookmark SMU’s online University Policy Manual: smu.edu/policy: (log in with your e-mail address and password)

Nominations now being accepted for 2013 SMU staff awards

UPDATE: Nomination deadlines for all 2013 staff awards have been extended to 5 p.m. Friday, Feb. 7, 2014. Find links to award criteria and nominating materials in this post.

Originally published Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2013

Loretta O'Reilly Hawkins
Loretta O’Reilly Hawkins

The SMU Staff Association is now accepting nominations for the University’s 2013 Presidential Staff Recognition Awards and Loretta O’Reilly Hawkins Award. This year’s deadline is 5 p.m. Friday, Jan. 31, 2014.

The Presidential Staff Recognition Awards “recognize the contribution and excellence of staff employees to SMU,” and the nomination and selection process is managed by the Department of Human Resources.

The awards will be presented at the 2014 Staff Recognition Ceremony scheduled for 10 a.m. Thursday, March 6. Each Presidential award includes a $1,000 cash prize, and each carries unique criteria:

  • New Employee Excellence Award, given to a staff member who has been with SMU for 1 to 3 consecutive years.
  • Continuing Excellence Award, given to a staff member who has been with the University for 4 or more consecutive years.
  • Outstanding Leadership Award, given to a staff member who supervises 1 or more benefit-eligible employees and who “demonstrates exceptional leadership ability within his or her unit or across the University.”
  • Innovation Award, given to a staff member whose “creative, innovative ideas … significantly improve a work process or system or greatly increase the efficiency of an operation or unit.”

> Review the criteria for the Presidential Staff Recognition Awards

The Loretta O’Reilly Hawkins Award is presented by the SMU Staff Association to permanent full-time employees “who have exemplified the qualities and characteristics of Loretta O’Reilly Hawkins as a member of the University community by demonstrating integrity, productivity and devotion to SMU and family.”

The award was endowed by Dallas E. Hawkins II to honor his mother and her life as well as to benefit the university she served as a staff member from 1924 to 1961.

> Learn more about Loretta and about the award bearing her name

Hawkins Award nominees must have been permanent, full-time SMU staff employees for at least 5 five years as of the month of the nomination deadline and be in good standing with the University. The award includes a cash prize of $1,500.

Students, supervisors, employees, co-workers and colleagues are welcome to submit nominations for all awards. Honorees will be named at the 2013 Staff Recognition Ceremony Tuesday, Feb. 12.

Find lists of past Presidential and Hawkins award winners

Send Presidential Staff Recognition Award nominations to SMU Human Resources, to the attention of Rebecca Sampson, SMU Box 232. Loretta O’Reilly Hawkins Award nominations may be sent to Staff Association President Darrah Rippy, SMU Box 181. Mark all nomination materials confidential.

Download Presidential Award criteria and nomination forms from SMU Human Resources
Find Loretta Hawkins Award criteria and nomination forms at the Staff Association homepage

Health care options in the spotlight at 2013 HR Fair

Stock image of 'Good Health, This Way' freeway signVendors from SMU’s medical plans will be on hand to discuss your health care options at the University’s 2013 Human Resources Fair Oct. 15.

You can learn more about the University’s health, savings and retirement plans during the fair, scheduled for 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballrooms.

Flu shots will be available at the Memorial Health Center station, and SMU Recreational Sports therapists will be on hand to provide chair massages. In addition, Baylor Health Care System will offer bone-density screenings; no appointment is necessary.

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

SMU 2014 Open Enrollment takes place Oct. 12-31, 2013

Benefits U logoSMU’s 2014 Open Enrollment period began Saturday, Oct. 12 and ends Thursday, Oct. 31, 2013. 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 2014 open enrollment, you must take action if:

  • You want to make changes to your current coverage, including adding or dropping dependents.
  • You want to participate in one or both of the Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) or the Health Savings Account (HSA) in 2014. You must re-enroll in the FSAs or the HSA even if you participated in 2013.

If you do not make any changes during open enrollment, your 2013 elections will continue for the upcoming calendar year, except for contributions to the FSAs and the HSA.

In 2014, significant provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) require changes that may affect you:

  • Beginning Jan. 1, 2014, all U.S. citizens will be required by law to have health insurance.
  • If you do not have health insurance in 2014, you will pay a penalty to the federal government. The penalty is the greater of $95 (up to three per family, or $385) or 1 percent of your income.

Your health insurance coverage options for 2014 include:

  • An employer-sponsored health plan like SMU’s or a spouse’s employer health plan.
  • A health plan available through the Health Insurance Marketplace.

All of the SMU Health and Wellness Plan medical options meet or exceed the government’s “minimum essential value” criteria. As a result, SMU’s benefits-eligible faculty and staff members and their eligible dependents will not be eligible for a premium subsidy in the Health Insurance Marketplace.

> Learn more about the Health Insurance Marketplace at healthcare.gov

SMU will continue to offer the $1,000, $2,000, $2,500 and $5,000 deductible options. Medical premiums for all University plans except the $5,000 deductible plan will increase 5 percent – half the national healthcare inflation average of 10 percent.

Specialist office visit and emergency room copays will increase in 2014. The Primary Care Physician (PCP) copay of $25 and the Urgent Care Center copay of $35 will remain the same.

Changes in copay will vary depending on the medical plan you choose for 2014:

  • For the $1,000 or $2,000 deductible plans, the copay for specialist office visits will increase from $40 to $75. The emergency room copay will increase from $100 to $300.
  • For the $2,500 deductible plan, copays do not apply until the deductible is met. The copay for specialist office visits will increase from $40 to $75. The emergency room copay will increase from $100 to $300.
  • The $5,000 deductible plan has no copays. All covered services apply toward the deductible.

> Find more information in SMU’s 2014 Benefits Guide

Express Scripts will continue to administer SMU’s pharmacy plan in 2014; however, CVS and Walgreens pharmacies will no longer be in the retail pharmacy network available to SMU faculty and staff members.

Participating pharmacies have agreed to offer greater prescription discounts to remain in the retail pharmacy network, including Costco, Kroger, Sam’s Club, Target, Tom Thumb and Wal-Mart, as well as several independently owned stores.

The Express Scripts web portal, Express-Scripts.com/SMU, enables faculty and staff members to get retail and mail-order pricing information for prescription medications.

> Read more about SMU’s new pharmacy plan for 2014

SMU has provided on-campus health screenings for a number of years. Beginning in October 2013, those screenings will be replaced by a more comprehensive preventive health check-up provided by Catapult Health. The preventive health check-up will continue to be free for all faculty and staff members.

The Catapult Health check-up takes about 45 minutes and includes these elements:

  • Private 20-minute check-up with a health technician
    • Lab-accurate finger-prick blood test that measures cholesterol, triglycerides and blood glucose
    • Biometric values measurements including blood pressure and waist circumference
  • Private 10-minute consultation with a nurse practitioner
    • Review Personal Health Report and develop a Personal Action Plan
    • Review listing of programs SMU makes available to help you improve identified health risk factors

In addition, the University will offer the opportunity to participate in Healthy Outcomes, a voluntary pilot program created to reward healthy behavior by encouraging us to become more aware of our health status and take action to improve it, if needed.

> Read more about SMU’s Healthy Outcomes voluntary pilot program

SMU uses a secure online open-enrollment application available through Access.SMU. To make your benefits elections for 2014:

  • Enter your Access.SMU 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 2014.

More information on vendors and plan changes will be available at SMU’s 2013 Human Resources Fair, 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 18 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 Thursday, Oct. 17 to Monday, Oct. 28 designed to help faculty and staff members better understand the medical plans and other resources available to them. RSVP online for the “How To Be a Better Healthcare Consumer” session of your choice.

> Consult SMU’s 2014 Benefits Guide on the web

Related:
> New SMU health program pays incentives for wellness, prevention
SMU to use new pharmacy network in 2014
SMU’s Fall 2013 flu shot clinics begin Sept. 25

New SMU health program pays incentives for wellness, prevention

Benefits U logoIn an effort to improve the health of SMU’s faculty and staff, while helping to control rising medical costs, the University is offering a voluntary health and wellness program with a $300 cash incentive for those who successfully complete the program.

Healthy Outcomes, a voluntary pilot program, is designed to reward healthy behavior and to acknowledge the crucial role of prevention in reducing the cost of health care, says Jeff Strese, executive director of SMU Human Resources. “We want to encourage employees to be aware of their health status and to take action, if needed.”

The program is a response to significant portions of the Affordable Care Act that go into effect Jan. 1, 2014. The healthcare reform law encourages better outcomes and lower costs by permitting employers to offer incentives to employees who take steps to become more aware of their health issues and reduce their known risk factors.

A key component of the program is a baseline check-up designed to identify specific health risks and help participants take steps to maintain good health or improve risk factors.

Catapult Health logoSMU has contracted with Catapult Health to administer the check-ups on campus. The 45-minute Baseline Check-up will measure blood pressure, height, weight, and waist circumference. The Check-up includes a finger-prick blood screening which will identify any risk factors associated with HDL cholesterol, triglycerides and blood glucose. You will also have a private consultation with a nurse practitioner to help you establish your health goals.

The Check-up meets the screening requirements for those participating in Wellpower and for those who wish to participate in the 2014 Deductible Discount Program.

The Healthy Outcomes Program is open to all SMU faculty and staff members enrolled in a SMU medical plan on January 1, 2014.

There are three steps to completing the pilot successfully and earning a $300 Healthy Outcomes Achievement Award:

  1. Complete a Baseline Check-up before Friday, Nov. 25, 2013 using Catapult Health or your primary care physician. During the Baseline Check-up, you will complete a Commitment Form to officially join the program.
  2. After your Baseline Check-up, your Achievement Period begins. You will have until Thursday, May 15, 2014 to meet your health goals based on your screening results:
    1. If you have no risk factors, your goal will be to maintain your good health by keeping your lab values in the normal range.
    2. If you have one or more risk factors, your goal will be to improve your lab values for each risk factor identified.
    3. Catapult will provide information about SMU’s wellness resources that may help you achieve your goals, or you may select a program of your choice and/or work directly with your primary care physician.
    4. If you are pregnant, you may download and complete a maternity waiver form found on the appointment scheduler website.
    5. If you have a medical condition that would impede your ability to meet the program goals, Catapult and your physician can work with you to develop an alternative program. Email Catapult to request a medical condition form to be completed by your physician.
  3. Complete the Results Check-up before Thursday, May 15, 2014 using Catapult Health or your primary care physician. The Results Check-up will include another finger-prick blood screening that will determine if you met your health goals during the Achievement Period.

Check-up results and information are protected by the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). SMU will not have access to your individually identifiable health information.

SMU will receive a list of names along with the Check-up date in order to properly credit participants with completing a screening for Wellpower and the 2014 Deductible Discount. If you volunteer to participate in the Healthy Outcomes program, your name will be released to SMU only if you qualify for the $300 cash incentive. SMU will not know if you volunteered for the program, but did not complete it successfully.

The on-campus Baseline Check-ups will begin Tuesday, Oct. 29 and continue through Friday, Nov. 15 on the main campus. The SMU-in-Plano campus will host the final day of Check-ups on Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2013. Make an appointment online at www.timeconfirm.com/smu or by calling (214) 269-1513 and following the automated instructions. The online and phone schedulers are both available 24/7.

The Check-up is open to all benefit-eligible staff and faculty. Spouses and family members are not eligible to participate at this time.

Additional information about how to use results from your own physician, screening/check-up locations, directions to schedule your appointment and more may be found on the SMU HR website.

Watch your mailbox for more information from SMU Human Resources.

Related:
> SMU to use new pharmacy network in 2014
SMU’s Fall 2013 flu shot clinics begin Sept. 25

SMU to use new pharmacy network in 2014

Benefits U logoImportant changes to SMU’s Health and Wellness Plan pharmacy network are coming in 2014 – “changes that should help the University group health plan and its faculty and staff members save more than $1 million on their prescriptions over the next three years,” says Jeff Strese, executive director of human resources.

Participating pharmacies have agreed to offer greater prescription discounts to remain in the SMU network, which serves all of the University’s medical plans. They include Costco, Kroger, Sam’s Club, Target, Tom Thumb and Wal-Mart, as well as several independently owned stores.

CVS and Walgreens pharmacies will no longer be part of Express Scripts’ SMU network. If you have recently filled a prescription at a CVS or Walgreens, you will receive a letter from plan administrator Express Scripts providing the locations of three network pharmacies closest to the pharmacy last visited.

Express Scripts logoExpress Scripts has created a web portal, Express-Scripts.com/SMU, that will allow faculty and staff members to compare prescription prices at more than 450 Dallas-Fort Worth area retailers. The site will be open during the University’s 2014 open-enrollment period, Oct. 12-31, 2013.

If you currently use CVS or Walgreens but want to take advantage of the new prescription discounts, you must transfer your prescriptions to a network pharmacy by Jan. 1, 2014. You can complete a transfer in one of three ways:

  • Take your prescription container to the new network pharmacy of your choice; they will contact your current pharmacy to transfer the prescription.
  • Call your new pharmacy and ask them to contact your current pharmacy for your prescription information.
  • Ask your doctor to call your new pharmacy with your prescription information.
  • Ask SMU’s Compass Health Pro, Jeremy Garrett, to do the work for you. He can research Express Scripts’ contracted rates at pharmacies near you after Jan. 1, when Express Scripts loads its online database of 2014 prescription pricing. Call after Jan. 1 with your Rx information at (800) 513-1667, ext. 726.

If you currently use a CVS or Walgreens pharmacy to fill prescriptions, you can continue to do so. However, you will pay the full retail cost without plan discounts, and the costs will not apply toward your medical plan deductible or out-of-pocket maximum.

After extensive analysis with Express Scripts, SMU’s Department of Human Resources learned that 99 percent of faculty and staff members currently filling prescriptions at a CVS or Walgreens pharmacy have access to an alternative network pharmacy within less than three miles of their current pharmacy location, says Sheri Starkey, director of total compensation and senior associate director of human resources.

“By asking some faculty and staff members to move to our new retail pharmacy network, all faculty and staff will benefit from the savings our plan will experience over the next three years,” she adds. “This change is one step we’re taking to ensure the continuation of a comprehensive and affordable benefit plan.”

The University’s mail-order prescription plan will remain unchanged.

More information on the new SMU pharmacy plan will be included in the 2014 open-enrollment packages, scheduled for delivery in early October 2013.

> Learn more about 2014 open enrollment at smu.edu/hr

Related:
SMU’s Fall 2013 flu shot clinics begin Sept. 25

New series on SMU healthcare and benefits for 2013-14

SMU Benefits U logoKey provisions of the federal Affordable Care Act will become law Jan. 1, 2014. As SMU’s open enrollment period (Oct. 12-31, 2013) approaches, faculty and staff members will receive important information about new benefits programs and changes to existing ones.

Beginning the week of Sept. 16, 2013, SMU Forum will post a series of articles on topics ranging from prescription services to wellness initiatives. These articles will appear throughout the 2013-14 academic year to help keep the University community informed about health and wellness issues.

Bookmark our Benefits tag to keep track of this series as each story appears.

> Visit SMU Human Resources online

Health coaching available at SMU beginning Sept. 18, 2013

Paige Shouse, Baylor Health Coach
Baylor Health Coach Paige Shouse returns as SMU’s on-campus wellness coach during the 2013-14 academic year.

Baylor Health Coach Paige Shouse will return to SMU to provide on-campus wellness coaching during the 2013-14 academic year. She will available for consultation on most Wednesdays beginning Sept. 18, 2013.

A 5-year veteran of corporate wellness programs, Shouse served as SMU’s on-campus health coach in 2012-13. She helps Wellpower participants set and achieve wellness goals through one-on-one counseling in person, by phone and via e-mail. She also hosts seminars and webinars on wellness topics throughout the year.

> Learn more about Wellpower at livehealthysmu.org

Shouse holds a bachelor’s degree in food and nutrition and certification as a Health/Fitness Specialist from the American College of Sports Medicine. In addition, she holds certification as a Wellness Program Coordinator through the National Wellness Institute.

To set up a consultation with Shouse, e-mail wellpower@smu.edu.

> Read more from the SMU Human Resources blog

SMU seeks full participation in Protection of Minors program

SMU President R. Gerald Turner has requested that all University employees complete an online training program on their responsibilities under Texas law to report suspected child abuse.

The course, “Program for the Protection of Minors,” requires approximately one hour to complete and includes a module on fundamentals of the Clery Act. Per University Policy #9.31, all SMU employees are required to complete the training.

The program is offered as a partnership among SMU’s Office of Police and Risk Management, SMU Human Resources, and the Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center (DCAC). The policy requirement applies to the SMU-in-Taos and SMU-in-Plano campuses as well as to the main campus.

> Complete SMU’s Program for the Protection of Minors on Blackboard

Texas colleges and universities are required to comply with the law laid out in Senate Bill 1414 relating to abuse-prevention training for employees who work with campus programs for minors, which took effect Sept. 1, 2011. For the first phase of training, an SMU task force spent five months identifying the University populations that work directly with minor children, says Jeff Strese, executive director of human resources.

All SMU camp operators, coordinators, and employees who work with minors completed a version of the program by June 1, 2012, Strese adds. In addition to the training in Blackboard, the SMU Police Department has completed DCAC’s first-responder training, which is recognized for its collaborative and child-centered approach to protection of minors, says Associate Vice President and Chief Risk Officer Anita Ingram.

Phase Two of the training rollout is currently in progress for all benefit-eligible faculty and staff, as well as student workers. The deadline for completion is Tuesday, April 30, 2013. The third phase will include training for temporary employees, including adjunct faculty.

The University has committed to exceeding state standards for compliance, said President Turner in a video introduction to the program. Turner and the President’s Executive Council have already completed the program.

Log in to Blackboard at courses.smu.edu with your 8-digit SMU ID and e-mail password. Find the training program on the right side of the page under My Courses (HRPPM-01: SMU Program for the Protection of Minors).

If you believe you have already completed the program, check your training summary in Access.SMU or contact SMU HR to review your training records. For more information, contact Mary Stall, 214-768-2194.

Find the full training sequence and more information on Blackboard