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Chancellor Lesa Roe Update Header

 

UNT World Faculty & Staff:

As we approach the Fall Holiday Break there is much to be thankful across our UNT System. This fall we are enrolling more students than ever before – nearly 50,000 across the system – and over the past several years we have also grown degrees awarded, research, endowments and our overall financial position. Simply put, our ability to impact the North Texas region and our state as a whole has never been greater. 

I am thankful for the opportunity to have served as UNT System Chancellor these last 4+ years. The opportunity to change lives for the better through education and research is one that I will always cherish. I am deeply appreciative of my incredible leadership team, and truly thankful for the hard work and dedication of faculty and staff across the UNT System.

Our UNT System Board of Regents has been a tremendous partner in providing support and guidance to drive us forward. I am grateful for their advocacy during my time as chancellor and I’m also appreciative of the collaborative relationships with our campus presidents.

Congratulations to UNT Health Science Center President Michael Williams on being named “sole finalist” to fill the Chancellor position upon my retirement in 2022. As Dr. Williams prepares to take the reins I wanted to express my gratitude to the entire UNT System community. It has been a great privilege to lead the UNT System in service to our students, the Dallas-Fort Worth Region and the great state of Texas. 

Thank you to our institutions and the local community for embracing me – I’m very proud of all that we have accomplished, and I look forward to following the UNT System’s continued progress and cheering all of you on in the future.

High Fives Section

REGENTS NAME MICHAEL WILLIAMS SOLE FINALIST

On Nov. 8 the UNT System Board of Regents announced UNT Health Science Center President Michael Williams as sole finalist to become the system's next chancellor. Dr. Williams has served as HSC’s President since 2012, and previously served on the UNT System Board of Regents. Under his leadership, HSC saw record enrollment without raising tuition since 2013, created more than 650 new medical residency slots for the DFW region, opening a new Pharmacy School, established a Lena Pope Early Learning Center on campus, all while growing research awards by more than $115 million dollars. HSC was also ranked first among U.S. medical schools for innovation and research impact by the George W. Bush Institute under the leadership of Dr. Williams. CLICK HERE for additional details.

UNT SYSTEM OFFICE OF DEI PROGRESSING WELL

Since the July arrival of Dannetta Bland, our first-ever UNT System Chief Diversity Officer, we have very deliberately accelerated our efforts across UNT World in terms of diversity, equity and inclusion. From Day 1 Dannetta hit the ground running, immersing herself in listening tours, while digging into data and formulating a strategic plan for DEI. The UNT System's new Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion is in the final stages of rolling out a focused mission and vision, as well as values, drivers and definitions to help propel us forward as leaders in this important space. The office is also on the cusp of embarking on a UNT World DEI assessment that will help us understand how to best leverage our strengths and take advantage of opportunities that lie ahead. CLICK HERE for additional details in a Q&A with Dannetta Bland. 

UNT WORLD REMAINS STATE LEADER IN HUB USAGE

The University of North Texas System and our member institutions continue to be leaders for the use of Historically Underutilized Businesses (HUB) as vendors. The State of Texas recently released its annual HUB report for state-funded agencies, and I am proud to share that our system ranked No. 1 in Texas for HUB usage among public university systems. UNT Dallas ranked No. 1 among all universities for HUB engagement for the third consecutive fiscal year, with 44% HUB utilization. UNT was the top-ranked flagship university in Texas with 24% HUB utilization, and HSC ranked among the state's top graduate medical institutions with 10% HUB utilization.     

Final Thoughts Section

MEMBER INSTITUTIONS GIVING BACK

This Saturday, Nov. 20, UNT Dallas will host a public holiday food distribution event on campus in partnership with North Texas Food Bank. There will be approximately 1,500 families provided with boxes of food for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday. 

Next month, on Dec. 11-12, UNT Health Science Center will team up with Remote Area Medical (RAM) — a major nonprofit provider of pop-up clinics delivering free, quality, dental, vision and medical care to underserved and uninsured individuals — to bring a free health clinic to Fort Worth. The free clinic will provide dental, vision, and medical services to patients on a first-come, first-served basis. CLICK HERE for details or to sign up as a volunteer. 
 

UPCOMING HOLIDAY SCHEDULES
Please note that all UNT System and campus offices will be closed for Fall Holiday Break on Nov. 25-26. UNT System Administration offices, as well as campus offices a UNT and UNT Dallas, will close at noon on Wednesday, Nov. 24. HSC will operate as normal on Nov. 24.  All UNT System and campus offices will re-open for normal business on Monday, Nov. 29. 

Looking ahead to December, our Winter Holiday Break will include Dec. 24, as well as Dec. 27- 31, 2021. As always, a a full holiday schedule listing can be found online at HR.UNTSystem.edu/Holidays
 
Enjoy a happy, healthy and safe Thanksgiving. Thank you for your support!

 

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Lesa B. Roe
Chancellor

Chancellor Lesa Roe Update Header

 

UNT World Faculty & Staff:

UNT announced one of the most significant milestones in its history last week, accepting an invitation to join the American Athletic Conference (also known as the American or AAC) for intercollegiate athletics as soon as 2023. This exciting move from Conference USA will mean greater financial resources for our athletics department as we compete for championships in all sports, while also providing a significant increase in regional and national media exposure that will elevate the brand of the university as a whole.

 

 

 

The American announced a lucrative and comprehensive media rights extension with ESPN in May of 2019, providing the conference with a strong, extensive presence on ESPN’s primary television networks (ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU). Since the extension took effect in the 2020-21 academic year, a minimum of 40 regular-season football telecasts and 60 regular-season men’s basketball games per season appear on those primary networks. Nearly every conference-controlled game in all sports will appear either on an ESPN network or on ESPN+. The football championship game, all rounds of the men’s basketball championship, and multiple rounds of the women’s basketball championship, will be on linear ESPN television networks. 

As the American looked to expand, UNT checked multiple boxes as a perfect candidate: rapidly improving athletics, top-notch sports facilities, record enrollment growth, location in a major market and rising prominence in both academics and research. 

Three Mean Green teams won conference championships in the 2020-2021 academic year, and the men’s basketball team won the program's first-ever NCAA Tournament game. Additionally, the Mean Green earned its fourth bowl berth in five years with a trip to the 2020 Myrtle Beach Bowl. Academically, UNT student-athletes completed their fourth and fifth consecutive semesters above a 3.0 cumulative GPA, the longest such streak in department history.

Also set to join The American as soon as 2023 are: Charlotte, Florida Atlantic, Rice, UAB and UTSA. The new invitees will join existing members East Carolina, Memphis, Navy (football only), SMU, Temple, Tulane, Tulsa, USF and Wichita State (basketball only).

Congratulations to President Smatresk, Director of Athletics Wren Baker and the entire UNT community – you dreamed big, worked hard and achieved your vision of creating a brighter future for everyone involved at our flagship university. 

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LEGISLATORS AWARD $273M TO UNTS INSTITUTIONS

Texas legislators reached an agreement last week to provide more than $3 billion to colleges and universities across the state to accommodate growth. The funding bill now heads to the desk of Gov. Greg Abbott. Once signed into law, the legislation will allocate $273 million to the UNT System, including $113 million to UNT for a Science and Technology Research Building, $100 million to UNT Dallas for a Science Building and nearly $60 million to HSC for campus optimization and space realignment to repurpose outdated space into flexible, multi-purpose rooms more useful for activities requiring skill-based educational components. It would also change the name of “tuition revenue bonds” to “capital construction assistance projects” after lawmakers declared the term was confusing. CLICK HERE for more.  

UNT DALLAS ALUM WALKS AGAIN, SHARES STORY

UNT Dallas alum Corey Borner's story is one of determination, courage and faith and has been featured nationally on Good Morning America, The Washington Post and many other programs and publications. Corey suffered a spinal cord injury playing high school football in 2009 that knocked him down, but not out. After multiple surgeries, he learned to function in a wheelchair and adopted the mantra, “Find a way.” Indeed he has found a way – to graduate from high school, graduate from college and become a motivational speaker. Confined to a wheelchair for 12 years, Corey promised himself and others that he would walk again – and he did just that in August when he walked across the stage to accept his diploma from UNT Dallas. CLICK HERE to listen to Corey Borner tell his story first-hand on our We Are North Texas podcast.

HSC AWARDED $50 MILLION FOR HEALTH DISPARITIES

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced a $50 million award to the University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth (HSC) to lead the coordinating center for the Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning Consortium to Advance Health Equity and Researcher Diversity, or AIM-AHEAD, program. HSC will lead the multi-institutional coordinating center, which brings together experts in community engagement, artificial intelligence/machine learning (AI/ML), health equity research, data science training and data infrastructure. AIM-AHEAD was created to close the gaps in the AI/ML field, which currently lacks diversity in its researchers and in data, including electronic health records (EHRs). CLICK HERE for more.  

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2021 UNT SYSTEM ANNUAL REPORT & DECEMBER 6 TOWN HALL WITH PRESIDENTS

Despite the many pandemic challenges we faced, 2021 was an incredible year for our system and member institutions. Our 2021 UNT System Annual Report documents the year that was and is available online at UNTSystem.edu/annual-report

Presidents Mong, Smatresk and Williams will join me in reflecting on 2021 and recognizing the extraordinary efforts of our faculty and staff at our UNT System Town Hall for employees across the system on December 6 (virtually) – please mark your calendars and look for a detailed announcement soon.  

PLEASE CONSIDER SUPPORTING THE STATE EMPLOYEE CHARITABLE CAMPAIGN

The coronavirus pandemic has created many challenges for Texans over the past 19 months – physical and mental health, financial hardship, childcare challenges and all the stress that has come with this unprecedented public health crisis. As we work to put the pandemic behind us, it’s important to remember that others may still be struggling.

During tough times, it can be incredibly uplifting to help others. If you are in position to give back to those in need during this challenging time, I encourage you to consider making a charitable contribution through the State Employee Charitable Campaign (SECC) this month. Now through Oct. 31, UNT World faculty and staff have the unique opportunity to make a collective difference in our community through this annual fundraising effort of state employees in Texas.

The SECC allows employees of public universities and state agencies throughout Texas to donate to a number of local, statewide or national charities in a one-time gift or through payroll deduction. In order to qualify, SECC Charities must operate with a low overhead of less than 10% statewide. Giving through the SECC is a great way for you to support a favorite cause or charity.

To donate online, click here and follow the easy, step-by-step instructions. First-time donors will be asked to complete a brief registration form. 

Thank you for your support!

 

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Lesa B. Roe
Chancellor

Chancellor Lesa Roe Update Header

 

UNT World Faculty & Staff:

Thank you to those who participated in today's UNT World Town Hall. If there's one thing we have learned over the past 18 months of the pandemic, it's that communicating is a critical piece of becoming a Best Place to Work. 

Our quarterly town halls are designed to keep you informed and answer your questions. Based on the questions we received in advance of today's town hall, it's clear that many of us are still working through pandemic-related challenges – some of us have felt isolated, or have been challenged by childcare issues or faced economic challenges. Some have fallen ill and some of have lost people dear to them. 

Last month, I shared news about our new Employee Assistance Program (EAP) in this space and I feel compelled to mention that again as we continue to encourage our team members to make mental health a priority. If you, or a member of your household, is struggling with stress, anxiety, depression or other emotional challenges, please consider utilizing the support services offered by ComPsych through our EAP. Services are offered 24 hours a day at no cost and include confidential emotional support, work-life solutions, critical incident stress management, legal guidance and financial resources.

I'd like to applaud our three presidents for also making mental health a priority. Our UNT Health Science Center community recently lost a beloved team member, Jose Diaz, and President Williams held a healing town hallearlier this week to talk about this loss and other challenges related to coronavirus. Similarly, President Smatresk spent time discussing pandemic challenges within the UNT community in his recent State of the University speech and President Mong also uses his UNT Dallas Town Halls to check in on the emotional well-being of his team. 

The good news is that all three UNT System campuses have taken significant precautions to help prevent large outbreaks and these action plans are working. Positive cases on all of our campues have dropped and current data across Dallas-Fort Worth suggests that Delta variant cases are trending downward throughout the North Texas region. 

That doesn’t mean we can let our guard down – we will continue to monitor local COVID-19 data and react accordingly to ensure a safe environment across all our locations. Let's also work together to keep our eye on colleagues, friends, family – and ourselves – from a mental-health standpoint. Asking, "Are you OK?" is a great first step toward helping someone who is facing emotional challenges.

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HSC'S SIMS SHARES STORY TO HELP PREVENT SUICIDE

September is National Suicide Prevention Month. As part of our efforts to spotlight mental health awareness and support suicide prevention, we recorded a special episode of our We Are North Texas podcast with John Sims, Director of HSC's SaferCare Texas. John's son Clay took his own life four years ago and John has made it his personal mission to share how suicide can be prevented. Thank you to John for opening up and sharing his emotional story to help us better understand how we can help others and prevent suicide. CLICK HERE to listen. If you know someone in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text HELLO to 741741. Both services are free, confidential and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 

UNT WORLD CELEBRATES HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH

Each year the UNT System observes National Hispanic Heritage Month from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 by celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. This year our celebration includes a video series titled "Mi Familia" that features employees of Hispanic descent from across UNT World being interviewed family members or close friends about their heritage. Each week during Hispanic Heritage Month, the UNT System Office of Communications & Marketing will post a new video that shares stories of heritage from employees like Marilu Vargas-Howard, Sergio Renovato and Dolly Garcia. Visit UNTSystem.edu/HHM to view the videos each week, as well as past Hispanic Heritage Month celebration videos.

SARAH FULLER NOW BLAZING TRAILS IN DENTON

Sarah Fuller became a national sensation at Vanderbilt University last year when she became the first woman to score in a Power Five college football game, just weeks after leading the Vanderbilt soccer team to an SEC championship. Today, she is a graduate student at UNT, as well as the starting goalkeeper for Mean Green soccer. Sarah joined our We Are North Texas podcast to take listeners through her incredible pathway to Denton that included an improbable championship run, two epic kicks that changed college football forever, participation in the 2021 Presidential Inauguration and a walk down the red carpet for the ESPY Awards. She also shares what brought her to UNT, why she loves playing for the Mean Green and what she wants for a career after she graduates with an MBA in Sports Entertainment Management. Listen to Sarah's inspirational story on Spotify or Apple Podcasts

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UNT SYSTEM, INCLUSIVE OF INSTITUTIONS, NAMED BEST PLACE FOR WORKING PARENTS
Best Place for Working Parents™ Dallas is a new initiative, presented by the Dallas Regional Chamber, to recognize family-friendly workplaces in the Dallas Region and raise awareness of the importance of family-friendly benefits and policies. I am proud to share that the UNT System, inclusive of our member institutions, has received this designation – this is an exciting milestone in our Best Place to Work journey. 

BE HEARD! PLEASE COMPLETE THE ANNUAL GALLUP ENGAGEMENT SURVEY BY OCT. 8
As we work together to shape the future of UNT World, it is critical for our leaders to listen to our faculty and staff. With that in mind, you were sent the Gallup Q12 Engagement Survey earlier this week.

As a reminder, the Gallup Q12 Engagement survey is a tool that measures performance management needs, employee motivation and psychological commitment. This annual inquiry provides you with an opportunity to anonymously share input on what it’s like to work for the UNT System or one of our member institutions.

Remember, this is not just a survey, this is your chance to help to make UNT World a better place for you, your coworkers, our students and community members. Engagement is not a quick fix, but a journey that will help us further our overall mission. In the weeks ahead, you will receive communications on what to look for, how we plan to share the results and resources to guide teams on what to do after they have received their results.

Thank you for completing the survey prior to our Oct. 8 deadline. 

 

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Lesa B. Roe
Chancellor

Chancellor Lesa Roe Update Header

 

UNT World Faculty & Staff:

It’s always special when students return to our campuses at the start of each new academic year, but this fall is perhaps the most inspiring experience in my four years as Chancellor.

We’ve overcome so many challenges over the last 18 months to reach this point. And while coronavirus continues to present us with obstacles, early headcount numbers indicate that all three of our member institutions will have increased enrollment this fall, making it likely that we will surpass last year's system-wide enrollment record of 47,000 students. Earlier this week President Smatresk shared UNT's enrollment success this fall, including the university's largest freshman class ever, on KRLD.  

We are able to offer a full on-campus experience to students across the system by respecting one another, being adaptable and being resilient. Thank you for your dedication to serve and fulfill our important missions across UNT World.

Certainly, this is not an easy time and all of us can experience emotional challenges such as stress, anxiety and depression. Our emotional well-being is just as important as our physical health and prioritizing the mental health of our students, faculty and staff is a focal point across our system. With that in mind, I am excited to announce the rollout of a new, more robust Employee Assistance Program (EAP) for our employees and their households, effective September 1, 2021.

Administered by ComPsych, our new EAP offers no-cost solutions to life’s challenges, 24 hours a day. Services offered include confidential emotional support, work-life solutions, critical incident stress management, legal guidance and financial resources.

Full details of the program will be announced next week. In the interim, you can learn more about your new EAP benefits by watching the accompanying video for a short, virtual orientation that helps you better understand how to utilize and access these helpful resources. Providing emotional well-being resources to employees is critical in today’s modern workplace and we are committed to helping you and your loved ones live your best lives.  

 

 

High Fives Section

UNT DALLAS PARTNERS WITH YMCA TO SERVE YOUTH

UNT Dallas teamed up with the YMCA this summer to provide free youth development programs to children ages 10-17 living in underserved communities. The partnership is now expanding this fall in the form of an after-school program under the umbrella of UNTD's Rising Blazersinitiative, which fosters youth leadership development. The programs, which include physical and enrichment activities, are available at the Park South YMCA in South Dallas and the Moorland Family YMCA in Oak Cliff. “Through new partnerships with organizations like the YMCA, we’re able to offer additional programs that will help impact and change the lives of children in some of Dallas’ most disadvantaged communities,” said Nakia Douglas, executive director of TRIO and Pre-Collegiate Programs at UNT Dallas. The partnership was featured in The Dallas Morning News. 

UNT TO HOST TEDx EVENT ON CAMPUS, OCTOBER 1

Registration is open for TEDxUNT: Create the Change, which will take place from 1 -- 4 p.m., Oct. 1 in the University Union. You can now register for your free ticket, which is the name badge you will pick up outside the University Ballroom prior to the event. In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) created TEDx — a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together worldwide to share a TED-like experience. TEDxUNT is our licensed event. Attendees will hear from students and faculty as we explore topics ranging from research and innovation to social justice and sustainability, as well as enjoy performances by students in our College of Music. Email tedxunt@unt.edu if you have any questions. 

HSC TO HOLD LEGENDS FUNDRAISER ON OCTOBER 4 

Following a year hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic, UNT Health Science Center will hold its annual Legends Concert Series charitable fundraiser on Oct. 4 at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth. Featuring live music performances by Texas legends ZZ Top and Pat Green, the event will raise funds for the HSC Legends Scholarship Fund, which supports student scholarships for all six HSC schools. Since the inaugural Legends event in 2013, more than $2 million has been raised to support HSC’s patient-centered education, ground-breaking research and outstanding clinical care. To support the HSC Legends Scholarship Fund, please contact Lee Ann Embry at 817-735-0204 or LeeAnn.Embry@unthsc.eduto purchase tickets, VIP packages or sponsorships. A portion of all Legends purchases made through HSC is tax deductible.

Final Thoughts Section

ANNUAL GALLUP ENGAGEMENT SURVEY TO BE DISTRIBUTED ON SEPT. 27
As we move forward toward a “new normal,” there’s no doubt that our workplace is evolving. As we work together to shape the future of UNT World, it is critical for our leaders to listen to our faculty and staff. With that in mind, the Gallup Q12 Engagement Survey will launch on Sept. 27, 2021 for all employees at all locations.

As a reminder, the Gallup Q12 Engagement survey is a tool that measures performance management needs, employee motivation and psychological commitment. This annual inquiry provides you with an opportunity to anonymously share input on what it’s like to work for the UNT System or one of our member institutions.

Remember, this is not just a survey, this is your chance to do your part in helping to make UNT World a better place for you, your coworkers, our students and community members. Engagement is not a quick fix, but a journey that will help us further our overall mission. In the weeks ahead, you will receive communications on what to look for, how we plan to share the results, and resources to guide teams on what to do after they have received their results.
 

SAVE THE DATE: NEXT UNT WORLD TOWN HALL ON SEPTEMBER 30 AT 2 PM
I will hold our next quarterly UNT World Town Hall virtually on Sept. 30 at 2 p.m. – please mark your calendars. Full details of our September Town Hall  will be announced next week and, as always, work-related questions for me may be sent to communications@untsystem.edu

Thank you for your support,

 

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Lesa B. Roe
Chancellor

Chancellor Lesa Roe Update Header

 

UNT World Faculty & Staff:

Across UNT World we are excited for a fall with fully opened campuses at UNT, UNT Health Science Center and UNT Dallas. Over the last 18 months our COVID-19 response teams have done an incredible job of helping us navigate the many challenges of the pandemic and they will continue to make the safety of students, faculty and staff our top priority as we resume normal operations this fall. 

If there’s one thing we’ve learned about the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s that circumstances are consistently evolving. Citing new evidence that the delta variant of the coronavirus could be spread through rare “breakthrough” infections in vaccinated people, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week announced it now recommends increased public mask use when indoors in regions where the variant is spreading quickly – this includes all of North Texas. 

Please note that each campus will continue to be in touch with details about their fall plans. We have shared CDC guidance throughout the pandemic and will continue to post the latest recommendations to our UNT System web site. It is important to note that there is no mask mandate in Texas, as summarized in a statement released by Governor Greg Abbott’s office this week:

“Governor Abbott has been clear that the time for government mandating of masks is over—now is the time for personal responsibility. Every Texan has the right to choose whether they will wear a mask, or have their children wear masks. Vaccines are the most effective defense against contracting COVID and becoming seriously ill, and we continue to urge all eligible Texans to get the vaccine. The COVID vaccine will always remain voluntary and never forced in Texas.”

I encourage you to get vaccinated if you have not already, and our medical experts at HSC continue to recommend COVID-19 testing for anyone experiencing symptoms – fever/chills, cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, muscle/body aches, headache, new loss of taste/smell, sore throat, congestion/runny nose, nausea or diarrhea. As noted by Gov. Abbott, this is a time for personal responsibility.

Thank you for your continued flexibility and dedication – your efforts over the past 18 months have us well-positioned for a return to normalcy this fall. 

High Fives Section

UNT DALLAS COLLEGE OF LAW PROFESSOR HONORED

UNT Dallas College of Law professor Cheryl Wattley has been recognized as the Dallas Bar Association’s Trial Lawyer of the Year. Per the DBA's newsletter: "(Professor Wattley's) recognition as the Dallas Bar Association’s Trial Lawyer of the Year is but a confirmation of a life dedicated in service to others, especially those who might not otherwise have a voice." As the Director of Experiential Education for UNT Dallas College of Law, Professor Wattley has created legal clinics, not only within the law school’s physical borders, but also in neighborhoods where legal services are not usually offered. She also created the Community Engagement Program which requires our students to volunteer at least 75 hours of service to local nonprofit agencies, government organizations and community programs prior to commencement.

UNT GRANT TO SUPPORT PH.D. STUDENT DIVERSITY

A new grant that will increase student participation and diversity in Ph.D. science and engineering programs focusing on research relevant to human health is being established at UNT starting in Fall 2021. The Graduate Research Training Initiative for Student Enhancement (G-RISE) grant from the National Institutes of Health will develop a diverse pool of Ph.D. scientists for careers in the biomedical research fields. The $2 million grant will provide financial and mentoring support and other professional development resources for students at UNT from historically minoritized groups in the biomedical research sciences. Pamela Padilla, newly appointed as Dean for UNT's College of Science, will lead this effort alongside faculty members Warren Burggren, Lee Hughes, G. Andrés Cisneros and Vijay Vaidyanathan.

HSC SPONSORS FWISD TEACHING EXCELLENCE CHAIR

UNT Health Science Center is working with the Fort Worth Independent School District to reward outstanding educators by sponsoring the Chair for Teaching Excellence in Secondary Science. Sponsorships from community partners and local businesses salute great teachers while also giving them an honorarium. HSC’s participation in the program is an investment in science and health for students in kindergarten through grade 12. HSC faculty, health experts, students and volunteers have worked with the school district in several areas, including supporting physical wellness programs and tutoring high school students attending the Texas Academy of Biomedical Sciences. Sponsors contribute to awarding excellence in education while getting an inside look at what it takes to be an outstanding teacher.

Final Thoughts Section

Since my arrival as Chancellor in 2017, we have been very deliberate in analyzing and evaluating all aspects of UNT System operations and our approach to the business side of higher education. One example of this effort to foster continuous organizational improvement is a system-wide brand study that was conducted in 2019-2020, and I'm proud to share an award-winning outcome of our brand work.

Using data collected and analyzed through the brand study, our UNT System Office of Communications & Marketing redesigned the UNT System's primary marks and logos – creating a more modern brand identity that highlights our connection to the Dallas-Fort Worth Region. I am proud to share that this new logo (pictured) recently earned top honors from the Hermes Creative Awards for Excellence in Marketing and Communications -- winning a Platinum Hermes Award for Logo Design.

Overall our UNT System team won two Platinum, four Gold and four Honorable Mention Hermes honors for excellence.

The Hermes Creative Awards program is administered by the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals (AMCP) and judged by industry professionals who look for companies and individuals whose talent exceeds a high standard of excellence, and whose work serves as a benchmark for the industry. Of 6,500 Hermes entries in 2021, just 17 percent won Platinum awards and only 20 percent won Gold honors.

Congratulations to all involved in the effort to elevate our brand position – it is always rewarding when our roadmaps toward improvement yield positive outcomes. 

Stay cool during these "dog days" of summer – fall will be here before we know it!

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Lesa B. Roe
Chancellor

Chancellor Lesa Roe Update Header

 

UNT World Faculty & Staff:

This Saturday is Juneteenth, which celebrates the historic emancipation of Confederate slaves in our home state of Texas on June 19, 1865. This year, Juneteenth is set to become the 11th holiday recognized by our federal government, although Texas became the first state to designate Juneteenth as a holiday in 1980.

 

Juneteenth provides us with an important opportunity to celebrate Black history and culture, and there are many events scheduled right here in North Texas.

  • Dallas’ Juneteenth Celebration March & Festival will include historic exhibits and music performances at Fair Park, beginning at 11 a.m. on Saturday.
     
  • The City of Fort Worth has put out a call to action for people to support Fort Worth Black/African American-owned businesses and is hosting multiple Juneteenth events (details here).
     
  • Denton will hold a two-day celebration of freedom, beginning with a gospel concert tonight and several events, including a parade on Saturday – full details at DentonJuneteenth.org

I echo President Smatresk’s message to the UNT community earlier this week regarding Juneteenth, and encourage our faculty and staff across UNT World to reflect on the heritage of Black Americans this weekend, and consider what we can do to foster a legacy of inclusion for all Black lives. Over the past year, our teams across UNT World have engaged in incredible dialogue about racism, and it’s important we continue to listen, learn and form action plans to help ensure the UNT System is a leader in diversity, equity and inclusion. 

We are committed to an inclusive culture that celebrates our many differences every day, not just on Juneteenth. Together, we will continue to find authentic ways to come together and affirm the value of our diverse students, faculty and staff and build communities that celebrate diversity.

High Fives Section

HSC DIRECTOR OF SAFERCARE SAVES A LIFE

John Sims, Director of SaferCare Texas at UNT Health Science Center, brought a man back to life at the Cowtown Half Marathon. Nearing the finish line, runner Bryce Schilling had a heart attack and – clinically speaking – was dead. Sims, a member of The Cowtown’s volunteer medical team and a registered nurse, noticed the man's blue lips and immediately took action. “The training kicks in and you’re just focused on saving a life,” Sims said. Sims, alongside several HSC medical students, performed CPR until EMTs with the Fort Worth Fire Department were able to use a defibrillator to jumpstart Schilling's heart. For the full story, check out the Fort Worth Star-Telegram feature on Sims. When he isn't saving lives, Sims works to improve patient safety and healthcare in Texas in his role at HSC's SaferCare.

UNT SYSTEM APPOINTS CHIEF DIVERSITY OFFICER

Following a comprehensive national search, the UNT System announced the appointment of Dannetta English Bland as Chief Diversity Officer, effective July 19, 2021. Dannetta will join the UNT System after spending nearly 17 years at Deloitte advising Fortune 500 companies on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) and talent strategy, cultural and workforce transformation, as well as executive transition and alignment. We are excited for her to hit the ground running, working with our system, and member institutions, as well as our diverse students, faculty and staff. You can learn more about Dannetta and this exciting new role that is designed to refine and accelerate our important work in DEI in this week's Dallas Business Journal

UNT AD BAKER REFLECTS ON SUCCESS, LOOKS AHEAD

Five years into his job as Vice President & Director of Athletics for UNT, Wren Baker has helped lead the Mean Green to dozens of new milestones, but he isn’t content. This spring, Mean Green athletics notched its first-ever NCAA tournament victory for men’s basketball, multiple championships in women’s golf and a perfect game in softball. UNT has also reached new heights in the classroom under Baker’s leadership, posting four consecutive department Graduation Success Rate records, with all 14 teams recording a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. Baker appeared on the UNT System's We Are North Texaspodcast this week and quickly gave credit to his coaches, athletes and staffers, while saying the key for UNT to reach the next level is sustained success. Listen on Spotify or Apple Podcasts

Final Thoughts Section

Dan Tenney, UNT System Vice Chancellor & Chief Financial Officer, continued his “Ask Me Anything” series for UNT World faculty and staff with a virtual Q&A on June 10. Moderated by UNT System Chief Communications Officer Paul Corliss, this quarter’s “Ask Me Anything” included the following panelists answering work-related questions in a virtual format:

  • Jennifer Cowley – UNT, Provost & Vice President for Academic Affairs
  • Emily Deardorff – UNT System, Assistant Vice Chancellor Governmental Relations
  • Clayton Gibson – UNT, Vice President for Finance & Administration and Chief Financial Officer
  • Sheraine Gilliam Holmes – UNT System, Vice Chancellor for Human Resources
  • James Meintjes – UNT Health Science Center, Chief of Staff  

CLICK HERE to watch this quarter's "Ask Me Anything" in its entirety. Thank you to all of our team members that tuned in live and submitted questions. 

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY

Juneteenth isn't the only holiday this weekend. Sunday is Father's Day and I'd like to wish a happy one to all the dads across UNT World.

Thanks to all for your continued hard work and dedication!

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Lesa B. Roe
Chancellor

Chancellor Lesa Roe Update Header

 

UNT World Faculty & Staff: 

The month of May has been a good one, UNT World – we’ve held safe and successful commencement ceremonies, we’re working to put the COVID-19 pandemic behind us and we just received good news from the 87th Texas Legislature.

The final budget decisions from the Texas House and Senate are in and the UNT System did very well. The Legislature added a significant amount of formula funding for enrollment growth to both General Academic Institutions ($300 million) like UNT and UNT Dallas, as well as for Health Related Institutions ($80 million) like UNT Health Science Center. For UNT World, this led to roughly $24 million more in funding than we had anticipated.

We are grateful to the legislature for its support of higher education. Specifically, we appreciate the support and hard work of our delegation: Senator Jane Nelson (chairman of Senate Finance Committee), Senator Royce West (Vice Chairman of Senate Higher Education Committee), Senator Drew Springer, Representatives Lynn Stucky, Carl Sherman, and Charlie Geren. They were committed and relentless in representing our interests. I am extremely proud of our UNT System Government Relations team for their great work this biennium.

Below is the GR team's summary of our legislative outcomes:

  • Compared to the 2020-21 base, which included 5% reductions, UNT System’s total General Revenue increased $49.1 million (12.3%). This includes a $38 million increase for UNT (19.5%), $8.5 million increase for UNT Dallas (26.8%) and $2.5 million increase for HSC (1.5%).
     
  • UNT received $500,000 for its Center for Agile and Adaptive Additive Manufacturing (CAAAM) to maintain funding at the original $10 million level.
     
  • UNT Dallas received $3.5 million in new funding to create a Center for Socioeconomic Mobility Through Education. In addition, expansion funding for young, growing universities like UNTD was restored to 2020-21 appropriated levels, and this funding will not start phasing out until enrollment reaches 6,000 full-time students.
     
  • HSC has a new performance-based research operations formula (mission-specific) that will direct the Legislature to provide matching funds based on HSC’s three-year average research expenditures at a rate of 28.58%, in addition to a performance incentive tiered match. This is by far the highest match rate of any of the mission-specific research formulas. 

Certainly, we still have many financial challenges ahead due to the coronavirus pandemic, but these significant funding increases speak to the resiliency of UNT World and our positive direction as we emerge from the pandemic. 

High Fives Section

UNT WORLD UNITES TO SUPPORT MENTAL HEALTH

After enduring more than a year of unprecedented pandemic challenges, managing our mental health is more important than ever. That’s why UNT World, guided by UNT System Human Resources, united to create the #UNTWorldCares initiative this May for Mental Health Awareness Month. This included a series of livestream wellbeing webinars created and presented by faculty and staff from UNT, UNT Dallas and HSC. In addition, the UNT System communications team produced a video series featuring UNT World experts – Teresa Espino, UNT Dallas Counseling & Wellness Center; Dr. Priya Bui, HSC Clinical Chair of the Department of Pediatrics & Women’s Health; Jamaica Chapple, Ph.D., UNT System Assistant Vice Chancellor, and a licensed professional counselor; and Stephanie Kelton, a psychiatric nurse practitioner at the UNT Student Health and Wellness Clinic – discussing mental health issues. 

UNT, HSC PARTNER TO SERVE PHARMACY STUDENTS

UNT and the UNT Health Science Center College of Pharmacy have partnered to allow students in the HSC pharmacy program to earn dual credit, applying classes from their first year in the pharmacy college toward a Bachelor of Arts in biology from UNT. It’s a faster, cheaper option for students earning a bachelor’s degree while attending pharmacy college. “For those who wish to complete their bachelor’s degree, in addition to receiving a PharmD, the agreement will provide a time and cost-efficient pathway,” said Todd Lang, assistant dean of health professions at UNT. “Students also can pursue dual degree programs at HSC College of Pharmacy, such as the PharmD/MPH, PharmD/MS, or PharmD/PhD."

UNT WOMEN'S GOLF WINS 'LET THEM PLAY CLASSIC'

After being told they couldn't play at the NCAA Regional in Baton Rouge because the course wasn't in "championship" condition, the Mean Green women's golf team thought their season had come to a sudden end. One week later, they were playing at the Let Them Play Classic, which was put together on the fly by sports blogger Sam "Riggs" Bozoian and featured 10 of the 12 teams that were left out to dry in Baton Rouge. Already Conference USA Champions, the Mean Green made the most of their extra chance to finish their season on the course by winning the tournament on May 21, beating seven top-50 teams. Junior Audrey Tan, who won the individual championship at the Conference USA tournament last month, brought home the individual title with a score of 9-under par. CLICK HERE to watch a TV feature on the team by WFAA.

Final Thoughts Section

On June 10 at 2 p.m., Dan Tenney, UNT System Vice Chancellor & Chief Financial Officer, will continue his “Ask Me Anything” series for UNT World faculty and staff. Moderated by UNT System Chief Communications Officer Paul Corliss, this quarter’s “Ask Me Anything” will include the following panelists answering work-related questions in a virtual format:

  • Jennifer Cowley – UNT, Provost & Vice President for Academic Affairs
  • Emily Deardorff – UNT System, Assistant Vice Chancellor Governmental Relations
  • Clayton Gibson – UNT, Vice President for Finance & Administration and Chief Financial Officer
  • Sheraine Gilliam Holmes – UNT System, Vice Chancellor for Human Resources
  • James Meintjes – UNT Health Science Center, Chief of Staff  

The event will be webcast live at UNTSystem.edu/JuneAMA and work- related questions may be sent to communications@untsystem.edu in advance of the virtual event. 

OBSERVING MEMORIAL DAY THIS WEEKEND

On Monday, May 31, we will be closed in observance of Memorial Day. This day of remembrance honors American military members who died in the line of duty.

Per the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Decoration Day (the precursor of Memorial Day) was established on May 5, 1868 as a time for the nation to decorate the graves of Civil War veterans killed in the line of duty. You can learn more about the origins of Memorial Day, and how to best observe this day of remembrance, at USMemorialDay.org and MemorialDayFoundation.org.

Thank you,

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Lesa B. Roe
Chancellor

Chancellor Lesa Roe Update Header

 

UNT World Faculty & Staff: 

As the 2020-21 academic year winds down, I wanted to take an opportunity to thank each of you for your incredible efforts, adaptability and resilience during this unprecedented time. Despite the many challenges presented to us by the COVID-19 pandemic, the UNT System and our member institutions enrolled a record 47,320 students, while also increasing our workplace engagement and giving so much to our communities in need.

UNT Health Science Center graduates group hug

There's no better way to commemorate the successes of this most challenging academic year than celebrating a record number of graduates across UNT World. With that in mind, listed below are the latest details on our Spring Commencement Ceremonies, which begin this week.

UNT: In-person Commencement Ceremonies will be held on April 30 and May 1 at Apogee Stadium in Denton. In addition, virtual College Recognition Ceremonies hosted by UNT's college deans will premiere on YouTube on April 30 and May 1. Full schedules for UNT's commencement ceremonies, as well as virtual recognition ceremonies, can be found here: UNT Commencement Schedules.

UNT Health Science Center: The 2021 Commencement Ceremony will be held on Friday, May 14, from 9 a.m. to noon at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth. The ceremony will also be livestreamed here: UNT HSC Commencement 2021 on Livestream.

UNT Dallas: The Spring 2021 Commencement Ceremony will be held on Saturday, August 14, at 8:30 a.m., at DeSoto ISD Football Stadium with safety protocols in place. In addition, UNT Dallas College of Law will hold a drive-through commencement ceremony on May 22 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the main UNT Dallas campus in southern Dallas. 

Congratulations to our graduates and thank you to our faculty and staff!

High Fives Section

UNT WORLD CELEBRATES DIVERSITY MONTH

April is Celebrate Diversity Month, a time to embrace and recognize the beautiful mix of cultures, backgrounds, generations and ideologies that make UNT World such a unique place. As part of our celebration, the UNT System communications team featured diverse leaders from each of our institutions, including (pictured clockwise from top left): Susan Harper, Ph.D., Coordinator of Activities, Student Affairs, UNT Dallas; Sylvia Trent-Adams, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, Executive Vice President & Chief Strategy Officer, UNT HSC; Felecia Epps, Dean and Professor of Law, UNT Dallas College of Law; and Hanchen Huang, Ph.D., Dean, UNT College of Engineering. Additionally, our "We Are North Texas" Podcast featured a diverse panel from UNT Dallas that explored not only ethnic and cultural diversity on the campus, but also generational differences. 

MEAN GREEN SPORTS CREATES NATIONAL BUZZ

Building on momentum created by the UNT men's basketball team's historic run in the NCAA Tournament last month, Mean Green Athletics has continued to make national headlines. On April 11, softball pitcher Hope Trautwein pitched a perfect game and struck out all 21 batters in a 3-0 win over Arkansas Pine Bluff. It was the first perfect game in Mean Green history and is the first perfect seven-inning game in NCAA Division I history with every out being a strikeout. Trautwein's accomplishment made news reels across the globe, including coverage by the New York TimesWashington PostESPN and hundreds of other outlets. Later in the month, on April 21, UNT's women’s golf team won its first conference championship in school history. UNT's Audrey Tan won the individual Conference USA championship, and her score of 207 is also a new 54-hole program record. Go Mean Green!

UNT SYSTEM PARTNERS WITH DMN ON PODCAST

On April 29, the UNT System launched a new podcast in partnership with The Dallas Morning News titled, "The Deep Side of Dallas." Hosted by UNT System Chief Communications Officer Paul Corliss and Dallas Morning News Editor Rudy Bush, the podcast will dive into news and issues through candid conversations with people making an impact in Dallas and all of North Texas. The UNT System produces the podcast and The Dallas Morning News distributes it. In the first episode, Dr. George Keaton, a historian and UNT alumnus, discussed Black history in Dallas, including the history of lynching in the city and the influence of the Ku Klux Klan, while also providing historic perspective on the verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial. Corliss will also continue to host the "We Are North Texas" podcast, which focuses on on positive stories across UNT World. 

High Fives Section

UNT AND UNT DALLAS ANNOUNCE NEW APPOINTMENTS

Clayton Gibson, a licensed Certified Public Accountant with a track record of driving transformation through the engagement of teams and technology, has been named Vice President, Finance & Administration and Chief Financial Officer for UNT.

Gibson will start his appointment at UNT on June 7, leaving Alabama A&M University. In his role at Alabama A&M, Gibson managed 520 full-time employees, quadrupled institutional cash on hand through robust budgeting and process improvements, and oversaw growth of the annual budget by 33 percent.

UNT recently announced Karen Hutzel, an internationally recognized and community-minded arts leader, as its new Dean for the College of Visual Arts and Design. Dr. Hutzel comes to UNT from The Ohio State University, where she served as Chair of the Department of Arts Administration, Education and Policy. 

UNT Dallas College of Law recently announced a key hire, naming Cynthia L. Fountaine as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor of Law. Fountaine will arrive in Dallas this summer from Southern Illinois University, where she served as Professor of Law, following a stint leading SIU as Dean from 2010 to 2017. 

Final Thoughts Section

As April comes to a close, teams across UNT World are preparing budgets for the upcoming fiscal year. FY2022 begins on Sept. 1, 2021, and – similar to last year – our finance teams are working through multiple financial models based on uncertainties related to coronavirus and other factors. We also continue to work with legislators on State of Texas funding for 2022-23 and remain optimistic.

I am also working with our university presidents and leadership teams to prepare for the upcoming UNT System Board of Regents Meeting. This quarter's meeting will be a one-day session, held virtually on May 13.       

Thank you for your efforts to help us thrive during this challenging academic year – I feel confident we have turned the corner in our fight against COVID-19 and look forward to seeing more students on campus as we head into summer.

All the best,

 

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Lesa B. Roe
Chancellor

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UNT World Faculty & Staff:

What a difference a month makes! While February closed with frustration over winter storms and power outages, March brought new milestones and accolades to UNT World and – perhaps most importantly – progress in our battle against COVID-19.

On March 29, Texas will become the largest state to expand COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to all adults. North Texas also reached a symbolic milestone in the fight against COVID-19 this week when Parkland Hospital in Dallas closed its COVID-19 intensive care units.

What does this mean for UNT World?

We will continue to follow CDC recommendations that are continually evolving.  Given the rate of vaccinations and the high probability that the recommendations will be significantly relaxed, we are currently planning for the following at each location:

  • UNT will have a full physical return for Fall semester and is planning a limited number of summer camps and other summer programs. Camp requests are being reviewed weekly with information announced as approvals are given.
     
  • UNT Dallas is performing a detailed assessment of its facilities on April 23 and will follow with a final decision on the level of physical return for Fall.
     
  • UNT Health Science Center will have a full physical return for Fall semester with many of those programs starting this summer.

Eligible current UNT employees and students, and UNT World employees can now register to be vaccinated at the UNT Student Health and Wellness Center: http://bit.ly/untvform. Once you complete the registration process, you will receive further communication about your appointment. Email questions to Stephanie Fields-Hawkins.

For more information about other locations to get a COVID-19 vaccination, contact your health plan, primary care provider or click on the county links below (you may register in any county):
Collin County | Dallas County | Denton County | Tarrant County

We’ll discuss our progress in the fight against COVID-19 further in our quarterly UNT World Town Hall (additional details below), which will be held virtually at 1 p.m. on Monday, March 29, and streamed live at: http://untsystem.edu/MarchTownHall.

MEAN GREEN MEN'S BASKETBALL MAKES HISTORIC RUN

Congratulations to the record-breaking Mean Green Men's Basketball team for their hard work and determination this season. The team earned a spot in Round 2 of the NCAA tournament for the first time in program history when they defeated fourth-seeded Purdue, 78-69, in an overtime victory on March 19. The Mean Green eventually fell to fifth-seeded Villanova on March 21, but not before delivering millions of dollars in exposure and immeasurable pride to the UNT community. Congratulations to the team and thank you to the Conference USA champions for representing UNT so well.

UNT DALLAS COLLEGE OF LAW NAMED MOST DIVERSE

Pre-Law Magazine recently released its annual rankings for diversity, and our own University of North Texas at Dallas College of Law was ranked No. 1 in the nation. Per the magazine: This year, University of North Texas at Dallas College of Law takes top honors in our diversity rankings. The upstart school has improved steadily in this ranking in recent years. It ranked No. 8 in 2019. UNT Dallas College of Law closely matches the U.S. average for the number of Hispanics, Asians, Blacks and Native Americans.

UNT HSC Vaccinations

HSC BRINGS VACCINE TO UNDERSERVED COMMUNITY

UNT Health Science Center, in partnership with Tarrant County, recently opened a COVID-19 vaccination site in Fort Worth’s historically underserved Stop Six neighborhood. The new vaccination hub is part of a collaboration between HSC and Tarrant County to expand access to the vaccine in historically underserved and hard-to-reach communities. HSC students will work to help register residents for the vaccine. 

“HSC is excited to partner with Tarrant County and leaders in the Stop Six community to bring this vaccination opportunity directly to the people who live here,” said Dr. Sylvia Trent-Adams, HSC Chief Strategy Officer.

INAUGURAL COHORT OF LEADERS GRADUATE
Congratulations to the first cohort of graduates from our new Foundational Leadership Academy (FLA) – a system-wide employee leadership development program sponsored by UNT System HR Organizational Development & Engagement (ODE). Graduates came from all UNT System institutions and attended weekly leadership sessions, designing group projects that benefit or enrich UNT World. Some examples of group projects are improving the Leave Without Pay process, creating an employee parking perks program, and developing programs to improve employee engagement and morale.

As part of our continued efforts to keep faculty and staff informed of the UNT System’s priorities and key projects, I will host this quarter’s UNT World Town Hall at 1 p.m. on March 29. As part of the program, UNT System Chief Communications Officer Paul Corliss will moderate a Q&A session with UNT System Vice Chancellors Sheraine Gilliam-Holmes (Chief Human Capital Officer), Chris McCoy (Chief Information Officer) and Jack Morton (Government Relations).

The Town Hall will be held virtually via Zoom and will be streamed lived (and later archived) at UNTSystem.edu/MarchTownHall.

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UNT WORLD VISION: STRATEGIC ROADMAPS TO MAXIMIZE ALIGNMENT

We are driven by our system-wide UNT World Vision to "Transform the future of North Texas and beyond by being accessible, caring, innovative, community-focused and industry-connected — bringing out the full potential of those we serve." 

With that vision in mind, our UNT System Headquarters Cabinet participated in a planning retreat last week and shared future roadmaps for discussion and alignment on next level down planning. Our next step is sharing and discussing these roadmaps with our university presidents and other campus leaders in order to refine our approach and maximize alignment across UNT World. 

DIVERSITY, EQUITY & INCLUSION UPDATE

The UNT System is committed to an inclusive culture that celebrates our many differences and finds authentic ways to come together and affirm the value of our diverse students, faculty and staff. We have a rich legacy that is built on the philosophy that higher education should be accessible to everyone, regardless of race, gender identity/expression, age, nationality, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status or diverse perspectives.

With that in mind, we recently launched a national search for a dedicated Chief Diversity Officer (CDO) who will report directly to me as part of our critical efforts to advance our culture of diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I). This individual will collaborate with campus leaders and advisory groups across campuses to:

  • Lead the shaping of system-wide vision and compelling message for diversity, equity, and inclusion by creating aspirational goals, plans for change, and assessment of initiatives;
  • Plan, guide and advise executive officers on diversity, equity, inclusion (DE&I) across UNT World;
  • Work directly with the Chancellor’s Cabinet and Campus Leadership to define strategies and support objectives for their teams and institutions;
  • Communicate cohesive, integrated strategy roadmap, as well as DE&I progress, to Board of Regents, Chancellor, Presidents, and all levels of system and campus leadership.

This important opening has been posted to our UNT System job site for applicants, and our search committee will work with me to fill the position this spring.

I also wanted to congratulate UNT's Division of Institutional Equity & Diversity on holding a very impressive  Equity & Diversity Conference earlier this week. DE&I is a focus at every campus and location across UNT World and thoughtful events such as this keep our important efforts in the space at the forefront.  

 

Thank you,

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Lesa B. Roe
Chancellor

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UNT World Faculty & Staff:

 

February is Black History Month – a time for people to come together, learn from the past, embrace an inclusive future, and honor our commitment to standing united against racism and all forms of discrimination. Across UNT World we celebrate Black History Month and the contributions African Americans have made to our nation’s history with host of programs, initiatives and experiences. 

UNT Health Science Center's Desiree Ramirez discussed Black History Month.

Through a short video series produced by the UNT System Office of Communications & Marketing, African American faculty and staff from across UNT World provided their unique perspectives to colleagues on what black history month means to them. Please click the video image above, or visit http://bit.ly/UNTSBlackHistoryMonth to watch.

We Are North Texas Podcast with Chuck Beatty and WIllie Davis

In addition to the video series, our We Are North Texas podcast explored Black History Month with Mean Green Hall of Famers Charles “Chuck” Beatty (UNT football, 1966-68) and Willie Davis (UNT basketball, 1964-68). Beatty and Davis candidly share their experiences as Black athletes in the 1960s in a largely segregated Texas. UNT was one of the few Division I universities in the state to include Black athletes during this era. The university helped Beatty and Davis reach the professional ranks in their respective sports, while also providing an education that equipped them for success in life after their playing careers. Beatty, who played for the Pittsburgh Steelers, used his UNT degree to become 5-time mayor of Waxahachie and later served on the UNT System Board of Regents. Davis went on to a successful career as a Fort Worth ISD administrator.

UNT World celebrates the diverse contributions that every student, faculty and staff member brings to our communities. We have a rich legacy built on the philosophy that higher education should be accessible to everyone, regardless of race, gender identity/expression, age, nationality, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status or diverse perspectives. And with two Minority Serving Institutions and a system-wide student body that is “minority-majority,” the UNT System’s commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion remains steadfast.

HEROES ACROSS UNT WORLD HELP WEATHER STORMS
From Denton to Dallas to Fort Worth to Frisco, all of our campuses and office locations were impacted by last week's winter storms, record cold temperatures and related power outages. Through the extraordinary efforts of teams across UNT World, we continued to care for our students while working through the many associated challenges the winter weather and outages presented, enabling us to re-open. No matter how difficult the challenge, our teams continue to be resilient, dedicated and adaptable – whether it’s the pandemic, winter storms, power outages or other obstacles, we continue to navigate challenges while working to fulfill our important missions across UNT World.

UNT DALLAS FIGHTS HUNGER IN WAKE OF ICY STORMS
UNT Dallas has partnered with the North Texas Food Bank throughout the COVID-19 pandemic to help feed students and community members in need through monthly mobile food pantry events held on campus. In the wake of last week's frigid temperatures and widespread power outages throughout the Dallas-Fort Worth region, UNTD worked quickly to pull together a special food distribution event to help many hungry families struggling to find food after the winter storm crippled the state’s power supply and left grocery store shelves empty throughout North Texas.
Learn more about this very special event at UNT Dallas from WFAA.

UNT SYSTEM CFO NAMED FINALIST FOR D-CEO AWARD

This week, D CEO Magazine announced Dan Tenney, UNT System Vice Chancellor for Finance & Chief Financial Officer, as a finalist for the Dallas-based magazine's 2021 Financial Executives Awards program, presented in partnership with the Dallas CPA Society, Financial Executives International and the Association for Corporate Growth. Working closely with the Chief Financial Officers of each UNT System institution and their campus teams, Tenney has helped lead a system-wide effort to mitigate the many financial challenges UNT World has faced during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Visit D Magazine for a full list of award finalists.

As part of our continued efforts to keep faculty and staff informed of the UNT System’s priorities and key projects, I will host this quarter’s UNT World Town Hall at 2 p.m. on March 23. As part of the program, UNT System Chief Communications Officer Paul Corliss will moderate a Q&A session with UNT System Vice Chancellors Sheraine Gilliam-Holmes (Chief Human Capital Officer), Chris McCoy (Chief Information Officer) and Jack Morton (Government Relations).

The Town Hall will be held virtually via Zoom and will be streamed lived (and later archived) at UNTSystem.edu/MarchTownHall. If you have specific work-related questions you would like us to address during the Town Hall, please email communications@untsystem.edu.

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The 87th Texas Legislature is now in session and clearly focused on reigniting our state’s economy as more Texans receive the COVID-19 vaccine, and we begin to concentrate on emerging from the pandemic.

 

Earlier this week, the UNT System presidents and I testified before the Texas Senate Appropriations Committee and shared the many successes across UNT World during this challenging time, including our community connectedness, seamless use of technology and outstanding customer service to students that helped us achieve record enrollment.

 

With March approaching, we are a full year into the COVID-19 pandemic, and yet our UNT System and member institutions continue to grow stronger – due in large part to the talent, hard work, adaptability and resiliency of faculty and staff throughout UNT World.

 

Thank you,

 

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Lesa B. Roe
Chancellor