By | July 8, 2021
senate logo

THE SENATE STANDARD – ISSUE 2.39

ACC Full-Time Faculty Senate Website 

ACC Coronavirus page

Dear Faculty Colleagues,

We’re just about half way through the summer session. In the meanwhile, ACC works on “back to campus” logistics and details as we prepare for fall, and then, spring 22. I know many of you are off contract, while others are in summer school mode. So, I want to draw your attention to some key and new items below.

First, there’s still time to volunteer for 21-22 committees and councils.  Find the link to the committee volunteer form under Current Action Items below.  The Full-Time Faculty Senate has been invited to nominate one full-time faculty member to serve on the hiring committee for the college’s new Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.  Find that link in the New Action Items section below.  Finally, there’s some movement on the web conferencing issue we tackled this year.  Zoom has been integrated into Blackboard! While FTF requested WebEx, Zoom, Meet, and Collaborate all be integrated into Blackboard, we recently learned IT will be integrating Meet soon. So, we’ll have three out of four.  Find under Newsworthy links to how to activate Zoom in your Blackboard courses.

Stay safe.  Stay cool.   

Wayne

Senate Meetings / Minutes / Agendas

The June 11th meeting minutes have been approved. You can view them here.

The next Full-Time Faculty Senate meeting will be Friday, July 9th. Click here to add the meeting to your Google Calendar. Email wbutler@austincc.edu to nominate agenda items.

Newsworthy

ACC Student Success Report, 2020-2021 is Now Available: Download Provost Cook’s presentation to the board.  As the Provost noted in his cover email to the association presidents, “The report documents the amazing success of ACC students during this past very difficult year.  I emphasized to the Board that this success would not have been possible without the incredible dedication of our faculty and staff and the countless hours you have all spent in terms of professional development, adaptation of pedagogies and technologies, and acts of empathy and care for our students.”

Zoom is now integrated with Blackboard! To get started, add the Zoom tool link to your courses. Training and how-to resources are on the way, but in the meantime, support is ready to answer any questions you or your students may have. Visit the TLED blog for more information.

New Information about Web Conferencing Platforms: In the last edition of the Standard, I shared details about updates on this issue.  Too long to reproduce here, but take another look in the digital edition of the last newsletter.

Summer Enrollment for Plan Year 2022 is Now Open: During this open enrollment period, you will have an opportunity to enroll in new benefits programs or change current coverage for yourself and your eligible dependents. Any changes you make go into effect September 1, 2021.  If you do not make changes at this time, you will NOT be able to make any changes to your benefits plan until the next open enrollment period (next year) or if you experience a Qualifying life Event (https://ers.texas.gov/active-employees/Life-Changes). If you are currently enrolled in a HealthSelect plan, and you don’t want to make changes to your medical plan, you do not need to do anything.

Learn more about HealthSelect plan changes and benefits effective September 1, 2021.  You can also view the updated premium rate sheets HERE or the Digital Summer Enrollment Guide HERE. If you have any questions in the meantime, please reach out to your HR Benefits team at hrbenefits@austincc.edu.

Web Conferencing Update: The Faculty Communications team has updated TLED’s web conferencing webpage here: https://tled.austincc.edu/faculty-support/tools/web-conferencing/   The web conferencing page and updated features table result from a collaboration among stakeholders from Distance Education, Academic Technology, Student Affairs and the Full-Time Faculty Senate and the Adjunct Faculty Association

The updates include:

  • Links to knowledge base “how-to” articles for each of the tools, including Zoom polling, and breakout rooms
  • New FAQ page
  • Clarity note that the chart displays only features that are currently available & supported by ACC
  • Chart update: Added new available feature – video pinning

Tesla START Manufacturing Program Set to Launch: ACC and Tesla announced a new partnership. Together, we are launching the Tesla START Manufacturing program, a first of its kind in the nation. This program builds on the college’s manufacturing programs and is specifically designed to prepare students for careers at Tesla’s manufacturing facilities. The first cohort is expected to start this summer and by the end of the year, we anticipate training three full cohorts. They’ll work with new and advanced technologies such as robotics to design, build, and maintain cutting-edge machines. Our Riverside Campus will be home to much of this learning. We’re working now with Tesla to revamp portions of the Squires Building to provide state-of-the-art learning spaces. Visit Info Hub story for additional information.

New Information Regarding New Family Benefits: P-EBT is a significant economic benefit for any families who qualify for reduced school meals, AND, for all children of those who participated in SNAP for even one month from October 2020-June 2021 (even infants). If these families have not received the benefit on their EBT card yet, they can call for assistance. If a family was new to SNAP in May or June, they will need to apply.

  • It is NOT necessary to provide a SSN – a Student Id is sufficient – please spread the word about this
  • Graduating HS seniors can receive this benefit directly
  • Families should hold onto their EBT cards because Summer P-EBT will be issued later (beginning of fall)
  • Families with non school-aged children who did not participate in SNAP for one month between October 2020 and June 2021 are not eligible for P-EBT.

Faculty Communications Archive: Tired of asking yourself “what did that email say again?” Need to catch up on the faculty messages you missed while on break? See an archive of all communications sent to ACC faculty and instructional leadership. Watch this video for more information and email comments or feedback to TLEDcomms@austincc.edu.

Summer Wellness Classes: Our amazing wellness instructors will be back NEXT WEEK with virtual wellness classes available FREE to all ACC employees. We even have a couple of NEW classes (including some 30 minute options) and returning past instructors for this semester.  

Check out the Summer schedule HERE to view and access these classes, and be sure to mark your calendar with your favorite classes to join!  In fact, you can click HERE to add the shared Wellness Calendar to your Google Calendar for easy access.  Click HERE for a description of classes and instructors.  

Please be sure to Register HERE prior to attending any classes. While there is still no attendance requirement, this form is required for participation. You may sign up for as many classes as you plan to attend using one form, and can even edit to add new classes as desired. This form contains the official class waiver and provides us with a way to communicate important information regarding the classes throughout the semester. We hope you will join us, and see you in class soon!

HR Memo on Housing Support Services: The College recognizes that during these times of challenge, employees need support and assistance in a variety of ways. There are a variety of city and county programs that provide assistance. To view the full memo and list of options, click here.

TLED recap of the April 23rd Faculty Evaluation Forum. Check out the recording of the forum at https://instruction.austincc.edu/tledupdates/2021/05/11/faculty-evaluation-forum-outcomes-april-23-2021/

TLED Summer Software Day [Friday, July 23]: Summer Software Day is an annual event that offers workshops for all ACC faculty and staff. The event provides you with an opportunity to keep up to date with your tech skills and learn new ones to implement in your classrooms and day-to-day tasks. This year, Summer Software Day will be delivered entirely online on Friday, July 23, 2021. More details are available at austincc.edu/softwareday

HR Compensation Announces Annual Educational Adjustment Process for Qualifying Full-Time Faculty [Deadline, July 31, 2021]: The Annual Educational Adjustment Process for Qualifying Full-Time Faculty is now being conducted by HR Compensation. If you have completed a higher degree or completed additional graduate hours (either 24, or 45 or more) in your teaching discipline or in the discipline of Education in this academic year (FY21), those additional hours or degree qualifies your salary to be reviewed for a higher salary level. See attached for more details. Contact Carla Dykstra at carla.dykstra@austincc.edu with questions.

Teaching and Learning Academy (TLA) [Application deadline August 1]: Registration is now open for the Fall 2021-Spring 2022 cohort. Watch Samantha Croft’s short video for her take on why now is the right time to join this program. You have plenty of time before the deadline to apply, but please keep TLA in mind over the summer. Please mark your calendar to submit your application by August 1, 2021. Learn more and apply here.

New Action Items:

Volunteer to Serve on the Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Hiring Committee [Deadline:  5PM, Friday July 9]: AVP Gaye Lynn Scott and Chief Diversity Officer Larry Davis are convening a search committee.  The committee will consist of one Full-Time Faculty member and one adjunct, among others.  Important dates to consider:

  • July 16:  Job ad closes
  • July 19 at 1:00PM:  Search committee kick off meeting
  • August 2-19:  Interview period

If you are interested, visit the Full-Time Faculty Senate homepage to find the volunteer sign up form. The Full-Time Senate Leadership Team will select the representative to forward to Gaye Lynn Scott.

Current Action Items (These are reminders for things I’ve already sent out):

ACC Faculty Handbook Open for Comments [Due July 15th]: In 2018, faculty identified the need for significant revision and updates of the ACC Faculty Handbook, and TLED subsequently became process holder for this document. We invite faculty to review and offer feedback on the content by July 15, 2021. The DRAFT Faculty Handbook, feedback form, as well as more detailed information about the Faculty Handbook timeline, can be found on this TLED website –  Faculty Handbook Review Project.

Internal Job Posting for Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiatives in Instruction [Due July 16th]: Faculty can go to the job postings link here, (you’ll see the position highlighted), or you can go directly to the posting with more information here. The deadline to apply is July 16, and details about how to apply are in the posting.

Call for Shared Governance and Senate Standing Committee Volunteers [Deadline: 5:00P Friday, July 18]: ACC’s shared governance structure and various committees are the primary ways ACC Full-Time Faculty can have a significant voice in college policies and procedures, budgets and technology allocations, and all the other decisions that go into running the college.  Here is your chance to let your voice be heard as a volunteer on one or more of the various shared governance and senate committees. Please visit the form here and let us know your preferences by 5PM on Friday, July 18.

Best,

Wayne