All posts by Jennifer Heath

Jennifer Heath currently works for the University of Texas Libraries as Assistant Director for Organizational Development and Human Resources. Jennifer is a graduate of North Carolina State University. Before joining Libraries, she was Manager of Administrative and Training Services for Facilities Services, and has been an employee of the University of Texas at Austin since 1990.

Meeting Notes 2/09/2017

Present: Roxanne,  Gilbert,  Melanie,  Allyssa, Jennifer,  Stacy,  Andres, Jessica

Diversity Action Committee (DAC)/Library Staff Council (LSC) Meeting

If we want Dr. Haricombe’s feedback regarding the work of DAC, what’s the process? What should be brought up at LSC Admin meeting?  These questions will be brought up in the February 21 LSC/Admin meeting that Andres will attend.

Our DAC minutes will go out with LSC minutes, now that we are a standing committee of LSC.  DAC will use LSC comment form.  If the need arises, we can explore other options to receive comments.

Are there expectations that DAC will prepare an annual report? If so, what are the guidelines?

We discussed for the need to address the campus climate report in regards to our hiring.  Our goal is to promote diversity in our recruiting, hiring and retention practices.  We discussed having members of DAC on Personnel Committee. We currently have two such members.  For the March meeting, Jennifer will provide a list of where we advertise our positions, which includes advertising to under-represented targeted audiences.  We explored if there is a way to get impressions from under-represented applicants who are not position accepting offers? The Library HR Office can reach out to the candidate to ask.

Lessons Learned Session

Krystal Wyatt-Baxter will lead our Lessons Learned, scheduled for March 8 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. in PCL 1.124. This will be potluck, which will include vegetarian and gluten-free items.

Facilitator, Krystal, will ask questions in advance, which will include our hopes for outcome of Lessons Learned session, DAC’s successes and challenges over the last year. Other questions will be about our leadership positions:  How is that going?  Also, how is our transition going from an staff interest group to a standing committee under Library Staff Council?  How is communication officer position going?  We will also document the transition process.

Chill Space Update

Chill space update: Stacy and Andres reported for future renovation we can incorporate considerations for chill spaces.  We can seek out partnerships with other organizations on campus, and to provide recommendations. WE discussed seeking informal feedback.  More quiet spaces are desired in libraries.  What was DAC charge? We can’t designate space only for prayer that is not study space. Typically, such spaces have no desks, may have benches, be a comfortable place. No food or drink allowed. No power outlets. This is a viewable area with doors that cannot lock, no fluorescent light, and provides a calm environment.

Spring Panel Update

Gilbert and Jennifer reported that the spring panel is on track, scheduled for April 13, 1-2:30 in PCL Learning Lab 1.  All panelists have been contacted and PG Moreno has agreed to moderator the discussion.

Recruitment/Spring Open House

During our open house, this will be an introduction of who we are, and what we’re committed to doing.  This is an exercise to inform people, as well as to recruit new members.  Everyone is encouraged to talk to other staff members about Open House.  Please reach out to those who aren’t on other committees. This is also an opportunity to affirm our commitment of why we’re on DAC.  We’ll also explore what has worked well at previous Open Houses to encourage people to join DAC.

It’s time to nominate new co-chair. Melanie will roll off.  Doodle poll to determine May calendar date


DASIG Meeting Agenda, December 8

I remember.

• Facilitator/blogger signup (Andres, 5 minutes)
• Spring meeting schedule (Melanie, 10 minutes)
• Blog updates (Allyssa, 5 minutes)

Event updates
• Strategic planning, meeting with Thao (Andres, 5 minutes)
• Spring Panel event (Jennifer and Gilbert, 10 minutes)

UTL Space Assessment update – Kristin and Stacy, 5 minutes

DAC transition action items (Melanie, 10 minutes)
• Announcement of new status/name/by-laws/Sharepoint presence/communication plan
• Expectations around DAC communications/promotion/recognition within UTL

It made me think.

Meeting Recap, 12/03/2015

Attendees: Gilbert Borrego, Dale Correa, Cindy Fisher, Jennifer Heath, Frank Meaker, Andres Ramirez, Ben Rodriguez, and Ronda Rowe.

Ben demoed the app, Inclusive U, which included links to UTL information.  The app will be part of the the UTL subject specialist page.  The group was impressed with the app development, how easy it will be use the app, and how useful it will be for the campus community.

We discussed our signature event in 2016, which will be the app launch party and a panel discussion of stakeholders who came together to bring the app to fruition.  Student government chairs will be invited, as well as Employee Assistance Program, Office of Inclusion and Equity, and iSchool Women and Technology subgroup.  The subcommittee who will help Jennifer with the event are Andres, Ben, Frank, and Gilbert.

We also discussed workshops that we can host, such as Ally training that is one hour long, which we can offer more than once.  BeVocal facilitator training may also be beneficial.  Gilbert suggested having an app walking tour.  Microagression training could be helpful also in this time of racial and ethnic tension.

Lessons Learned is an important exercise to reflect on what DASIG’s accomplishments have been for the year, what can we improve, and what we can work toward in the next year.  The group discussed having a facilitator from Division of Diversity and Community Engagement or Multicultural Excellence Committee.  Perhaps such a facilitator can help us go deeper into social justice issues.

Mark Puente of Association of Research Libraries (ARL) was brought up as a possible speaker on ARL diversity concerns.

We determined that future meetings will be one hour long from 10-11 a.m. beginning in January.  We discussed communicating through e-mails, treating e-mail as a conversation.  Cindy mentioned setting up DASIG as a Skype conversation.

Andres said that he will e-mail the students to invite them to come to the March meeting, and invite them to read our blog.

Ben shared with us BeVocal information that is a university innovation to prevent high-risk behavior or harm, and to create a culture that takes care of each other.  The group discussed why people don’t intervene when they witness a potentially harmful situation.  We learned that 2/3 of students will talk about suicide with a friend before committing suicide.  Expressing concern and empathy can effect the outcome.