April Newsletter 2023

April Newsletter 2023

Provost Vaught's Thoughts

Dear Faculty,

As we enter the last full month of the semester, I want to express my gratitude for the hard work and dedication you have shown to our students and our university. The warmer weather is upon us, and I hope that it brings with it a renewed energy to finish the semester strong.

I encourage you to take the time to connect with your students and offer them the support they need to succeed. Your one-on-one interactions can make a significant impact on their lives and their future. Let us work together to ensure that every student has the opportunity to reach their full potential.

As always, the Office of Academic Affairs is here to support you in any way we can. Please do not hesitate to reach out if you need assistance or have any concerns.

Thank you for all that you do for our university community.


Provost Wayne Vaught

Dates to Remember

April 26

Last day of spring classes 

April 27

Interim Day (no classes held)

April 28-May 3

Final Exams

May 4-May 5

Commencement & Convocations

May 9

Final grades due from faculty for full semester classes 

August 16 

Virtual Faculty Convocation(see attached invitation for more details)


Faculty Invitation



UVU student discussing equipment checkout with a library aide, with another student walking by in the background.

Checkout Equipment at the Fulton Library

The library is known for cozy study spots, helpful librarians, and books galore, but did you know we offer equipment checkout for students, staff, and faculty? From DSLR cameras and lighting equipment to presentation tools and cable adaptors, the library has the tools you need—and they’re all free. We even have a limited number of document cameras and webcams for instructor-only use. Interested in all the other items you can check out? Visit the library’s equipment page for a full item list. 

Checking out equipment is easy: bring your UVID or government-issued ID to the Circulation Desk, and a library aide will help you through the checkout process. Most equipment can be checked out for three days and is available on a first-come, first-served basis. 

Are there items you’d like the library to consider purchasing? Submit an equipment suggestion. As funding allows, we allocate priority purchasing to items that promote student success, support academic curriculum, and fulfill circulation demand. 


For questions about equipment checkout, call the Circulation Desk at 801-863-8265. 

Innovation Academy 

UVU Academic Innovation Award

Dr. Claudia Jorgensen  - Improving student success in asynchronous, online PSY 3430 through UVU's "Include-Engage-Achieve" commitment

Amber Smith-Johnson and Emily Hedrick  - Replication of Industry Practice in the Classroom

UVU Innovative External Collaboration Award

Dr. Ashley Egan- Integration of botanical training with trail improvement and public education initiatives in GE and major courses

Women’s Business Leadership Initiative - Organizational Leadership Team: Dr. Kelly Hall, Dr. Maureen Andrade, Dr. Jonathan Westover, Jill Jasperson, Angela Schill, and Jessica Ballard

 Scott Abbott has received the Distinguished Service Award from the Utah Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters, given in recognition of exceptional service to the higher education community in Utah.https://www.utahacademy.org/

The award ceremony was part of their annual conference.

innovation academy

Policy Update:

Since our March 2023 newsletter, President’s Council has approved the following policies to enter Stage 1 Drafting:

· Policy 510 Graduate Admission and Continuation

· Policy 526 Student Record Adjustments

Also, remember to get your comments to your Faculty Senate senator or PACE representative for the following policies, which are in stage 2, Review by UVU Entities:

· Policy 168 Whistleblower Anti-Retaliation (closes 5/18/23)

· Policy 607 Course-Based Fees (closes 4/13/23)

And on March 23, President’s Council approved the following policies to enter stage 3 Campus Community Review, however, both policies recently closed. They will return to President’s Council for approval to continue to the next step.

· Policy 252 International Travel (closed 4/7/23)

· Policy 324 Drug-free Workplace (closed 4/7/23)

· Policy 332 Remote Work (closed 4/7/23)

Finally, on March 30, 2023, Policy 646 Faculty Appeals for Retention, Tenure, and Promotion was approved by the Board of Trustees and became effective in the Policy Manual.

Policy Highlight:

Policy 646 Faculty Appeals for Retention, Tenure, and Promotion

Faculty members whose application for retention, tenure, or promotion in rank was denied by the Board of Trustees at the end of March, have a revised policy in which they may file an appeal.

As soon as possible after receiving written notification of a denial of midterm, tenure, or promotion, a faculty member considering their option to appeal must first “consult with the Faculty Senate president and/or the chair of the RTP&A committee to further understand the appeal process.” Section 5.1.1.

Then, if the faculty member decides to proceed with an appeal, within 15 business days from when that faculty member received the written notification of the adverse decision, the faculty member “must submit a written notification of their request to appeal to the Faculty Senate president, the chair of the RTP&A committee, and the Provost[.]” section 5.1.2.

The faculty member’s written request to appeal must contain the following:

· Name and date of decision being appealed;

· An explanation (with reasonable clarity) for the basis for the appeal, alleging one or more grounds for appeal;

· As much detail as possible to support the validity of the appeal; and

· Attach a copy of the written notification of the decision of non-renewal or denial for retention, tenure, or promotion. Section 5.1.3.

It is important to note that this “initial request should be as comprehensive as possible but it does not need to be exhaustive, as additional grounds and/or evidence may emerge as the [faculty member appealing] prepares their appeal.” Section 5.1.3.

As stated, the faculty member appealing must allege one or more of three grounds for their appeal. The grounds for appeal are as follows:

“(1) the process leading to the adverse outcome failed to follow university policies and procedures with respect to the application for retention, tenure, or promotion and the alleged failure to follow policies and procedures substantially influenced the adverse outcome of the person’s application;

(2) the decision was arbitrary or capricious; or

(3) the decision was primarily a response to the faculty member’s legitimate exercise of academic freedom.” Section 4.5

The faculty member does not have to do this alone. “If desired, the faculty member can request support in preparing their appeal from the chair of the RTP&A committee[.]” If this happens, then “the chair must excuse themself from serving on the appeal committee for that faculty member.” Importantly, the “support from the RTP&A committee chair in the preparation of the appeal does not constitute legal advice and does not guarantee a successful appeal.” Section 5.1.4

“Within five business days of receipt of a timely written request for appeal, the RTP&A Chair will notify the Office of Academic Affairs of the appeal[.]” Then, “the Office of Academic Affairs will [not only] notify the Office of General Counsel of the appeal[,]” it will “prepare a secure digital space to store all evidence and copies of official communication for the appeal proceedings[.]” section 5.1.5

April Service-Learning Superstar Winner!

April Learning Superstar

Distinguished Service-Learning Faculty:

I am pleased to announce Bobbi Kassel as the April Service-Learning Superstar! 

Bobbi Kassel is an Associate Professor in the Criminal Justice Department at Utah Valley University.  She has an M.Ed. in Educational Psychology from the University of Utah and a BS degree in Criminal Justice from Utah Valley University. 

Bobbi uses service-Learning projects in her Victimology class (CJ 3300).  This course is designed for students to learn more about crime happening in their own communities, identify the problems and dilemmas that crime victims face along with learning how the criminal justice system interacts with and assists crime victims. The service-learning project allows students to engage with criminal justice organizations that help crime victims.  The students work hand-in-hand with these organizations to plan, develop, and execute meaningful projects to help people that have been a victim of a crime.

Students enrolled in Bobbi’s Victimology course participate in projects with many organizations throughout the state of Utah.  Recent student projects include working with the following organizations: The Refuge, Utah County Children’s Justice Center, Utah Domestic Violence Coalition, American Fork Police Department, Orem City Police Department, Provo Police Department, CourtWatch -Utah Coalition Against Sexual Assault, Fourth District CASA Program, Utah Office for Victims of Crime, and Pretty Tough Ladies Resource Center. Her students provide various services for these organizations and in turn, they receive valuable insight into the work that is being done within the criminal justice system to help people that have been victimized.

A service-Learning project that stands out to Bobbi is one where a student worked closely with a police officer in the Provo Police Department. The student worked with the officer to organize, plan and complete a donation drive, asking for new door locks.  These locks were donated to the police department.  Officers respond to domestic violence calls often.  To help the victim feel safer, and depending on the situation, an officer might offer to change the locks on the doors at the home. This particular student was able to collect more than 30 new locks that will go a long way to help victims of domestic violence feel more secure. This is just one example of many meaningful projects Victimology students complete each semester.

Service-learning is an excellent way for students to be involved and make a difference in their communities. Many of the projects in Bobbi’s Victimology class have personal meaning to her students. Her students have loved the opportunity to network with these criminal justice organizations and at the same time, make a difference in someone’s life.


Please join us in congratulating Bobbi Kassel for her incredible service-learning efforts!

Dr. Jonathan Westover

Academic Director, Center for Social Impact 

Dr. Leandra Hernandez

Associate Academic Director, Center for Social Impact 

We welcome nominations for future Service-Learning Superstars on a rolling basis, and self-nominations are encouraged. To nominate, please send an email to Dr. Jon Westover (Jonathan.westover@uvu.edu) and Dr. Leandra Hernandez (Leandra.Hernandez@uvu.edu.) with a 250-word description of the nominee, department affiliation, and service-learning course activities.

UVU Care Hub Mobile Food Pantry

On Tuesday, April 18th, the UVU Care Hub will bring their Mobile Food Pantry to West Campus from 1-3pm.


What is the Mobile Food Pantry? It’s a vehicle operated by UVU CARE Hub with the purpose of getting needed food to students experiencing food insecurity. 


Why does UVU provide this service? For UVU students and faculty, sometimes times can get rough and there’s not enough money to make ends meet. Several can go through this, and the Care Hub’s aim is to lessen its impact. Ultimately, they want to cover the staples of food so that students and faculty in need can pay their bills. Pre-ordering is not required to participate. For those needing it, please come and partake in the service.

The Mobile Food Pantry is an appendage of the UVU Food Pantry,  operated by the CARE Hub. The Hub’s mission is to aid faculty and students in the grips of food insecurity, among other things such as housing insecurity, health, safety, and school resources.

mobile food pantry

2023-2024 New Year Compensation & Benefit Information

Dear UVU Employees,

Each Spring, at the conclusion of the legislative session, UVU reviews funding available to allocate to UVU’s compensation program within financially feasibility and sustainability.  The allocation of these funds aligns with UVU’s Compensation Philosophy to respond to external labor market changes, promote internal equity, and reward performance.

The 2023-224 salary and wage increases were approved by President’s Council on April 10, 2023. Annual salary and wage increases for 2023-2024 are determined by the criteria contained within this approved plan.

We have posted the approved plan to our People & Culture compensation page within myUVU Workplace and have also included supporting documents to help give clarification and transparency on the plan details for this year. Additionally, your executive leaders have been briefed on the plan so they can respond to questions and/or direct questions to People & Culture.

All increases associated with this plan will take effect July 1, 2023, apart from changes to Adjunct Faculty rates and Summer ICHE, which will take effect at the start of the Summer Semester. Full-time faculty and staff can expect to receive salary notification letters from their supervisors in June.

UVU also reviews the current year’s benefit premiums, allocation, and usage to estimate for the next fiscal year. Effective July 1, 2023, adjustments to medical and other plan rates will take place. More information regarding the premium changes, and other pertinent benefit information will be shared at our Benefits Fair on Tuesday, April 18, 2023, in the Hall of the Flags from 10 am to 2 pm. Open enrollment is available from April 17 – May 12, 2023. The benefits approved plan is located on our People & Culture benefits page. Benefit information was approved by President’s Council on March 23, 2023.

This year was unique as the Utah Legislature communicated with higher education not to increase student tuition. Since funding for wages, salaries and benefits come from tuition and Legislature funds, the allocation from the Legislature was adjusted.   We are grateful for the funding the Legislature and the administration provided through reallocation, allowing us to keep tuition the same for our students this year. 


People & Culture