May New Employees

Amber Maxwell
Psych Clinic Coordinator
Allison Fannon
Admin Assistant II
Mary Stoll
Library Archive Spec.
Jessica Hodges
Grant Accountant
Yesenia Gonzalez Rodriguez
Grad Admissions Assist.
Kendall Beye
Patrol Officer I
Christopher Belty
Service Rep. I
Autumn Patton
Coord Group Tours
Kollyn Reed
Intramural Rec Specialist
Josh Rolf
Set Up Tech I
Rebel DeHart
Administrative Assist III
Emma Andrews
Head Basketball Coach
Barbara Aqrabawi Administrative Assist III
Melissa Wood
Data Analyst Temp
Travis Chambers
Admin Specialist II
Ty Wallace
Co-Op Admin Assist
Casey Maxwell
Coordinator Digital Media
Amanda Franze
Administrative Assist I
Brandy Kemp
Safety Officer

June Birthdays

June Years of Service

The Broncho Beat – May 2022 Issue

Featured Story: GIThrive | Managing Stress through Digestive Health

Sydney Wood, Benefits Manager

Stress and anxiety may lead to digestive symptoms like indigestion, stomach cramps, diarrhea, loss of appetite, emotional eating, or nausea. There’s a powerful connection between your brain and digestive tract, and the gut-brain connection may be why. Your gut is called your “second brain” because of the millions of nerve cells that line your GI tract. Many studies have shown that improving gut health leads to better mental health.

Your Dedicated Health Coach and Dietitian can help you find stress management and mindfulness practices and a personalized nutrition plan that work with your daily life.

Click here to learn more and take action.

How it works

GIThrive is a program to help you improve your health — starting with digestion. It includes an app, unlimited access to your Health Coach and Registered Dietitian over the phone or video, and a free GutCheck microbiome kit. It’s all done from home – and no cost to you!

GIThrive program includes:

  • Dedicated Health Coach and Registered Dietitian
  • At-home Gut Microbiome kit
  • Stress Management Techniques
  • Personalized Nutrition
  • Smart App

Learn more about this fully covered benefit.

Get-To-Know a Broncho

Sam Washburn, Assistant Professor, Design

What is your background?

I’ve worked as an illustrator and graphic designer for the past decade or so and started teaching about 5 years ago. I’m an illustration fanatic and have done research in the field as well as produced work for clients like The New York Times, Reader’s Digest and Scientific
American. My work has been recognized by associations like Communication Arts, American Illustration, the Society of Illustrators and the American Advertising Federation.
I started teaching to be an advocate for illustration and design and am proud to be part of a fantastic team here at UCO.

Tell me how you first got involved at UCO. 

I came to UCO to pursue an MFA in Graphic Design a few years ago and was fortunate enough to join as an adjunct instructor soon after. As time has passed I’ve climbed up the ranks to become an assistant professor in the School of Design.

What would you say your strongest beliefs are about your contributions to the university?

I’m proud of the work we put in as a faculty during this pandemic under some very challenging circumstances.

What do you do when you are not working?

Spend time with my family and/or exercise. 

UCO Talent Development Program Naming Contest

Jill Lynch-Silva, Talent Development Specialist

The Talent Development team has been working diligently for these past 8-10 months to create a tailored program geared toward acclimating our new supervisors to their position at UCO. They will be learning the basics on topics like:

  • Introduction to Talent Development
  • FERPA Fundamentals and Advanced Knowledge
  • Environmental Health and Safety
  • P-Card, Requisitions, and Banner Finance
  • Paycom and Payroll Supervisor Basics
  • Working with Minors
  • Investigations and Reporting
  • Holistic Employment, Care, and Support
  • UCO Event Training

Do you have a clever name idea? If so, please leave your top three choices in the form linked here. The first round of submissions will be due by Monday, May 9th at 5:00pm. The finalists will be announced and voted on by everyone across campus. The last day to vote will be Monday, May 23rd at 5:00pm. The winner will be awarded a $50 certificate to the UCO bookstore in the Nigh.

Let loose and get to writing, we are excited to see what you all have in store.

Employees receiving gifts from UCO are considered non-cash earnings by the State of Oklahoma. Individuals will be taxed on said items as additional wages of $50 or more per calendar year.

Human Resources to Host Shredding Event

Allison Penn-Franklin, HRIS Team Lead

Human Resources has arranged for MidCon Data Services to bring a shredding truck to campus from 11am-2pm, May 5th, in parking lot No. 11 (between Hurd and Main).  All files, including personal files from home and work documents, are accepted.

For more information about compliance, call the Office of the General Counsel at 405-974-3377.  For information about the shredding event, email Human Resources or call 405-974-2366.

Tech Corner: Microsoft Outlook Report Message Add-In

Roberta Botello, Executive Assistant to the CIO

The Office of Information Technology (OIT) is happy to announce a more efficient method to report suspicious email and for our users to handle junk emails. The Outlook Report Message button will allow for more efficient handling of suspicious emails and make our systems more secure.

UCO users will be able to report e-mail messages as Junk, Phishing or Not Junk with the click of a button. 

Simply select the ‘Report Message’ button from the menu at the top right-hand corner of Outlook.

If a user receives an e-mail in their Junk e-mail folder that is legitimate (not junk), they can use the button to report the message as ‘Not Junk’ and the message will be moved back to the Inbox and the sender of the e-mail will be added to the Safe Senders’ list for that user.

If a user receives an e-mail in their Inbox that is potential Junk, they can use the button to report the message as ‘Junk’ and the message will be moved to the Junk e-mail folder and the sender will be added to the ‘Blocked Senders’ list for that user sending e-mails to the Junk e-mail folder for the user in the future.

If a user receives an e-mail in their Inbox that is potential Phishing, they can use the button to report the message as ‘Phishing’ and the e-mail will be sent to  It will not block the sender from sending the end user messages in the future and it will not add the sender to the ‘Blocked Senders’ list.

For more information, review the Reporting Suspicious Email knowledge base article (KBA) or call the UCO Service Desk at 405-974-2255.

Chosen Name and Pronouns Fields in Paycom

Annabelle Saunders, Assistant Vice President HR Ops & Tech

Faculty, staff and student employees can add or edit their chosen name and pronouns via Paycom Employee Self-Service at any time. Currently, these fields do not connect to Banner or other systems.

Chosen (displayed in Paycom settings as “preferred”) names added to Paycom will be displayed throughout the system where a legal name is not required. To add a chosen name to Paycom, follow the chosen name guide provided on The Hub.

Additionally, pronouns added to Paycom will be viewable by an individual’s supervisor and upline. To add pronouns to Paycom, follow the pronoun guide provided on The Hub.

Supervisors, chairs and deans can follow the viewing employee information guide to view their downline’s information, including chosen names and pronouns.

Student employees do not have access to The Hub. Guides should be downloaded and shared with them if they would like to make these changes.

Policy Updates

Mary Deter-Billings, Director of Employee Relations

Paycheck Policy

Employee Relations conducts a review of current UCO policies and updates as necessary in partnership with those who manage the policy. In April, the following policy changes have been made:

The Paycheck policy was discontinued because it is a replication of the information provided on the annual Payroll Calendar which is released each fiscal year and available on the Hub. The Payroll Calendar provides a more accurate description of the actual payroll schedule then the Paycheck policy.

Visit the Policy Changes page on The Hub to see a full list of this year’s changes and modifications. If you have any questions regarding policy changes, email Employee Relations.

Staff Senate Updates

Ellen Schmidt, Master Electrician, Mitchell Hall Theatre

staff senate update

Staff Senate elections were held in March, and we’re happy to announce the election winners:

Academic Affairs

Ellen Schmidt, Gary Parsons, Jennifer Burris, Liliana Renteria Mendoza, Sue Haller and Zachary Hunter

Enrollment and Student Success

Michael Hendricks, Rachel Fairchild and Stepheny Smith

Finance and Operations

Barb Andrews, Beatriz Garcia Bertrand and Teresa Delaney

Information Technology

Julio Mata


Jodi Elderton

To see a list of current Senators, please visit the Staff Senate website.

April Meeting Highlights

Staff Senate met on Tuesday, April 5th. Guest speaker Provost Charlotte Simmons acknowledged challenges on campus but also highlighted several positive happenings and accomplishments around UCO. The Stakeholder Relations and Involvement Committee introduced SSJR – Affirmation of, and Support for, Sustainability Efforts in the UCO Community, which will be debated and voted on at our May 3rd meeting. The topic of conversation during divisional caucusing was constituent responses to the recent budget forum.

Upcoming Meetings

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2-4pm, FSI 106

Tuesday, June 7th, 2-4pm, FSI 106

For more detailed information regarding the roles of senators, meeting agendas, minutes, how you can bring legislation topics to the senate, please visit the UCO Staff Senate website.