News Category: innovation

Victims Advocate Network implements best practices for crisis intervention services during pandemic

Marica Kelley, VAN Program Coordinator (Left) and Danica Morgan, VAN Caseworker (Right)
Nov. 30, 2020

The University of Texas at Austin Police Department (UTPD) Victims Advocate Network (VAN), provides immediate crisis intervention services at the scenes of crimes or distressing events. Despite changes to operations during the pandemic, the team of VAN employees and volunteers continued providing care to UT community members and beyond, according to Noelle Newton, Director of Campus Safety Communications.

AFM pivots with innovation to maintain customer service during COVID-19

Stewardship FAS value graphic
Nov. 23, 2020

With the onset of COVID-19, Accounting and Financial Management (AFM), had to pivot from a traditional office environment to remote work, which meant numerous changes in how they conduct business.

Manager John Cano uses listening to lead effectively

John Cano interview screenshot
Nov. 17, 2020

In this interview, Financial and Administrative Services (FAS) Media Manager Veronica Trevino talks with John Cano, information technology manager with Enterprise Business Information Technology Solutions (eBITS). Cano has led many projects to improve the university’s payroll systems and processes and was recently recognized as an emerging leader in government technology by the Texas Association of State Systems for Computing and Communications. Here, he shares his approach to leading individuals, projects, and process improvement.

FAS offers new remote and flexible work resources

Remote work graphic representation
Nov. 12, 2020

Financial and Administrative Services (FAS) staff and managers can find the latest resources for flexible and remote work under the Flexible and Remote Work tab on the Human Resources Support Services (HRSS) website. New and existing materials under the tab support workers and managers in assessing and establishing workplace options that support success for both staff and the business of the unit.

National Fire Prevention Month spotlights Fire Prevention Services’ year-round commitment to safety

Fire Prevention illustrated icon with smoke detector and fire pictured
Oct. 19, 2020

Although October is National Fire Prevention Month, UT’s Fire Prevention Services (FPS) works year-round to ensure fire safety is always a priority. During the pandemic, FPS continues to offer trainings and conduct inspections and fire drills, and respond to inquiries to minimize the risk of fire that could result in loss of lives and property at the university. 

Concern for others drove mobile food pantry event hosted by PTS

Mobile Food Pantry volunteers prepare to distribute food for UT employees and students, provided by the Central Texas Food Bank.
Oct. 14, 2020

For Blanca Gamez, an associate director in Parking and Transportation Services (PTS), her UT roots run deep. She came to the university as a student in 2000, started working for PTS in 2001 as a student employee, and became a full-time PTS employee in 2007. After hearing from UT employees who were experiencing food-related concern or hardship as a result of the pandemic, Gamez decided to take action.

Utilities and Energy Management meets the challenges of energy efficiency and sustainability

Combustion Turbine Exhaust Collector
Oct. 7, 2020

As the utility provider for UT Austin, Utilities and Energy Management (UEM) has the task of keeping the main campus up and running 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Classrooms, dormitories, research laboratories, athletic facilities (including one of the largest stadiums in the world) and a cutting-edge medical center all depend on the energy generated by the on-campus power plant and chilling stations. According to university data, these areas add up to more than 22 million square feet of building space, serving a population of more than 50,000 students and 24,000 faculty and staff.

Emerging Technologies and Architecture collaborate to create innovative Virtual Learning Environment

FAS Core Value Innovation Graphic
Sept. 30, 2020

On Aug. 28, 2020, the university’s College of Natural Sciences (CNS) launched the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) project in its Public Health Program. The VLE for undergraduate Public Health students was created through a collaboration among faculty, educational facilitators in CNS, CNS IT and the Emerging Technologies and Architecture (ETA) team within the Campus Solutions group of ITS.

ID Center meets the challenge of providing 6,000 ID cards in-person on a shorter timeline

FAS Core Value Innovation Graphic
Sept. 21, 2020

Traditionally, the ID Center would create and distribute between 7,000 and 8,000 university ID cards for freshman orientation, in-person, over seven weeks.

This year, with New Student Services’ shift to virtual orientation sessions due to the pandemic, the ID Center had to rethink their strategy for delivering ID cards to the approximately 6,000 incoming students expected to arrive on campus within days of classes starting on Aug. 26.

UTPD launches free safety app

LiveSafe benefits graphic
Sept. 4, 2020

On Sept. 1, the University of Texas Police Department (UTPD) launched LiveSafe at UT Austin. The free mobile app gives the UT community the ability to engage with UTPD 911 dispatch more effectively and allows UTPD to serve its public care-taking role no matter where students and employees are working and attending classes this fall.