Fall Town Hall topics include internationalization, diversity and inclusion

by Cidni Sanders

Jenkins Town HallRev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., University president

More than 1,600 employees attended the University’s fall Town Hall meetings in early October. Notre Dame President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., and Executive Vice President John Affleck-Graves provided updates on a number of University initiatives and programs, including internationalization, diversity and inclusion, campus safety and benefits.

“If I look back on the last decade, one of the most significant developments at the University has been the internationalization of the University, our network of connections around the world. As you can see, we really are global,” Father Jenkins said, referencing a map of 16 non-U.S. locations that included global gateways, centers and offices.

“Our gateways are our most extensive presence in an area. They usually involve a physical presence — a building, classroom space and library space. It’s a place where we send students and where we have conferences,” said Father Jenkins. “Centers are focused on a particular area, usually a historic connection. Offices are places where we’re just starting; we have people on the ground and we’re working toward building a greater presence.”

Michael Pippenger, Notre Dame’s new vice president and associate provost for internationalization, will work to further the University’s global culture, programs, reach and reputation through expanded international research, collaborative projects and strategic relationships with global partners.

Fall Town Hall

Father Jenkins also spoke of the University’s ongoing efforts regarding diversity and inclusion, such as new employee resource groups and training opportunities for senior leaders, managers and employees.

In addition, the Office of Human Resources, the director of staff diversity and inclusion, and Campus Dining are partnering to hold a diversity discussion series where staff can share experiences and learn from each other. An upcoming session in November will focus on minimizing microagressions, and in December the series will explore the historical significance of Hanukkah and Kwanzaa. Visit hr.nd.edu for more information.

Town Hall attendees were reminded that ensuring a safe and secure campus is everyone’s responsibility. Safety hazards, suspicious or dangerous activities and crimes in progress should be immediately reported to the Notre Dame Security Police by calling 911 from a campus phone or 574-631-5555 from mobile phones. Safety concerns can also be shared at reportthreats@nd.edu.

Work environment concerns can be shared with Human Resources at 574-631-5900 and askhr@nd.edu; the Office of Institutional Equity at 574-631-0444 and equity@nd.edu; or the Integrity Line at 800-688-9918 and www.compliance-helpline.com/NotreDame.jsp.

Executive Vice President Affleck-Graves highlighted recent changes the federal government made to the overtime exemption regulations of the Fair Labor Standards Act. As of Dec. 1, approximately 500 Notre Dame employees, including faculty, staff and postdocs who are currently exempt will become non-exempt and eligible for overtime pay.

“I want to emphasize that this is a good thing. This is all about protecting employees across the country, and we wanted to make this change as fair as we could to our employees,” said Affleck-Graves. He noted that the University will protect a number of benefits for affected employees, including 403(b) Plan participation, vacation accrual and long-term disability. Those with questions about the FLSA changes should speak with their business manager, HR consultant or the Office of Human Resources.

For more content from the fall Town Hall meetings, view the video at evp.nd.edu/town-hall/.