The Resource

In This Issue

Home Loan Program
The Whole U
Career Development
Fiscal Fitness 2015
Preparing to Retire

Published: January 14, 2015

Start 2015 off right by exploring the state’s new wellness website, joining 2000 of your colleagues in setting a Guinness World Record, or making good on your New Year resolutions with the Dare to Do in 2015 challenge.

Watch The Resource—UWHR's e-newsletter—to take full advantage of the many wonderful resources faculty and staff have access to. You can even help guide our community efforts by taking The Whole U community interest survey.

Happy New Year,
Your colleagues in UW Human Resources


Annual Attendance Incentive Program—Deadline January 30
Each January, UW employees who accrue sick leave and have a year-end balance exceeding 480 hours may request to be paid for a portion of their unused sick leave that was accrued but not used in the previous calendar year. Payment is made at the rate of 25% of the hourly equivalent of your pay rate and all hours compensated are deducted from your sick leave balance. Submit the attendance incentive payment form to your department in time for processing and delivery to the Payroll Office by the deadline of Friday, January 30, at 5 p.m. UW Medicine employees: there is a Medical Centers-specific form. See program information and the required forms.


PERS 3 Transfer Window Opens January 1
If you're a member of the Public Employees Retirement System (PERS) Plan 2 and you were enrolled in the plan prior to March 1, 2002, you have an annual option to transfer to PERS 3 during the month of January 2015. To be eligible, you must earn service credit in January 2015. This one-time transfer is irrevocable, meaning you cannot change plans at a later date. See Transferring from PERS 2 to PERS 3.


Flexible Spending Account Grace Period
Did you have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) through December 31, 2014? If so, you have a 2½ month grace period—from January 1 through March 15, 2015—to incur claims against your FSA through Flex-Plan Services. All eligible FSA expenses for services provided from January 1 through March 15, 2015, should be submitted to Flex-Plan so they can automatically process claims against the 2014 plan year or until your account balance reaches zero. If your claim exceeds the available funds from the 2014 plan year, and you are enrolled in a 2015 FSA, you can submit excess claim amounts to Flex-Plan Services. Remember, if you elected the Consumer-Directed Health Plan with a Health Savings Account for plan year 2015, you were required to incur services, file claims, and receive reimbursements for 2014 FSA expenses by December 31, 2014.


Caring For Your Whole Self
It's a new year with new resolutions and goals. Consider taking a slightly different approach and encompass your whole self. This month's UW Carelink Tip Sheet lists ways for you to take inventory and be your best you, by getting sleep, managing stress, being active and eating healthy, and laughing every day. Worries about the future and regrets about the past make it hard to focus on what's important right now. Practicing mindfulness can help as you bring more awareness to your thoughts and feelings. For a deeper exploration, UW Carelink will broadcast a one-hour webinar "Get Your Head In The Game – Focus on the Now" on January 20 at 9: 00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. You must pre-register at least one hour before the presentation. Visit (use "UW" as the company code) and click the Online Seminars section. Select the presentation and then register by clicking on the first or second session option. If that day doesn't work it will be archived on the site and available for viewing by the beginning of February.


Kids Get Sick
You have a very important meeting at work that's taken months to put together, and your child comes down with a mild fever. You have options! If your child is mildly ill and between one and 12 years old, you have access to sick child care through Tender Loving Care at Virginia Mason Medical Center. The University underwrites the entire daily fee for UW benefits-eligible employees working .50 FTE or more and for academic student employees. Eligible families pay only a one-time registration fee of $5 per child.


Power Is Out, Your Childcare is Closed
Don't get caught without a back-up child care plan! UW WorkLife and Bright Horizons offer a specialized back-up care program to all UW faculty, staff, and students. Use the Bright Horizons Back-Up Care Advantage program when your regular caregiver is unavailable, you are transitioning back to work after leave, or your child's regular school is closed. Bright Horizons has numerous centers in the area ready to provide for these emergent needs.

WorkLife has a one-stop registration and call center open 24/7 designed to help you evaluate your needs and the centers available to you. If this is a service you may need to access in the future, register now, so that if an emergency arises, you'll be ready to call or go online to find care. To register call 877-242-2737 or visit Bright Horizons Back-up Care Advantage (user name UnivWA, and the password is 4Backup). After you log in you will create a personal account that only you can access. This service is on an "as available" basis. The cost is $100 per day, paid by the parent of the enrolled child.


SmartHealth: Fun, easy, and engaging!
Effective January 1, Health Care Authority launched SmartHealth, the state's new voluntary wellness program for eligible members of the Public Employees Benefits Board (PEBB) Program. Health Care Authority sent a mailer about this program to your home via U.S. mail earlier this week.

Begin your wellness journey this year by joining SmartHealth and taking steps to improve your health and well-being while having fun and connecting with others. Use SmartHealth's interactive website to take part in fun activities to reach your health goals, and when you reach 2,000 points or more by June 30, 2015, you'll qualify for a $125 incentive in 2016. Plus no more paper forms to fill out!


Whooping Cough (Pertussis) Shot Clinic
Have you ever been vaccinated against "Pertussis" also known as Whooping Cough? If not, then consider getting a Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis (Tdap) shot, especially if you have close contact with babies younger than 12 months.

UW Benefits is sponsoring a drop-in vaccination clinic for UW faculty, staff, and their covered dependents age 18+ who have not yet received the Tdap shot:

Thursday, January 15
10 a.m.–2 p.m.
South Campus Center Lobby

Accepted health insurance plans include PEBB's Uniform Medical Plan and Group Health, Graduate Appointee Insurance Program (GAIP) and International Student Health Insurance Plan (ISHIP). Shots will be administered on a first-come, first-served basis for as long as supplies last. While no appointment is necessary, please bring your photo ID and health insurance card. Also, download and complete this claim form so the vendor can bill your plan directly.

Remember to check with your health care professional if you're not sure whether you have ever received a Tdap shot since insurance companies may not cover a second one.


Mammography Screenings for UMP Members
If you're a woman age 40+ who's enrolled in Uniform Medical Plan (UMP), consider scheduling your next routine mammogram at the MammoVan! Seattle Cancer Care Alliance's MammoVan is a customized, mobile breast imaging clinic bringing the latest technology in digital mammograms to you at your workplace. Convenience, state-of-the art technology, and exceptional quality are reasons why women choose this service.

The MammoVan is scheduled to visit the Seattle campus once every other month throughout 2015 starting January 28. Appointments are available to UMP members on a first-come, first-served basis between 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. The average appointment time is just 15 minutes.

Access screening information and schedule an appointment.


What's Your Score?
An annual diabetes screening is a proven method of detecting prediabetes in its early stages—when it's easier to treat successfully—but did you know it's possible to reverse prediabetes through the "NOT ME" prevention program? NOT ME is a free benefit available to PEBB members who are 18+ and enrolled in PEBB's Uniform Medical Plan or Group Health.

How do you know if you’re at risk and what can you do about it? First take the 30-second Risk Quiz and if you score 9 or higher, schedule an A1c (finger stick) test in one of two ways:

  1. Attend a blood sugar testing event—drop-ins are welcome, or schedule an appointment.
    • January 23 at the Health Sciences Building, Hogness Auditorium, Room A420, from 9 a.m.–4 p.m.
    • January 28 at UW Tacoma, Milgard Assembly Hall, from 10 a.m.–2:30 p.m.
  2. Get tested by your physician. If your A1c results show that you're prediabetic then email to enroll in the free NOT ME Diabetes Prevention Program.

Stay on track! If you recently completed a NOT ME Diabetes Prevention Program class series, drop in to a monthly follow-up session at the UW Tower or Harborview.


Weight Watchers at Work
Weight Watchers teaches you how to stick to healthy living and have a healthier relationship with food so you can lose weight and keep it off. Sign up for a monthly pass to attend sessions at:

  • Tuesdays, Schmitz Hall
  • Wednesdays, UW Tower
  • Thursdays, Harborview
  • Fridays, Health Sciences

The pass allows you to enjoy lower monthly fees, attend unlimited meetings anywhere, and get free access to Weight Watchers eTools—interactive tools, tips, and recipes that help you stay on track. Learn how to get started.


Start Fresh - Quit Tobacco
If you smoke, here's a win-win opportunity just for you! Enjoy revitalized lungs, a fatter wallet, and lower health care costs by quitting tobacco. With the PEBB's free "Quit for Life" program, there's plenty of information to help you succeed in quitting tobacco this year. You know it's time. Start your quit plan today!

Home Loan Program  

HomeStreet offers the following free one-hour seminars to help you learn about a variety of homeownership issues related to budgeting, buying, remodeling, refinancing, and selling your home:

  • Buying a Home with Down Payment Assistance – For those interested in buying a home but want to keep their down payment to a minimum.
  • Understanding Credit – Learn how credit reporting really works.
  • Buying a Home – Whether you're buying your first home or just need a refresher, this seminar is for you.
  • Planning on Upsizing or Downsizing your Home – For those ready to move up to a bigger home or downsize to a smaller one.
  • Buying and Remodeling a Fixer Upper – For the "Do-It-Yourself" type of homeowner.

Access information and registration.


Free Homeownership Counseling
Thinking of buying or refinancing a home but not sure how to get started? Why not schedule a free personal home ownership counseling session with a HomeStreet representative who can walk you through the process? These 30-minute, one-on-one sessions are both private and informative, and your spouse, partner, or potential co-signer is welcome to attend with you. To schedule an appointment, email or call 206-628-0207.

The Whole U  

Break a Guinness World Record at Husky Stadium!
Don't miss our biggest event of the year. On Wednesday, January 28 we're taking over beautiful Husky Stadium for the World's Largest Umbrella Dance. The moves are easy but the bragging rights will last a lifetime. All participants will receive the following swag:

  • Free limited-edition Whole U umbrella
  • Free T-shirt to commemorate breaking the record
  • Free snacks for recharging as you triumphantly leave the field
  • Opportunities to win prizes

Together we will be part of history. Family members at least 12 years of age are welcome. Spots are limited, so sign up now!


Prevent the Sitting Disease
Not only do we sit at work, but think about all of the hours we spend sitting on the couch watching television, reading, playing games, or surfing the Internet. The Whole U is welcoming experts Elliot O'Connor, DPT and Dr. Brian Liem from UW Sports Medicine to present on sitting disease. Learn what sitting disease is, hear how it can lead to chronic back and neck pain, and walk away with simple exercises that you can do to prevent and beat sitting disease. You will have the option to stand or sit at this seminar. Join us on Tuesday, February 3 at noon in the HUB. Sign up now.


Make a Child's Birthday Bright
The Whole U is hosting a Birthday Bag Blitz with Cheerful Givers, a community organization that provides birthday gift bags to disadvantaged children. Make new friends while you help package these very special gifts with us. You will also get to hear from a representative from the University District Food Bank who will distribute the gifts to families in need in our local community. A $10 donation is required to cover the expense of the toys, bags, ribbons, and birthday stickers. We'll be assembling the bags in the Tower on Thursday, February 19 at noon. Register now.


Run a 5K With Us!
How about getting some exercise, helping out a local charity, and creating memories with your coworkers, family, and friends all at the same time? Join us for the F5 St. Patrick's Day Dash, on Sunday, March 15. The Dash is the largest single-distance run in Seattle and a family event with many fun activities, including live music, giveaways, a costume contest, and a beer garden. We've secured a discount and created a custom training plan. Learn more.

Career Development  

Professional & Organizational Development (POD) courses are open to all UW employees, subject to supervisor/budgetary approval and UW's release time policy. Please view our policy page for additional information.


Get the Picture
Better understand your organization's situation and how roles, systems, and outcomes are connected with a set of tools designed to visually represent how your organization does business and illuminate operational innovations. Register for Master Process Planning.


Set the Standard
In this half-day workshop, define (or redefine) your customer service standards as you gain techniques for listening, problem-solving, maintaining perspective, and improving all points of customer contact. Register for Customer Service Excellence.


Find Your Calling
Uncover what you do best! Assess your strengths and explore how to use your unique excellence to maximize career satisfaction and adapt to the changing demands of the workforce. Register for Discovering Your Dependable Strengths.


Stop the Clock
In this half-day class, evaluate how your time is currently being spent, learn prioritization techniques, and improve your time management skills so that you feel more productive and less stressed at work. Register for Time Management.


Start Something New
Breathe new life into your career! One-on-one career counseling can help you assess your career fit, make the most of your strengths, prepare for a job search, or plot a new path for your career. Sessions are offered through Training and Organizational Development Consultant Susan Templeton; the fee is $95 per one-hour session if paid with a UW budget number (with supervisor approval) or $109.82 if paid with cash, check, or credit card (due to a mandatory institutional overhead fee). Learn more about career counseling.

Fiscal Fitness 2015  

Social Security: A Foundation for Your Future
A secure, comfortable retirement is everyone's dream. Now that we're living longer and healthier lives, we expect to spend more time in retirement than our parents and grandparents did. Join us at this free Social Security seminar to get a better understanding of how Social Security and Medicare systems work.

Learn what benefits to expect and when these will be available to you and your family. Open to UW faculty, staff, students, and retirees. Access seminar information and free registration.

Wednesday, March 4
11:30 a.m.- 1:00 p.m.
UW Tower


Investment Strategy Seminars
Join Fidelity at one of these upcoming events for guidance strategies to help with your retirement and financial planning needs. Access event registration and information.

Getting on the Right Path with Your Workplace Savings Plan

  • Effectively balance your saving, spending, and debt
  • Set goals and develop a plan to reach them
  • Estimate how much to save for retirement and set your contribution rate

Income Strategies for Your Retirement

Intended for UW employees who are planning to retire within the next 12 months.

  • How to address need for inflation protection vs. market risk
  • Key portfolio risks in retirement and how to make your money last
  • How to balance portfolio risk vs. return in retirement
  • How to create withdrawal strategy that will mitigate the key risks of retirement

Stretching Your Hard-Earned Dollars
The UW has partnered with two local nonprofit credit unions to help you learn to save more, and better manage your finances!

  • Financial Yoga: Stretching Your Hard-Earned Dollars – Learn tips that will help you gain control of your finances and reduce financial stress.
  • Scams, Shams and Identity Theft – Learn how to better protect yourself, your money, and your personal information.
  • Social Media and Your Child's Financial Future – Learn effective strategies for your child and the top 10 social media mistakes to avoid.
  • Credit Reporting 101 – Come away with valuable tips to help you get the most from your creditworthiness.

Access information and registration.


Take Advantage of Free Retirement Planning Guidance
Whether your retirement is years away or just around the corner, did you know that you can receive free retirement planning guidance from a Fidelity or TIAA-CREF consultant? Individual appointments are an excellent time to:

  • Ask about saving for retirement and other goals
  • Evaluate investment choices that meet your needs
  • Create an action plan to get and stay on track for retirement
  • Review retirement income options

Schedule an appointment in a way that works best for you.


Build Your Nest Egg
Did you know that you can quickly boost your retirement nest egg by participating in one or both of these optional retirement programs in addition to your basic mandatory retirement plan?

Remember, the Internal Revenue Code limits annual contributions to retirement plans so be sure to stay within the limits posted at both web pages linked above.


In a world with so many financial obligations and options, money management can be overwhelming. That's why the UW and our local credit unions have partnered with a financial fitness program called BALANCE. Through this partnership, you have access to free and confidential financial counseling services to help you get out of debt, design a money management plan, and achieve your financial goals. Learn more and/or download informational flyer.

Preparing to Retire  

Ready to Retire?
If you're thinking of retiring within the next 12 months and you want to prepare a sound strategy, consider attending a free retirement workshop based on your current retirement plan and/or eligibility. Access workshop information and free registration.

  • Retiring from UW Retirement Plan (UWRP)
  • Retiring from Public Employee Retirement System (PERS)

Remember, you must apply for PEBB retiree benefits (or deferral of insurance) within 60 days after UW-paid or COBRA coverage ends. If you miss that deadline, you will have to go back to work to re-qualify for PEBB retiree coverage.


Winter Wellness Courses at the IMA
New offerings and more flexibility make the IMA an ideal place to start 2015 off right. Online registration ( is open. IMA courses are offered at low rates, with IMA membership required to enter the building for all classes ($66 + tax per quarter, or $21 + tax per month). All questions can be directed to Anne Garrett, Fitness Coordinator, at

Drop-In Classes Start Early January!
This winter IMA offers a record number of mind/body and cardio drop-in classes at $5 each. Online registration for each class runs for a week beforehand, closing 30 minutes before class begins. Browse the selection.

Mindfulness Serving Life Course
A new mindfulness class is being offered at the IMA for $100 this winter! Practicing mindfulness can promote calmness, resilience, compassion, and expanded awareness. Studies have shown decreased burnout, improved immunity, and improved athletic and academic performance. This 4-week course is on Thursdays from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on 1/15, 1/29, 2/12, and 2/26. Register now. Registration closes prior to class on January 29, but it is recommend to register by January 15.

Intro to Meditation
Meditation has proven benefits for your body and mind, and the way you interact with and impact the world around you. During each week of this course, you will learn and practice a new method of meditation. Class is on Mondays from 5:30-6:30 at the IMA. Fee is $20. Register now. Registration closes prior to class on February 2.

Self Defense
Learn how to instinctively respond to a variety of aggressive acts and defend against multiple attackers. This course builds the student's fighting spirit and teaches how to respond both mentally and physically in a time of need. Please note this is a full-contact and high intensity class; those with serious injuries are not recommended to take it. Classes are on Mondays and Wednesdays from 5:30-6:30 p.m. from 1/21-3/11. Cost is $42. Register now. Registration closes prior to class on January 26, but class usually fills prior to this date.

Adaptive Yoga
The IMA is partnering with Adaptive Yoga Northwest to offer a new Adaptive Yoga course. People who have lost sensations in parts of their bodies or face chronic pain can still experience the energy flowing in their limbs and a sense of release and freedom from their practice. Yoga poses are adapted for people with a range of conditions (paralysis, MS, stroke) and participants may practice in a sturdy chair, thick mat (both are provided), wheelchair, or their own yoga mat. Julie Fournier teaches the course on Thursdays from 5-6 p.m. from 1/22-3/12 in IMA Meeting Room 246. Register now. Registration closes prior to class on January 29. Drop-in will be open after that date; however pre-registration is more cost-effective.

Step is Back!
The IMA's new Step Interval class is a fusion of the latest interval training trends with old school step-aerobics. The class has been designed to be easy to follow; no step or aerobics experience needed. Join instructor Stephanie for this fun workout on Mondays and Wednesdays from 6-7 p.m. Register now. Registration closes prior to class on January 26.


Supporting Aging Parents: Hearing Health
Do you have an aging parent who frequently says "Can you repeat that?" Come and learn about various models of hearing healthcare delivery. You will also learn about hearing aid options to enhance your understanding of amplification choices as you support your parent in their decision. Additionally, you will be provided with communication tips to enhance communication with your parent(s) and learn about realistic expectations of amplification.

Friday, January 30, 2015
HUB 340
Presenters: Susan Anderson, AuD and Lisa Illich, MCSD Clinical Audiologists, UW Speech and Hearing Clinic


Help Guide The Whole U
Take a five-minute break and help shape The Whole U calendar for 2015. Your ideas and opinions matter to us! Take The Whole U Community Interest Survey now.

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