The Resource

Also In This Issue

Career Development
Caring for Loved Ones

Published: January 13, 2010

You earn more than a paycheck when you work or teach at the University of Washington. The Resource, UWHR’s e-newsletter, will keep you informed of offerings from across the University that help you make the most out of UW employment.

Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions  

Find a Fitness Club Near You
Are you ready to get into shape now that the holidays are over? If so, consider taking a tour of or joining one of these UW fitness centers: UW Rec Sports or UW Tacoma Campus Fitness Center.

Or, if you'd rather exercise closer to home, there are two discount programs available to you:

UW Discount Program – Check out fitness clubs and wellness discounts offered by Motivano, our premier discount partner. Create your personal account by using your UWNetID and click on local merchants. It's fast and free!

Washington Wellness Fitness Club Discount Program - See a list of fitness club discounts available to Washington State employees--and in some cases, to family members and retirees. Your club not listed here? Make a suggestion by email to


Resolution: This Year, Eat Better and Exercise More
Have you resolved to eat better and exercise more in the New Year? Would you like to build your food skills to maximize the nutrition benefits in support of a more active lifestyle? Join Alysun Deckert, a registered dietitian with training in both nutrition and exercise sciences, in a lively discussion of the healthy basics and gather suggestions and motivation for continuing your resolutions for the next eleven months. Access event information and registration.


Weight Watchers at Work
Congratulations to UW Weight Watchers at Work enrollees who lost a combined total weight of over 600 pounds in 2009 by increasing their exercise and making smarter food choices—all in a supportive environment. Attend a Weight Watchers at Work meeting to learn how you can reshape yourself, too. View the Weight Watchers Schedule or visit


New Year’s Inventory: Health, Happiness, Prosperity
Can you name a dozen steps that you can take towards better health, happiness, and prosperity this year? Use this Health Inventory Checklist to set your personal goals for optimizing your health in 2010.


Resolve to Save More for Retirement
What are your resolutions for the New Year? Is saving more for retirement high on your list? When you consider that people are living longer and health care costs are on the rise, it's easy to see why it's important to save as much as possible for your retirement. The IRS limit on pre-tax contributions allows you to save up to $16,500 this year, plus if you’ll reach age 50 by the end of this year, you may contribute an additional $5,500 to your plan. This valuable “catch-up” provision is a way to quickly boost your account balance and make up for lost time as retirement nears. To learn more about the Voluntary Investment Plan (VIP), contribution limits, and catch-up provisions, see the VIP web page. For an added boost, you have the option of participating in the Washington State Deferred Compensation Program (WSDCP) too. In fact, you can participate in your basic retirement plan and both the VIP and the WSDCP in the same tax year at the same time. See the WSDCP web page for more information.


Annual Attendance Incentive Program - Deadline January 29, 2010
Each January, UW faculty and staff who accrue sick leave and who 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.

The Payroll Office must have all attendance incentive payment forms by Friday, January 29, 2010 at 5 p.m. Submit the form to your department in time for processing and delivery to the Payroll Office by the deadline. See program information and the required form.


Annual PERS3 Transfer Window Opens
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 the option to transfer to PERS Plan 3 through January 31. To learn more about choosing between PERS 2 and PERS 3, register to attend a seminar.

Please note that you must earn service credit in January 2010 to be eligible to transfer, and your decision to join Plan 3 cannot be changed at a later date.


Flexible Spending Account Grace Period
Did you have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) through December 31, 2009? If so, you have a 2½ month grace period—from January 1 through March 15, 2010—to incur claims against your 2009 FSA. All FSA claims for services provided from January 1 through March 15, 2010, will automatically be processed against any remaining funds in the 2009 plan year first, if submitted by March 31, 2010. If your claim exceeds the available funds from the 2009 plan year, any excess will be automatically applied to the 2010 plan year.

Note that the grace period is not the same as the "run-out period”—the 90-day period at the end of a plan year in which you can claim reimbursement for 2009 eligible medical expenses. For example, you have until March 31, 2010, to submit claims for 2009 medical expenses. During this period you can file claims incurred anytime during the plan year, as well as claims incurred during the grace period. Learn more.

Career Development  

Payroll: The Basics
In this half-day course, learn about common payroll processes regarding employment at the UW, including OPUS, time reporting, overpayments and underpayments, tax reporting, and more. Access course information and registration.


Developing Dynamic Team Skills
This one-day course integrates exercises in team development and group dynamics with elements of refining communication skills, listening empathetically, giving and receiving feedback, making decisions, and other tactical skills. Access course information and registration.


New Hourly Career Counseling
One-hour career counseling sessions are now available with Training and Organization Development Consultant Susan Templeton. The charge is $80 per one-hour counseling session if paid with a UW budget number (with supervisor approval) or $92.48 if paid with cash, check, or credit card (due to a mandatory institutional overhead fee). Career counseling can help you evaluate your strengths, assess your career fit, write a résumé or cover letter, conduct an effective job search, or gear up for a job interview. Learn more about this service.


H1N1 and Seasonal Flu Clinics
New H1N1 and seasonal flu vaccine supplies are now available! Attend a campus flu clinic to get your free immunization.


Smart Spending
Learn how to shop wisely whether hitting the stores or searching for deals online via an online seminar on Tuesday, January 19. Register now. Use UW for company code.


Jumpstart Recognition
The budget forecast is bleak and staff are working harder than ever. What can we do to acknowledge the positive difference employees continue to make? Recognize them–of course! Providing recognition in a meaningful way is more than the “award,” it’s the message and thoughtfulness involved. This 90-minute workshop will help jumpstart your unit’s culture of appreciation, refresh or validate an existing program, and introduce what others are doing at the University. Recognition is within your reach–staff and supervisors are encouraged to attend. Access event information and registration.

Caring for Loved Ones  

Memory Loss: The First Subtle Signs
Dr. Laura Baker, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the UW Medical School, will discuss that vague “gray” area between what is normal and what is not normal cognitive functioning as we age. Find out about the signs and symptoms which should receive further evaluation and what constitutes that evaluation, as well as the health conditions and the medication interactions which increase the risks of dementia. Access event information and registration.


Adult Eldercare Consultations
Would you like to sit down and talk about your concerns regarding your elderly parents, find out about options for their care and the resources available in their community? Contact UW WorkLife to request an eldercare consultation; email


Tender Loving Care
Begin the New Year with a plan for childcare should your child come down with sniffles and sneezes by completing the Tender Loving Care (TLC) at Virginia Mason registration for your child. TLC offers your child a warm and nurturing place while giving you the confidence that he or she will be well cared for while you work. The University of Washington underwrites the cost of TLC for all benefits-eligible faculty and staff. For more information, contact WorkLife at 206-543-6963 or visit the sick child care web page.


Upcoming Homeownership Seminars
Understanding your credit and budgeting for a home are important concepts to grasp before buying a home. Attend a free lunchtime seminar to learn how to “clean up” your credit, pay down debt, and save for a down payment on a new home. Register today.


Aetna / UW Medicine Provider Contract Update
UW Medicine and Aetna have agreed to extend their current contract through January 31, 2010 while they continue negotiations for a new contract. This means that if you receive services from UW Medicine through January 31, 2010, Aetna will pay for those services at the network level as long as they are covered benefits. Aetna will post updates to its website.


Find SafeCampus on Facebook
The UW SafeCampus Facebook page is a great way to stay up to date on information about counseling and safety resources, University policies, and how to report concerns about violence. Visit our page and become a fan!


“Tip Sheets” Mental Health Awareness: Depression
Everyone experiences periods of feeling ‘blue’ associated with life’s events. Should those ‘blues’ linger, find out about the recognizable symptoms of clinical depression, which is one of the most effectively treated mental health conditions.


More than $2 Million Raised for Charity
UW faculty, staff, and retirees reached a new milestone this year by pledging $2,044,030 to local, national, and international charities through the UW Combined Fund Drive. The generosity shown by the UW community will have a tremendous impact on these organizations by funding needed programs and services. Visit the UW Combined Fund Drive website for more information about the campaign.


Walk into the Tropics
During the gray days of winter, it’s just hard to get ourselves outside. Well, 'just do it’–bundle-up and take a brisk walk into the tropics of the Botany Greenhouse. If the doors are open you are welcome to step out of the rain and into the warm tropics abundant with ferns and cacti. A little fresh air and physical exercise can lift the spirits and refresh the mind.

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