The Resource

In This Issue

Career Development
Combined Fund Drive
Home Loan Program
Saving for Retirement
Retirement Seminars

Published: January 9, 2013

Happy new year from UW Human Resources! Compensation at the University of Washington goes beyond salary. The UW offers a vast range of benefits—from the traditional to those offered by other premier employers to those that are truly unique to working at the UW. The Resource—UWHR's e-newsletter—keeps you informed of all of these offerings so that you can make the most out of your UW employment.


Annual Attendance Incentive Program—Deadline January 31
Each January, UW employees 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. Submit the attendance incentive payment form to your department in time for processing and delivery to the Payroll Office by the deadline of Thursday, January 31, at 5 p.m. UW Medicine employees, please note that there is a Medical Centers-specific form. See program information and the required forms.


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. (Note that you must earn service credit in January 2013 to be eligible to transfer and your decision to join Plan 3 cannot be changed at a later date.) Find transfer details.


Flexible Spending Account Grace Period
Did you have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) through December 31, 2012? If so, you have a 2½ month grace period—from January 1 through March 15, 2013—to incur claims against your 2012 FSA. All eligible FSA claims for services provided from January 1 through March 15, 2013, will automatically be processed against the 2012 plan year first, if filed by the claims filing deadline for that plan year. If your claim exceeds the available funds from the 2012 plan year, any excess will be automatically applied to your 2013 FSA if you are enrolled in one. Otherwise, funds will be forfeited. However, if you elected to change to a Consumer-Driven Health Plan (CDHP) with a Health Savings Account (HSA) for 2013, you were required to use all FSA funds by the end of 2012 with no grace period. Learn more about FSA.


Extended Open Enrollment Period for Employees Affected by Hurricane Sandy
The Public Employees Benefits Board (PEBB) Program will extend the 2013 open enrollment period to January 15 for PEBB members affected by Hurricane Sandy in November 2012. This includes subscribers (or their representatives) who resided, lived, or worked in an area impacted by Hurricane Sandy, and were not able to make changes to their 2013 coverage by November 30, 2012. Learn more about the extension.


Complete a Health Assessment for 2013
Get immediate feedback on your health through a simple questionnaire called a "health assessment." As part of your state-sponsored PEBB medical plan, each year you and your enrolled dependents age 18 or older are encouraged to participate in a 20-minute, confidential assessment that helps you prioritize your health challenges and set reasonable goals. Learn more about the health assessment.


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 Schmitz Hall on Tuesdays and/or UW Medical Center on Fridays. The pass allows you to enjoy lower monthly fees, attend unlimited meetings anywhere, and get free access to Weight Watchers eTools—interactive web tools, tips, and recipes that help you stay on track. Learn how to get started.


Start Fresh: Quit Tobacco this Year
Here’s a win-win opportunity for tobacco users. Enjoy revitalized lungs, a fatter wallet, and lower health care costs by quitting tobacco using the Quit for Life program. You’ll find plenty of information that supports your New Year’s resolution to stop smoking. Start today!


Being Efficient at Work and Home
It’s 2013 and sometimes the doldrums set in after the holidays conclude. UW CareLink has some tips this month to help “Get the Most Out of Your Day.” Stay on track throughout the day by planning meaningful activities, being active, and making use of waiting time. As evening rolls around, remember to unplug.

If you need help planning, look for that extra support through UW CareLink. They offer free, confidential counseling services that include up to five sessions with a state-licensed professional who can help you stay on track and identify obstacles. To get started, simply call 866-598-3978.


Maximizing Your Day: Effective Time Management
UW CareLink will offer a webinar, “Maximizing Your Day: Effective Time Management” on January 15 at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. Register at (enter “UW” as the company code) and look for Online Seminars in the lower right hand corner of the home page. Since these times may not be convenient for everyone, the webinar will also be archived on the site and available for viewing by the beginning of February.


Backup and Sick Child Care Needs
Work/Life is ready to help you prepare for your next childcare emergency with two programs—one to use when your child is healthy and one for when they are under the weather.

The Bright Horizons Back-Up Care Advantage Program is available to all UW faculty, staff, and students 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 and, in some instances, care may be reserved up to one month in advance. Pre-register now so you can easily take advantage of this service when you need it at The company user name is UnivWA and the password is 4Backup.

Once you are registered, you may find backup care by logging into your Bright Horizons account or calling 877-242-2737. While availability is not guaranteed, most often care can be found. Be prepared to show your current UW Husky card at time of drop-off. The cost is $100 per day, paid by the UW faculty, staff, or student.

If your child is mildly ill and between one and 12 years old, you can find sick child care through Tender Loving Care (TLC) at Virginia Mason Medical Center. This is a great resource when you have a mandatory meeting to attend or an event to host and your child is not well enough to attend school or daycare.

The University underwrites the entire daily fee for UW benefits-eligible employees working .50 FTE or more and academic student employees. Families pay only a one-time registration fee of $5 per child.

Questions about either program can be directed to or call 206-543-6963.

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.


Introduction to Research Administration
This short course is designed to help individuals build a foundational body of knowledge within research administration, with a focus on the terms, basic concepts, policies, and practices within the field of research and their application at the UW. (Note: This class was formerly called Fundamentals of Grant and Contract Management.) Access course information and registration.


Developing Assertiveness Skills
This course offers an interactive overview of assertiveness as it relates to behavior at work. You’ll collaborate on giving constructive feedback and posing relevant questions as you interact with colleagues, and you’ll learn how to apply assertiveness in a supervisory role. Access course information and registration.


Time Management
Don’t let time get away from you this year! 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. Access course information and registration.


Total Organization
This 90-minute webinar is for those of us awash in information (and who isn't?) in electronic and paper form, yet strive for an improved environment where creativity and productivity flourish. Regardless of what platform you work in, you'll explore how to better organize your email, electronic documents, paper files, and physical workspace. You'll examine the information surrounding you in your current environment, both online and physical, and you'll learn practical ways to organize the mountains of information you face by applying techniques for a “totally organized” setting. Access webinar information and registration.


Hourly Career Counseling
Thinking about your resolutions for the new year? Through one-on-one career counseling you can learn how to make the most of your strengths, prepare for a job search, or explore a new career path. Sessions are offered through Training and Organizational Development Consultant Susan Templeton for $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 this service.

Combined Fund Drive  

2012 UW Combined Fund Drive: Final Results
The fall 2012 UW Combined Fund Drive raised $2,117,828, resulting in the most successful campaign to date. The UW community’s generosity will make a difference for hundreds of charitable nonprofit organizations in our neighborhood and around the globe.

During the campaign, nearly $3,500 was collected through a campuswide coin drive benefitting the Seattle Ronald McDonald House. In addition, 1,000 pounds of food were donated to the House pantry, which supports children with life-threatening illness along with their families. Many other unit and campuswide events and fundraisers were held throughout the fall helping to bring awareness of the 3,000+ charities that are part of the campaign.

Visit the UW Combined Fund Drive for more information. Thank you for supporting the campaign!

Home Loan Program  

Free Seminars from Hometown Home Loan Program

Budgeting for a Home: How much cash will you need to buy a home in today's market? Learn how to create a household budget, set your savings goals, and pay off debt—all while saving for a home. Attend this free lunchtime seminar on January 15 at Seattle’s UW Tower, January 24 at South Lake Union, or February 21 at Bothell.
Buying a Distressed Property: Thinking of buying distressed real estate? Learn where to find properties, how to finance this type of purchase, and how the industry defines terms like short sale, bank-owned, owner-occupied, and investment home. Attend this free lunchtime seminar on February 19 at the UW Tower.
Understanding Credit: Do you know why credit history is important when getting ready to refinance your home? Learn how to clean up your credit history and fix reporting errors. Attend this free lunchtime seminar on January 17 at UW Tacoma.

Access event information and registration on the HomeStreet site.


Prequalification Appointments Available
The Hometown Home Loan program can help make your dream of homeownership a reality. Schedule a free, private, half-hour, one-on-one counseling appointment with a HomeStreet Affinity Loan Officer to discuss your homeownership options. Spouses, partners, and anyone else who might be on the loan are welcome to attend with you. Schedule an appointment today.

Saving for Retirement  

Check out the New VIP Roth 403(b)
The Voluntary Investment Program (VIP) just got better! It now offers the new Roth 403(b) contribution, a feature that allows qualified after-tax contributions to grow and be withdrawn tax free, subject to Internal Revenue Service restrictions on withdrawals. Unlike a traditional pre-tax 403(b), the Roth 403(b) allows you to designate all or a portion of your VIP 403(b) contributions as an after-tax Roth contribution.

So now you can take deductions from your gross salary either before or after federal income taxes are calculated—or you can contribute both ways. Either way, when you participate in the VIP, your contributions are automatically deducted from your paycheck, so you avoid the temptation to spend the money each pay period.

Talk with a Fidelity Workplace Planning and Guidance Consultant for help deciding whether the Roth 403(b) makes sense for you. Contact Fidelity at or 800-642-7131.


Fiscal Fitness in 2013
Fidelity's Workplace Planning and Guidance Consultants are dedicated to helping you reach your investment goals. Whether your retirement is many years away or around the corner, schedule a complimentary one-on-one appointment with a Fidelity Consultant 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

If you have questions about your plan or would like investing guidance, we invite you to contact Fidelity in the way that works best for you. Schedule your one-on-one appointment online or by calling 800-642-7131.


Resolve to Save More for Retirement
Does maximizing your retirement savings rate high on your list of New Year's resolutions? When you consider that people are living longer and health care costs are high, it's easy to see why it should be. The IRS limit on pre-tax contributions allows you to save up to $17,500 this year, plus if you’ll reach age 50 by the end of 2013, you can make an additional $5,500 "catch-up" contribution 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 page.

For an added boost, you have the option of participating in the Washington State Deferred Compensation Program (WSDCP). In fact, you can participate in your basic retirement plan, the VIP, and WSDCP in the same tax year at the same time. See the WSDCP page for more information.

Retirement Seminars   

Social Security: A Foundation for Planning Your Future
A secure, comfortable retirement is everyone's dream. And now, because we're living longer, healthier lives, we expect to spend more time in retirement than our parents and grandparents did. Learn what benefits to expect from Social Security and when benefits will be available to you and your family. Attend the seminar, "Social Security: A Foundation for Planning Your Future," to gain a better understanding of how it and Medicare works. This session is offered on Friday, February 8, at UW Tower. Access seminar information and free registration.


Thinking of Retiring Soon?
If you're thinking of retiring this year, consider attending one of these workshops to learn how to construct a sound strategy. Workshops are free and based on your current retirement plan and/or eligibility.

  • Retiring from UW Retirement Plan (UWRP)—January 9 or February 13
  • Retiring from Public Employee Retirement System (PERS)—January 24, February 12, or February 28

Access workshop information and registration.


UWRA Retirement Transitions Series
The UW Retirement Association is excited to announce the UWRA Retirement Transitions Series. Each two-hour workshop focuses on important issues and decisions for new retirees and employees who are thinking about retirement. The slate of workshops for winter and spring includes:

  • Later-life Legal Issues (January 31)
  • Non-financial Retirement Planning (February 26)
  • Considering End-of-Life Issues (March 19)
  • Long-term Care Insurance (April 3)

Open to UW employees, retirees, alumni, and their partners/spouses, and held on the Seattle campus. The cost is $15 for UWRA and UWAA members; $25 for non-UWRA/UWAA members. Sign up today or register by calling the UWAA at 206-543-0540. Access workshop information and registration.


Stalking: Reporting a Concern or Incident
January is National Stalking Awareness Month. Stalking is broadly defined as a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person fear. Stalking may be difficult to recognize because some stalking behaviors are also normal everyday behaviors taken to the extreme. Messaging, giving gifts, and surprising someone to walk them to their bus stop might all be part of a healthy relationship or could be stalking behaviors. Behaviors that could signal stalking are:

  • Receiving repeated messages or phone calls, even after asking the person to stop contact.
  • Changing routines to avoid a person or area.
  • Persistent requests for dates or meetings.
  • Being followed.
  • Someone tracking or monitoring you on social media.

SafeCampus is available at 206-685-SAFE (7233) to help all members of our community with stalking concerns. If you need immediate assistance, remember to always dial 911.


Free Weekend Walks - Washington Park Arboretum began Sunday, January 6, from 1-2:30 p.m. and recur weekly until January 27. Meet at the Washington Park Arboretum, Graham Visitors Center and enjoy the public tours. They will look at tree species considered “living fossils” like the gingko and Japanese umbrella pine. Visitors will learn about succession of plants on earth and how these few species have survived millennia.


Henry Art Gallery: Membership Discounts
University of Washington faculty, staff, retirees, and members of the UW Alumni Association (UWAA) are eligible for a 15% discount on basic membership to the Henry Art Gallery.

The Henry also offers “Art Break Tours,” special 30-minute lunchtime tours for University faculty and staff. Exhibition guides focus on a selection of objects and use visual thinking techniques to draw a lively discussion.

Current Henry exhibits include:

  • Collected Stories: Books by Laurie Anderson—ends February 3
  • En plein air—now through March 24
  • Now Here is also Nowhere: Part II—now through May 5
  • Richard C. Elliott: Cycle of the Sun—permanent installation
  • Light Reign, James Turrell Skyspace—permanent installation

Sign up for a guided tour at View more faculty and staff discounts at UW Discounts.

UW Human Resources, Box 354554, Seattle, WA 98105
©2009 University of Washington | Contact Us | Privacy Policy