“Commit to your wellbeing” is the principal message to share for this academic year. “Be present to being well. When we’re well, we are able to deal more effectively with all the stuff coming at us in our lives,” advised Lisa Castle, UBC Vice President, Human Resources.
Another year of school is beginning, and in addition to the standard hustle and bustle of changing seasons, the University is going through changes as we prepare for the future. Some of them include the change of President next year; the development of flexible learning initiatives; tightening resources; and another round of collective bargaining with all unions and associations in 2014.
With change comes tremendous opportunities for growth and resilience. UBC is in a strong position to adapt and evolve to these changes: “We are stable, and we have the right people in the right roles to work through them,” said Lisa.
Seeing the larger picture will also help us in adapting to changes effectively. The primary focus of the work we do is for and with students: creating an exceptional learning environment and a continued emphasis on improving the student experience. UBC staff and faculty continue to strive both in front of and behind the scenes on improving the quality of the educational experience. “In my time here,” Lisa said, “I have never seen more sustained focus on giving life to this commitment.”
Students, faculty and staff should know that UBC is not only evolving its physical campus attributes with expanded green and informal spaces, but also on the learning front itself through the Flexibility Learning Initiative. This huge and important endeavour will continue to shape the university in the coming years.
With all the changes taking place during this busy time, it is important to remember that UBC is more than a place to learn, work and live; it is a diverse, unique, and welcoming community for all. Please take the time to be well. It can be something as simple as enjoying our campuses’ beautiful green spaces, pausing for reflection in quiet spaces, and experiencing the camaraderie of our colleagues. Being mindful of the bigger picture and committing to your wellbeing will help us all contribute both individually and as a community to another successful academic year.
By Breeonne Baxter on April 5, 2013
The UBC Board of Governors has reappointed Lisa Castle, Vice-President Human Resources, for a five-year term beginning April, 2013. Ms. Castle has had two previous terms in Human Resources, since September, 2012, as Vice-President, and prior to that as Associate Vice-President beginning April 15, 2002.
The Board noted that, “Ms. Castle brings an energetic, consultative, strategic and values-based approach to her position. Her terms have been marked by a careful building of human resources practices across the university and implementation of Focus on People: Workplace Practices at UBC. Lisa was commended for her passion and support of the University. She is recognized as one of the most influential human resources leaders in Canada in higher education.”
In approving her reappointment, the Board acknowledged that Ms Castle has been an innovative member of the University leadership, and has done much to implement Place and Promise: the UBC Plan, and to enhance the people practices at UBC.
By Kathy Pang on October 15, 2012
The UBC Pension Administration Office will be moving to a new location within the Vancouver Campus on Nov. 13, 2012. Our new office will be located on the second floor of the Donald Rix Building. Please view our Office Move Notice for additional information and location details.
By Breeonne Baxter on August 30, 2012
The beginning of the new academic year brings a feeling of promise and excitement at the University. The energy and spirit our students bring back to campus is one of the best and most rewarding reasons to be part of the UBC community.
Welcome back to all UBC students, and we wish you all the best for a great year ahead and a bright future!
Be sure to check out the 2012 Orientation events planned: http://www.events.ubc.ca for the Vancouver campus and http://www.ubc.ca/okanagan/students/newtoubc/orientations.html for the Okanagan campus.
By Breeonne Baxter on October 18, 2011
Expecting an addition to your family? We have a step-by-step guide to taking a maternity, parental or adoptive leave at UBC available on our website.
The step-by-step instructions will guide you through the following processes:
- notifying your Department of your leave;
- requesting a Record of Employment;
- applying for Employment Insurance (EI) benefits available from Service Canada;
- applying for UBC Supplemental Employment Benefit (SEB) top-up;
- maintaining your benefits while on leave; and
- enrolling your newborn on the UBC benefits plans.
For further information, please visit the Leaves section of the UBC Human Resources website and click on the maternity, parental or adoptive leaves section for your particular employment group.
If you have any questions, or you have feedback on the guide itself, please contact HR Benefits Analyst Stephanie Mah at email@example.com.
By Breeonne Baxter on September 14, 2011
Sun Life, UBC’s benefits provider, has launched a new mobile app for iPhone and Blackberry.
With the app, you can
- submit and track medical, dental and vision claims;
- use your smartphone as your drug and travel cards;
- check plan balances; and
- use interactive tools to see how you can increase your savings.
Find out how to download the apps at http://www.sunlife.ca/mobile/.
Want to know more about UBC Benefits? Visit our Benefits site.
By Breeonne Baxter on March 18, 2011
The purpose of this message is to provide important information for faculty and staff currently in Japan.
Today, the university directed all UBC students currently in Northern Honshu and Tokyo and surrounding areas to return to Canada immediately. This decision was made in light of the extension of Government of Canada travel advisories for Northern Japan, and the uncertainty surrounding nuclear facilities in the region after last week’s devastating earthquake and tsunami.
The safety of UBC faculty and staff and their families is of the utmost importance. Given the above developments, UBC is urging all faculty and staff currently in Northern Honshu and Tokyo and surrounding areas, for either business or personal reasons, to use the available information to make the right decision for themselves and their families. Options to consider include leaving Japan, or moving away from the impacted areas.
The following information and resources are available to help impacted faculty and staff in making their decision, and to assist them should they choose to leave Japan:
- Government of Canada Travel Advisories and information to assist Canadians currently in Japan
- UBC Travel Benefits, which includes information on accessing emergency medical services while outside of Canada
- UBC Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP). Human Solutions has also provided a document about Coping with the Emotional Aftereffects of the Tsunami (pdf).
UBC will cover the cost of travel for faculty and staff who wish to return to Canada. Faculty and staff may contact North South Travel to make their travel arrangements: http://www.northsouthtravel.com/ or 604.736.7447. Please identify that you are with UBC when you contact North South Travel.
I want to re-emphasize that the safety of UBC faculty and staff and their families is of the utmost importance to all of us at the University. Please circulate this message immediately and widely to ensure that those are impacted receive this information as quickly as possible.
Please note that information for UBC students in Northern Japan is available at http://www.students.ubc.ca/global/safety-abroad/.
AVP, Human Resources
By Breeonne Baxter on June 8, 2010
Moving to a new house or apartment can be a busy and chaotic process. Once the dust has settled and you’ve managed to find the coffee cups, make sure to change your address with UBC, to ensure that you’ll continue receiving all information:
Faculty and Staff Self-Service
The one-stop address change location is in UBC’s Faculty and Staff Self-Service portal. Under the “myPersonal Info” tab, select “Home and Mailing Address” to update your address. While you’re there, make sure that your emergency contacts and email address are up-to-date as well!
Medical Services Plan (UBC Group Enrolment)
If you are enrolled in the provincial Medical Services Plan through UBC group enrollment (a direct debit from your UBC paycheque), you will need to contact Payroll to change your address on the MSP system:
- Fill out Section E of the MSP change form, and submit the form to Financial Services (Forms and addresses are available at the Benefits Forms page).
- Email Payroll, indicating that you need to change your address with MSP. You can find your payroll portfolio representative contact information online.