May 1, 2019

Dear Staff, 

One of the recurring themes I heard during my listening tour last fall was that employees wanted advanced training, and dedicated time for that training so that they and their direct reports could enhance skills and support professional and career development.

I am a firm believer in the importance of not only providing the right level of training but making it available in a schedule and format that maximizes accessibility and impact. 

In support of our WP mission and in service to our diverse community of students, faculty, and staff, Human Resources worked with our School of Continuing and Professional Education and faculty and staff subject matter experts to develop a summer 2019 training and development program. We are confident that this program will provide classified and unclassified staff both the opportunity and the time for personal and career development that will benefit the entire University community.

In order to ensure a focused and successful program, sessions will be conducted one morning each week throughout the summer for all classified and unclassified staff with a kick off on Thursday, May 16 followed by sessions every Wednesday thereafter through August 21. During this time, the University will be open for regular reporting, but offices will be closed for business from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. Some offices in critical areas will remain open for business; those employees will be notified by their supervisor.  

Human Resources will contact you shortly to describe next steps and provide details about both required and elective sessions. You will be asked to respond with your elective session decisions. Weekly participation is mandatory and attendance will be taken at the sessions. Aside from two required diversity and inclusion sessions, other offering selections should be made according to your interest, training need for your current position, or advancement desires for your personal and professional development. Please let your supervisor know about any vacations, which will be excused weeks. 

I’m looking forward to this program and to assessing its benefits at the other end.


Richard J. Helldobler, PhD