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Inside Story - Past Issues

Inside Story for Friday, September 17, 2010

How Do I Request Software Purchases?

The Software Review Committee has been reviewing all proposed software purchases and renewals since August 2003.  This process was developed in a continuing effort to be cost-effective, support institutional effectiveness and provide software users with a solid support system.

To request software, follow this procedure:

  1. After receiving approval from cost center manager, staff/faculty member requests a software purchase by completing and submitting one of these online forms in the Forms Bank:
    1. New Software Purchase and Install Request form for new purchases
    2. Software Maintenance or Tech Support Purchase Request form for existing software
  2. The request will be sent to the Software Review Committee for analysis.
  3. If the software request is non-supported/non-approved, the requestor and cost center manager will be notified by email.
  4. If the software request is approved by the Software Review Committee, the requestor and cost center manager will be notified by email. 
    1. Be sure to read the email; it will specify the next steps necessary to purchase the software.

Review and follow the above process when you need to purchase software.  If you have questions, email Vicki Spilker or call 457-2921.

Travel Procedures and Employee Reimbursements

A committee comprised of a cross-section of College staff was convened to review possible changes and make recommendations to simplify and streamline Procedures Memorandum VI-2 Travel Guidelines. The recommendations were presented to and approved by the President's cabinet. These modifications are effective immediately.

The major changes to the Travel Guidelines PM VI-2, travel procedures and employee reimbursements in general are as follows:

  • Redefinition of local travel to mean any vehicle travel that does not entail airline travel or an overnight stay.
  • Clarification of mileage reimbursement for travel to assigned first or last work site (unless it is greater than normal commute).
  • Elimination of travel advances (except for student group travel).
  • Incorporation of Non-Itemized, Lost/Missing Receipt Form on Forms Bank.
  • Increase tipping maximum to 20 percent of the pre-tax meal amounts.
  • Having travelers personally cover their expenses for later reimbursement or utilize their departmental P Card for lodging and conference fees.
  • Suggestions on ways to expedite reimbursement voucher payment.
  • Attachment of travel narrative form to travel authorization form for long distance travel.

Review the changes here:

Procedures Memorandum VI-2, Travel Guidelines: www.mccneb.edu/procedures/VI-2_Travel.pdf

Travel Authorization and Narrative Form: www.mccneb.edu/formsbank/instructions.asp?idnum=203

Gulf Coast Cleanup Efforts Continue

This month, migratory birds began their long trek from Canada's breeding grounds to the Gulf Coast, which is the wintering ground for many waterfowl. With oil still on the surface and submerged in the Gulf, there is no way to predict where it will go or what damage it may do. The risk to the Gulf's coastal wetlands is extremely high if a tropical storm surge laden with crude oil rushes into the wetlands flooding extensive areas of vegetated marsh.

To respond to this crisis, MCC students are again organizing a drive for materials to aid the Gulf Coast in cleanup efforts. Items collected will go to Save Our Seabirds, based in Sarasota, Fla. Items collected will be used in efforts related to Gulf Coast cleanup and beyond, as the organization is always working to keep birds in the Gulf region safe.

The drive will be through September 30. Drop off items at the barrels near the front doors at MCC's Elkhorn Valley Campus.

 Items needed include:   

  • AA & AAA Batteries
  • Bleach
  • Laundry detergent
  • Heavy duty latex gloves
  • Scotch brand scrubbies
  • Paper towels
  • WD40
  • Rags
  • Towels
  • Dawn dish detergent
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Zip ties
  • Bungee cords
  • Sand paper
  • Mr. Clean cleaner
  • 409
  • Clorox wipes
  • Crayons

Poverty Simulations Help Teach Diversity

Americorps*VISTA members from the Service-Learning Office offer instructors and students the opportunity to learn about diversity with an hour-long poverty simulation. The VISTA members can visit classes in any academic area to help students understand poverty and how better to work or live with people from different financial situations.

Poverty simulations have been performed in areas including human relations, education, financial planning, business, nursing and the industrial and commercial trades.  The simulation can be tailored to fit the outline and activities of the course.

The simulation is divided into parts:

Part 1: Discussion. Stereotypes are presented about people living in poverty - as well as the facts. Poverty statistics can focus on Omaha and Nebraska or nationwide. 

Part 2: Simulation.  Students pull a person card that tells them who they are, whether they have children and how they are employed. Then they pull a job card with a salary. Handouts show transportation costs and housing options. Students are asked to write a budget for three months in the year - remembering that some months are more expensive than others depending on holidays, summer childcare expenses, etc. 

Part 3: Discussion. Students discuss what was learned from the simulation.

To include a simulation in your class, contact Jennie Tullos, 457-2637 or jtullos2@mccneb.edu.

Training & Development

S.A.F.E. Defense
S.A.F.E. Defense familiarizes participants with general self-defense training methods. This two-hour workshop is based upon the philosophy that removing the element of opportunity reduces the risk of attack and that 90 percent of self-defense is mental preparedness.

S.A.F.E. Defense and other collegewide development offerings are listed on the Training & Development website.

Intended audience: Staff and Faculty (particularly females).

New Employee Orientation
Welcome new employees! This program is for new employees (non-faculty) with work start dates in July - September. Orientation will be held Friday, Oct. 8 from 8-9:30 a.m. at the Fort Omaha Campus, Institute for the Culinary Arts, Bldg. 21, Room 201F. Course number is TRDV 002N 01. If you haven't already enrolled, do so today by going to webadvisor.mccneb.edu or calling 457-8518. Prior to the orientation program, review the new employee orientation web portal.

Technology Training: Networks
Are you saving files to "My Documents"? Find out why this is not a reliable practice and can result in the loss of your information in this three-hour workshop. Learn and practice how to save to your network folder (U:drive). This hands-on workshop provides instruction and exercises in:

  • Creating new folders on the U:drive and organizing existing documents into these folders .
  • Moving and copying documents from one folder to another on the U:drive.
  • Changing views of the documents on the U:drive.
  • Creating shortcuts on the Desktop to access folders and files on the U:drive.

Other topics include:

  • Network password
  • Connecting to a printer
  • Disk clean up as a Scheduled Task

The instructor is Ruthanne Grimsley. Course number is TRDV 010N 01 (synonym 164069). The workshop will be held Oct. 15, 1-4 p.m., at the Sarpy Center, Room 220.

Note: Attending an activity during your scheduled work hours requires supervisor approval. It is your responsibility to obtain approval to attend a Training and Development event.

To enroll, visit webadvisor.mccneb.edu or call 457-8518. For more information, contact Marilyn Cotten, Training & Development Coordinator, 457-2507 or mcotten@mccneb.edu.

Sustainable Agriculture Listening Session

MCC will co-host the first urban and rural agriculture listening sessions Sept. 24 to help advance profitable, environmentally sound farming systems that are good for communities, part of the USDA's Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program.

Input received at the session, 2:30-5:30 p.m. at the Institute of the Culinary Arts, 32nd and Sorensen Parkway, will guide future USDA and North Central Region (NCR)-SARE policies, programs and outreach. Additional sessions will take place Sept. 23 at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension Office in Lincoln and Sept. 24 at Iowa Western Community College in Council Bluffs.

The public is invited, especially anti-hunger and food justice advocates, educators, nonprofit organizations, concerned citizens, government officials, farmers, ranchers, grocers, chefs, workers, food processors and distributors. Discussion topics could include new production, processing, distribution, food safety and security and health information. These discussions will help guide future USDA and NCR-SARE policies, outreach, research, and programs.

The listening sessions are free and open to the public. The sessions are scheduled as follows:

  • Sept. 23, 5:30-8:30 p.m., University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension in Lancaster County
    Contact: Gary Bergman, gbergman@unlnotes.unl.edu, (402) 441-7180
  • Sept. 24, 8:30-11:30 a.m., Iowa Western Community College
    Contact: Bahia Barry, bahia.barry@rcdnet.net, (712) 482-3029
  • Sept. 24, 2:30-5:30 p.m., Metropolitan Community College
    Contact: Jenn Valandra, jvalandra@mccneb.edu, (402) 457-2555

For more information and to participate, register online at www.mccneb.edu/sareusda or call (402) 457-2241.

Harvest Reception
Following the Omaha session, Metropolitan Community College's Institute for the Culinary Arts will host a $10 Harvest Reception, 6-8 p.m., featuring local foods prepared by students. Preregistration is required. The reception is open to the public. Register online at www.mccneb.edu/sareusda or call (402) 457-2241.

Save the Date: MCC Hosts Free Financial Planning Day

Omaha residents will be able to get free financial planning advice and guidance from professional financial planners at an upcoming community event hosted by MCC on Saturday, Oct. 23 at two different locations. Financial Planning Day will feature experts from the Financial Planning Association (FPA) and highly qualified Certified Financial Planner professionals, all volunteering their time and expertise to work with local residents one-on-one to address important financial issues.

The morning event from 9 a.m.-noon is located at MCC's Elkhorn Valley Campus, and the afternoon session from 1-4 p.m., at the South Omaha Campus, Industrial Training Center, Room 120. English-to-Spanish translation and interpretation services will be available at the South Omaha Campus.

The event will feature a series of classroom-style educational workshops addressing key personal finance topics, including: financial starter kit, young adults and money, life planning, surviving job loss, spending plan 101 and investing basics. Additionally, financial planners will be able to meet one-on-one with attendees to answer questions on budgeting, getting out of debt, income taxes, dealing with mortgage foreclosures, paying for college, estate planning and insurance, among many other topics. The advice will be offered on a "no strings attached" basis, and planners will not give out business cards or sell financial products or services.

The event is being organized in partnership with FPA of Nebraska as part of a national Financial Planning Days initiative created by Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Financial Planning Association, Foundation for Financial Planning and the U.S. Conference of Mayors. The collaboration is a first-of-its kind effort involving city governments and thousands of financial planners nationwide united in an effort to provide free financial education and programming to communities throughout the U.S. Locally, the community partners involved in planning the Omaha event are: MCC, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, Omaha Branch, the Mayor's office, United Way of the Midlands, Creighton University, and Nebraska Financial Planners Association of Nebraska.

Financial Planning Day is free and open to the public. Register online for the Financial Planning Day at www.financialplanningdays.org/omaha. Walk-ins are also welcome.

Feel the Heartbeat of the Native American Community at Powwow

MCC celebrates Native American cultures Sept. 18, 1-7:30 p.m., with the annual Fort Omaha Intertribal Powwow. The outdoor celebration honors the traditional dance, music, artistry, storytelling and foods of Nebraska's Native Americans. The event is free and open to the public.

Fair Features Student Clubs and Organizations

MCC offers a diversity of student life activities. Encourage students to see them all in one place at the Student Organization Fair at an MCC location. While they are discovering what MCC has to offer, they can enter to win a bookstore gift certificate.

The Student Organization Fair is at:

  • Fort Omaha Campus, Bldg. 10: Monday, Sept. 20, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
  • South Omaha Campus, Connector: Tuesday, Sept. 21, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
  • Elkhorn Valley Campus: Wednesday, Sept. 22, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
  • Sarpy Center: Thursday, Sept. 23, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.

Questions? Contact Kristin Hoesing, klhoesing2@mccneb.edu or 457-2732, or Diana Kerwin-Kubr, Dkerwin@mccneb.edu or 289-1416.

MCC in the Community

As coordinator of the College's community outreach efforts, the MCC Office of Public Affairs will be highlighting key events where MCC will be engaged in reaching out to our diverse, four-county service area.  This next week MCC will be connecting at:

  • DECA Fall Leadership Conference, Sept. 20. The annual conference for high school students involved with DECA, a business-marketing student organization, and who are interested in business.
  • YWCA One Stop Career Extravaganza, Sept. 21. This community career fair is held at the YWCA and will help students and prospective students explore a variety of career options.
  • Urban League Economic Empowerment & Employment Expo, Sept. 22. MCC will host this year's expo at the Institute for the Culinary Arts building.  This event will provide the North Omaha community career and educational opportunities as well a key presentation on financial planning and literacy.
  • City of Omaha Career Fair, Sept. 22. This annual City of Omaha career fair provides a unique opportunity for municipal employees to connect with MCC and learn more about our new continuing education courses and degree options.
  • Western Douglas County Chamber Business Expo, Sept. 27. MCC will be hosting a booth to provide business members key information about how our entrepreneurship program and MCC's Business & Training Solutions can assist them with their workforce needs.

MCC's outreach team will also be visiting the following high schools through the month of September: Burke High School, Roncalli High School, Millard West High School, Horizon High School, Omaha Northwest High School, Bellevue East High School, Bellevue West High School, Fremont Bergen High School, North Bend High School, Concordia High School, Scriber-Snyder High School, Omaha Central High School, Blair High School, Omaha Benson High School, Hooper-Logan View High School, Dodge High School, Howells High School, Oakland-Craig High School, Omaha South High School, Omaha North High School, Wahoo Bishop Newman High School, Council Bluffs Lewis Central High School, Weeping Water High School, Blackburn High School, Omaha Mercy High School, Papillion-LaVista South High School and Lyons-Decatur High School.

If you know of community events where MCC can connect with others, forward your event information to outreach@mccneb.edu.

Weekly Green Tip

Recycle your cellular phone. Donate your phone to a charity or sell it to a third-party recycler. You can often take a tax deduction for the phone's value or get hard money for it from a recycler. Less than 1 percent of cell phones are currently recycled, and there are 500 million used cell phones not being used in the United States alone! - The Green Book

HR Updates

New Employees

Rita McManigal
Rita McManigal
Coordinator of Financial Aid                 FOC 30          457-2742

Separations            Last Day

Marsha Reed             9/15/10

Rachel Steiner           9/17/10

MCC in the News

MCC Job Openings

For information about the College's open positions and how to apply, visit www.mccneb.edu/hr or call the jobline at (402) 738-4050. Applications are also online at www.mccnebjobs.com.

MCC Is Making News

What's the latest and greatest? Check out the latest news releases issued by Public Affairs to find out.

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