The University of Newcastle, Australia

Welcome to semester two

Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Welcome back to semester two, and a very warm welcome to the sessional academic staff who have just joined us. In this issue of UON Academy News we share exciting changes to superannuation, bring you an update on activities relating to UON’s culture work and highlight our new staff learning platform, plus lots more.

UON Academy has a busy second half of 2016 planned, with many of our activities informed by the results of the inaugural Your Voice survey for sessional academic staff. I would like to offer a sincere thank you to all staff who participated.

The results are benchmarked across five other Australian universities and provide valuable insights into employment experience of sessional staff at UON. We were heartened to receive positive feedback on some of the Academy’s initiatives that have already enhanced working life as a sessional academic staff member, and I’d like to take this opportunity to respond to some of the feedback.

  • You said: “I would like access to the Employee Assistance Program (EAP)” Sessional staff do have access to the EAP while on a current contract. Read more.
  • You said: “I would like access to the fitness passport” Sessional Staff are eligible to access the fitness passport if the membership can be maintained for 12 months. Read more.
  • You said: “Parking is terrible” Did you know about the free overflow parking available on Oval Number 5 (behind the Forum)? Also in Semester 2, UON is trialling a new ride sharing app called 'Liftango' that aims to replace the current car pool permit system at Callaghan and Ourimbah. The app helps to find and connect drivers and riders, and can be downloaded from the App store and Google Play.

Your Voice results are still being analysed and I look forward to sharing the details with you at our end of year function on 3 November. This is an opportunity for all sessional academic staff to get together and celebrate each other’s achievements and hear what the Academy has planned for 2017. I hope to see you there.

John Germov


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