Compliance Corner: Summer Reminders

Now that many of the University of Miami teams have concluded their seasons, it is important to remember that NCAA rules affect student-athletes, coaches, institutional staff members, and fans throughout the year, not just during the playing season. Here are a few reminders everyone should keep in mind during the summer:

Use of student-athlete names, images, or likenesses: NCAA bylaws prohibit boosters, local businesses, and corporate entities from using a student-athlete’s name, picture, or likeness to promote any commercial product. Nor can a student-athlete authorize the use of his or her name or picture on commercial items.

Employing student-athletes: Student-athletes can earn only the going rate in the locale of their employment. This means, for example, that if the going wage in a certain field is $20 an hour, it would be impermissible to pay a student-athlete $50 an hour for the same job. Additionally, student-athletes may be paid only for work actually performed and, to ensure the work is completed, should not be paid in advance. There have been many NCAA violations concerning student-athletes who were paid for work they never performed.  Student-athletes who receive payment without performing work jeopardize their eligibility and subject UM to seek their reinstatement, or face other potential penalties. If you are aware of a student-athlete’s employment for yourself or another employee, please report it to the compliance office.

Extra Benefits: An extra benefit is any special arrangement by an institutional employee, or a representative of the institution’s athletics interests, to provide a student-athlete, a prospective student-athlete, their friend, or their family member a benefit not authorized by the NCAA. However, if the same benefit is available to the general student population, or a particular segment of the student body that includes the student-athlete, the receipt of that benefit is not a violation of NCAA rules.

As always, your efforts to help the University of Miami maintain a culture of compliance are greatly appreciated. For more compliance information, follow the UM Athletics Department on Twitter (@UCompliance), like them on Facebook (www.facebook.com/UCompliance), or contact them via email, [email protected].

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Welcoming a New Class of Welcomers

IamtheU Class2

The second class of I am the U’s U Facilitators is ready to welcome the University’s newly hired employees.

The Talent and Organizational Development (TOD) Department recently welcomed its second class of U Facilitators for the University’s new I am the U employee orientation program developed from recommendations made by UM employees.

Designed by the Global Orientation work team through the Culture Transformation efforts of 2015, U Facilitators are volunteer staff who were selected through a rigorous audition process. They welcome new employees to the University twice a week, leading them through a full day of engaging, interactive, and collaborative activities and sharing with them the University’s DIRECCT Values, Common Purpose, and Service Standards.

In 2017, the TOD team successfully delivered more than 90 such sessions and welcomed over 3,000 new employees to the University of Miami.

If you are interested in joining the next class of U Facilitators, please visit I am the U online for more information, or email [email protected].


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UMPD Officers Train to Defend Against Violent Assaults

UMPD Officers Eddie Somarriba and Jose del Valle practice self-defense techniques during the training.

UMPD Officers Eddie Somarriba and Jose del Valle practice self-defense techniques during training.

As part of ongoing education and training, University of Miami Police Department officers simulated real-life violent assault situations to better understand proper self-defense techniques during potentially life-threatening situations.

“By providing officers with a solid knowledge of physical defense techniques they are able to learn how to avoid panic during a possible violent encounter and can defend themselves effectively and efficiently,” said UMPD Lieutenant Benjamin Hedrick.

In addition to the trainings conducted for current UMPD officers, the department is offering the National Self-Defense Institute’s two-hour S.A.F.E class to University faculty, students, and staff. The classes, which are free, are offered on Wednesday evenings throughout the semester. The next class is Wednesday, February 7, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Future S.A.F.E classes will be offered on Wednesday, March 7, and Wednesday, April 11, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in Mahoney-Pearson Commons 116 and 118. Participants only need to attend one session. While the course is designed for women, no one will be turned away.

If interested, please email [email protected] with the date that best fits your schedule.

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With Feathers and Beak, This Hat Speaks Engagement and Appreciation

By Michael R. Malone
UM News


From left are Campaign and Donor Relations team members Darlene E. Gonzalez, Emily Wilson, Barbara Gonzalez, Hildee Wilson, and Ivette Mancha, who found the hat on ebay.

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (January 30, 2018)—When Ivette Mancha, events director for University Advancement, spotted the vintage Hurricanes’ Ibis hat—big droopy eyes, protruding orange beak and all—on eBay, she knew right away her team would love the idea. Mancha and colleague Hildee Wilson had been tasked with advancing the Campaign and Donor Relations team’s “one action” to better recognize and appreciate team players, and the quirky feathered hat was a sure winner.

“We knew we’d have some fun with it—it was so ‘Cane spirited—and the hat was in great condition,” Mancha remembered. Five of the donor team’s members—including Mancha herself—have since donned the hat as proud winners of what has become the team’s Ibis Recognition Award.

The award stems back to the Gallup faculty and staff engagement survey conducted in 2016. President Julio Frenk announced a summary of those results in a University message on February 16, 2017. While the University engagement level was “higher-than-average” and employees gave a high favorability rating and reported a “sense of purpose, clarity around goals and expectations,” the survey encouraged that University workplace culture be further improved by expanding collaboration and learning, welcoming feedback, and building better connections.

Individuals and departments collectively were tasked to create one action based on the survey results.

Samantha Dietz, executive director of programs in the Office of Institutional Culture, helped facilitate the donor team’s retreat last spring. “We were trained as ‘engagement champions’ and asked to help the teams interpret their results from the survey,” explained Dietz, who helped the team identify the area that would best support a stronger Culture of Belonging. “The conversation focused on the process of growing and developing together—improving engagement—which contributes everything to team success and achievement.”

“As a team we scored well on the survey, yet because we’re always on the move, always planning the next event, we realized that one of the things we sometimes fail to do as much as we want is to recognize each other,” said Darlene Rebello-Rao, assistant vice president for Campaign and Donor Relations. “Our team is held to a high level of excellence, and that can get stressful. Yet we know that together we can get it done—and we don’t want to take that for granted.”

The Ibis Recognition Award didn’t cost a lot of money, and the team has enjoyed the opportunity to experience and appreciate each other in a new, fun way. It has served in a light-hearted way to promote shared culture and values, while advancing the team’s mission to support philanthropy at the University through stewardship, events, development communications, and campaign planning.

To date, Emily Wilson, Darlene Gonzalez, Barbara Gonzalez, and Mancha have all been recognized with the award. Another awardee will be named soon to wear the long-beaked peak performance hat.

Wilson, the inaugural Ibis Recognition winner, suggested it would add to the fun to document the Ibis’ activities as it travels desk to desk. So the team began filling a photo album—Ibis with the turn-over chain, bundled up on a chilly day, sipping a macchiato, on holiday, on game day—wherever the “champion” takes it.

What’s clear is that wherever the Ibis goes with someone on the Campaign and Donor Relations team, the hat helps to lift everyone’s wings just a bit and to encourage team appreciation and classic ’Cane spirit.



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Business and Finance Honors Nearly 2,000 Years of Service

By Melissa Cabezas
UM News

Before the rise of the internet and personal computers, Walt Bechtel, Grant Basham, and Gerardo Ordaz began their careers at the U. They’ve seen a lot of changes and created many cherished memories. And while they may have started at the U in different places, they all agreed that they kept coming back each day because of the opportunity they were given to be part of something so important.

Not one of them expected to be here for 35 years, but all secretly hoped they would.

The three were among the 120 employees honored December 5 for their dedication and service to the U during the Division of Business and Finance Long Service Awards Ceremony. The annual celebration, hosted by Jacqueline Travisano, executive vice president for business and finance and chief operating officer, honors employees celebrating 10 or more years of service to the University.

“Today, we honor 120 people who have given almost 2,000 years of service to the University of Miami,” Travisano said. “As the newest member of Business and Finance, this is truly inspiring to me. It further validates my decision to join the University of Miami family.”

Travisano’s remarks resonated with Bechtel, as he recalled his first days at the U. “Once I arrived I felt really honored and privileged to be here,” the assistant vice president for information technology said. “In many ways I thought: how long can this run go? I hoped it would go a long time, and 35 years is a long time.”

In addition to their commitment and dedication, Long Service Award recipients are also applauded for their exhibition of ’Cane pride. “RSMAS is a great place to work,” says Basham, noting his open work space. His family, including three children who graduated from the University, are also season ticket holders for Hurricanes football.

“I am so proud and grateful for the opportunity to work at UM,” said Ordaz, who did not speak English when he joined UM. He attributes his career here to his first manager who provided him with an English-to-Spanish translation book. “I am very grateful for the opportunity he gave me.”

“The University is doing some really amazing things,” said Bechtel, who believes that the sense of community at UM is a perpetual pick-me-up. “I’ve had the privilege of leading so many people and learning so much from them.”

And while they didn’t all have the opportunity to answer the infamous “When-will-you-retire?” question, Ordaz’s answer seems to sum it up for all of them.

“The day my car doesn’t start or my hands start to shake, that will be the day I stop coming to work at UM,” he said.

View the photos from the Division of Business and Finance Long Service Awards Ceremony.

Is your department honoring its long standing members? Send your story to [email protected].


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