Sept. 1-7, 2000
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Arts & Sciences dean to step down next year
Don't be afraid to speak up
Local charities receive first surplus computer donations

Laptops donated for student use

Use proper form
Since U Asked ... Why were trees cut down in front of Peabody?
Center for South Asian Studies awarded new funds
Historian named to Polish studies chair
Tour, or tour with, the Bayly Art Museum
Notable -- awards and achievements of faculty and staff
Programs aid employees in work and life skills
Hot Links -- Consumer health page
Nondiscrimination Policy: A Reminder
See art faculty's annual exhibit
Give us your feedback -- IUVA reader's survey
Favorite daughter earns Faculty/Staff Scholarship
Profile of entering class
TOP NEWS

Programs aid employees in work and life skills

Staff Report

With the Department of Organizational Development and Training's programs, learning at U.Va. is not limited to students. ODT's Workplace Education Program is geared toward those who, as a nationwide group, receive the least amount of training and educational support -- housekeepers, grounds workers and maintenance staff.

The program includes seminars geared toward improving basic skills, including ways to make decisions, speak and listen effectively, solve problems and search for information. There are also sessions on reading, writing, math skills, critical/analytical thinking, and working with others.

ODT continues to offer, in partnership with Housing and Facilities Management, a preparation class for employees who want to pass the high school equivalency exam.

Based on a needs assessment conducted in Housing and Facilities Management, ODT began offering two additional classes in January with the support of those two divisions: Reading for Success, and Work Skills for the New Millennium.

Unlike traditional schooling, these classes build on adults' prior experiences and knowledge, said Debbie Tuler of ODT. They include individual and group goal-setting, they address the needs and concerns of adults, and they explicitly address application of skills on the job and in one's personal life. Participants' learning and progress is assessed in relation to individual starting points, rather than by comparing participants with one another.

The Work Skills class is project-based, so that participants improve their skills by doing a work-related group project. They then demonstrate their learning by presenting the project to supervisors and co-workers. ODT contracts with the Charlottesville Adult Education Program to offer these classes.

In addition, last spring other workshops previously targeted to employees in pay grades above 4 were offered to employees in pay grades 1-4, and will be open again. Over the course of the year, these will include such topics as customer service, conflict resolution, assertiveness, communication skills, career development, and personal financial management.

While these classes and workshops are a benefit to employees, they also benefit the University as a whole, according to Tuler. Research shows that organizational benefits may include increased retention and decreased turnover, increased job effectiveness, improved safety records, improved customer satisfaction, and improved ability to handle on-the-job training, Tuler said.

The GED preparation class, which is free, begins Sept. 11. Other workshops may have a fee. For information on Workplace Education at U.Va., contact Tuler at 243-8968, or via e-mail djt9u@virginia.edu


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