A-Z Index

August 2023 | HR Monthly Bulletin

Wellness Program Reminder

Physician screening forms due Oct. 15

Northwest no longer offers the annual, on-campus health risk assessment. Employees on the University health plan and hired prior to Aug. 1, 2023, must have an annual preventive visit and labs with a primary care provider. 

Employees must download and print a Physician Screening Form (PSF) from the A Healthier You portal and bring it with them to their preventive care appointment. Employees who do not return the PSF by Oct. 15, 2023, will be assessed a $50 per month premium differential beginning with the December 2023 paycheck. 

As a reminder, if you visit a Mosaic provider, identify yourself as a Northwest employee when calling to schedule your appointment and state your need to schedule a standalone wellness/preventive-only appointment and labs with your primary care provider. 

During the appointment:

For additional information about the primary care provider wellness program, visit or call the Office of Human Resources at 660.562.1127.

Update to lab draw process at Mosaic Life Care

Northwest, Blue Cross Blue Shield and Mosaic Life Care have collaborated and reached a resolution on the lab draw process.

When registering for your appointment with Mosaic, employees should request that labs drawn for a non-wellness appointment be sent to Quest. Examples of a non-wellness appointment include routine lab draws for an existing diagnosis, labs drawn for a new illness, etc. Lab draws sent to Quest will result in a clinic lab charge for employees opposed to labs being charged at a much higher hospital rate.

As a reminder, labs drawn during a preventive-only health screening appointment should not be charged to Northwest employees. When scheduling a wellness or preventative-only appointment and labs with Mosaic, identify yourself as a Northwest employee and state your need to schedule a standalone wellness or preventative-only appointment and labs with your primary care provider.

Northwest employees who receive a bill from Mosaic for a lab draw completed during the preventative-only health screening appointment should contact Northwest’s Office of Human Resources.

For more information, contact the Office of Human Resources at 660.562.1127 or email

Welcome our new Bearcats!


Bikash Adhikari

Computer Software/
Programming Specialist
Learning and Teaching Center


Dr. Onema Adojoh

Assistant Professor


Dr. William Alderman



Dr. Kayode Ayinde
Assistant Professor
Math and Statistics


Dr. Mahesh Bashyal
Assistant Professor
Agricultural Sciences


Dr. Michael Bay
Assistant Professor

sherry bay

Sherry Bay
T-K Teacher
Horace Mann Laboratory School

 Dr. Casey Bell
Assistant Professor

blackford jee

Dr. Jeffrey Blackford
Assistant Professor
Professional Education


Dr. Sheng Chai
Assistant Professor
Computer Science and Information Systems 


Kelly Claycomb
Assistant Professor


Dr. Daniel Ess
Assistant Professor
Agricultural Sciences

 Chance Hermelink
Financial Assistance Coordinator
Financial Assistance


Dr. Jason Holderieath
Associate Professor
Agricultural Sciences


 Scott Jones
Assistant Professor
Computer Science and Information Systems 

kastberg leonard

Dr. Mariliz Kastberg-Leonard
Assistant Professor
Political Science


Dr. Alicia Kershaw
Assistant Professor
Professional Education

 Emylee King
Project Assistant:
Curriculum and Instruction
Regional Professional Development Center

Michael Logan
University Police Department

 Vishnu Maddineni
Database Software Engineer
Information Technology

mccormick joel

Dr. Joel McCormick
Associate Professor

Lauren McCormick
Part-time Instructional Aide
Horace Mann Laboratory School


Dr. Hunter McFall-Boegeman
Assistant Professor


Dr. Sarah McFall-Boegeman
Assistant Professor

Nicholas McMahon
Facility Services

Gabriel Mura
Junior Software Developer
Information Technology

Katie Parman
Registered Nurse
Wellness Services

Dr. Stacey Passalacqua
Assistant Professor


Kevin Pitts
Horace Mann Laboratory School and Phyllis and Richard Leet Center for Children and Families


Madeline Shaffer
Resident Director
Residential Life

Dr. Sara Sony
Assistant Professor
Math and Statistics


Travis Surprise
Emergency and Disaster Management


Destiny Switzer
Resident Director
Residential Life

tengelsen Jacob Tengelsen
Assistant Professor

underhillLaura Underhill

Amanda Weatherd
Facility Services

whiteside Adam Whiteside
Assistant Professor

zimmermanAlexander Zimmerman


2023-2024 Holiday Schedule

To express gratitude for excellent performance and give our employees a chance to relax and celebrate with loved ones, Northwest will close for the following holidays. A complete listing also is accessible on the myNorthwest portal.

Please contact the payroll office at 660.562.1108 with questions regarding timesheet entry.

2023 holiday closings:

2024 holiday closings:

2024 utility disruption schedule:

We thank you for your endless contributions and dedication to Northwest and wish you the best of breaks and a great 2024!

Employee Anniversaries

Congratulations to these employees for their milestone years of service
in August 2023!


Brandon Masters Head Cross Country and Track Coach Athletics
Lori Atkins Part-time Art Faculty Horace Mann Laboratory School
Dr. Leticia Cabrera Assistant Professor Biology
Dr. Shih-Hsien Chuang Associate Professor Economics
Dr. Travis Dimmitt Assistant Professor Professional Education
Ronda Driskill Instructor Agricultural Sciences
Dr. Bronson Herrera Assistant Professor Political Science
Dr. Heather Hill Assistant Professor English
Catherine Holthaus Instructor English
Dr. Vincent Hustad Instructor Biology
Haley Hutcheson Instructor Math and Statistics
Helen Konstantopoulos Membership Development/Events Coordinator Radio/TV
Thomas LaPann Assistant Professor Art
Dr. Trevor Meyer Assistant Professor English
Dr. Rebecca Moore Assistant Professor Professional Education
Jacob Robinson Library Circulation Specialist Library
Craig Spire Maintenance Technician Facility Services
Dr. Clifton Watkins Assistant Professor Chemistry
Veronica Watkins Assistant Professor Art
Jared Larson Transfer Academic Advisor Academic Success and Retention
Dana Mallett Counselor Wellness Services
Valerie Pierce Project Assistant: Curriculum and Instruction Regional Professional Development Center


Andrea Mason K-6 Curriculum Design/Reading Horace Mann Laboratory School
Dr. Alisha Campbell Associate Professor Biology
Dr. James Campbell Associate Professor Biology
Dr. Brett Chloupek Associate Professor Geography
Dr. Ashley Davis-Black Associate Professor English
Dr. Joseph Haughey Associate Professor English
Dr. David Kiene Associate Professor Professional Education
Dr. Jay McGhee Associate Professor Biology
Dr. Gregory Rich Associate Professor Professional Education
Dr. Kathryn Strickland Associate Professor/Director of Bands Music
Dr. Robert Voss Associate Professor History
Dr. Timothy Wall Dean School of Education
Patricia Warner Senior Instructor Chemistry


Dr. Peter Adam Assistant Professor Biology
Dr. Richard Black Professor English
Sarah Creason Senior Instructor Psychology
Elizabeth Dimmitt Senior Instructor Psychology
Luke Rolfes Assistant Professor English
Richard Sonnenmoser Professor English
Malinda Tobin Senior Instructor Accounting


Dr. Kristina Alexander Professor Professional Education
Dr. Rod Barr Director School of Agricultural Sciences
Dr. John Gallaher Professor English
Dr. Robin Gallaher Associate Professor/Chair English
Dr. Ming-Chih Hung Professor  Geography
Dr. Jeffry Thornsberry Associate Professor/Chair Department of Natural Sciences
Lori Hopkins Deputy Athletics Director / Compliance / Senior Woman Administrator Athletics


Dixie Piel Associate Registrar Registrar
Dr. Lauren Leach-Steffens Associate Professor Psychology
Gina McNeese Instructor Health and Physical Education
Dr. Joni Adkins Director School of Computer Science and Information Systems


Marla McCrary Office Manager School of Communication and Mass Media
Dr. Jawad Sadek Professor Math and Statistics
Cara Shell Part-time School Nurse Horace Mann Laboratory School
Dr. Richard Field Associate Professor Philosophy
Dr. Michael Hobbs Professor English
Kendall Burchfield Custodian Facility Services

Upcoming Events

Flu Shot Clinic

Wellness Services will host a flu clinic for employees and students from 2 to 4 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 11, in Meeting Room A at the J.W. Jones Student Union. Employees must present their insurance card at the time of the vaccine.

Save the Date: Employee Appreciation Football Event

The employee appreciation football event will be Saturday, Oct. 7, at the Carl and Cheryl Hughes Fieldhouse. Additional information, including a link to RSVP, will provided via email in the coming weeks.

Parking Permits

Parking permits for fall 2023 will be available to purchase. Northwest 2022-23 permits are valid until Aug. 31. Temporary permits are available at the University Police Department 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Contact Lt. Amanda Cullin at or 660.562.1254 for more information.

Mandatory Training

Upcoming Mandatory Training Deadlines

Northwest is using Vector/Safe Colleges to offer training courses online for your convenience. Below are upcoming mandatory trainings and deadlines:

Personal and Professional Development Opportunities

Upcoming Career Pathing Sessions

Click here to register for an upcoming Career Pathing session.

Small Actions Big Consequences

Dr. Shalon Malone, Northwest assistant vice president of diversity and inclusion
Dates: Wednesday, Sept. 13
Time: 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m. 
Length: 60 Minutes
Location: Student Union Boardroom

Microaggressions, stereotypes and biases are prevalent in our society. This workshop will define actions and provide tools to modify behavior, call people in to learn about harmful actions and how to create a welcoming environment for all. 

Emotional Intelligence

Michele Burch Reid, MS
Principal, Legacy Consulting Institute, LLC
Organizational Effectiveness and Personal Development Consultant 
Date: Monday, September 18
Time: 10 a.m., 1 p.m. or 3 p.m.  
Length: 60 minutes
Location: Student Union Boardroom

Emotional Intelligence refers to a distinct combination of emotional and social skills and competencies that influence our overall capability to cope effectively with the demands and pressures of work and life. It is divided into five important areas of emotional and social intelligence. Each of these five areas or categories consists of three emotional intelligence subscales, measuring a total of 15 Emotional Intelligence skills that influence the way we:

• perceive and express ourselves
• develop and maintain social relationships
• cope with challenges, and
• use emotional information in an effective and meaningful way

40 Day Practice to Resilience: Relaxation and Stress Management

Michele Burch Reid, MS
Principal, Legacy Consulting Institute, LLC
Organizational Effectiveness and Personal Development Consultant 
Date: Monday, October 2
Time: 11 a.m., 2 p.m. or 4 p.m.
Length: 60 minutes
Location: Student Union Boardroom

Michele Burch Reid, MS, guides you in learning how stress affects the body, how to reverse those effects how to build resilience. The workshop is interactive and includes several relaxation and stress management exercises. 

Opportunities to get involved

Northwest affinity groups

Affinity groups are designed to create safe spaces for members to share and process experiences. As allies, our affinity group also allows participants the opportunity to identify ways in which we can appropriately use our privilege to bring about social change. For more information, visit Northwest affinity groups.

Association of Black Employees Logo

Contact Giselle Greenidge 


Contact Elyssa Ford 

ALLY Affinity Group Logo




Employee resource groups

These employee-led groups aim to foster a diverse, inclusive workplace. Contact each group individually. 

Diversity Groups

Staff Council

Northwest Staff Council represents a unified voice for all Northwest staff. To learn about staff, upcoming events or voice concerns, visit Northwest Staff Council.

The Staff Council Executive Board for FY24 is:

The Staff Council T-Shirt fundraiser continues until Oct. 8. Proceeds go toward the Staff Council Scholarship Fund. Online orders will be submitted for print every two weeks. Allow 4-6 weeks to receive a shirt. Notifications will be sent to emails when shirt orders are ready.

To order T-shirts, visit

 Staff Council Tshirt 1Staff Council Tshirt 2

Employee Engagement Action Tracker

Well-being and perks:

Health care:


Mental health and wellness resources

The Office of Human Resources highlights the following resources that employees may use as necessary. Mindful by BlueKC, the EAP and TAO are completely confidential.

Family Guidance partnership to assist employees

The University has established a partnership with Family Guidance Center to provide a crisis counselor on site. Holly McMillen, a certified licensed professional counselor, is available Monday through Friday to respond to any crisis or resource needs.

This service is confidential. Contact Holly directly to schedule an appointment at or 660.853.8196.

For more information, contact the Office of Human Resources at 660.562.1127.

Mindful by BlueKC

Mindful by BlueKC is a behavioral health initiative dedicated to reducing stigma around behavioral health in our communities while making care accessible and affordable for members. Mindful by Blue KC is a commitment to covering the health needs of the whole person and comes to life as a set of tools and resources to address stress, depression, anxiety, substance use and more. This ensures that members can access and afford the behavioral health care they need. 

Mindful Advocates are available 24/7 and are licensed behavioral health clinicians who match members to providers and guide care plans. Mindful Advocates may be contacted at 833.302.6463. For more information, visit Mindful by BlueKC initiative.

Employee Assistance Program (EAP)

All Northwest employees are eligible to use Ability Assist Counseling Services sponsored by The Hartford. Click here to read about the benefits this program offers.

TAO-Therapy Assistance Online

This is a private online library of behavioral health resources. It is a free and confidential resource available to Northwest employees and students. For more information, visit TAO-Therapy Assistance Online. 

Wellness Services is offering a variety of online programing. Follow Wellness Services on Twitter and Instagram at @nw_wellness for updates.

New Directions resource program center

The center provides reliable information about a variety of mental and behavioral health topics. For more information, visit New Directions Health Resources.

For information about a specific substance use, visit New Directions Substance Use Disorders Center, or call the Substance Use Disorder Hotline at 877.326.2458.

If you have questions, email

Benefits & Wellness Information

Employee Wellness

Bearcat Family 5k

The first inaugural 5k on the Bearcat Trail was a success! Thank you to all who volunteered and participated in the Bearcat Family 5k. We are looking forward to making this an annual event!

3-Part Mental Health Support Series

Northwest continues its three-part series on Mental Health Support on the new Employee Wellness website. The series includes information and resources on the topics of sleep, relationship health and financial wellness.

Part III of this series, “Financial Wellness,” will be published next week. It will include an informational video by MOSERS and links to upcoming MOSERS webinars as well as a recorded presentation, titled “Completing the Retirement Puzzle,” by David Gibson of Deferred Compensation. Visit the Financial Wellness page on the Employee Wellness website.

Fall Fitness Challenge

Be on the lookout for additional information in the coming weeks regarding a fall fitness challenge.

Blue KC Online Member Guide 

Now you can access your member guide online! Click here and scan the QR code to get instant access to your member guide all year long.

Benefits Resource Center

USI's Benefits Resource Center is a free resource service for employees and encourages you to reach out for any information, questions or help with insurance or benefits.

Click this link to download a flyer with more details and contact information

BlueKC SmartShopper

BlueKC is partnering with Sapphire Digital to offer SmartShopper, an incentive platform that can save members money on health care expenses every time they select a reward-eligible, lower-cost care for qualifying procedures such as MRIs, colonoscopies or blood work. 

SmartShopper is embedded within the provider finder and cost estimator tools in your portal. Click here to watch a short video about SmartShopper.

MOSERS educational programs

MOSERS offers educational programs to help members learn information about their benefits as they progress through their career and experience different life events along the way. 

Newer Employees and MOSERS Webinars: Start learning about the state benefits administered by MOSERS.

Mid-Career Webinar: Learn how different career and life events may affect your pension benefit.

Ready to Retire Sessions: Learn about the retirement process and how different decisions may impact your pension benefit.

Stay up to date and visit frequently for more information, including schedules and how to register. 

MOSERS termination and reemployment rules

For employees in a MOSERS eligible position and nearing retirement, keep in mind the termination and reemployment rules. Those rules state that before receiving a benefit payment from MOSERS, IRS rules require a “bona fide termination” of a member’s employment. For purposes of MOSERS Board Rules, a "bona fide termination" occurs when:

For more information, please see MOSERS' FAQs on termination and reemployment rules and its termination and reemployment rules flyer.

Please note, if an employee does not have a bona fide separation of service, their retirement will be null and void, meaning they will not receive their pension payments.

MO Deferred Comp Retirement Plan

The MO Deferred Comp plan is a supplemental retirement savings option available to employees. Visit to learn more about the plan, register for upcoming education sessions or find financial planning options.

MyBlueKC mobile app includes virtual care

Blue KC offers members digital tools to allow quick access to health insurance plan information to support them along their health journey.

Today, many members enjoy the convenience of Blue KC Virtual Care from their mobile device or laptop computer. Virtual care offers a fast, simple way to see a doctor 24/7 for sick care or to make an appointment with a behavioral health provider.

The Blue KC Virtual Care has moved from its own, standalone app to the MyBlueKC mobile app. This change means virtual care is now a feature in an app that members frequently use. With just a few taps, members can have a video visit with a doctor as well as get benefit information, view claims, download digital ID cards, and connect to health and wellness programs – all in one place. Make sure you have updated to the latest version of the MyBlueKC mobile app through your device settings for the virtual care functionality.

Click here for instructions on how to get the MyBlueKC app.

Beware of financial planning emails

Some employees have received emails from financial planning companies implying they are partnered with MOSERS. The content of the emails suggests that members must pay for a meeting with a retirement counselor and that they can learn how to increase their retirement savings. This is inaccurate. MOSERS has not authorized any outside financial planners to advise our members on their MOSERS benefits. 

As a reminder, the services offered through MOSERS and MO Deferred Comp are provided to MOSERS members at no cost. In regard to increasing their retirement savings, MOSERS members have the ability to meet with MO Deferred Comp financial education professionals to help make savings decisions as they prepare for retirement.

Northwest advises all MOSERS members to stay vigilant and double-check the addresses of email senders before clicking any links. 

A Healthier You (AHY)

The A Healthier You program gives you convenient online and mobile access to wellness tools that you can use to live your healthiest life. Plus, you’ll earn points that can be redeemed for chances to win gift cards to some popular retailers. For more information about the program, click here.

Blue365 deals

Blue365 is a free health and wellness discount program offered to Blue KC members for year-round discounts on gym memberships, fitness gear, healthy eating options and more. To register and browse available discounts, log in to your portal and select Health Programs in the Health & Wellness menu. For more information about the program, click here.

Campus recreation offerings 

The Foster Fitness Center, Student Recreation Center and Hughes Fieldhouse walking track are free for all employees and spouses to use. Employees and spouses must complete the assumption of risk and waiver of liability form on CatPAWS in advance of using the Foster Fitness Center. 

The Hughes Fieldhouse walking track is available for employee use, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Employees should enter through the south doors, and parking is available in the south lots. Kids are welcome but must be accompanied by an adult at all times while on the track. Click here to view a listing of when the walking track is not available.

Mosaic offerings

Mosaic Medical Center-Maryville offers a personalized weight management program called Healthy Lifestyles. The program is designed to help people of all ages and sizes achieve an improved quality of life through medical nutritional counseling, teaching and lifestyle changes. For additional information about the program, visit Healthy Lifestyles: Personalized Weight Management Program.

Employee Discounts

Discounted Bearcat Football Tickets

Northwest employees are eligible for discounted single-game football tickets during the 2023 season. This discount is applicable to any Northwest employee and immediate family members for up to six tickets per home game when purchased prior to game day.

The discounted ticket rate is available for seating in two sections at Bearcat Stadium:

Discounted employee tickets must be purchased online no later than 11:59 p.m. on the day prior to home games. Discounted employee tickets will not be sold on game days. 

How to purchase discounted tickets

Click here to purchase game tickets and select the game you want to attend.

To apply the employee discount, scroll down on the web page and click “Have a passcode?” Enter your 919 number to unlock the employee ticket discount and purchase up to six tickets per game.

Home Chef

Home Chef is recognizing our nation’s educators and school support personnel with a 50 percent discount on their first scheduled Home Chef meal kit and a $10 discount on five subsequent deliveries. Simply use code EDU50 at checkout to begin receiving your education discount.

Get Started with Home Chef

Home Chef makes home cooking simple. Their fresh, weekly meal kits are customized to your liking and delivered straight to your doorstep. Minimize your trips to the grocery store and distress your evenings with delicious, pre-planned meals starting at just $6.99 per serving. Here’s how it works:

Your education discount is available at // and, if you already are a customer, you can verify with on the payment page of your account to begin receiving 10 percent off all future orders.


Paperless billing

Beginning in May, all Northwest employees receive an e-bill to their University email, rather than a mailed paper bill. To opt out of an e-bill, complete the Paperless Billing Opt-Out form in MyNorthwest under Employee Resources -> Finance & Administration -> Billing.

Bearcat Food Pantry

The mission of the Bearcat Food Pantry is to provide a source of food and necessities for Northwest students and employees experiencing food insecurity and hunger. The food pantry is located in the J.W. Jones Student Union and is accessible Tuesday, 8 a.m. to 10 a.m.; Thursday, 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday 10 a.m. to noon.

Northwest accepts food donations for the pantry at the Student Engagement Center and the Office of Student Affairs located on the second floor of the Student Union. For a list of most needed items, visit Bearcat Food Pantry. Monetary donations to support the food pantry should be directed to the Northwest Foundation and are tax-deductible.

Friends of International Students

Friends of International Students (FIS) is a community-based organization established to match interested area individuals and families (friends) with international students at Northwest. The program goals are to provide support to the students as they become adjusted to their new home and to promote friendship and understanding between people of different nationalities.

FIS is recruiting friends to connect with international students. Friends are asked to make contact with assigned students at least once a month during their year-long commitment to the program. Contact can take many forms, including family dinners, attending sporting events, pumpkin carving and various other activities involving two-way cultural tradition sharing. For more information or to apply, contact board members at or visit

Does your department need office supplies?

Visit the “How to Purchase Office Supplies” guide. Various binders, hanging file folders and other office supplies are available at no cost to departments at Central Receiving.

Purchase requisition training videos

Purchasing has created instructional videos explaining how to create a purchase requisition and a Central Stores purchase requisition in Banner/INB. The videos are available in MyNorthwest, Employee Resources - Finance

Workstation safety guidelines

It is important for employees to apply good ergonomic practices. To view a complete list of ergonomic suggestions, visit Workstation safety guideline.