Getting to Know UW-Green Bay Conversations with Chancellor Shepard:
Facilities Management
January 14, 2002

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What’s your management style?

Chancellor responded that leadership doesn’t have all the answers; leadership helps figure out answers/vision.  Here are the questions; here are the problems, what do we do?  Leadership enables people to do their jobs.  Goals are set and people are held accountable.  He doesn’t micromanage.

Budget crunches seem to happen on the backs of Blue Collar workers ­ how will we be affected?

Chancellor responded that he didn’t know how current budget matter will be resolved.  Different solutions/trial balloons are being floated to see who’ll scream the loudest.  There’s a conference call later today on the budget.  WBS is betting there will be some pretty intense wrangling the next few weeks.  He asked staff to practice patience as political games play out.  He’s attempting to take a different approach to the budget by looking systematically at shifting investments on needs of the University, but it will take time to get there.  We’re fortunate to be in a state that values education ­ he sees us as part of the solution, not the problem.  Per capita income in Wisconsin is declining relative to the national average; we need to educate those who will be our future labor force.

Are you in favor of expansion of the Sports Center?

Chancellor responded that intercollegiate athletics is important to our future.  Division I is important to the campus.  Students, whether or not they are intercollegiate athletes,  have high expectations with regard to facilities and we aren’t meeting that need.

We will not compete with the Resch Center.  We will provide an events center for large events (i.e. commencement, womens basketball) ­ funded by student dollars, State dollars, and private dollars.  We have planning dollars this biennium, will go forward with Union remodel next biennium, private dollars to expand the sports complex the following biennium. 

Will we have people to clean the Union and Sports Center expansions?

Vice Chancellor Maki is looking at that and it’s looking positive.  We won’t undertake a commitment without a revenue stream to support facilities.

Maintenance staff is stretched thin (i.e. opening of MAC Hall) and it will begin to show in a couple of years.

With regard to MAC Hall, adequate space needs for storing the amount of supplies needed to run the building weren’t taken into consideration. 

Technology needs in MAC Hall are a concern.  Example:  The State contract for lamps (light bulbs) is with Phillips.  However, the tech. company says that Phillips lamps don’t work with their equipment; Sylvania bulbs required.  Because there’s a State contract for Phillips, then Sylvania bulbs come from Sara Gorton’s budget.

When it comes to building/remodeling, there hasn’t been input from the maintenance standpoint; such input would help eliminate some problems. 

The Chancellor mentioned that in Wisconsin, we don’t get to pick the architect.  However, once an architect is picked, they will have the responsibility for talking with all users to understand issues and building requirements.

You’ll be hiring a new Provost and two Academic Deans.  What are your plans to make this a 5-day a week campus? 

The Chancellor responded that he’s already discussing this with the Interim Provost and Interim Deans ­ would like to see Friday’s utilized just as much as the other week days. 

Is there any way to promote health and wellness for employees?  Employees seem to feel as though they can’t leave the office for longer than their 45-minute lunch period to take advantage of fitness classes offered at the Sports Center over the noon hour.  Flexible work schedule would be appreciated.  If encouraged from the top down, perhaps supervisors would allow such flexibility.

The Chancellor responded that there are some facilities limitations that should be addressed with the expansion.   He knows the benefit of exercise and how it makes for healthier/happier employees.

Employees take great pride in what the campus looks like and spend a great deal of time getting the campus looking good for commencement, orientations, etc.  ­ then, two weeks later BayFest trashes the place.  (Some years the grounds are wet when set up occurs or we get rain during the event.  Semi ruts can be as deep as 25”.)  It takes months to get the grounds back into shape.  We know BayFest is an important fundraiser for athletics.  Operations sets up/takes down ­ takes 800 man hours ­ that’s 800 man hours taken out of maintaining/cleaning existing facilities.

Alcohol consumption on campus is a concern (BayFest).

The Chancellor noted he had not yet had the opportunity to attend BayFest but mentioned how pleased he’s been to hear from students that our campus was attractive to them because we’re not known as a party school.

Has there been any thought about using student athletes to set up/take down?  Some athletes do trash pick up at night.

Vice Chancellor Maki replied that most students are gone when BayFest is held. 

The Chancellor inquired about BayFest.

Vice Chancellor Maki replied that Saturday night is typically the largest draw crowd wise with an estimated crowd of 100,000 - $140,000 average net revenue. 

A lot of kids come out for BayFest.  It was suggested that the Chancellor might like to collect tickets one evening to see who’s attending ­ it’s a learning experience. 

Many campus employees volunteer.

It was also suggested that the Chancellor might like to walk around to see how and where cars are parked.  Though it has gotten better, cars are parked anywhere there’s an open space.

A request was made for more of Cyndie’s chocolate chip cookies.

It was mentioned that we have such a beautiful campus, but we seem to be signing it to death.  Numerous No Parking signs have been put up by the housing bus stop and the sports center.  These signs detract from the beauty of the campus. 

Low starting pay was mentioned.  We’d get higher quality applicants if we could offer a higher starting wage.  It’s hard to keep employees once they are here because they can get higher paying jobs elsewhere.  Here, the starting wage is $8.68 per hour; it’s $10-$12 in Brown County for the same job. 

Vice Chancellor Maki replied that he’s had conversations with DER ­ they understand, but nothing’s changed.  We’ll keep pushing it.

The State blue collar/clerical contract is not yet settled.  Don’t know if we will keep up with the cost of living ­ the benefits are great, but need to pay bills.  It seems like every time our contract comes up, there’s a State budget problem. 

Vice Chancellor Maki replied that Broad Banding provides some flexibility, but the dollars need to be there.

It’s helpful when information is  provided to key staff so rumors can be dealt with ­ we’d like to prevent misinformation. 

I’ve been employed here for a number of years, and what’s impressed me is the good crew we have at UW-Green Bay.  Feedback included that the Union President doesn’t put up with frivolous grievances, employees feel they’re being treated fairly, it’s a nice place to work, we’re spoiled with our good job environment, there are so many long-time employees, there’s low turnover, a good work ethic.

Maintain communication from the top down.


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Revised 1/8/03