The Higher Ed Workplace Blog

National Science Foundation Issues New Harassment Reporting Requirement


Under the new requirement, institutions that have been awarded grants (nearly 2,000 colleges and universities) must notify NSF within 10 days of any findings or determinations that any NSF-funded principal or co-principal investigator (PI) violated the law or the institution’s policies with respect to harassment, including sexual harassment or assault, or if the institution has taken administrative actions or sanctions against the PI or co-PI because of alleged harassment.

Let’s Talk About the Emotional Support Squirrel in the Room

by Amanda Davis

Several major news outlets covered the recent kerfuffle of a Frontier Airlines passenger attempting to fly out of Orlando, Florida, with her emotional support squirrel seated with her. These kinds of incidents raise questions about the policies colleges and universities have in place to address service animals and emotional support animals on campus.

Simple Metrics: How to Use Compa-Ratios to Guide Compensation Decisions

by Adam Pritchard

A comparison ratio (compa-ratio for short) is one of the most common metrics for pay. Simply stated, a compa-ratio compares an individual employee’s salary to the midpoint of a given salary range. This easy-to-calculate statistic can be used in many ways to guide decisions about compensation on your campus.

HR’s Role in Balancing Free Speech and Inclusivity

by Missy Kline

Results of a recent survey of college and university presidents conducted by the American Council on Education (ACE) show that half of all presidents surveyed rely on their chief HR officer to weigh in when setting institutional policy related to campus inclusion and free speech. And 30 percent of presidents said they rely on HR when addressing active conflict around inclusion and free speech. Would you know how to react if your president came calling on such matters?

Navigating “Stuff:” 5 Strategies for Diffusing Organizational Noise

by Missy Kline

How often does “stuff” ruin your workday? Stuff like people’s propensity to complain about anything and everything; petty squabbling or personality conflicts; miscommunication; misunderstanding; mistakes. How can we tamp down that stuff in our workplaces so that we can focus instead on the work at hand?

HR and the Courts: Recent Rulings and Legislation


Each month, CUPA-HR General Counsel Ira Shepard provides an overview of some labor and employment law cases and regulatory actions with implications for the higher ed workplace. Here’s the latest from Ira.

4 Ways to Mitigate Risk Related to Sexual Misconduct and Harassment on Campus

by Missy Kline

When it comes to creating a safe, inclusive, equitable campus, culture is the bottom line. But changing the culture and transforming the mindset of an enterprise as large and complex and multifaceted as a higher education institution certainly doesn’t happen overnight — it’s a slow and steady journey. While helping their colleges and universities navigate this bigger change over the long term, there are also things HR can do in the short term to help reduce risk, ensure fairness, and support institution-wide efforts to create a culture of safety and respect on campus.

6 Ways to Keep Your Retirees Engaged

by Missy Kline

Retired staff and faculty are often an untapped resource for colleges and universities. While many retirees would like to stay connected and engaged — with their colleagues, with students, with the campus community as a whole — they just aren’t sure how to do so.