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Information and Best Practices for Staff

Where is your career headed? What do you need to learn to advance? What kinds of skills has your supervisor suggested you gain? Having a professional development (PD) plan for yourself, and implementing it, is important to your career path, your job growth, and your own job satisfaction. Professional development is EVERYONE’s responsibility. Your supervisor can guide you toward opportunities, but it is up to you to take an active role in your own learning.

At the Teaching Center, we believe that developing your professional network, expanding your knowledge, and building your skills is important to the success of the Center and the University. We encourage you to work with your supervisor and mentors to develop your own plan that takes advantage of the myriad opportunities available to learn more about instructional development, technology, media, communications, and other areas in which we work. These activities can include: attending webinars or workshops, leading or attending a peer learning event with your colleagues, using to learn a new skill, attending a conference, engaging in a social or professional community, writing an article for a professional journal, or even taking a semester-long class. Regardless of the activity, remember that it is your responsibility to learn as much as you can and apply it to your job. It is equally as important to formally share what you learn with your colleagues and resources are available to help you do so.

We are fortunate that many PD opportunities continue to be available even during the pandemic time via synchronous remote or asynchronous courses, seminars, and conferences. We also expect to see face-to-face opportunities emerge again. Some PD opportunities cost money, and we need to plan and budget for these, so work with your supervisor. PD opportunities are an investment in you, and we expect you to make the most of that investment!

Submitting a Conference Proposal

We love to see our staff members publish and present about the work we do. It is great for you, and great for the Center. Before you submit a proposal to a professional conference to make a presentation, host a discussion table, or participate in the conference agenda in any way, you are required to please seek approval from both your unit’s director and your supervisor. If you do not get prior approval, you may not be able to attend the conference, even if the proposal was accepted. There are budgetary implications for travel, and we must be selective as to how we invest our staff development dollars. Please get approval prior to submitting a conference proposal or committing to a conference in any way. Requests for conference expenses should be submitted through the Purchase Requisition form.

Travel and/or Conference Expenses

Staff may occasionally be selected to represent the Teaching Center at a professional development event that requires financial support for registration, travel, lodging, and/or car rental. Your supervisor must be informed and approve of the trip prior to any arrangements being made, or any invitations being accepted. The information below outlines the University’s policies and procedures for traveling for University business:

  • Travel & Expense Management
  • Transportation: Our Center’s Business Office will purchase your plane or rail tickets or rent an automobile through Pitt Transportation using the University’s purchasing card. The Business Office can also rent an automobile in cases where travel does not require air
  • Hotel: You must make your own hotel reservations and pay using your personal credit
  • Travel Cash Advance is available upon
  • Within one week of your return, please submit all of your receipts through Concur, the University’s travel and expense management system. The Business Office can assist you with this process.

Driving University Vehicles/Teaching Center’s Van

The Teaching Center owns and operates a cargo van. Staff who have been approved to operate University vehicles by Pitt Transportation are authorized to use the van for University business. The manager of Classroom Services maintains the schedule for the van.

To become authorized to operate a University vehicle, submit the following to the Business Office:

  • The “Request for Driver Information” form, which can be found in this folder on the shared network: Q:\Information for Staff\Teaching Center – Authorized Drivers
  • A copy of your valid state driver’s license
  • A copy of your university ID

These items will be submitted to Pitt Transportation for review. If approved, you will be added to the department’s “Approved Driver” list.

You can find more information on the Guidelines for University Leased Vehicles web page.

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