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ISSS Announcements

Please note the following announcements from the Office of International Student and Scholar Services:
U.S. Consulates in Canada to Suspend Third-Country National Visa Processing for the Summer 
The U.S. Embassy in Ottawa has announced that third-country national (TCN) processing will not be available at any U.S. consular posts in Canada from June to August 2014. Only emergency TCN applications will be processed. TCN applicants with appointments already scheduled at a post in Canada during these months will not be affected. 

How will this affect U of MN international students & scholars? 
The suspension will primarily affect foreign permanent residents of Canada and foreign nationals who seek to renew a visa in Canada rather than travel to their home country. 
Social Security Administration Eliminates Ten-Day Waiting Period for Foreign National SSN Applications
Foreign nationals no longer need to wait ten days after entry to the U.S. to apply for a Social Security number (SSN), the Social Security Administration (SSA) has confirmed. As long as a foreign national's entry record is accessible in Customs and Border Protection's online I-94 system and is correct, he or she may apply for an SSN shortly after arrival. 

SSA uses I-94 entry records to verify a foreign national's valid immigration status and eligibility for an SSN. Before the advent of Customs and Border Protection's online I-94 system, the arrival records of foreign nationals took ten days to be entered into verification databases. Foreign nationals who applied for SSNs less than ten days after arrival in the United States often faced delays because their records were not yet available to SSA for verification.

How will this affect U of MN international students & scholars?
For J-1 scholars, the above change does not eliminate the need to Check-In at ISSS to validate their Active status in SEVIS. The SSN office will still need to verify the Active status of a J-1 visa holders. This can be done only after U of MN J-1 scholars have completed their Scholar Check-In with ISSS. 
As a reminder, J-1 scholars should report to ISSS before going to the SSN office. There is still a lag-time of 2-3 days in the electronic systems between U of MN, SEVIS, and the SSN Office's system. This means that scholars who visit the SSN office soon after their ISSS Check-In (which is normal), they might still receive a letter from SSN stating that they couldn't yet verify the "Active" status. This letter can still be used for Payroll purposes. In the course of a few days, the SSN office will have the updated status information. Unless the scholar is told by SSN that they must re-apply for the SSN, they do not need to reapply.
U of MN Background Checks and Non-salary J Scholars
Do Research Scholars holding J-1 visas and not receiving a salary from the U of MN require a background check?
On a basic level, according to the University Policy Office: The Research Scholar who is not receiving a salary from the U of M would not be required to complete a background check. Without salary appointments of any type are not covered under the policy. However, individual Schools/Colleges/Units can have their own policies around this and might still require it, so refer to your internal HR for the appropriate practice. 
If you have additional questions regarding the U of MN background check policy, please direct them to the University Policy Office ( and/or central HR. 

ESUP Presentation and Information from 4/10/14 CLA NOW

Here is the presentation from Santiago Fernandez-Gimenez which he presented at last week's CLA NOW.
He also asked that the Intro to ESUP video on the front page of the ESUP web site is distributed.  This is a great place to send staff for a overview of the changes coming. You can view the two minute orientation video and then subscribe to the Upgrade newsletter. There is lots of specific information under the "What's Changing" tab on the site.
Also, here is a link to the Faculty Center sneak peek for those who might want to share this specific functionality more broadly.
If you have any suggestions for any other ESUP topics you would like covered at future CLA NOW meetings, please let know. Thank you!
The April 2nd Education, Instructional Services, and Teaching Job Family Information Session Video can now be found online here:

Please contact your HR Consultant with any questions.

AFSCME Clerical and Technical Contracts Are Now Available

The AFSCME clerical and technical contracts are ready for distribution - CLA HR will request the contracts from central OHR and get them mailed to units.  Please let know how many copies of each contract you would like for your managers, supervisors & payroll contacts in your area.   Please do not include BU employees in this count as LR employees will receive the contracts in a separate mailing. Please let us know if you have any questions.

If you prefer to view the contracts online, they can be found here: 

AFSCME Clerical

AFSCME Technical

CLA HR Deadlines - Spring Semester 2014

Below are upcoming deadlines.  Please contact CLA HR (; 4-9839) with any questions.

March 7 - P/A Professional Development Leave Applications (HR)

March 14 - P/A Annual Review (HR)

March 28 - P/A Promotion Dossiers (HR)

June 13 - CS/BU Annual Reviews (HR)

Upcoming EOAA Workshops

Below is a list of EOAA workshops that will be offered this semester. Please email this information to your staff. Further description of the courses and online registration can be found on EOAA's website at .
  • February 18, 2014 (1:00-3:00 pm) : Incorporating Equity & Diversity into Job Performance (655 McNamara)
  • March 6, 2014 (1:00-3:30 pm): Supervisors' EOAA Toolkit (655 McNamara - UMConnect session)
  • April 16, 2014 (1:30-3:30 pm): Sexual Harassment: Awareness, Prevention, & Response (120 Andersen Library)
  • April 22, 2014 (1:00-3:30 pm): Addressing Bullying Behavior in the Workplace (655 McNamara - UMConnect session)
The 2013 Calendar Year OSHA 300A Injury and Illness Report has been posted on the CLA HR website. The OSHA 300A report is a public report.  As required by federal law, the report MUST BE POSTED in areas accessible to all employees for a period of (3) three months, beginning February 1, 2014 through April 30, 2014.  After April 30, 2014 the report must be on file in your unit for five years.
The OSHA 300A report is generated from information supplied on worker's compensation claims called "First Reports of Injury".  This information is supplemented through personnel data using a historical database from Institutional Relations.  Please verify the information for your unit. If errors are found, please contact CLA Human Resources at
Thank you.

Staff Appraisal Committee

The performance review is a fundamental tool in communicating performance feedback, yet our most recent tally shows that only 48% of 2012-2013 academic year reviews were completed for CLA staff college-wide.  We must make improvements to prepare for President Kaler's charge that all Civil Service employees be evaluated under a merit based salary system with the next 2014/2015 academic year.

To those ends, we have formed the CLA Staff Appraisal Committee with representatives from a variety of academic and administrative units throughout the college. Our charge is to create a new review format that will work for merit pay for all staff positions. The new format will be required for civil service and labor represented staff and optional for P&A staff who might instead be evaluated through a faculty-like process. We are completing the assessment phase of our work and to date have vetted a number of review format options from both within and outside the U of M. We are now moving into the development/design phase of our work in creating and/or recommending a new college-wide staff performance review format. The committee members agree that we will pursue an on-line format. 

Between now and February, our committee is reaching out to a variety of interested parties within the college. The groups include you, the Admin Forum, COC, CEDD, the P&A Board, the U's CS Consultative Committee, and AFSCME. We also welcome broader input and will share more as we have a draft format.

Many thanks from the CLA Staff Appraisal Committee!

Lisa Bachman (CLA HR), Cassandra Cockburn (CLA Fiscal), Margaret LaFleur (Writing Studies), Kate Gallagher (CSCL&CNES), Ann MIller (Sociology), Angie Plambeck (CLA HR), Millie Reid (TAD) Andrew Sell (CLA IT), Orbe Stricherz (Psychology), Terri Wallace (Writing Center)

Position Management Clean-Up

As the end of the Analyze and Design phase of the HRMS upgrade Project nears, data clean-up, including position management, is a top priority.  CLA HR and Fiscal have been working with units to clean-up position management data including the "reports-to" field and unpooling of positions that no longer meet the requirements for remaining pooled.  Please contact your HR Consultant or with any questions.

Please be aware that we are creating additional pools to meet the new pooling requirements.  We are trying to label the positions so that you will be able to correctly select the appropriate pool when making your job offers in Intersections.  It is important that our appointments meet the new position and pooling requirements going forward. 

Position titles will start to reflect FTE and reports to where appropriate.  
For example, your unit may go from having one "Teaching Assistant" pool to a couple of pools such as "25% Teaching Assistant, 50% Teaching Assistant, 75% Teaching Assistant".  You may also begin to see "reports to" information in the Position title as well where appropriate.  For example "Research Assistant" may be retitled as "25% Research Assistant - Professor XYZ". E-mail Account

Just a reminder to send ALL requisition/pool/hiring/offer requests and all position number requests to the CLA HR e-mail account (  This allows for the most efficient processing of all requests.
Thank you!

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