The University of Houston’s Auxiliary Services revived its Auxiliary Services Professional Symposium by hosting this year’s event on June 7th at the M.D. Anderson Library.
The event was attended by 40 colleagues from across the UH System. The focus of this year’s program was collaboration and connecting – highlighting the important role of auxiliary services is impacting the student experience and helping to make connections between auxiliary services professionals and student affairs programs and services.
Keynote speaker University of Houston-Clear Lake President Dr. Richard Walker, who also previously served as Vice-Chancellor and Vice President for the Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services at the UH System and the University of Houston, led a group discussion with attendees about lessons learned in supporting students during the pandemic.
Participants discussed how basic student needs became more visible during the pandemic and the importance of flexibility in student learning and programming.
“Re-launching the Auxiliary Services Professional Symposium in 2022 with a focus on collaborations with our colleagues in student affairs was a great way to remind ourselves of the important role we all have in supporting student success,” said Dr. Emily Messa, UH System Senior Associate Vice Chancellor and UH Senior Associate Vice President for Administration.
“I am looking forward to the creativity and partnerships that will be inspired by this event.
Symposium panelists included the following leaders from the UH Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services:
- Dr. Norma Ngo, director of Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS).
- Kyle Mutz, director of Dart Student Accessibility Center.
- Don Yackley, assistant vice president of Student Housing and Residential Life.
- Dr. Monica Thompson, interim assistant vice president for student affairs and executive director of University Career Services.
- Varselles Cummins, director of the Center for Diversity & Inclusion (CDI).
For Samantha Eades, UH Campus Store Manager, the symposium was an opportunity to enhance her learning on a topic she was unfamiliar with.
“I believe what resonated most with me, due to my lack of previous knowledge on the subject, was the key points surrounding the Dart Student Accessibility Center,” said Eades.
Neil Hart, Executive Director of Parking and Transportation, appreciated Yackley’s presentation on Student Housing.
“I enjoyed all of the presentations, but if I had to pick one, it would be Don’s presentation,” said Hart. “I enjoy seeing data in action along with nice videos.”
Participants also had the opportunity to tour campus auxiliary services operations, including parking operations, the license plate recognition camera cars, and the new mail and package lockers.
Additionally, participants visited some of the public art across the campus, including the Luis Jimenez’s Fiesta Jarabe near Cougar Woods Dining Commons, Frank Stella’s Euphonia at Moores Opera House, and Lawrence Argent’s You Move outside the University Lofts.