Employee Development & Engagement

University employees enjoying food at a university housing and dining event

View the resources and opportunities available for employees in training, wellness, development and engagement. The Employee Development and Engagement (EDE) team facilitates a variety of initiatives, learning opportunities, and events that focus on these areas to encourage and develop employee growth. We are committed to providing a range of positive experiences and opportunities for all UHD employees to enhance their experience working for our department. We aim to foster a thriving workplace culture where employees are engaged with their work, inspired to grow and invested in fully contributing to the work we do for students.

Initiatives for Employee Development and Engagement

Training and Orientation

A variety of trainings are available for staff to attend in person and online. Through UTLearn, an online learning management system, staff can register for trainings and complete online learning modules to advance their skills. We also collaborate with other units who want to offer training and assist with the creation and execution of specific training.

All new benefits eligible employees attend New Employee Orientation to become familiar with UHD policies, available resources and employee culture. Supervisors attend Supervisor Orientation that acquaints them with the role and responsibilities of being a supervisor in a series of in-person trainings and online learning modules.

Learning and Development

We encourage a focus on lifetime learning in our department through the workshops and presentations we provide and by consulting with managers and staff about specialized learning and development needs. We offer adult education classes, including English as a Second Language, conversational Spanish and digital literacy. Our supervisor development opportunities include the Leadership and Communication Series, which features videos and discussions about leading a team and communicating effectively and respectfully. Staff also have access to LinkedIn Learning which allows them to choose skills they want to develop.


Our team regularly facilitates a variety of wellness opportunities that help staff engage with eight wellness pillars: physical, emotional, occupational, intellectual, financial, environmental, social and spiritual. We work with campus partners, including HealthPoint and the Employee Assistance Program (EAP), to offer programs that help participants incorporate wellness practices into their everyday lives. With a variety of programming and three exercise rooms in the buildings we operate, staff can decide what wellness means to them.

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Tea with Dr. T

This recurring town hall-style event gives our staff opportunities to ask questions, share ideas and suggestions, or voice concerns with the leader of our department, Associate Vice President Dr. Marilyn Tyus. We encourage all UHD employees to join these conversations.

CARE Committee

CARE stands for community, appreciation, recognition and events. The CARE committee and its subcommittees are dedicated to enhancing the employee experience. The subcommittees build community, show appreciation, promote recognition and contribute to organizing large-scale events. Past initiatives include a book club, staff appreciation summer cookout, campus walking tour and student employee appreciation.

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Star to Star Recognition Program

The Star to Star Recognition Program is a way for UHD employees to give fellow staff members a shout-out for shining in their everyday work. From a daily positive attitude to going above and beyond during a shift, there is so much our employees do to bring value to their teams. Help us illuminate our stars by telling them you appreciate what they do. 

How It Works

  1. Notice a fellow UHD employee doing something you want to recognize. This could be something as small as a helpful act or as big as shouldering a large responsibility – no answer is wrong as long as you feel it makes them shine!
  2. Tell us about it through our submission form. Head to any UHD breakroom to find and submit a paper form, or fill out a digital form instead.


The program is open to all UHD employees, including full-time, part-time and student staff. Any employee can recognize any other, no matter if they’re a team member or someone from a different unit.


The first four times a person is recognized, they’ll receive a copy of the submitted form and a food coupon redeemable at certain UHD-operated dining locations.

The fifth time a person is recognized, they’ll receive a Star to Star insulated tumbler to keep their beverages hot or cold in style.

The UHD CARE Committee manages this program. Please contact uhd.CAREcommittee@austin.utexas.edu for more information.