The Chronicle of Higher Education, a trade publication about universities in the United States, recently awarded the “Great College to Work For” title to Weber State University.
The award is based on the results of a survey conducted by the Chronicle in which employees of 281 universities and colleges were interviewed. Only 86 institutions received the award.
“The Chronicle’s Great Colleges to Work For program shows how the colleges and universities on the list are getting it right: They’re leaders in creating environments where smart people enjoy their work,” said Liz McMillen, editor of The Chronicle.
The Chronicle has conducted similar annual surveys since 2007, and the results are considered a major decision-making influence by many seeking employment in higher education. According to McMillen, the rigorous selection process positions universities in a prime situation for recruitment.
WSU participated for the first time.
According to a press release, WSU’s most convincing performance was in job satisfaction and support, in the balance between work and life and in facilities, workspace and security.
“During the first couple of years of my presidency, I’ve come to know that Weber State is a great university to work for, and this survey makes my observations official,” said Charles Wight, WSU president. “We will use the survey results to celebrate our strengths and look at opportunities for improvement.”
Anneli Byrd, who has worked as a secretary at the Student Success Center at WSU for four years, was not surprised by the survey results. “People here are genuinely friendly, and everyone helps each other out, even across departments,” she said.
Her co-worker Krystal Banner agreed, saying that everyone working at WSU was “part of a big team.”
“I could call the accounting department or the human resources department at anytime, and they would send me instructions or even meet with me in person to walk me through things I couldn’t do on my own when I first started working here,” Byrd said.
Byrd also said that the training new WSU employees receive is exceptional.
Raechel Ivie, who works as an aid at the Science Lab’s computer lab, sees even more advantages to working for WSU. “Unlike with off-campus employment, the school is very willing to work around your class schedule,” she said, but she added that the support between employees was what impressed her most.
Recently, Ivie’s computer lab experienced some issues with its printing station, leaving many students frustrated. Ivie contacted the IT manager, and he came in the same day to fix the problem.
The following day, Ivie received a personal email from the science department chair, commending her for her work and her reaction to the problem. “I don’t think a lot of other schools would even take time to do that,” Ivie said.
Not only staff but also faculty members expressed their happiness with WSU as an employer.
“This university has a track record for valuing employee commitment and loyalty, drawing from a diverse pool of raw talent from a variety of geographic areas,” said Forrest Crawford, a professor in the Education department.
Crawford added that building this reputation has improved WSU’s relationship with the community, helping both the school and its surrounding community to prosper permanently.