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August 2015

Welcome to the Fall Semester!

The new academic year is in full swing and we are excited to welcome our students back to campus, as well as those of you who weren't here over the summer. It's been a busy few months on campus: Many fences have come down, the Student Wellness Center is open, we are now tobacco and smoke free, and Dr. Susan Martin has joined us as our interim president. It looks to be a fall of new beginnings in Sparta!

Spartan 101 Reunion

We held the inaugural Spartan 101 Reunion on August 7. Employees who participated in Spartan 101 from January through June 2015 were invited to this new event. Participants had the chance to connect and reconnect with one another. HR received valuable feedback about onboarding processes, including what they found useful and what they wish they had known sooner, as well as ideas for improvement.

We played games, gave away prizes and even had a surprise visit from Sammy Spartan! The Spartan 101 Reunion will be an on-going event, held twice a year.

Employee Services Fair

Come one, come all to the Employee Services Fair on Tuesday, September 29 from 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM in the Student Union Ballroom! The Employee Services Fair is your opportunity to learn about the benefit programs available to you and meet the vendors who provide them. Your HR Benefits Representatives will also be on hand to answer questions.

The Employee Services Fair is held during Open Enrollment to give you the opportunity to talk to vendors before making any changes. The annual Benefits Open Enrollment period for SJSU employees is September 14 through October 9, 2015. All changes made during Open Enrollment will be effective January 1, 2016. Open Enrollment is the annual opportunity to make changes to your benefit plans. During this period, you may enroll in or change a health or dental plan, add or delete dependents, enroll in or cancel FlexCash, and enroll in a Flexible Spending Account (HCRA/DCRA).

In addition to the health, vision and dental providers, CalPERS and the financial savings vendors will be at the Employee Services Fair along with many other vendors offering discounts and perks to SJSU employees. Don’t forget to bring your Tower ID card to be eligible for a variety of giveaways and prizes. See you at the fair!


Click the 'View in web browser' link in the gold bar above or the ‘View entire message’ link at the bottom to read all the news!

Upcoming HR Training & Events 

Sept. 3, Wed
Spartan 101
Sept. 10, Thurs
Intro to Skillport Learning Library
Sept. 15, Tues
Investment Planning for Every Investor
Sept. 17, Thurs 
ScholarShare 529 College Savings Plans
Sept. 23, Wed
Social Security and Your Retirement
Sept. 24, Thurs 
Successfully Resolving Conflict
Sept. 29, Tues
Employee Services Fair (10:00 AM - 2:00 PM)
Oct. 29, Thurs
Spartan Service Celebration (3:00 PM - 5:00 PM)

See the Human Resources Training Calendar July – September 2015 for the full list of upcoming training classes and instructions on how to register.

Spotlight On:


The Benefits team is responsible for managing the CSU's comprehensive benefits programs for the campus. Providing timely service and issue resolution for all employees and their dependents is a priority. We know that reviewing your benefits can be an overwhelming experience and that’s why we provide a variety of resources to help you understand the rules, guidelines and deadlines governing the CSU Benefits Programs. More information is on the Benefits webpage.

New Employee/Newly Eligible Enrollment

The deadline for enrollment in benefits is 60 calendar days from the date of appointment. If the deadline is missed, employees may enroll in health insurance after a 90-day waiting period under the Health Care Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA), or during the annual Open Enrollment period with coverage effective the following January. Adding or deleting eligible family members may be done during a qualifying Family Status Change or during the Open Enrollment period. The medical plans are administered by the California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS). No dual enrollment or split enrollments are allowed.

Family Status Change

When certain life events or circumstances occur, you are entitled to make special enrollment updates within 60 days of the event. Family Status Changes include adding or deleting a dependent due to birth, adoption, marriage, domestic partnership, divorce, or death. The gain or loss of an alternate non-CSU plan is also a valid reason for a Family Status Change. For additional information on family member eligibility, visit the CalPERS website.

Retirement Planning

If you are approaching retirement, you face many considerations, both personal and financial. To learn whether you are financially prepared for retirement, start with the CalPERS Education Center or contact your professional financial advisor. We recommend you begin the steps to retire from CalPERS one year in advance. If your retirement date is less than a year away, don't worry. We can still help you retire on the day you have planned. You can find a detailed checklist in Planning Your Service Retirement (PUB 1), or watch our Retirement Planning Checklist video. You may also contact Human Resources to schedule an appointment with your Benefits Representative at (408) 924-2250. Remember, you retire from CalPERS, not SJSU.

Leave Programs

The CSU offers a variety of leave programs for all faculty, management, confidential and staff employees. Each program contains eligibility requirements as stated by the appropriate Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBAs), specific CSU policies, applicable legal agreements, and current state and federal legislation. Approval for these programs may be granted to employees depending on the circumstances of the leave and the appropriate collective bargaining unit of the employee. For more information on leave programs and frequently asked questions, please visit the Leave Programs webpage.

The Benefits team is led by Anita Vasquez, Manager, Payroll and Benefit Services, and the entire staff is committed to providing outstanding customer service and to assist you with all your benefits needs.

Marie Garcia - Sr. Benefits Representative
Reuben Soto - Benefits Representative
Christina Hill - Benefits Representative
Kim Wilcott - Leave Program Manager

Please see Your HR Representatives to identify your primary contact for Benefits and don't hesitate to reach out if you need assistance.

Congratulations to

our Survey Winners!

Thanks to everyone who participated in our HR On-the-Go survey. Your feedback is invaluable. Congratulations to Denise Hamilton and Sabrina Porter, winners of the SJSU umbrellas!

Vision 2017:  

Spartan Pride

Develop vibrant, safe and welcoming communities that create a sense of belonging and instill Spartan pride. Show your Spartan Pride every Thursday by wearing blue and gold! 

Buzz on...Rosario Gaspar

Rosario Gaspar has been working in Human Resources for over 15 years. She started as a student assistant and currently serves as the Budget and Immigration Analyst. She has well-rounded experience in HR, as she has worked in almost every unit during her career. 

Q. Where did you grow up?

A. I grew up in ​Watsonville and lived there most of my life until I moved to San Jose when I started attending college at SJSU.

Q. What do you like to eat?

A. I love shrimp, "coctel de camaron", shrimp with pasta, shrimp ceviche......and more shrimp!

Q. What is your favorite spot on campus?

A. I love the grassy area around Tower Hall because it brings me good memories. My first job as a student assistant was in the Office of Equal Opportunity, which at the time was located in Tower Hall. I used to walk through there early in the morning and I would see people doing yoga and it just looked so relaxing; I wanted to join them but needed to go to work.

Q. What is the most satisfying part of your job?

A. The constant change and many opportunities: to get to know different people; every day is different and you never know what the next day will bring. It is satisfying to be able to help students, especially when they are new to this country. I also get to interact with different departments on campus and the general community.

Q. How do you spend your time outside of work?

​A. I have been blessed with a little girl, so being a mother takes up most of my time. I like to be outdoors, I like cold weather, and enjoy being at the beach to see the sunrise.

Q. Who is someone that inspires you?​

A. It would be my daughter because she is very honest, smart, and caring.

Ask HR...

What is the importance of the effective date on the Position Management Action Form?

The effective date is crucial in creating or updating a position because it denotes the date a new position can be used, or when a specific change takes effect. For instance, if a position is created effective 7/1/15, the position only exists from that date forward. If you were to try and appoint someone to that position prior to that date, the system would not allow it because it would predate the existence of the position.

When making changes to a position (reporting structure, funding, department id, etc.) it is important to keep this in mind because changes will only take place from the effective date forward.

Do we have access to any online training resources?

SJSU employees have access to two online training resources. Our Employee Assistance Program, LifeMatters by Empathia, has a website that offers a variety of information and trainings on health, family life, emotional well-being, and work-related topics.

All employees, including auxiliary employees and student assistants, have access to Skillport 8.0. The Skillport learning library has thousands of engaging online courses, books, and videos covering a wide range of business-related and technical topics.

Visit the HR eLearning webpage to access both the LifeMatters and Skillport 8.0 sites. For questions regarding any online training offered by Human Resources, email Julie Inouye Wong.

Have a question for HR? Ask us here!


Spartan Pride

This crossword puzzle is not interactive, but we encourage you to print it out to see how much you know about Spartan Pride.

5. SJSU was _____ in 1857.
6. SJSU sponsors 200 _____ programs in 35 countries.
7. SJSU is a national leader in graduating _____ students.

1. What is the name of SJSU’s newspaper?
2. What day of the week is Spartan Pride Day?
3. How many California State Universities offer undergraduate and graduate degrees in nuclear science?
4. San José is the first in the nation to open a joint city-and-university _____.
8. SJSU is the _____ public institution of higher education on the west coast.

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Mailing address: SJSU HR, One Washington Square, San Jose, CA, 95192, US
Last Updated Aug 31, 2022