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October 2015


SJSU is proud to partner with Our Promise: California State Employees Giving at Work to provide employees an opportunity to give back through payroll deduction. Our Promise encompasses 29 regional campaigns throughout California and is a commitment to our communities. It has been the single largest effort among state employees to support charitable programs. Join the Our Promise Campaign by contributing to help tens of thousands across our community to prosper.

Employee pledge forms were distributed to departments with the October 1 payroll. You can also download the pledge form and submit it to Michaux Burchard in Human Resources (zip 0046). Pledge forms will be accepted by HR until November 30, 2015. 

Not sure of what organization(s) to support? There are thousands of charities who participate in Our Promise. Find a charity to support.

If you have questions about making a donation or the Our Promise campaign, please contact Michaux Burchard at 408.924.2155 or view the Our Promise list of Frequently Asked Questions.

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment for Benefits is now in progress and runs through October 9. This is your annual opportunity to learn about new offerings and to make additions, changes or deletions to your benefits, which will be effective January 1, 2016. Please see Benefits Open Enrollment on the HR website for more information.

Spartan Service Celebration

Join us as we honor our colleagues reaching milestone years of service to San José State University at the 48th Annual Spartan Service Celebration on Thursday, October 29 at 3:00 PM in the Student Union Ballroom. The university will recognize 95 staff members with 15, 20, 25, 30, and 35 years of service. There will be a program highlighting our honorees’ contributions to SJSU, followed by a celebratory reception. In the spirit of helping and caring, there will be no fees for guests to attend the event. Come celebrate your fellow Spartans!


Spotlight On:

The Office for Equal Opportunity and

Employee Relations

The Office for Equal Opportunity and Employee Relations (OEO/ER) is committed to providing the campus community with an academic and professional environment that is free from discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. We do this by working closely with departments to ensure recruitment and employment practices comply with state and federal law, as well as CSU policies. Additionally, when concerns arise, our office takes swift action to investigate and address claims of discrimination, harassment and retaliation. If there are concerns specifically dealing with labor practices or employment, we work closely with our labor union representatives to ensure compliance with the collective bargaining agreements while providing consultation to the campus community. 

The Office for Equal Opportunity and Employee Relations is led by Julie Paisant, Director of OEO/ER. She and her team are here to assist you in matters concerning employment and equal and fair treatment.

Julie Paisant - Director, Equal Opportunity & Employee Relations
Carwin Liang - Senior Labor & Employee Relations Analyst
Maggie Carrera - Equal Opportunity & Employee Relations Analyst
Stacey Elsibai - Equal Opportunity & Employee Relations Analyst

If you have questions or concerns in the workplace, feel free to contact us. We are here to help.

What is the State Controller's Office and Why is it Important?

The State Controller’s Office (SCO) is responsible for issuing pay checks for all State and Civil Service Agencies. They are also responsible for reporting all income to two of the largest retirement systems: CalPERS and CalSTRS. Although you can view your paychecks online in PeopleSoft, all paychecks are issued by the State Controller’s Office and dispersed on campus by Human Resources.

The San José State payroll staff is responsible for entering all employment transactions into PIMS (the SCO's payroll system) and works closely with the SCO to resolve all payroll related issues. See below for additional information about the SCO.

All W2s are issued and mailed by the SCO by the end of January of each year. If you do not receive your W2 by mid-February, please contact Human Resources. 

Direct Deposit
All direct deposit forms received in Human Resources are mailed to the SCO for processing. Normally it takes 45 to 60 days to process direct deposit enrollment forms; however due to a backlog at the SCO, they are 60 to 90 days behind their normal processing schedule. Note: 
Other areas of the SCO experiencing backlogs are: the Disability Unit, Payroll Unit and Benefits Unit.

When employees retire, they are actually retiring from the California Public Employee Retirement System (CalPERS). At the time of retirement, all unused sick leave is reported to CalPERS via the SCO and converted to state service. It can take up to 60 days before CalPERS can do a calculation. If adjustments are needed, retirees will receive a letter from CalPERS.

Catastrophic Leave Donation Program (CLDP) Updates

We have streamlined the donation process for the CSU Catastrophic Leave Donation Program (CLDP). A campus wide email is now sent the first week of each month to collect donations for eligible employees. For ease and confidentiality, the process has also been updated to receive online donations! Note: You must be logged into SJSUOne to access the online form.

The CLDP provides employees the opportunity to donate sick and/or vacation leave credits to other employees who have exhausted their own leave credits, and are requesting assistance due to a catastrophic illness or injury.

If you wish to donate, please visit the Catastrophic Leave Donations webpage. This program is voluntary and confidential, and donations are used in the order in which they are received. Your support of fellow employees is greatly appreciated. If you have questions regarding this program, please contact Kim Wilcott, Leave Program Manager at 408.924.2282 or

Buzz on...Melissa Wright


Melissa is truly dedicated to the California State University. She has been a part of three CSU campuses! As an undergraduate student, Melissa attended Sacramento State University then later transferred to Sonoma State. At Sonoma State, Melissa worked as a student assistant in the Facilities Department. Soon after graduating, Melissa moved to San Jose and began her career in Human Resources at a staffing agency, where she managed onboarding. The Human Resources office was fortunate to have Melissa join our team in late 2013.

Get to know Melissa!

Q. Where did you grow up?

A. I grew up in Auburn, a town about 45 minutes east of Sacramento. Auburn is a really small town and used to be a gold mining town. It has a population of about 13,000 people and has a lot of outdoor recreational activities.

Q. What do you like to eat?

A. Cheese is my favorite food group; I love everything cheese. However, I also cannot resist the temptation of Italian food and hummus. I enjoy pretty much anything that has hummus and involves dipping into hummus. 

Q. What is your favorite spot on campus?

A. I have two favorite spots on campus: outside of the Student Union and Tower Hall. I enjoy spending my lunch break at Union Square because it looks and feels clean. I also enjoy Tower Hall because the clock tower is beautiful and the corridors are nice and cool inside.

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

A. It’s interesting to see how many different types of jobs there are and going through the process of finding the person that’s right for the job -- it’s complex. There is always so much going on and it’s exciting to see the person come onboard and go through new employee orientation. It’s beginning to end, the whole cycle. It’s like a big happy family.

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

A. I enjoy social league sports, especially kickball and volleyball. I also enjoy reading and hiking, with Point Reyes being one of my all time favorites.

Q. Who is someone that inspires you?

A. Alice Paul, women’s rights activist. She inspires me because she was able to go against the norm and fight for equality.

Ask HR...

How do I keep my personal data updated in PeopleSoft?

Once logged into PeopleSoft HCM (via MySJSU), navigate to Self Service then Campus Personal Information. Addresses: Make sure to keep your home and mailing addresses updated. Names: You may update your preferred name, but please note that this will not change your campus email address. Submit a Help Desk Ticket if you also need to change your email. Phone Numbers and Email Addresses: Your campus phone number and email address cannot be changed, but you may add a personal phone number or email address if you'd like. Emergency Contacts: Please keep your emergency contacts updated. Only HR and UPD have access to this information, and it's important we know who to contact in the unlikely event you have an emergency on campus.

What is the maximum number of vacation hours I can carry over into the next calendar year?

The maximum number of hours varies depending on your position and years of service. Review Employee Benefits Summaries for more information about the maximum allowable vacation hours to carry over.

Eligible employees may accrue unused vacation credits up to the maximum allowed as of December 31. When computing the maximum allowable vacation limits, include the December vacation accrual that is available the following January.

How can I ensure that absences for my department will be able to be approved on time? What do I do if there needs to be an update?

It is important to ensure that employees are reporting to the appropriate manager, department chair or work lead so that when the end of the month comes there will be no issues approving absences. Has a manager retired recently? Have you had some internal reorganization? Is there a new department chair this term? If you said yes to any of those items, submit a Position Management Action Form to to have employee position data updated to report to the new manager, department chair or work lead. Always check your Position & Job Reporting Structure report (in MySJSU: SJSU Human Resources > Workforce Administration) mid-month to ensure that employees are reporting to the correct ‘reports to’ person. If you have any questions regarding this process please contact Workforce Planning at 408.924.2250.

Have a question for HR? Ask us here!

Spartan Stepping Beyond


“As a new manager here at SJSU, there is a lot that I do not know. Anthony has been extremely helpful and informative by explaining how the Work Study program… well, works. He has also offered tools to help me keep track of the hours worked by my students, and explained how their allocations are used over the course of the year.

Simply put, he has answered a hundred and one questions, and has exhibited above all else, patience. Thank you, Anthony!” — Sonja Bowsky

To recognize a fellow Spartan, please visit Spartans Stepping Beyond.

CSU Background Check Policy

What It Means to You

As many of you are aware, a new and comprehensive Background Check Policy has been developed by the Chancellor’s Office, and as of August 3, 2015 these new requirements took effect. This policy has been put in place to ensure we are fostering a safe campus community for our students, faculty, staff, and campus guests.

As defined by this policy, the background check includes a check of criminal records over the last seven years, as well as verification of 10 years of employment and a verification of education. When applicable, credit checks, as well as motor vehicle, license and certification verifications will also be completed. With rare exception, no employee may start work until the background check is complete and cleared.

To help you understand how this impacts you and your employees, we have summarized the most notable aspects of the policy:

Faculty: Finalists for all faculty positions are required to undergo a background check. If a faculty member voluntarily moves to another position on campus, a new background check may be required if the position he or she is moving to is considered sensitive and a check has not been completed at SJSU within the last 12 months. This process will be managed by the Office of Faculty Affairs.

Staff/Management: Finalists for all staff and management positions are required to undergo a background check. Employees who voluntarily move to a new position on campus will undergo another background check unless they have completed a background check at SJSU within the last 12 months. This process will be managed by Human Resources.

Students: New student employees whose position is considered sensitive must undergo a background check and may not start work until the background check has cleared. Teaching Associates and Graduate Assistants may also have to verify admission to a master’s program prior to being appointed to their position.

Volunteers: Volunteers must undergo a background check regardless of the duration of their appointment.

Auxiliary Employees: All campus auxiliary organizations are required to follow the policy. Each auxiliary will manage this for their organization.

Contractors: All contractors working on campus are required to background-check their employees and provide proof, as requested. This process will be managed by Procurement. 

Accurate Background: Faculty Affairs and Human Resources are in the final stages of implementing Accurate Background, a third-party vendor selected by the Chancellor’s Office, whose services will allow the university to complete background checks through an online process, as opposed to fingerprinting. The University Police Department will continue to maintain the LiveScan fingerprinting functionality, as their employees are required to go through more rigorous background checks.

The full background check policy can be found on the CSU’s website, under Technical Letter 2015-08.

Holiday Closure 

It may only be October but the holiday season is just around the corner and with that comes the annual holiday closure. As you may be aware, most of the days between December 31, 2015 and January 1, 2016 are rescheduled holidays but there is one day that is considered a Campus Closure, December 31, 2015. For this date, employees will need to charge vacation, CTO or personal holiday time in order to be paid accordingly. Because this date falls in the 2015 calendar year, the 2016 personal holiday credit will not be available for use. If you are unsure if you have sufficient time to cover this one day closure, please contact your appropriate administrator (MPP) to discuss options available for this closure date. MPPs, confidential employees and 12-month faculty are required to use time. There are no other options available.

For your reference, you can view all HR calendars on our website.

Upcoming HR Training & Events 

Oct. 13, Tuesday TRFE36     ScholarShare 529 College Savings Plans
Oct. 15, Thursday TRFE37 CalPERS Future Planning
Oct. 20, Tuesday BIT001   See Something, Say Something, Do Something
Oct. 27, Tuesday TRSD41 Communicating for Connection
Oct. 29, Thursday   Spartan Service Celebration (3:00 PM - 5:00 PM)

Visit Our Website


Email Human Resources

Join/View the HR User Group for updates from your HR team!

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