WSU Today: April 7, 2020


First Tuesday graphic April 7, 2020

April edition of president's newsletter, First Tuesday, set for today

The third edition of the monthly newsletter, First Tuesday, will be coming to your email inboxes today (Tuesday, April 7). This is a new newsletter, started in February, as a way to keep the campus community up to date on what President Golden's top initiatives are, what he's up to on a daily basis and ways he's engaging with the Shocker and local community. 

Wichita State announces temporary cost-saving measures

As you will see in today’s First Tuesday newsletter to the campus community, the university is beginning to review the longer-term implications of COVID-19 for our campus. This pandemic has already had a significant financial impact on our institution. These uncertain times require us to take thoughtful precautions to ensure WSU’s future success.

As we look ahead to the start of the next fiscal year, beginning July 1, we are bracing for the financial impact caused by a reduction in state revenues from the loss of business activity and an anticipated reduction in enrollment.

Although our enrollment projections for academic year 2020-21 were showing an increase in overall enrollment, we now anticipate an adverse effect. We especially worry for and about our international student population, many of whom have returned to their home countries and may not be able to return to the United States by the fall semester, as well as prospective international students who can’t get a visa to travel to the United States.

Our administration and our university budget advisory committee, comprised of 31 faculty, staff and student representatives from across campus, are exploring scenarios and management approaches to minimize adverse impacts to our campus community. As we look for ways to reduce the future financial impact, we must evaluate our current spending.

Therefore, today, WSU is implementing two temporary cost-saving measures: a hiring freeze and restrictions on discretionary spending including travel and non-essential purchases. More detailed information about these actions and their implications, including the process for waiver requests, will be coming soon.

We do not tell you these things to be alarming, but rather to be honest and transparent about the challenging realities higher education institutions – including our own – are facing. We are confident that, with strategic and thoughtful planning, Wichita State will emerge even stronger than we were before.

We are grateful for your continued patience and grace during these unprecedented and difficult times. Please continue to take care of yourselves and others. Stay connected, but remain vigilant in practicing social distancing. Know that we are here for you and we will walk through this together, as one Shocker Nation.


President Jay Golden and Provost Rick Muma

Health Plan updates April 2020

State Employee Health Plan updates in response to COVID-19

Gov. Laura Kelly announced four provisions on March 13, that are effective immediately and for the next 60 days for employees and dependents enrolled in medical insurance through the State Employee Health Plan.

  1. SEHP will cover medically necessary diagnostic tests that are consistent with CDC guidance related to the COVID-19 at no cost share to member, where it is not covered as part of the Public Health Service response.
  2. SEHP will allow early refills on 30- or 90-day prescription medications and / or allow members to use their mail order benefit.
  3. Given the nature of the COVID-19 outbreak, seeking in-person medical care has the potential to further spread the virus. SEHP partners with Aetna and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas to provide Telehealth services with a virtual doctor’s office. There is 24/7/365 access to this service. The member cost share will be waived for any Telehealth service.

Aetna members - Teledoc

Blue Cross Blue Shield members - Amwell

More information here
  1. For plan participants that reside in the Topeka area, the HealthQuest Health Center available to members enrolled in the health plan, is located at 901 S. Kansas Ave., Topeka
  • Phone screening is recommended before going to the center: 785-783-4080
  • If a patient walks into the clinic, they will have them put on a mask and clean their hands with hand sanitizer. The health center staff will evaluate the patient’s symptoms and recommend they isolate if the initial findings and/or symptoms present are a positive indicator for the virus.
  • Testing is not available at the health center for COVID-19 and the clinic will refer all patients that meet the risk criteria to the local health department for testing and further evaluation.

For all up-to-date information regarding COVID-19 and the WSU campus, go to


Faculty Senate Call for Nominations

Nominations are now being accepted for division representatives and two university-wide at-large seats for the Faculty Senate to serve a two-year term starting in the 2020-21 academic year. Senators represent the faculty at the university and serve as a liaison for their academic divisions. The Senate meets twice-a-month during the regular academic year from 3:30-5 p.m. on the second and fourth Mondays of the month.

All faculty are eligible for nominations. Current senators whose term is expiring are eligible for another term.

Please submit your nominations to Lee Ann Birdwell before midnight Friday, April 17. Self-nominations are strongly encouraged. Your participation is essential to a fair and inclusive process of shared governance.

Usha Haley

Usha Haley interviewed by Fortune magazine on post-crisis economy

Fortune magazine asked several prominent analysts in academia and industry to predict the economic environment after the coronavirus. Is the United States and the world headed into a post-pandemic recession? Among the academics, Fortune interviewed global analyst and researcher, Professor Usha Haley, W. Frank Barton Distinguished Chair in International Business, Professor of Management and Chair of the Center for International Business Advancement. Most predicted a recession in the short-term, but no depression. Several aspects of this crisis are unusual and stymie predictions, though. Read about it here.

Fortune article

PTAC workshop April 14, 2020

PTAC to host virtual workshop April 14

Kansas Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) will host a virtual workshop regarding the basics of doing business with the federal, state and local governments.

The workshop titled “Competing for Government Contracts: Basic Training.” will be offered as a virtual program from 9-11:30 a.m. Tuesday, April 14. This program focuses on an overview of the way government agencies purchase goods and services. Also provided will be information on how a company can become a contractor to agencies at all levels of government.

The workshop will be taught by Deputy Program Director Scott Knapp. Registration will be required in advance to attend the workshop.

Register here.

Socially connected April 2020

Stay socially connected with us!

Wichita State University welcomes you to our new Employee Connection community!

We need to be physically distant at this time, but not socially distant. Connection is critical, and we are striving to understand the human moments that are happening and create space for employees to find their balance in this new world. Having said that, LET’S CONNECT!

Visit our Employee Connection webpage for ideas on how you can continue to stay socially connected with your teams at Wichita State, and join (and share) our new Facebook page for fun, interactive activities. We want to see your posts about ideas on how YOU are staying socially connected right now. Ready, set.... HAVE FUN at Employee Connection.

SEM Goal 9

SEM Update: Goal 9

By Carolyn Shaw, Associate Vice President for Strategic Enrollment Management

Goal 9 Increase international undergraduate enrollment

  • Goal 9 is a new SEM goal, added in 2018-19. We have seen an increase in the number of international students enrolled in classes at WSU in recent years. Much of this growth is due to online offerings for non-degree bound students that do not require the student to get a US visa (yellow line above). Our new (grey line) and returning (orange line) international student numbers are essentially flat, or declining slightly.
  • WSU continues to explore new markets to recruit international students. Staff and students in the international office exchange more than 40,000 emails annually to answer questions for individual prospective students and walk them through the legal processes to obtain a visa.
  • The impact of COVID-19 on our international enrollments for the coming year will be challenging to address. International education fairs as well as TOEFL and other testing services are being cancelled in many locations abroad. This will make it harder to connect with prospective students, and for them to complete the requirements necessary to secure student visas.
    Recruitment and Retention Tips and SEM Shout Out

    Recruitment and Retention Tips:

    • Consider attending the international student orientation to welcome these students to campus, or hosting a welcome event in your own office/department for those international students in your program.
    • Offering additional online courses may help international students who are unable to travel to the US in upcoming terms due to travel restrictions.

    SEM Shout Out:

    • To Heather Stafford, Student Health Services. Heather always gives a presentation at international student orientation, taking time on the weekend to come in a provide important health information to our new international students.
    • To all the departmental transfer credit evaluators who provide a quick turn around on the transfer credit requests.

    SEM Plan


Zoom Physics Seminar on April 8

Please join us for our next Physics Seminar on Zoom, featuring Dr. Ian Lewis from the University of Kansas at 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 8. Click here for the Zoom details. 


University Libraries seeking faculty feedback

University Librarians are asking for faculty input on how the library can replace face-to-face with remote library instruction sessions and workshops. This quick survey will help us to better gauge what kind of support students may need so that we may prioritize our efforts.

Library Faculty Survey

Phi Kappa Honor Society Honor Roll

Wichita State University named to Phi Theta Kappa Transfer Honor Roll

Wichita State University has been placed on the 2020 Transfer Honor Roll by the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society (PTK). The Transfer Honor Roll exists to recognize programs that have developed pathways for community college students to easily transfer to a four-year university.

The university's efforts were evaluated through a Transfer Profile created through the Phi Theta Kappa organization. This profile evaluated information about the university's cost of tuition, student life, recruitment strategies, admissions practices, etc., and used those factors to determine a Transfer Friendliness Rating. Schools on the Transfer Honor Roll had Transfer Friendliness Ratings that ranked in the top 25% of all schools with completed profiles. More than 120 universities were honored this year. Click here to see all members of the 2020 Transfer Honor Roll.

For more information about recruitment efforts with the transfer student population in the Office of Admissions, contact Chad Steinkamp at

IEEE courses

University Libraries to offer free webinar on IEEE courses

Join us for a free webinar to learn more about IEEE Courses from noon-12:30 p.m. Thursday, April 9. To view log in information for the webinar, visit the event page

Virtual meetings with TIAA Financial Consultants are available

TIAA Financial Consultants are available to help participants in the Kansas Board of Regents Retirement Plan with virtual meetings to confirm they are on track for retirement, discuss market volatility, and consider recommendations on how to invest their funds.

These virtual meetings are private and secure, with only the employee and the Financial Consultant joining the virtual meeting. Through a computer or tablet, the participant is able to see the consultant as they talk, and the consultant can share information on their screen to create an experience very similar to a traditional face-to-face meeting. 

Click the link here to schedule an appointment or call TIAA at 800-732-8353 to set an appointment.

Please email Jeremy Kohn, TIAA Financial Consultant, at if you have problems setting an appointment and need assistance.

Changes to GRASP

Given current recommendations, the in-person Graduate Research and Scholarly Projects (GRASP) Symposium has been canceled. However, in order to provide an opportunity to showcase graduate research and scholarly projects, we will be moving GRASP online. We’re still working on logistics and will announce details later.

Aren't familiar with GRASP? Please visit our website to learn more about our annual symposium at

GRASP Symposium

Color tees sale April 2020

$7 color tees online at the Shocker Store

From now to Sunday, April 12, you can grab our popular color tees for just $7 each at There are eight colors to choose from! Plus, enjoy free shipping on orders over $25, or choose our curbside pick-up option. Not valid with other discounts or promotions, some exclusions apply.

Shocker Store