Skip to main content
Seattle University

Answer Me This

Q: How do I learn more about the staff performance evaluation process?

February 12, 2013

Performance evaluations

Q:  It's staff performance evaluation time. How do I learn about the process and get started on my self-evaluation and the evaluations for the staff who report to me?

A:  Human Resources has many opportunities to learn more about the performance evaluation process. There are training sessions on a variety of topics related to performance evaluations. To learn more, visit the upcoming events section of the HR website at If you would rather learn about the process through an online recorded presentation, visit Performance Management, where you will also find other useful information on performance evaluations.

Q: Where did the new piano in the Pigott Auditorium come from?

January 28, 2013

Key new acquisition for SU

Q:  Where did the new piano in the Pigott Auditorium come from? 

A:  When world-class opera divas Indra Thomas and Melissa Parks took to the Pigott Auditorium stage on Jan. 26, they were accompanied by a wonderful new Steinway piano. The nine-foot concert grand piano was made possible by a generous gift from Susan Sommer, an alumna of the Albers School of Business and Economics and longtime member of the chamber music program. Sommer dedicated the piano to her mother, "(w)ho…taught me to dream and encouraged me to sing." 

The acquisition is part of a wider effort to upgrade the pianos at SU, an effort being spearheaded by the Department of Fine Arts and University Advancement. "The piano is the universal instrument that impacts all of the music on campus, including the music majors, campus ministry, residential life, and the overall quality of the Seattle University experience," says Josef Venker, S.J., chair of Fine Arts. "Music as both a major, minor and co-curricular activity is an important factor for attracting and retaining higher quality students across the university." 

Of Sommer's gift, David Chow, academic advancement officer for the College of Arts and Sciences, says, "I met Susan in the choir and shared with her the need. She really cares about the music program and wanted to make an impact. It was a team effort with Joy Sherman, Fr. Venker, Susan and me."

Q: Where can I find the library's most recent acquisitions?

January 14, 2013

New & Notable

Q:  Where can I find the library's most recent acquisitions? 

A:  The Lemieux Library and McGoldrick Learning Commons is pleased to bring back "New & Notable," a popular service that was last offered before the library's 2010 renovation and expansion. Located on the library's third floor near the Circulation Desk, "New & Notable" features the latest acquisitions in books and media. 

One of the notable items you'll currently find on the shelves is an extraordinary film collection of Roger Gillis, S.J., a beloved Jesuit who died in 2010. Fr. Gillis, who had a passion for film, developed a huge collection of more than 400 films (DVD and VHS) including Oscar nominees and winners as well as American Film Institute (AFI) classics. The films cover over 75 years of filmmaking.  

All materials are loaned according to current circulation policies. Swing by the third floor of the library to see what's new and notable.

Q: How do I find out if SU is closed due to inclement weather?

December 20, 2012

Weather-related closures 

A:  How does Seattle University announce weather-related closures?

B:  The university utilizes a number of vehicles to inform students, faculty and staff when it is closing due to inclement weather, including a posting on the university's homepage, a campus announcement, a recording on the hotline, posts on social media and a message on, which feeds the local media outlets.

Q: What are the top five holiday gift ideas at the SU Campus Store?

December 4, 2012

Holiday shopping at the SU Campus Store

Q:  What are the top five holiday gift ideas at the SU Campus Store?

A:  This holiday season, why fight all that traffic and endlessly circle the parking lot at the mall? Keep it simple-do your holiday shopping right here at the SU Campus Store where you're bound to find something for everyone on your list. With thanks to Kathy Straughan, assistant manager of the SU Campus Store, here are the top five gifts you need to buy at the Campus Store this holiday season…

1.  Red sweatshirts and tees: They not only show your Redhawk Pride but they are the perfect Christmas color! 

2.  Instant Snow to Go: Bring winter fun indoors. 

3.  Anything Apple: Get the coolest computers at the best prices. 

4.  Boots cosmetics: Look and feel your best this holiday season with the UK's fabulous cosmetic line. 

5.  Kindle: For the bookworm or the gadget geek, there is a Kindle for everyone.

Q: How can I celebrate the Christmas Season, SU-style?

November 19, 2012

Christmas at SU 

Q:  How can I celebrate the Christmas Season, SU-style? 

A:  There are many opportunities. Here's five that come to mind. 

1.  Kick off the Christmas Season in festive form with SU's Annual Tree Lighting at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 29. Cookies and hot cocoa will be served in the Student Center Hearth, followed by a short program, caroling and, of course, the lighting of the tree in the Lemieux Library and McGoldrick Learning Commons Plaza.

2.  Always a delight, "A Festival of Christmas" is being performed by the SU Choirs on Friday, Nov. 30 (8 p.m.) and Sunday Dec. 2 (2 p.m.). Both performances are at St. Joseph Church (18th E and E Aloha).

3.  Another signature Christmas-at-SU event, the Alumni Advent Mass and Reception takes place 4-7 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 9 at the Chapel of St. Ignatius. Alumni and friends are welcome. Space is limited and seating is first come, first served. Light refreshments will be served at a reception immediately following Mass in the Paccar Atrium of the Pigott Building. A children's arts and crafts activity table will be available at the reception.

4.  Enjoy a scrumptious breakfast and the warm company of colleagues at the Faculty & Staff Christmas Season Open House from 8 to 10 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 14 at the LeRoux Conference Center. 

5.  Remember those in need by taking part in the Center for Service and Community Engagement's Giving Tree. Stop by the center in the Douglas (13th and Cherry) to take a tag from the tree and buy a gift for a child or adult from Childhaven, Treehouse, Full Life or Yesler Community Center. Please return UNWRAPPED gifts with the tag attached by Friday, Dec. 7, for delivery.

Q: How do the professional undergraduate academic advisors from the different school and colleges collaborate across campus to best serve the needs of students?

November 6, 2012

Academic Advising at SU 

Q:  How do the professional undergraduate academic advisors from the different school and colleges collaborate across campus to best serve the needs of students?

A:  Seattle University's Academic Advising Council (AAC) is formed of professional undergraduate academic advisors across six schools, colleges and programs. The AAC acts as the voice of undergraduate professional academic advising at SU and provides guidance for the development of advising resources. Together the Council works to establish academic advising best practices across campus and supports members in addressing advising challenges. The ultimate goal of the AAC is to establish excellence in academic advising at SU.

The AAC meets monthly as a group but is also comprised of three committees that work on various projects throughout the year. The focus of the committees rotates each year based on the current campus climate. The 2012-2013 committees are focused on campus outreach, professional development for advisors and building additional support mechanisms for students on academic probation.

At each monthly meeting, the AAC welcomes an on-campus guest. Faculty and staff interested in collaborating with the AAC are welcome to contact the 2012-2013 AAC Co-Chairs, Tonja Brown, (, and Suzanne Jayne-Jensen (

Q: Is there any place I can go to see the university's top rankings and recognitions?

October 23, 2012

Rankings and recognitions

Q:  Is there any place I can go to see the university's top rankings and recognitions?

A:  Why, yes, there is! A new page has been created to compile several of the recognitions that have been bestowed on the university. Created by Marketing Communications, the page includes the Presidential Award SU received from the White House for community service in 2012 and a number of other honors and accolades. Visit Rankings and Recognition to learn more.

Q: What is Limeade and what does it have to do with my own personal health and wellness?

October 9, 2012

Health and Wellness Benefit

Q:  What is Limeade and what does it have to do with my own personal health and wellness?

A:  Limeade is the company hired by SU in 2012 to promote health awareness among faculty and staff. Through the LiVE (lead, inspire, value, enrich) web service, Limeade sponsors assessment tools to help each of us identify areas of strength and development, challenges that motivate participation in whole health activities and campus/community online forums. Limeade, and the LiVESU program, are part of the university's comprehensive total health/wellness benefits that include personal coaching from Vera Fitness, periodic campus health screening events and the services of Premera and Group Health. Learn more at Limeade.

Q: How much money was raised at the 2012 Costco Scholarship Fund Breakfast?

September 25, 2012

Costco Breakfast

Q:  How much money was raised at the 2012 Costco Scholarship Fund Breakfast?

A:  A crowd of more than 1,000 supporters gathered for the 13th annual Costco Scholarship Fund Breakfast on Sept. 24. Through the generosity of Costco Wholesale and its many suppliers and business partners, the event raised $3,144,338 for underrepresented students at UW and SU. 

SU senior Perla Castaneda (social work and psychology) emceed the event and spoke of how transformational her SU experience has been so far, referencing in a special way her professors and a service immersion trip she took to Belize. New freshman Jorge Moreno-Nunez, left, was featured in a VIDEO shown at the breakfast, and alumnus Brandon Knight also spoke at the event. 

Jeff Brotman, Costco co-founder, and Craig Jelinek, president and CEO and SU trustee, honored Jim Sinegal, Senior Executive in Residence in the Albers School, with a surprise announcement of the new Jim Sinegal Graduate Scholarship that will support former Costco Scholars as they pursue graduate degrees at either SU or UW over the next 10 years. 

This year SU has 175 Costco Scholars on campus, and 600 scholars at SU have graduated. To date the scholarship breakfast has raised almost $30 million dollars and has benefited more than 1,000 scholars at both institutions.

-  Katie Chapman

Q: When does Seattle University's academic year officially begin? (Hint: It isn't fall quarter...) 

September 10, 2012

SU's academic year

Q:  When does Seattle University's academic year officially begin?

A:  While we tend to associate the beginning of SU's academic year with fall colors and shorter days, the university actually considers summer quarter the start of its academic year. The main reason for this is so that our graduate programs that start in the summer don't require students who need financial aid to submit two different applications for aid back to back, as would be necessary if the official start was fall quarter.

Q: What impact did the Eisiminger Fitness Center have on the SU community's recreational and fitness activities in its first year of operation?

August 22, 2012

Fitness Center stats

Q:  What impact has the Eisiminger Fitness Center had on the SU community's recreational and fitness activities in its first year of operation?

A:   In just about every measurable way, the William F. Eisiminger's first year of operation was a great success. In 2010-2011-the last year of the pre-Eisiminger era-an average of 1,200 users were visiting the Connolly Center on a daily basis. After the opening of the new fitness center, the number of users per day climbed by 15 percent to 1,380. A recreation benchmarking survey found that 61 percent of SU's students availed themselves of campus recreation facilities, programs and services in 2010-2011. That percentage rose to 70 percent in the first year following the Eisiminger Center's opening.