Congratulations Steven Kurle

Steven Kurle

Steven has accepted promotion to Technology Manager of the User Consulting team.  Steven has been filling this role in an unofficial capacity since Mark McNair retired last year, but as of 3/16/17 formally holds the recently-updated position managing that team.  For those of you new to CSS, Steven has been in a couple different roles with the division since 2007 & worked for UW before that starting in 2000.

Please take the time to wish Steven well in his new role.

Pies and Posters – TODAY!

Hope to see everyone at Pi Day today, 11:30am in the Tower Cafeteria – South. A contest will be held for best pie in the categories of savory, sweet and combo pie. Prizes will be awarded.

After you’ve filled up on pie, feel free to drop by the HUB Lyceum room and check out the UW Organizational Excellence Showcase. Cara and I will be presenting a poster on our operational excellence efforts in CSS and how UW-IT is working to improve our responsiveness to customer inquiries.

From the Flyer:
As campus units are finding innovative ways to “do more with less,” representatives from more than 50 UW departments and teams will crowd together Tuesday, March 14 in the HUB Lyceum from 1-3 p.m. to showcase how they’ve done exactly that. Staff and faculty are actively working on improvements all over the University and the OE Showcase demonstrates this through project posters ranging from operations and administration to curriculum/teaching and research.

Come look at posters of workplace improvement, talk about ideas with colleagues, and enjoy refreshments. No program – just mix and mingle. Drop in any time during the event. Free to all staff, faculty, and students.

Selected Schools/Colleges and Administrative areas showcasing their work include:

• Business Diversity Program
• Campus Master Plan
• Capital Planning & Development
• College or Arts & Sciences Shared Services
• Creative Communications
• Disability Resources
• Environmental Health & Safety
• Finance & Facilities
• Housing & Food Services
• HR/Payroll Modernization Program
• International Student Services
• Lean/Finance & Administration
• Libraries
• Medicine
• Nursing
• Office of the University Architect
• Organizational Excellence
• Pathology
• Procurement
• Student Fiscal Services
• Student Life
• Student Veteran Life
• UW Real Estate
• UW Sustainability
• UW Video

No RSVP necessary. We hope you and your colleagues stop by the Showcase to see the great work being done at UW.

More information:

Welcome Chris Fairfield

Chris Fairfield

Chris Fairfield

Please welcome Chris Fairfield to the User Support team.  Chris moved here from Champaign, IL last month and started working in CSS on 2/27/17.  After he got his degree in MIS at the University of Illinois, he’s been in tech. support and has been an Apple enthusiast “since the dark, Gil Amelio days of the company”.  He is a fan of pub trivia and, for years before he moved, hosted and wrote questions for a weekly trivia night.  He’s currently spending his time exploring Seattle and the PNW.  If you see him, be sure to tell him what your favorite restaurant is, he’s compiling a list…

Welcome Tanika Latta


Welcome Tanika who started as Executive Assistant to Karalee on 11/1. Tanika’s last position was also as an Executive Assistant for a voice-over company. So far she has greatly enjoyed meeting so many wonderful and knowledgeable people in UW-IT, and loves how busy and scenic the UW Seattle campus is. When she is looking to relax she enjoys a great inspirational book in a quiet room, while drinking a nice hot cup of tea by a fireplace. She finds a lot of inspiration from her children and fiancé who are all extremely outgoing and full of life, love, and energy. Fall is her favorite season as she enjoys wearing boots, scarves, and anything comfy and warm.

It’s a Holiday Party! – December 8th

Holiday Cheer
Please join UW-IT for some Holiday Cheer!

On December 8th, 2016 from 2pm to 4pm at the UW Intellectual House on campus. There will be spiced cider and some light refreshments served. All you have to bring is yourself!

Click on the coffee mug (>>over there>>) and go to the register site so they know how much drink and food to have on hand.

Don’t think you’ll have fun?


Look how fun former parties were! Come and join us for some festive fun!



David Wall’s Retirement

Life Before and After IP

Mark McNair, Assistant Director for CSS User Consulting & Support, is retiring from the UW after 32 years of service. Over the years Mark has had offices in the ACC (now Wallace Hall), Parrington, Mary Gates Hall, and now the UW Tower.

Mark’s first job was with the Microcomputer Support Group. One of his early accomplishments was building the first computing lab at the HUB in 1988 with approximately 30 512KB Macintosh computers donated by Apple. Mark says that “The computer labs were fun–building things, and seeing students use them.”

In those early days his group depended on a lot of donations, including space from the HUB and from Student Activities, as well as surplus equipment from campus departments. This first lab was later separated into the Purple and Gold halves–one for PCs and the other for Macintosh computers.

When Mark started, high-speed networking was 9.6KB on an asynchronous Hazeltine terminal. The UW’s backbone carried Novell, AppleTalk, and other protocols until a declaration was made that TCP/IP would become the only protocol.



Mark has known some hot times at the UW! A couple of memorable moments include the year it got hot enough in the HUB computer lab to melt joint compound on the fire sprinkler pipes above, sending hot grease dripping onto the computers below. Another heated event was the radiator pipe break upstairs on C-3 that sent steam and water throughout the Service Center, out to the east row of cubicles on the floor.

Things have changed greatly and Mark is happy to have been a part of this. Yet, at the same time things are still much the same–when he was hired (sight unseen!) he was told the phone would ring and people on the other end would desperately need computing help. There are still people in great  need of computing assistance, but they more often send email or requests online.

He sends a thank you to all the people he has worked with. In turn, we will miss Mark and have benefited greatly from his decades of service at the UW!

Job Shadowing in the Technology Service Center and Computer Operations

The TSC and COPS have started a job shadow pilot program to build skills across our units and better understand each other’s work. Lynn Jahed was one of the early participants and she shared some of her thoughts with us.

I had the opportunity to spend some time job shadowing and routing with Jasson and do some phone calls with Steele and here are my highlights:

  • I learned the importance of the 3 minute timer and the filter that helps the router to meet that goal.
  • I learned the different stages of routing that the router need to be aware of, i.e., pay attention to different stages during routing such as “In progress”, “stalled”, “paused”, etc.  All the above are important to note when routing because the router doesn’t route all records in the “paused” or “stalled” state.
  • I also learned that if router sees a trend of records come into the routing queue, such as re-direct routing from the same assignment group that the router should take some sort of action to find the root cause to prevent the same/similar records added up routing queue.
  • I also had a chance to see the back end processing of the Phishing emails that customers forward to and how Jasson processes such records.

I also had a chance to job shadow with Steele taking SC phone calls and worked on request fulfillment (Service Center info AG) which I found very helpful.  Steele is very patient and kind when taking Service Center calls which for Customer Service I believe is a great plus.

Lynn Jahed, Computer Operations

Lisa Jones – New Position at the U

After 15 years on the Nebula (now Managed Workstation) support team Lisa Jones resigned her position effective September 30th, 2016. She will now be working with Partners for Our Children, a group also located in the UW Tower, so you may still see Lisa occasionally.

Lisa’s position is being refilled and the job posting will appear on the Inside UW-IT HR page soon.


Operational Excellence Successes

Many of us have used the Re-resolve option in the past few months, but how many of us know that this improvement came from a submission via the Operational Excellence form in the CSS wiki?  Some of the key UW Connect improvements completed via the Tuning Project also stem from your suggestions, including a text editor and acting upon multiple records at once.  More recent suggestions will streamline the process for acquiring Entrust tokens and build new relationships with Learning Technologies staff so they can assist students more effectively.   

While the “easy wins” can be quickly implemented, some of the submissions require a more thoughtful evaluation, such as a request to develop a mentoring program to help new employees beyond orientation.  Suggestions are reviewed monthly by the CSS Managers’ Operational Discussions (CSS MOD) team which consists of the managers and supervisors from the four CSS Units. You can see a summary of requests and their status on the CSS Operational Excellence page. CSS’s work to evolve and improve depends upon the engagement by and feedback from each of its staff.  Please submit your own suggestions anytime via the Improvement Idea form.