Ripple Effect announces grant recipients

Sharing success stories, mentoring programs, polishing up writing skills, and a leadership-focused book club are examples of the eight employee-generated ideas funded by the Ripple Effect at Colorado State University. “We are so pleased by the innovation and creativity shown in the proposals we received,” said Amy Parsons, vice president for University Operations, who oversees the Ripple Effect project. “Hearing directly from our colleagues and embracing their ideas is key to moving us toward our goal of making CSU the best place to work for women. I’m looking forward to seeing these ideas implemented and becoming part of the fabric of our university.”ripple-effect600 Funding the proposals was made possible by a gift from an unnamed donor in support of giving good ideas seed funding. In addition, CSU President Tony Frank and Provost Rick Miranda supported the effort with additional funding because of the number of quality proposals submitted. Nearly 50 proposals were submitted by male and female faculty and staff from across campus, representing a diverse array of departments and collaborations. Funded grants are:

  • Stories ‘n’ Steps: A project that showcases stories of challenge, revelation and strength of CSU students, staff, faculty and alumni through photos and stories. The stories center on the impact of gender on experiences learning and working at CSU.
  • CSU Writes: Structured support for women to write for publication, degree completion and personal growth through writing groups. This project will foster writing groups and offer workshops and presentations, establishing long-term, sustainable commitment to writing groups on campus.
  • Leadership book club for women: Fostering leadership success through a book club for individuals who identify as women, with discussion about the book, takeaways and how lessons from the book can be implemented at CSU. A new book will be selected every six weeks and a $15 discount on featured books will be offered to the first 30 women who buy each book.
  • Mentoring women: Creating networks that bring together senior men and women who are recognized as fantastic mentors for women, including men in current or future positions of leadership who want to be great mentors for women. Potential mentors will be trained through workshops and meetings to develop a cadre of men and women who are committed to exceptional mentoring for women and enthusiastic about spreading knowledge to the rest of campus.
  • Financial literacy: A series of presentations to help women better manage personal finances will cover creating and sticking to a personal budget, developing and tracking financial goals, selecting a financial advisor, balancing bank accounts, managing credit card debt, safe e-commerce and avoiding identity theft. The series will be presented in partnership with First National Bank and will be free.
  • Women’s recreation ride: Bicycle safety and group rides for women hosted by Parking and Transportation Services, including monthly lunchtime rides, educational classes for women who want to polish up their bicycle skills, and lunch-and-learn presentations every other month. The interactions created by this project would help women overcome barriers to bicycling including demands of childcare, and to provide positive social and physical experiences for women on campus.
  • Home repair and maintenance series: A series of home-repair classes, taught by knowledgeable volunteers, will introduce the basics of home repair, arming participants with the background to safely tackle common household repairs while helping them identify jobs best left to professionals. Initial classes will focus on electrical and plumbing repairs including finding the main water line in a house and closing the valve, unclogging a drain, fixing a leaky toilet, understanding electrical panels and identifying and turning off proper breakers before doing electrical work, and replacing a wall switch or outlet. The classes also will provide tips for selecting a professional contractor for bigger jobs and resources for more information.
  • We Lead: Develop an institute for underrepresented, high-school aged women to help them explore career possibilities as well as network and develop self-esteem. The annual, three-day, interactive program would help encourage a greater number of Colorado students to attend college and provide a framework for CSU women and men in sharing their stories, strategies and disciplines with young women to develop their leadership potential through relationships, experiential activities and mentoring. CSU students will also provide support and encourage participants’ academic and personal growth.
Additional ideas that were not funded by this grant are being reviewed for funding through other sources. All CSU employees were invited to submit proposals to the Ripple Effect that will further the mission of making CSU the best place to work or learn if you’re a woman, as well as improve the university for all employees. Funding was distributed based on merit and proposals were evaluated by an awards committee with membership from faculty, administrative professionals and state classified staff, among others. The funded proposals will be implemented over the next few months. For more information about each proposal, including event and workshop announcements, watch SOURCE. The Ripple Effect was launched in fall 2013 after President Frank charged Parsons with leading an effort to make CSU the best place for women to work and learn. The project seeks ideas, feedback and comments from women and men across the campus community about what changes can be made at CSU to reach that goal. Become part of the Ripple Effect conversation.

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Test drive electric vehicle

Drive Electric Northern Colorado, CSU Parking and Transportation Services, and local dealerships are offering an innovative chance for CSU staff and faculty to get behind the wheel of plug-in electric vehicles to learn about the cost savings, environmental benefits, and national security benefits of driving electric. the event, from 11 a.m.-2p.m., Wednesday, January 14, will be on University Avenue in front of the Plant Sciences building. Drive Electric Northern Colorado, a partnership of Colorado State University and the cities of Fort Collins and Loveland, is a first-of-its-kind initiative aimed at achieving widespread adoption of plug-in electric vehicles in the Northern Colorado region. The chance to test drive an electric vehicle through the partnership's Ride-and-Drive program is free to all CSU faculty and staff. The Ride-and-Drive event combines the opportunity for CSU faculty and staff to learn about how plug in electric vehicles s are cleaner, greener, cheaper, and fun to drive while putting them behind the wheel of today’s latest vehicle technology. “CSU strongly supports our campus community driving electric vehicles and we’ve installed 10 charging points on campus to date. As one of the country’s leading green universities, we care about doing our part to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and support innovative technology in electriv vehicles,” said Amy Parsons, vice president for Operations, after test driving a Chevy Volt. Up to eight electric vehicle models will be available to test drive, and may include the Chevy Volt, Nissan LEAF, BMW i3, Mitsubishi iMiEV, Ford Fusion Energi, Ford C-Max Electric, and the Tesla Model S. At this event, current electric vehilcle owners will ride with each driver to explain the vehicle and about their experience owning an electric vehicle. Drive Electric staff will be present at the event to help attendees learn about federal and state tax credits (up to $13,500) available for purchasing or leasing an electric vehile, and how using electricity instead of gasoline can save consumers thousands of dollars in yearly operating costs. CSU now has 10 charging stations throughout campus where, as a faculty or staff member, you can charge daily for free.    

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