Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Union Institute & University Announces Newest Staff Additions

November’s hires include a former outreach program coordinator, an aspiring therapist, and Northern Kentucky’s top ranking table tennis player

Elizabeth Schmidt has been hired as administrative assistant to the offices of assessment and distant learning for Union Institute and University. Elizabeth has bachelor’s degrees in public relations and political science from Eastern Kentucky University, where she worked with resident’s life and the diversity office. Before coming to work for Union, Elizabeth worked for the YWCA Hamilton’s domestic violence shelter doing marketing and running outreach programs including an adult anger management program. Elizabeth grew up in Colerain Township, and lived in Lexington, Ky. for several years after college before returning to Cincinnati.

Elizabeth’s first pair of shoes were just like Forest Gump’s, and she recommends all first time roller skaters purchase a pair, “They work great for instant stability,” she says.

In their spare time, Elizabeth and her partner breed red worms to feed the 10 aquatic turtles they have rescued from hapless pet owners.

Elizabeth brings with her a personal philosophy directly in line with Union’s Mission, Vision, and Values. At each cross roads and at the end of each hurtle she asks, “What did I learn, and how has this affected the world around me?”

Nicole Hamilton, Union’s new writer/public relations manager, has experience on both sides of the PR world. She worked as a news aide and freelance writer for the Cincinnati Enquirer, before accepting a position as public relations and events coordinator for Northern Kentucky University’s Department of Music. Nicole (known as “Nikki”) has also worked as a media coordinator for political campaigns and, most recently, was a reporter for the Downtowner. A University of Cincinnati graduate, Nikki will manage Union’s public relations from Union’s Cincinnati headquarters offices as part of the communications team and will work closely with the alumni and development offices, as well as the deans and admissions staffs at each center.

Nikki is a certified yoga instructor and has been teaching people to stand on their heads for more than seven years, and has been a mediocre cello player for more than twenty years.

Janet Ross, Union’s new business office secretary, graduated from Toccoa Falls College with a bachelor’s degree in counseling. She worked for River Cities Capital Fund before beginning her career with Union in June of 1995, first working in the graduate college and then with the registrar’s office. After five years with Union, Janet moved on to work as administrative assistant for Greater Cincinnati Consortium of Colleges and Universities for six years, housed in the Union building.

Janet is back working for Union after serving as a case manager for Welcome House in Covington, KY. She hopes to earn her doctorate in psychology from Union.

Janet enjoys going to parks, seeing movies and spending time with her two girls. In addition, she volunteers for City Cure and helps women who are struggling with domestic violence.

“Who knows what the road ahead will look like after the degree,” says Janet. “But getting a chance to follow through on my dream of becoming a therapist is a miracle come to life.”

Greg Thompson, Union’s new director of computer services, earned a bachelor’s degree in communication from Northern Kentucky University, where he worked as the Network Administrator and Lead Systems Analyst for five years. Greg also served as a network administrator for Hillenbrand in Batesville, IN and as a senior project manager for Cincinnati Bell before coming to Union.

In his spare time, Greg plays table tennis at the Northern Kentucky Table Tennis Club ( http://nkytt.org ), where he is also the President. Greg founded this non-profit organization with his father in 2003, and is currently the top ranked player in Northern Kentucky and in the top 10 in the state of Kentucky.

Greg hopes to bring to Union is a fresh perspective, using 13 years of experience in the computer industry.

“There are many things we can do at Union to make things more efficient as well as innovative,” he says.

“I am constantly utilizing new technologies which we can use to make Union a cutting edge technology school.”

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