Staff Development Circle

Staff Development Circle

Staff Development Circle

Established in Fall 2016, the Staff Development Circle was formed from the combining of the Staff Rewards Committee and the Morale and Training committees, which were created in 2008 to maintain a system to recognize extraordinary staff efforts and provide meaningful rewards for those efforts.

STAR Rewards Program

Bauer STAR Rewards Program started in 2009. The STAR stands for “Staff Talents Are Recognized.” Criteria for giving Bauer STARs are flexible. In general, the award recognizes exceptional performance or exemplary actions resulting in quality service, including compassion and caring, that go well beyond expectations for customer service.

How staff members get a STAR:

Blank STAR cards (right) are available from the Staff Development Circle members.

The STARs can be completed by the person wishing to commend a Bauer staff member and sent to The SDC will download and print the STAR and send it to the exceptional staff member.

Anyone can give a Bauer STAR to a staff member (prospective students, students, other staff & faculty) by filling out the STAR card.

If a staff member receives a special thank you email or thank you card for outstanding service, the email or card can be taken to a SDC committee member to complete a STAR for you (this cannot be a regular thank you email, it must be one for outstanding service; it will be evaluated by the SDC to see if it qualifies for a STAR).

If a staff member would like to put an email signature noting the Bauer STAR program, this is the only approved signature to use:

Bauer College of Business strives to recognize superior customer service. If you feel that a staff member has gone above and beyond to assist you, please complete the online Bauer STAR form and send it to We appreciate your feedback!

When a staff member receives a STAR that has not been stamped, they must take it to one of the SDC members to get it validated with a stamp.

An SDC member will log the entry into a spreadsheet to keep track of valid stars.

Bauer STAR award events will take place twice a year. A prize will be awarded to the staff member with the greatest number of STARs for that preceding time period. Additionally, all staff members receiving STARs — except the one with the greatest number of STARs — will have their names in a drawing. Each recipient’s name will be entered in the drawing once for each STAR award received during that period, and the selected name(s) will receive a prize.

Award Periods:
  • Period 1 Awards: Deadline is May 1
    • o Stars received from (November 1 – April 30)
  • Period 2 Awards: Deadline is November 1
    • o Starts received from (May 1 – October 31)

Additional reward possibilities are being explored and will be added as developed. The Staff Development Circle is comprised of full-time Bauer staff members (names listed below) and welcomes staff input about staff rewards and opportunities. If you would like to contact us with ideas or comments, please email us at

Professional Development Funds

Professional Development Funds are available through the SDC to nourish, extend knowledge and create expertise for employees at the UH Bauer College of Business. Some examples of acceptable opportunities for use of these funds are to attend conferences, pay for memberships or to attend workshops.

Staff members can be awarded up to $400 per person from the SDC. However, you or your department can cover additional costs if the total cost of development opportunity exceeds $400. The Fund is available for benefits eligible staff who have been with Bauer for at least one year. The Professional Development Request Form is located at the right.

Please complete the Professional Development Request Form (right) and sign, and then submit to your direct supervisor for approval. Once you have received your supervisor's signature and the form is complete, you may submit to the SDC via e-mail at The applications will be evaluated by the committee and awarded based on cost and benefit analysis.

Staff Development Circle Members

  • Jorge Arellano
  • Brittany Dean
  • Liana Gonzalez-Schulenberg
  • Shaneika Gradney
  • Bria Johnson
  • Christy Pennington (ex officio)
  • Shirley Shiflet