Every day is a good day for gratitude. And on Friday, March 4, UC Santa Barbara staff members will receive lots of it.
The inaugural UC Santa Barbara National Employee Appreciation Day — not to be confused with Staff Celebration Week or Staff MAYNIA! held later into spring — will celebrate everyone that works on campus as a means of boosting morale.
“Staff morale and motivation are vital to the success of our campus community,” said Jane Gama, an employee engagement specialist and founder of the ‘Super Group’ of staff representatives from across campus who conceived the event. “Recognition significantly impacts employee motivation. Feeling appreciated increases morale, improves engagement and reduces turnover. Employee recognition even boosts oxytocin levels, and who doesn't need a boost now and then?”
All staff are welcome at Cheadle Plaza from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday for a free, pre-packaged burrito lunch sponsored by the Chancellor, drinks courtesy of Staff Assembly, and snacks by CSAC. A gratitude table will be available for penning thank you cards to others on campus, the UCSB United Way Campus Committee will be selling See's candy, and cornhole will be played.
From 4-5 p.m., a virtual trivia game will have three individual round winners and one at-large winner with four gift cards up for grabs.
The new event stems from the Welcome Home Initiative launched by the ‘Super Group’ early in Fall Quarter to help ease the transition back to campus for those forced to work remotely during the pandemic, to appreciate staff who worked on-campus throughout, and to engage staff who remain remote.
“National Employee Appreciation Day will provide time to bond socially with staff groups safely outdoors,” Gama said. “The campus community can't lose if our colleagues leave this event with a satiated belly, a full heart and a grateful spirit.”