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Staff honored at special convocation, reception

August 26, 2011 : Mitzi Bible/Liberty University News Office

Jerry Falwell JrLiberty University held a special staff convocation and staff appreciation reception on Friday, honoring its employees with a bonus and kicking off an initiative to thank and encourage all workers to continue to play an important role in Liberty’s mission to train Champions for Christ.

“I hear all the time from people how good you make them feel when they come on campus,” Falwell told staff. “We’ve had architectural groups in here all summer looking at different projects, touring the campus. … Invariably they say this place has a spirit that they’ve never seen at any other college. One firm has worked at colleges all over the country and they were blown away by the politeness, the Christian love they saw all over this campus.”

Falwell announced that staff members who were working at Liberty as of Jan. 1, 2011 would be receiving a one-time bonus of 3 percent of their annual pay in their next paychecks. This bonus -- a total of $1.5 million -- is money Liberty employees can spend with local businesses and stimulate the economy.

He said Liberty is conducting a comprehensive study of all departments to determine proper compensation for all staff members.

As part of the University's new “You Matter” initiative, signs have been placed in offices and other workplaces to remind staff, “Your job doesn’t change lives. You do.”

“It’s a reaffirmation and support for all that you do, to help you do what you do better, to continue to help Liberty have the reputation that it has of treating people like Christ would want us to treat others," Falwell said. "That’s what we’re all about.”

Vice Provost Dr. Ron Hawkins spoke on enhancing customer service and interaction with students, service awards and recognition for staff, and the importance of remembering the “Story of Liberty Mountain,” how Liberty was founded and the many blessings it has received from God in the past 40 years. 

“You are a link in a chain,” Hawkins told staff. “Your maintenance of integrity and enthusiasm and an attitude of compassion, concern and privilege is so important to this university. You represent us again and again and we thank you for it.”