Human resources holds luncheon

For the past four years, the human resources department at Missouri Southern has coordinated special luncheons to show appreciation and recognize clerical and office personnel.

The next luncheon is scheduled for Tuesday, April 15 in the House of Lords Room in Billingsly Student Center.

“We do it because oftentimes this very important group of people don’t get recognized,” said Debbie Dutch Kelley, director of human resources. “All individuals we invite are seen as special folks.”

These luncheons, held in spring semesters as well as fall semesters, have different themes each time. Themes in the past have been “Southern Goes Western,” “State Fair,” and “S.S. Southern Star.” The title for this spring’s luncheon will be “Southern Walk of Fame,” a playoff of the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

The luncheons held in spring are more formal, being more of a sit down and get served meal whereas the luncheons held in the fall are more informal and are held outside as more of a picnic-type setting with games and goodies for more of a fun atmosphere. Pictures are taken at each of these functions and made into different collages that hang in the human resources department.

Each spring luncheon has a guest speaker. This year’s speaker is Jane Wyman, a member of the Board of Regents. In the past years, guest speakers have included Dr. Patricia Kluthe, director of the honors program; College President Julio León; and Dr. Terri Agee, vice president for business affairs.

“The guest speaker talks about the general realm of appreciation for all they (the employees) do,” Kelley said.

Kelley also said the resources department had a turnout of around 70 attendees last year. This year, there were 109 invitations sent out, and many had already sent their RSVP to attend.

Julie Vestal, secretary to the vice president for academic affairs, attended last year’s luncheon.

“I’ve enjoyed it very much,” she said. “You get a chance to see people on campus you don’t normally get to see.”

Sharon Odem, secretary for the assistant vice president of academic affairs, has also attended in the past.

“I think they’re very relaxing and creative; it’s a good time to meet new people,” she said. “I think it makes us feel appreciated.”

Kelley said it is a way to say thank you for the work the personnel do.

“We want to definitely continue it,” she said.