Ocean Currents 7/20/21

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IMPORTANT: Telework Agreements and Vaccination Attestations

Less than half of the members of our school have filled out the mandatory vaccination attestation form. If you have a UW net ID, you are required to fill out the form.  Here is the link.

Are the details of teleworking confusing you? Let's cut it to the core: Mandatory telework agreements take effect September 13th for anyone working remotely on a regular schedule, even if it is only one day a week. Talk to your supervisor, work out a plan. Here is a link to more information and the telework form. It is just a document that helps codify the agreement between you and your supervisor. It's the "talking to your supervisor and working out an agreement" part that is most important. You can update the form whenever you want. These need to be in place by mid-August, so please speak to your supervisor and fill out the form.

Filled out forms can be deposited on our intranet. Here is a nifty tutorial video on how to do it.

  • Question: As of Sep 13th I will be coming to campus; do I have to fill out the form? No. If you will work your normal hours on campus beginning Sep 13th you do not have to fill out the form.
  • Question: I work evenings a little, checking email, etc. Does that mean I have to fill out a telework agreement? No. And remember that you are not expected to answer someone else's work-related inquiries out of hours.  
  • Question: What happens if I don't fill out the form? If push comes to shove, you could be denied pay for hours not worked in the agreed-upon location. If you do not submit a telework agreement then your assumed location is your office/lab on campus.


  • Faculty: Technically you must fill one out. But we all know that we work odd hours and sometimes work remotely. Only fill one out if you plan to make remote work a regular habit. Contact Rick by email if you wish to discuss this further. Emeritus faculty are exempt.
  • Grad Students: Technically you too must fill one out, but let's be realistic. Being a graduate student is hard and you work odd hours. Talk to your advisor, especially if you have UW-owned equipment at home. If the two of you think a telework agreement makes sense, then please fill it out and log it into our system. NOTE: if you now live out of town and telework regularly you do indeed need to fill out an agreement.
  • Post Docs: Yes—you must fill out a telework agreement if you plan to work from home regularly. Given your new union contract, this is non-negotiable if you will work off campus one day a week or more.
  • Staff: Yes, you must fill out the form if you plan to work away from campus one day a week or more.
  • Ship Operations: I work on the ship and am never on campus. Do I need to fill out a form? No, we've got you covered.
  • Undergrads: Fill out the form if you have a paid job in the department and wish to work from home (100% or partially), but talk to your supervisor/advisor first. If you are not in a paid position, then you do not need to fill out the form.

Apply for the Leo Cup

The Leo Cup is a $40k annual competition at the University of Washington for graduate and undergraduate students to follow their passions around the theme of ocean change and to create innovative solutions that address the growing issues of ocean plastics and pollution, and the resulting impacts on climate. Named in honor of Leo Maddox and funded by the Leo Maddox Family, the Leo Cup is open for applications now. Email Rick or Michelle for details. Apply today!


Irita Aylward successfully past her MS exam on Monday, July 19. Nice work, Rita!!

Our buildings are locked but open 

UW has now released updated pandemic guidelines, which are paraphrased here:

  • face coverings optional for fully vaccinated individuals and mandatory for non-vaccinated individuals
  • social distancing optional for both vaccinated and non-vaccinated individuals, though highly recommended for non-vaccinated individuals
  • exceptions (UW shuttle buses, etc.) will be clearly marked and will always defer to caution, so always bring a mask with you.

HallPass is retired. No new HallPass requests are being accepted. Though our buildings remain locked, if you have keys you may enter UW Oceanography buildings without a HallPass.

Banse Seminar

We are seeking nominations of early career scientists from underrepresented backgrounds to present at next year's department seminar. Please reach out to your networks and nominate your colleagues here.

Need Help?

As we adjust to a difficult new normal, how to help ourselves and others can be unclear. Here’s a resource provided by the UW that may be of help: Working during COVID-19/Caring for self and family/Self care.

Ocean Currents is a weekly bulletin of news and upcoming events for the UW School of Oceanography. If you have news or stories to contribute, please contact Su Tipple.
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