Campus News

'Behind the Blue': Advocating for University Employees With UK Staff Senate Chair Olivia Ellis

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 15, 2021) Established in 2002, the University of Kentucky Staff Senate is the official representative body of the staff of the university. Beyond representing the interests of staff in conversations and decision making with university administration, the Staff Senate works to strengthen relationships and empower all university employees and students to participate in the decision making process.

Staff Senate is behind special events such as the Outstanding Staff Awards, UK Appreciation Day, Conversation with the President, UK Remembers and more. The Senate consists of 133 senators across five sectors, with 13 standing committees that address issues such as community outreach, employee engagement, benefits and professional development

On this episode of "Behind the Blue," UK Staff Senate Chair Olivia Ellis talks about her involvement with Staff Senate, what compelled her to advocate for others and programs such as the Lunch & Learn series, mentorship programs and crisis relief efforts for fellow UK staff.

"Behind the Blue" is available on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher and Spotify. Become a subscriber to receive new episodes of “Behind the Blue” each week. UK’s latest medical breakthroughs, research, artists and writers will be featured, along with the most important news impacting the university. “The Kentucky Wildcast,” the UK Staff Senate podcast, is also available on your favorite podcast platforms.

For questions or comments about this or any other episode of "Behind the Blue," email or tweet your question with #BehindTheBlue. Transcripts for this or other episodes of "Behind the Blue" can be downloaded from the show’s blog page.

To discover what’s wildly possible at the University of Kentucky, click here.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.