Welcome to the 2013 State Employee
Charitable Campaign (SECC)

Final Thanks from Dean Watson


Near-record participation highlights close of 2013 SECC

Almost a quarter of all UTMB employees supported the 2013 State Employee Charitable Campaign, which raised $467,228 to benefit charities and causes in the region and across the nation and globe. More than 23 percent of employees participated. SECC chairperson and Dean of Nursing Pam Watson (above) led the effort, coming tantalizingly close to the university’s stretch goal of a half-million dollars. She offered her thoughts, thanks and gratitude to the campus community throughout the campaign.

As part of the campaign, a final prize drawing was held last week for two family memberships to the Alumni Field House. The winners were Patricia Trimingham, a manager for Talent Acquisition and Analytics in Human Resources, and Dr. David Konkel, science writer and editor in the Institute for Translational Science. For more information on this year’s effort, visit the SECC blog at http://blogs.utmb.edu/SECC/.

Pamela G. Watson, RN, ScD, Vice President of Education and Dean of NursingDec. 9, 2013

Dear Fellow UTMB Employees,

Yes, fellow UTMB employees, the 2013 SECC Campaign is over except for the "counting." Almost twenty five percent of you stepped forth to contribute to the campaign to help those who depend on UTMB employee generosity. Once again you showed that UTMB cares greatly about the needy. You all made me proud to be your colleague. You contributed even if this has not been the best year for you financially. You contributed even if some of your favorite charities were not on this year's list. You contributed even when you had challenges doing so remotely. Your support of SECC was commendable.

I will always be grateful for having the chance to connect with you for such a worthwhile cause. On behalf of all the member of your SECC team I say "Thank You."

Warmest regards,

Pam Watson
SECC Chair 2013 and Dean, UTMB School of Nursing

Dec. 5, 2013

Dear Fellow UTMB Employees,

Four hundred more contributors. Yes, 400 was the number rattling around in my head as I went to bed last night, and is with me this morning!  It’s an estimate of how many additional pledges—how many additional generous people—we’ll need to get close to our $500,000 campaign goal. With the short time that is left, it’s a big number. However, we are undaunted. The SECC volunteers and I have enormous faith, in the spirit of generosity that exists at UTMB, in the commitment of our colleagues to causes that matter, in the desire we all have to serve and to share.  

The 2013 State Employee Charitable Campaign closes at midnight on Saturday night, Dec. 7. As I write this, about 2,290 wonderful members of our UTMB community have pledged more than $438,000. That is humbling, wonderful and heartwarming. Thank you, from us, and on behalf of those your dollars will benefit.

There is still time to offer your support. Remember, at the end of the campaign, we will draw two winners for year-long family memberships to the UTMB Alumni Field House. I look forward to sharing their names and our final results with you on the SECC blog.

Thank you for your generosity. Wish us—and the charities we support—good luck.

.Pamela G. Watson, RN, ScD
Vice President of Education and Dean, School of Nursing

Dec. 4, 2013

Where the rubber meets the road

It’s easy sometimes to fixate on the dollars and percentages and forget that, at the end of the day, those dollars translate to constructive action and to doing good things. Yesterday our SECC chair was at the Council of Deans, and the president of the Student Government Association, medical student Jessica Tedford, spoke about student volunteerism. She spoke about several groups, many of them supported by the dollars raised through our SECC. In her own words:

TedfordEvery year, UTMB students try to say “thank you” to Galveston Island, a community that opens itself up to new students and faculty, a community that helps welcome us, a community that embraces us as neighbors and friends. There are many avenues in which students give back, but a very exciting avenue is the UT System initiative aptly named United to Serve. Initiated in 2004 by the University of Texas System Student Advisory Council involving UT System students, United to Serve allows administrators, faculty and staff to volunteer. As you can imagine, this effort to engage and mobilize volunteers is a perfect match for UTMB. This past year over 100 students and faculty volunteered in UTMB’s United to Serve initiative offering their help to non-profit organizations on Galveston Island including Ronald McDonald House, Galveston County Food Bank, Resource and Crisis Center of Galveston, Galveston Humane Society, St. Vincent’s House, The Children’s Center, The Salvation Army and the City of Galveston. Held in conjunction with National Volunteer Week, United to Serve enables UTMB students to partner with community organizations and create volunteer initiatives based on the preference and needs of the community. The main goal of United to Serve is to organize projects that will allow students, administrators, faculty and staff to serve others together and find ways to make our community a better place because we are a part of it.

Further information concerning the United to Serve UT System project can be found here, and more information about UTMB’s initiatives can be found here.

Jessica Tedford
SGA President, SOM Student

Get timely updates and read additional posts like this on the SECC Blog...


Nov. 26, 2013

Dear Fellow UTMB Employees,

Before many of us head off to spend time with family and friends for the Thanksgiving holiday, I wanted to share thanks of my own, for the more than 1,900 colleagues who have helped us raise $383,000. I’m extremely grateful for these gifts and support, and know there are many more planning to contribute before our deadline. Our sights are still set on our goal of $500,000.

Why the focus on this or any target? The support we provide is critical to dozens of service agencies and charities in the communities where we live and work. These are the groups feeding the hungry this week, providing a warm place for the homeless and clothes and coats for the cold, sheltering at-risk families, making the holidays special for needy kids, providing support for those struggling with health or financial challenges. In Galveston alone, our contributions from UTMB represent about 60% of the total funds raised annually. I know that every dollar we raise matters.

As much as I am looking forward to Thanksgiving and spending time with my family, the calendar is conspiring against us this year. Our deadline falls on the weekend of the holiday break. And, making a secure pledge from home—where many of us would be as the campaign would wind down—is a little trickier than it has been in the past.

Fortunately, we’ve been able to arrange for a little extra time. The SECC site will be up during the weekend, and through next week until Saturday, Dec. 7.

I hope you have a wonderful and happy Thanksgiving shared with family and friends. I am grateful for many things this year, and your support is one of them. I look forward to reporting back to you with great final results.

Pamela G. Watson, RN, ScD
Vice President of Education and Dean, School of Nursing


Nov. 19, 2013

Dear Fellow UTMB Employees,

First, I want to thank the 1,400+ of you who have already supported the State Employee Charitable Campaign. You’ve taken us more than halfway toward our goal of $500,000. I’m just as grateful (and hopeful) for the many who have told me they do plan to participate in the SECC, or who are thinking about it.

As I’ve gone around campus this year, what’s inspired me the most are the stories I’ve heard about why people give. It’s not about UTMB, about prizes or perks, not about my “inspirational messages” or cajoling. People give because their gifts matter. The work done by their selected causes and charities is important to these colleagues. The dollars are critical to those charities, and to the communities they support.

I’m humbled by what I see and hear, by the people who have relatively little and still find a way to share. It reminds me of how fortunate I am—how fortunate most of us are—to be in a position to support others in big or small ways, and to have such an easy way to do it.

The campaign runs until Nov. 30, but I really encourage you to make your gift as soon as possible. The holidays are almost here, and we’ve all experienced how busy we get and how quickly time passes. Can there be any more perfect way, however, to show our thanks this holiday season, than by sharing some of our bounty with those less fortunate through the SECC?

Thank you for your heart-warming encouragement and support.

Pamela G. Watson, RN, ScD
Vice President of Education and Dean, School of Nursing

Oct. 31, 2013

Thanks and gratitude, good fortune. These words came to mind when I was given the opportunity to chair the 2013 State Employee Charitable Campaign (SECC). When I last served as chair, there was gratitude and good luck of a different sort: it was the year that Katrina devastated New Orleans and Rita plowed through east Texas, and most of us were thankful to have escaped relatively unscathed. Then, in 2008, Ike hit home.

From the chaos and destruction that followed, I’m left with a moment I’ll always remember: Being in a long FEMA line, and a heartfelt conversation with a very elderly and frail woman who kept repeating, “I just want to get back to my home, I just want my life back.”

Most of us at UTMB have our lives back, are back in homes, have great jobs with good benefits and some stability in an increasingly uncertain world. We look around, and in place of devastation, we see growth and progress. We’re lucky. I wonder about the woman in the FEMA line, and if she ever returned to her home and her life, and of thousands of other people still struggling through personal storms, financial droughts, floods of misfortune, perilous health and tempests of the heart and mind.

The SECC is our way to help them. It runs from Oct. 31 until Nov. 30; our theme is “Lucky 2013”—a nod to how fortunate we are at this time and in this place. Giving is easy, and any cause that is important to you is represented. Everything you need to know is on this site. Please explore!

For as long as I’ve been here, the remarkable people of UTMB have always opened their hearts, purses and wallets to help those in need. We’ve consistently been a leader in the state, among the top in giving, and always blazing new trails. I’m grateful for all my good fortune. I’m also grateful for you, and what your generous support will make possible.

Please join me in this opportunity, on the 20th anniversary of our support for SECC, to share our luck and give thanks.

Pamela G. Watson, RN, ScD
Vice President of Education and
Dean, School of Nursing

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