Med center leaders’ signing event affirms importance of service members to the medical center.
The University of Nebraska Medical Center and Nebraska Medicine held a signing event on Feb. 3 pledging to provide opportunities and recognition for employees who are members of the National Guard and Reserve.
UNMC Chancellor Jeffrey P. Gold, MD, and Nebraska Medicine CEO James Linder, MD, signed a statement affirming the medical center’s partnership with the U.S. Department of Defense’s Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) and pledged that UNMC and Nebraska Medicine will recognize, honor and build opportunities for service members who are looking to begin their journey into civilian life.
“It is a great honor and, I believe a responsibility for the prominent universities of our nation to develop solid and enduring partnerships with those who defend the freedom of our country,” Dr. Gold said. “I believe we are more than what is publicly referred to as a ‘military friendly’ organization. We work very hard every day to define that phrase and to define it in ways that are really meaningful.
“Part of this document says ‘We appreciate the values and leadership and unique skills that service members bring to the workforce.’ That is absolutely true. But we also look toward education programs, research programs, clinical programs — ways that we can work together with the reserve forces, with the guard, with active military and with many other federal departments and agencies to try to secure the health, wellness and resiliency of the communities that we serve but, equally importantly, to be an exemplar and leader to our nation.”
Dr. Linder said the military’s strong sense of mission mirrors the sense of mission at Nebraska Medicine and UNMC.
“Both of us, if we don’t accomplish our missions, people either get hurt or they die. That’s a strong motivation to do your job well. So it’s no surprise to me that when visitors from the military come to our campus, they sense that culture of organization here, because it’s what we do, what we believe in.
“We take great pride in our partnerships with the military, particularly the National Guard. Each year, hundreds of guard service members receive training on our campus … we take pride in doing that as well.”
The pledge includes commitments to:
- Recognize and honor the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act;
- Provide managers with the tools they need to effectively manage employees who serve in the Guard and Reserve;
- Appreciate the values, leadership and skills service members bring to the workforce;
- Seek opportunities to hire Guardsmen, Reservists and veterans; and
- Recognize and support the country’s service members and their families in times of peace, crises and war.
Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Rick Evans, executive director of the National Strategic Research Institute and state chairman of the Nebraska ESGR committee, thanked Drs. Gold and Linder for their support.
“I’m proud of what we do here in Nebraska in support of the military,” Evans said. “These gentlemen have created an environment that’s very friendly and focused on national security, and that’s why we’re a leader.
“The Statement of Support Program is our most visible program and the cornerstone of our work to find and recognize supportive employers,” Gen. Evans said. “This event is somewhat unique in that we are combining two employers into one event with the University of Nebraska Medical Center and Nebraska Medicine. We know both are closely linked, and we also know that both are model employers in fully supporting military members, veterans and their families, whether they are working as employees, studying as students, or both.”
From left, Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Rick Evans, executive director of the National Strategic Research Institute and state chairman of the Nebraska ESGR committee; UNMC Chancellor Jeffrey P. Gold, MD; Brig. Gen. Gary Ropers, land component commander, Nebraska Army National Guard; and James Linder, MD, CEO of Nebraska Medicine at the signing event Friday.