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This Staff Handbook, also referred to as the handbook, is designed to acquaint staff employees with Southwestern Oklahoma State University (SWOSU) and to provide them with information about working conditions, employee benefits and some of the policies affecting employment. Faculty and student employees are not governed by this handbook. Employees should read, understand and comply with the provisions of the handbook. It describes many responsibilities of employment and outlines the programs developed by SWOSU to benefit its employees. One of SWOSU’s objectives is to provide a work environment that is conducive to both personal and professional growth. (For the purpose of this handbook, the term “staff” shall include staff and administrative positions.)

SWOSU utilizes, in its day-to-day operations, many practices that have developed from the values of the University. No employee handbook can anticipate every circumstance or question about policy and procedure. Rather, this handbook is intended to serve as a guide for the daily activities of SWOSU. SWOSU reserves the right to revise, supplement or rescind any segment or portion of the Handbook from time to time as it deems appropriate, in its sole and absolute discretion. The policies presented in this handbook may be amended, deleted or supplemented by the President, Vice President of Administration and Finance or Assistant Vice President for Human Resources. To ensure this is the most current version of the Handbook, refer to either the Human Resources Office (HR) or the Staff Handbook listed on SWOSU’s website.

SWOSU is an "at-will" employer, excluding administrators, at or above the director level, and faculty. The contents included in this handbook in no way modify or amend the right of SWOSU as an at-will employer in originating or terminating employment of personnel. At-will employment is for no specified term and is terminable at the will of either the employee or the employer. Only the President may alter an individual’s employment at-will status and will only do so in writing. No other process, expressed or implied, will negate the right of SWOSU to terminate employment at any time, without notice and with or without cause.

Administrators, at or above the director level, whose appointment is not renewed, will be given written notice from the University by April 1st, prior to termination of the current appointment. Administrators whose positions are externally funded may be non-renewed without prior notice. Failure to reappoint may be without specific cause. Note: Coaching staff may not be governed by the April 1st notification deadline.

Any portion of this handbook that may be modified, altered, initiated, revoked or amended does not invalidate other segments of the handbook. 

Employees who have questions that are not addressed by this handbook should contact their supervisor or HR.

Note: Throughout the Handbook, the President and Vice Presidents may be referred to as executive officers or senior administrators.