Briefly Noted: Campus News From Spring 2019

Briefly noted

Catch up on the biggest news and stories from last term — and what you’ll need to know for the rest of the summer here at Drexel University.  

Procurement Services Launches Amazon Business Catalog 

On June 4, Drexel Procurement Services launched Amazon Business as a punchout catalog in Smart Source. The Amazon Business punchout catalog has quickly become a popular choice among Smart Source users and provides a convenient, user-friendly shopping experience for Drexel’s business needs. Amazon Business purchases must comply with the Drexel University Purchasing Policy, and certain product categories are restricted due to contractual or policy reasons. If you have not yet set up your Amazon Business account and would like to learn more, please refer to the Amazon Business Registration Guide, Buyer Guide, and FAQs on the Procurement Services website. For account setup questions, contact Amazon Business Customer Service directly at or 888.281.3847For Drexel purchasing or policy questions, contact Procurement Services at or 215.895.2876.

Institutional Effectiveness Feedback

In a University-wide effort for efficiency and improvement, the Office of Program Management and Organizational Effectiveness (PMOE) would like to remind you that the Institutional Effectiveness Feedback Survey can be used to share your feedback and recommendations for improvement throughout the year. Recommendations submitted through the survey will be presented to the Institutional Effectiveness Committee for consideration. If you have any questions, please contact Lindsay Norlen at or 215.571.4644. For more information, visit the PMOE website.

Women in Investing

Drexel Human Resources is hosting this in-person and webcast event on July 23 from noon to 1 p.m. on the University City Campus to help participants determine how much they should be saving and which funds to invest in. All Drexel employees are welcome. Registration is required for this event via Career Pathway.

Purchasing Policy and Purchasing Guidelines

Procurement Services has updated some of its policies and processes based on feedback it has received, as well as ongoing efforts to improve the purchasing experience. Please note the effective dates of each update below.

Summary of the changes to the Purchasing Policy:

  • Added or enhanced language reflecting Drexel’s commitment to diversity and sustainability, including consideration of these factors in making purchasing determinations.
  • Clarified appropriate use of confirming orders and check requests (provided specific examples, including defining acceptable parameters for honoraria).
  • Defined exceptions to competitive bidding requirements, including a non-exhaustive list of valid sole source criteria.
  • Incorporated Drexel University Online, use of consortium/cooperative agreements, and unique research-related procurement considerations.

Please note that competitive bidding thresholds remain unchanged. This decision was made following a review of the policies of peer institutions and statistical analysis of Drexel’s requisition activity; 91 percent of purchases analyzed fell under the $5,000 competitive quote threshold and 97.6 percent of purchases analyzed fell under the $25,000 formal RFP threshold.

The Purchasing Policy can be viewed on the Procurement Services website

Summary of the new Purchasing Guidelines:

Guidelines to support the Purchasing Policy were separated from the Purchasing Policy with the intent for the policy to focus on the substantive rules of purchasing goods and services and for the guidelines to focus on process, procedures and best practice. 

More specifically, the guidelines contain information regarding the Drexel’s Request for Proposal (RFP) process, applicability of Drexel’s standard terms and contract templates as it relates to the purchasing process, defined procedures for “Special Purchases” such as alcohol, hazardous materials, computers, etc., and defined use of and considerations related to punchout and hosted catalogs available in Smart Source.

The Purchasing Policy Guidelines can be viewed on the Procurement Services website

Business Meals Guidelines Update

In May, Procurement Services made modifications to the Business Meeting Meals and Catering Expense Guidelines.

  • Procurement Services no longer requires submission of the Business Meal Expense Pre-Approval Form with purchases made using University funds. The approval process is deferred to the relevant cost center administrator.
  • Where business meeting meal expenses are paid with a Drexel P-Card, the information previously required on the Pre-Approval Form can now be entered as P-Card transaction notes.
  • If any expenses are paid with personal funds and reimbursement is sought, an Approval Form must still be submitted, though it is not required in advance.

Additional revisions to these guidelines include clarifying the distinction between business meeting meals and business travel meals, as well as more examples of allowable business meal expenses. The updated document is available on the Procurement Services website.

University City Campus Clean-up

Real Estate and Facilities is coordinating the annual University City Campus Clean-up from now until Aug. 30. The Clean-up is an opportunity for departments and offices to dispose of obsolete or broken equipment, furniture and other large, non-hazardous materials. 

To participate, submit a WebTMA work request noting “Campus Clean-up” and provide a description of the items to be removed in the action requested. (Some oversized pieces of equipment and sensitive items may not qualify for the Campus Clean-Up and will require special handling for disposal.) Be sure to clearly identify the items to be discarded, marking items with the work order number (FM-XXXXX) if possible. Email or call 215.895.1700 with any questions. 

Items being disposed of from laboratories may not include hazardous waste or dangerous chemicals; for all hazardous waste, contact Environmental Safety & Health at 215.895.5891 to arrange a special pick-up. For items that have residual value but are no longer useful for the University, please contact to see if they can be sold through the Surplus Sales program.

Recycling Reminders

While you’re cleaning out your office/workspace, be sure to handle your recyclables responsibly. Some dos and don’ts Drexel’s Recycling Program to keep in mind:

  • DO check our “Materials We Recycle” list if you’re not sure whether an item is recyclable at Drexel.
  • DON’T put soiled paper items in the recycling bin.
  • DO rinse and dry any plastic, glass, metal containers before you place them in the recycling bin.
  • DON’T put plastic bags in regular recycling containers.
  • DO dispose of clean, dry plastic bags and film in the designated bins in the Creese Student Center Lobby and Recreation Center Lobby so they can be recycled properly.
  • DON’T throw out used batteries! Check this page for the location of battery recycling bins on campus.
  • DO shred sensitive/secure information before recycling.
  • DON’T recycle Styrofoam or paper coffee cups.
  • DO recycle heavy cardboard by placing it next to trash and recycling containers for Facilities to pick up.

Slideshow: What’s Under Construction This Summer?

The summer months are a busy time for Drexel Planning, Design and Construction. With fewer students and faculty on campus, it’s the ideal time to tackle construction and renovation projects both big and small. The slideshow below highlights some of the most significant projects that will be taking place this summer. For a complete update on major campus projects, click here.

This story was published in the spring 2019 issue of Drexel Quarterly.