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Cleaning Up Shop

Posted by: Jennifer Stevens | April 5, 2012 | No Comment |

The Physical Plant demonstrates what it takes to succeed in an ever-changing, hands-on environment.

The shops are responsible for keeping all College operating systems in good repair and making the campus a comfortable, safe, and attractive place to live, learn, work, and play. With over 40 dedicated associates, the Physical Plant shops are responsible for over 100 facilities.

The nine various shops, listed on the Shops and Divisions page of the Physical Plant website, support day-to-day operations at the College. The work force is made up of custodians, electricians, plumbers, carpenters, Heating Ventilation Air Conditioning (HVAC) technicians, painters, maintenance associates, and locksmiths.

Covering so many facets, there is no such thing as a typical work day. The crew juggles work orders, works around class schedules (sometimes during 10-minute breaks between classes), and provides routine maintenance and support.

Despite managing a heavy day-to-day workload, Physical Plant team members must remain mobile as on-campus emergencies occur. In some situations, all routine work ceases until a specific problem has been corrected. Emergencies can range from locks falling off doors to gas leaks and complete hot water pump shutdowns. Often times, resources from multiple shops are pulled together to complete tasks. The responsiveness and teamwork is remarkable.

What are the keys to success? Ask any of the shop workers and these words will come to mind: flexibility and experience.

Schedules are constantly shifting. Time management and the ability to organize resources are essential. Viewing each task as an emergency, no matter how large or small, enables the shops to provide a high level of customer service.

In addition to flexibility, experience is an ingredient for success. Collectively, employees range from one to 20 or more years of work at the College. Many of them have 20 plus years of work experience in their respective fields. In other words, they understand the complexities of the College campus. Seventy percent of the time, they have encountered a specific situation before. The combined knowledge in each shop enables them to tackle those unfamiliar situations.

While their efforts often take place behind the scenes, the contribution of the shop workers doesn’t go unnoticed. Thanks to their combined efforts, the College remains open for business.

under: Business Affairs
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