Sophomore Campus Life employee Pagnaa Attah Nantogmah.
Photo by Anton Zemba.
The Campus Life staff is dedicated to helping students make the best of their college experience, from housing to participating in student organizations. The Campus Life Office, located on the fourth floor of the Warch Campus Center, is open from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. During those hours, student workers like senior Skyler West and junior Daphne Thomas can be found hard at work making sure tasks are fulfilled. This week, I wanted to highlight what goes on behind the scenes of Campus Life and those who work hard to make opportunities possible.
West is the Student Lead Assistant. He manages and supervises five other student workers in the office. The most basic task is supporting Campus Life staff with administrative work and overseeing student organizations and LUCC. His tasks include managing budgets, credit card reports, treasury training, Excel data entry, shopping shuttle logs, student group travel and waivers.
No two days are alike. West is in his second year of working with Campus Life. He started as a student assistant and was promoted to lead. He believes the best part of working with the Campus Life staff is that they recognize the values of working hard. He likes the relaxed work environment and the everyday interactions with the deans and his boss, Charity Rasmussen. West found out about the job when he was treasurer of the Men’s Ultimate Frisbee Organization at the end of freshman year and needed help with the student organization budget.
The application process was a one- to two-page application and a very casual interview with Charity about skills and experience with Excel and various administration tasks like answering phones and sending emails. West works three hours every week day, totaling up to 15 hours a week rather than six like the other assistants in the office. He enjoys inputting data on Excel and balancing budgets.
He likes the relationships he has formed with professional staff. The most difficult part of the job is keeping track of the huge variety of tasks, handling housing keys and mailing things to RLMs and treasurers. Other skills he has learned are a deep understanding of Excel and banner software and prioritizing tasks. As a government major, West wants to go into government work and believes this job has given him valuable skills for that.
Thomas is a psychology major and an Office Clerical Assistant. Some of their tasks include vehicle registration, reimbursement forms, roster changes, making copies, replenishing hobby lobby supplies, getting mail, logging shopping shuttle records and scheduling meetings. They are training under West to become the lead next year.
As a freshman, Thomas hung out with a senior who encouraged them to ask the Campus Life office if they needed help. Since working with Campus Life, Thomas has established good relationships with the RHDs and likes working with Excel documents, data entry and being helpful for student organizations. Outside of their job they are an accompanist for the Main Stage Opera with their friend.
They help opera students learn their parts during Fall and Winter Terms. In addition, they are doing an off-campus internship. They work Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and like sitting at the desk and feeling like part of the office and inner workings of student organizations. The most difficult part of their job is that sometimes students come in with requests and issues they have never dealt with before. Many student organizations have problems such as using the student credit card.
This involves making sure they have funding from LUCC before being able to make a purchase. Single and group housing, roommate and health accommodations are some other topics they cannot handle. Thomas learned to deal with all kinds of people and how to approach situations and keep an open mind with students who might be dealing with stress. According to Thomas, the best qualities of working in the office include independence, being inquisitive, taking initiative, patience, Excel skills, adaptability and willingness to learn new ways to enter data.
“I recommend the job because it helps you see the way Lawrence works outside of the student community and how certain facets function,” Thomas said. “I especially advise freshmen and sophomores to apply because they can be with Campus Life for a long time. It is a welcoming environment, and Charity is a wonderful boss.”