Staff contribute in many ways as campus prepares for new academic year
August 8, 2013
Following a busy summer of sports campus, professional and academic conferences, and new student orientation, the Virginia Tech community prepares for the arrival of approximately 30,000 new and returning students and 1,600 teaching faculty members who will renew their teaching and research activities this month.
Beyond routine maintenance projects, grounds crew employees are working around the clock painting cross walks and other markings on campus roadways. Housekeeping crews are working long hours waxing floors and cleaning classrooms, while other employees are making final passes through classrooms to address any outstanding maintenance needs.
At their South Main Street location, Printing Services employees are assisting faculty prepare copies of course materials and printing materials for departments across campus, including thousands of new business cards, specialized parking passes, and materials needed for student orientation and the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets.
The new Center for the Arts at Virginia Tech will open this fall and renovations to McBryde Hall will be completed. Project managers are preparing those buildings for occupancy by tracking construction punch lists; obtaining occupancy, health department, and other permits; overseeing fire safety, elevator, and lab equipment inspections; and coordinating furniture and sign installations.
Other university employees will continue working with construction companies as other campus building projects expect to be completed this spring.
Recreational Sports employees are now training the more than 500 student employees they have hired for the 2013-14 year. The student employees will manage several recreational sports facilities and teach various group exercise classes across campus throughout the year.
Student Centers and Activities staff members are busy upgrading and improving Squires Student Center, the Graduate Life Center at Donaldson Brown, and Johnston Student Center before students return for the fall semester. Changes to those facilities include new furniture for lounge areas and meeting rooms and refinishing the Commonwealth Ballroom floor which will have the university shield painted in the center of it.
In addition, 20 new electrical outlets are being added to the first and second floor lounge areas in Squires and a new lounge area has been created in the Haymarket Theater lobby to give students additional space to study and a place to wait for Blacksburg Transit.
In addition to cleaning and stocking all 10 dining facilities across campus, Dining Services employees are in the midst of hiring and training 600 new student employees and another 240 hourly employees. They are also hard at work creating a gluten free line of products at Gauchos in D2 at Dietrick Hall and opening Burger ’37 in Squires Student Center.
Approximately 75 faculty and staff members have volunteered to help students move into their residence halls as part of the Hokie Helpers program. In addition, 4Help’s Get Connected staff have recruited and trained about 40 technologically savvy students who will be available on-campus to provide phone and walk-in assistance for students, faculty, and staff who need assistance installing the university's VTNet software or getting their computers connected to the Virginia Tech network.
4Help’s Get Connected staff will also be available to assist in the residence halls during move-in.
Having recruited hundreds of new faculty and staff members, the Department of Human Resources is hosting several orientation events to welcome new employees to campus. The Human Resources Service Center can answer questions and provide information to new and returning employees.
And with the start of the academic year also comes the start of the football season. Facilities and athletic department employees are prepping for the first home game set for Sept. 7 against Western Carolina.
Thanks to the new automatic floor scrubber in Hancock Hall, housekeeper Jeff Moyer is now able to clean the building’s 25,000 square feet of floors in three hours. The process used to take three days using a mop and broom.