Team Winner

Terry College of Business, Office of Information Technology

Student Media Coordinator, Office of the Dean of Students
Hometown: Chatham, New Jersey
Senior, Entertainment and Media Studies

SEOTY 2021 - Team Award
Pictured left to right: Allison Doss, Jack Dugan, Samir Gupta, Natalie Roberts, Lawson Smith. Not pictured: Chandler Shockley
“I will never be able to convey in words how important our student worker team is to the Terry College of Business nor how proud I am of their accomplishments. What they put forth has dramatically shaped how our Solutions Center team functions, our roles and responsibilities, our comradery, and even our worth to the Terry College of Business.” - William Foglesong

Not only was this student worker team an invaluable asset during the start of COVID-19, they built a service that will remain a permanent offering here at Terry OIT. It is of great importance to note that our student work force allowed for the creation of a Tier-1 and Tier-2 hierarchy within our Service Desk. With our student group handling 80% of our overall tickets, our full-time employees are freed to work on high level issues, problems, and goals for the Terry Office of Information Technology (Terry OIT). Without this separation in duties, Terry OIT would have floundered under the weight of the transition to online learning due to COVID-19.

When COVID-19 hit, it of course was all-hands-on-deck for technology groups across campus. Simply put, our student team shouldered the burden of ensuring the Terry College remained operational while our Tier-2 team and Upper Management scrambled to prepare for COVID-19. We knew we could rely on our student team to handle all the break-fix tickets, classroom calls, computer setups/teardowns (as faculty and staff took equipment home), field panicked calls of faculty and staff, and on top of that, learn our new processes and how to teach them to the faculty and staff of Terry College. Even when we transitioned to off-site, our students never stopped working. They adapted to our new Amazon Connect phone service support line, allowing them to field the same calls they would receive as if they were still in our Solutions Center. The team adapted to our new remote connection software, allowing them to remotely support and help troubleshoot issues for faculty and staff.

Another responsibility arose; captioning video required by the DRC. Our students volunteered to add this task to their list of responsibilities. Students worked directly with faculty while under immense pressure to meet critical deadlines of release, to learn terminology appropriate to those courses, and to understand and interpret many forms of language barriers. Over the course of Spring 2020, our students captioned over 350 hours of lectures and material critical to the education of the students of the Terry College. As critical as this process was, only one full-time employee of Terry OIT had to manage this operation. Even then, this was only as a liaison to pair students with Faculty. I cannot even begin to describe how proud I am of them rising to this occasion and taking over this responsibility. Keep in mind; this is in addition to still handling their normal, daily responsibilities.

As we transitioned to being on-site, many of our students were back on-site of their own volition before faculty and staff were even required. They helped us create safe places for social distancing and rethink how our workspaces would flow. As Fall 2020 began, our student team was right beside us in ensuring a successful launch to the semester.

Even still, to me (as their manager), the worth of what they had already done for the Terry College during COVID-19 pales in comparison to a project this student team created during Fall 2020; Terry Tech Tutors. This team identified there was a need to quickly administer training to our Faculty and Staff to address rapidly changing transitions such as COVID. My direct supervisor noted that another prominent college had a tutoring program where student workers would teach and train faculty and staff in different areas of technology. This was the only push this student worker team needed. Upon hearing this idea, unanimously, they took it and ran with it. Our students come from diverse areas of study such as Management Information Systems, Business, Computer Science, and Social Work. It was outstanding to watch them put what they had learned, and are currently learning, into practice. The students utilized Microsoft Teams as their project management system, quickly jotting down and brainstorming a mind-numbingly long list of key elements this program would need to have. Among them are a website, intake forms for requests, an internal database for course curriculum storage, identify what courses we should offer, among many others. Terry Tech Tutors is a legacy that this group of talented students is setting up and leaving behind for the next wave of students that take their place. They have set up a service that will continually add value to Terry OIT. It is a service that will enhance Faculty and Staff’s abilities here at the Terry College of Business. It is a service that ultimately will enhance our students learning experience. As an employee for a college, I cannot imagine something more impressive than that.

Nominated by: William Foglesong, Terry College of Business