Thursday, October 25, 2012

Media Services Profile

Photo by Sarah Hayes / Forum


Above: John Brown hard at work for Media Services

By Sarah Hayes of the Forum

The classroom lights are still off when John Brown opens the door to Engineering 234. The only sound is that of the wheels from the equipment he pushes carefully to the front of the classroom. Without prompting, he moves into action, plugging in and turning on the computer and projector requested for that room. John checks the projector and makes sure the image being projected is clear and centered on the screen. He also checks to make sure that the Internet is working in the room.
These students like John Brown, who “operate” on glitching and chaotic computers, work for the college’s Media Services department. Media Services is located in the Instructional Resources building, although it’s not as obvious as most rooms. The door to the office is in a hallway leading to the library elevator with a sign reading “media circulation.” Inside is where students go to check out cameras and camera equipment for their classes and where teachers call in to make equipment reservations.
Although many people work in the department, three different heads of office directly oversee Media Services’ activities. During the morning hours, Donna Dixon and Duane McFall take care of the day-to-day operations. Dixon processes room reservations while McFall fields technical issues and equipment questions across campus. The night shift belongs to Aaron Linder, who handles every issue that passes through the office with the assistance of the student staff working evenings. Media Services is heavily reliant on its student workers who are picked through the college’s work-study program.
Robert Taylor is one of the student workers who have been working in Media Services since February of this year. Robert had assumed he would be nervous during his initial days on the job. He wasn’t particularly computer savvy and worried his lack of typing skills and PC skills would hold him back. After he became familiar with the job, Robert gained the confidence necessary to go on jobs alone. “I thought it would be a lot more challenging than it was,” Taylor admitted.
For future work-study students, Robert has some advice for those looking to become a part of Media Services. “Don’t over-think it,” Robert says. In his experience, the solution to any problem is often the most straightforward and least complicated of them all. Internet not working? It might not even be connected. Computer not on? Computer’s not plugged in.
Rarely, if ever, has he needed to do any fancy tricks to make everything function again. In those moments, Robert does what many student workers in his shift do: call Aaron Linder and ask him what to do. A Media Specialist with over ten years of experience, Linder usually has the answer. No one who signs up for Media Services as a student needs to be an expert in order to do their job.
 To Robert, Media Services isn’t just a place on campus where he happens to work. “It’s a very important department,” he says emphatically. “It’s Media Services who supplies teachers and group meetings with equipment and fixes it when things go wrong.” When something technical goes wrong at Florissant Valley, it is Media Services who gets the call - even if most people don’t realize they are here.

No comments:

Post a Comment