A New Chapter

Posted on Aug 10, 2013


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For the last seven years, I got off the bus and walked the pedestrian overpass to this building. Seven years is the longest I’ve ever worked anywhere. I spent most of my 30′s here. It’s a place I have come to love (and hate) and I pretty much know it inside and out. My last day was August 1st. I’m very excited to have found a job at my dream college. As much as I am ready to move on to a new chapter, this building and job still holds a special place in my heart.

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I spent the first three and a half years in the office just to the left of the mural. I supported 80 faculty members and was a cheerleader for the students.

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I proctored a lot of exams, uploaded a lot of notes and syllabi, and nagged (with love) the faculty into compliance.

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I also ordered a lot of supplies. From needles to pigs’ feet, I made sure classrooms were stocked with what was needed. I liked to watch the students across the hall from my office practice their stitches on the pigs feet. I also procured linens and laundered lab coats. I arranged classroom models from infants to proctology.

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Probably the weirdest thing I did in this job was order cadavers.

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The last three and a half years, I was the admin assistant to the Residency department. I helped manage 30 medical residents around the country. I worked closely with the onsite residents helping them get through this incredibly hard year of residency. I set up their orientation and found coverage for their shifts. I was the glue that kept that department functioning.

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Much of my time was spent organizing and running GPA (Graduate Proficiency Assessment) exams. These benchmark practical exams have many different working parts. Students must pass them to progress and graduate. It made for a stressful situation and I tried to calm nerves while running a tight ship. I spent hours and hours pacing the floors of the clinic.

 

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I will miss this beautiful building. Originally named the Josiah Failing Elementary School, this was the first public school west of the Mississippi River. It is also where Portland Community College got its start in the 1960′s.

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When I knew that I was leaving, I commissioned one of the students, Sunjae Lee, to paint me this painting as a remembrance of the last seven years. I’ve very grateful for the friends I’ve ┬ámade and all that I’ve learned. I feel like I’ll always be part of this amazing community.

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