What is your job title?
What area of campus, building and department do you work in?
Institute for Public Policy and Social Research, College of Social Science, North Campus, Berkey Hall
How long have you been at MSU?
I started my career at MSU in November of 1994.
How long have you been an Area Representative?
Why is being a member of the Union important to you and what value does it bring?
Being part of the APA and the MEA. Being an active member of the union is important to me because I believe unions are instrumental in creating healthy work environments for employees! History has been proven that there is power in numbers and unions typically represent a large number of people.
Furthermore, I came from a union family. My Grandfather was active with the unions in Pittsburgh, PA, during the time Pittsburgh was in its hay day.
So as you see, I learned early on the many protections unions provide hard working Americans. More often than not, unions have proven that if employees are provided with good working conditions they are much more likely to work hard and exceed expectations. History has also proven that unless employers are required to provide employees with good wages and good benefits it likely will not happen. Unfortunate as it may appear, we need unions to mandate or require employers to go the extra mile. Unions hold us all accountable and help us to prioritize in favor of the greater good.
What words of advice do you have for the new hires at MSU?
A few pieces of advice I wish someone had given me when I hired in at MSU are as follows:
- Get involved in your union and get involved Early! There are so many Union activities and events I missed out on in my early years and because of that I had a lot of missed opportunities.
- If you want to know what the union can and is doing for you, get active! Maximize your union benefits. You need to know the value of your membership. Know the discounts, the college benefits, the reduced insurance rates, great credit card rates, free financial advice, free life insurance. KNOW YOUR BENEFITS, then you will know the true value of being a unionized employee at MSU!
- Attending the union meetings is incredibly important. These meetings provide a greater understanding of what the union offers to employees. The meetings are a means of becoming informed on the union’s impact on campus. Union events and activities also allow employees to connect with one another. As issues arise on campus you may want someone to vent to or some clarification on an issue. Fellow union members offer that to each other.
- Being an active member of a union will help you have a better understanding of the volume of issues the union deals with on a daily and monthly basis. It will allow you to see how the union makes work-life better for so many MSU employees.
- I would encourage new hires to make time to get familiar with all areas of campus. It is easy to get busy and stuck in your building or region of campus. It is a big campus with a lot of intelligent and interesting people. Only you can expand your reach and expand your experience at MSU!
- Last but not least, look out and encourage your fellow co-workers. Support him or her. Remember…”When the tide rises all the ships come in”!
What do you love about working at MSU?
What I love most about working at MSU is watching the student’s journey from their freshman to their senior year. Students are filled with wonder and excitement. This positive energy resonates throughout campus and keeps many of the staff still feeling youthful! Furthermore, working at MSU has been a great opportunity to grow professionally and personally. There is always a lot of personal and professional development available to employees. With the encouragement of the unions, MSU continually promotes an atmosphere that “people come first”. This is not just a slogan at MSU, this is the culture of MSU. People truly do come first!
Over the years, I have often commented to my colleagues that we are so fortunate to work at MSU. To work in a healthy work environment that provides good benefits, good wages and just an overall great environment to start and end our day! Thanks to the hardworking members of the APA my career at MSU has been a pleasant and rewarding experience!
What do you like to do when you are not at work?
When not at work I enjoy hanging out with my 96 year old father. He is still mobile so weekends are full of wonderful moments. Spending time up north have been some of our favorite fun times!