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Unsung heroes of UW-Platteville

Matthew Ahasay, Opinions Editor
March 14, 2013

Universities: a stoic symbol of higher education that serve as the first step for many bright-eyed young adults to achieve the ever-elusive American dream.
At face value, the make-up of the typical American university seems pretty straightforward and simplistic. You have your campus, made of brick and mortar, containing quads for recreation, dormitories for housing, cafeterias for mastication and the library for studying.
Under the superficial exterior and obvious occupants of the university, however, there are people who are often overlooked for their integral work of making the university an upstanding institution.
Inhabiting the campus are the students, the true purpose of the university. Students are the lifeblood of the campus, exchanging tuition for an education, allowing the university to operate. In continual pursuit of advancing social and educational experiences, the student serves as a renewable source of enthusiasm and perspective.
Opposite of the student body are the faculty, the professors who shape and mold the student body into the well-rounded individuals expected in higher education. Despite some claims of useless classes and information from professors’ lectures, faculty serve the campus, and sometimes the bars, as a wealth of knowledge and experience.
Administrators, a third party, serve as the logistical face of the campus. Duties of an administrator range from filing paperwork on time, maintaining accreditation and regulating the student body to the best of their ability.
Students, faculty and administrators are central to a proper university. However, without the support staff, the university would not be able to function in the same capacity.
Without the custodians, who are almost always bright and cheery while cleaning and maintaining our facilities, our university would look like an episode of “Hoarders.” Despite some of the custodial staff having to work two jobs, they continue to provide a clean, maintained and polished environment conducive for students to continue their education.
Department secretaries, too, are an underappreciated yet essential cog of the university. Aiding professors in their day-to-day business as well as serving the student body as a knowledgeable resource for their department, the position of department secretary is a vital but frequently thankless one.
At University of Wisconsin-Platteville, we are fortunate enough to enjoy a scenic campus far removed from the turmoil of a metropolitan university. As a result, we as students are afforded the luxury of well-maintained slices of nature, such as our large quads and memorial park. Building and grounds management makes it all happen; even though some students may not know that the department exists.
Accepting that things will always be there and taken care of despite never nurturing or respecting them is the root of the idiom ‘taking things for granted.’
As you continue your college career, remember what a university is composed of. It is more than just students, professors and administrators. Rather, it is the people who work tirelessly to support the university and continue to make it an institution.
So, the next time you walk through our beautiful campus, sit in a clean classroom or visit your department, remember those who make it all possible.

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