Work study is a great thing. It’s flexible, convenient, and a job that pays! There are a variety of jobs to do on campus, and none of them are too hard or stressful. I for one had no idea what work study I would end up with, but I never expected to end up in a world I vowed I would never enter: the cubicle life.
I am a creative individual and naturally avoid such confining spaces because I get bored and restless pretty quickly. So when I heard that I would be working in the Office of Enrollment Management, my initial reaction was, “Oh, I’m going to be answering phone calls all day… Great.” I thought maybe the fact that I would be working in the Castle would make it cooler. It did not. They managed to partition one of the old rooms into little cubicles. However, once I actually started, it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be.
My first day was a little intimidating, I’ll admit. I was shown the basic computer instructions and then was left alone to start making phone calls to prospective students inviting them to an open house. I think I waited a good 30 minutes before finally picking up the phone and had to dial more than once, since I didn’t remember what extension I was supposed to dial in front of the number.
I learned very quickly that people can be one of three things on the phone: nice, rude, or just weird. People have hung up on me, shouted “Yoda!” in a recorded voice mail greeting, and have told me all in one breath, “No, so-and-so is gone; she has other options anyways, goodbye.” But then I have also had people apologize sincerely that they weren’t able to come to campus because they had a concussion (an acceptable reason not to show up to an open house, I think), laugh with me over the phone because I called right when the student was practicing driving, and ask me questions very politely and thank me for my time.
I might be stuck in a cubicle dialing numbers for my work study, but what I actually get out of the experience—these glimpses into the lives of other people—keeps me from boredom.
The cubicle life? Interesting? Didn’t see that one coming.