The maintenance staff is responsible for aiding to the needs of students and faculty members of MC. “We have someone on call 24 hours a day,” Assistant Physical Plant Director April Kennedy said.
The workers work 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the school year and 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday during the summer.
During the holidays, maintenance workers get a one-week vacation and two-and-a-half days off during spring break.
While students are spending their vacations away from the campus, maintenance staff is able to work on tasks more thoroughly.
“It’s easier to focus to get projects done when people are out of the buildings,” Kennedy said.
During the winter when there are freezes, maintenance staff must arrive at MC an hour earlier than scheduled to make the walkways safe for students and faculty members.
“When we have ice and snow, the grounds crew comes in at 7 a.m. and starts putting de-icer out on the sidewalks to start melting the ice,” Kennedy said.
“If we know the night before, they try to start putting it out the night before to start the process,”
Sam Martinez, a grounds keeper at MC for 25 years, said that when there is ice the workers arrive at the required time to prepare the sidewalks and “split up into different directions.
Certain people will do the dorms; certain people care for the administration building, and then the library.”
There are safety precautions that have to be taken while working around campus.
“We have to be aware of everything around us, wear safety glasses, and make sure equipment has all the safety features,” Martinez said.
For transportation, golf carts are issued to the maintenance staff.
“I drive a pickup truck to get around campus, plus I also have a golf cart.”
For events held on campus, there are crew members who help prepare designated areas.
“Two gentleman set up tables and other stuff for the different events on campus, like the club fair and meetings,” Kennedy said.
During the holiday season, everyone who is part of the maintenance crew works together to make the MC campus look festive.
“For Christmas events, the grounds crew and maintenance are all hands on deck,” Kennedy said.
On the other side of campus, there are workers who are specifically responsible for taking care of the student housing needs.
“There are three technicians assigned to the residence halls and we have two guys who take care of the air conditioners,” Kennedy said. Marla Wilson, a student who is living in the dorms, had positive things to say about the maintenance work that she has witnessed.
“I got a key stuck in my closet door once and had to call maintenance and they were there to help within an hour, even though it was late at night,” Wilson said.
“The sinks don’t always drain right, but they get to it pretty quickly.”
Students have also noticed the groundskeeping on campus.
“They are always cutting the grass, which I love, and during the fall I never had to step across leaves. They kept the walkways really clean,” Wilson said.
The staff members who maintain the grounds are responsible for “mowing, trimming trees and grooming flower beds,” Martinez said.
Maintenance staff are sometimes overlooked, but they take pride in their work at MC.
“I like my job. I’ve been working in grounds all my life practically. I’ve never encountered something I didn’t want to do,” Martinez said.