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January 31, 2011   Columns Articles | Inside UGA | Employees brave snow, ice to keep university running…

Employees brave snow, ice to keep university running during storm

Matt Weeks

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By Matt Weeks | January 31, 2011
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Although it may look different to outsiders, the University of Georgia never, in fact, closes.

During the spate of severe weather that recently shuttered offices across campus, many employees braved icy roads and freezing temperatures to keep vital parts of UGA up and running.

"It's standard for us to be here," said Police Chief Jimmy Williamson. "We run 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. While other folks might have been able to stay home and build a snowman with their kids, our folks were out here being able to serve if they were needed."

Employees from areas all across campus-the Tate Student Center, External Affairs, Enterprise Information Technology Systems and the Georgia Center for Continuing Education Conference Center and Hotel, among many others-joined UGA police officers on campus to keep the university's work moving forward.

"I often tell the finance and administration staff that our role is behind the scenes," said Tim Burgess, senior vice president for the division. "You might not always see our staff members, but without their dedicated work, the campus simply couldn't function. I think the snowstorm provides the perfect example. Men and women from several campus units-and not all of them in finance and administration-responded selflessly to the call to come in and keep the campus humming. We owe these dedicated staff members our heartfelt appreciation."

Food services continued to feed hundreds of students during the break.

"By day three, it was interesting because we weren't getting deliveries from outside vendors for things like bread and milk," said Jeanne Fry, food services director. "We actually had to go to their warehouse distributors to get our own deliveries."

Employees in the payroll department found their way to campus to make the transition back easy.  If it hadn't been for their efforts and those from employees in EITS, all UGA workers scheduled to be paid that Friday would have gone without checks.

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