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End of an Era

1990ish Graduations Office Halloween webres.jpg

I just got a call from my HR rep saying that Friday is my last day as a University of Washington employee. I'm feeling slightly shocked, not only because I was expecting more warning than that, but because it's the official end of a major part of my life. I worked at the UW for 26 (nearly 27) years, starting in February 1989 (not counting a year of temping for what they still called the Steno Pool before that). Not quite half my life, but pretty damn close. I've known it was over for at least a year, but now that it's come, I feel suddenly naked somehow. Not that anybody ever understood when they asked me what I did and I tried to explain.

I did a lot of things over the years: graduations, residence classification (for tuition purposes: are you in-state or not? A job I hated, because people would actually cry if we denied their applications), a brief attempt at supervising (fail!!), implementing the degree audit reporting system (huge success!), and finally various flavors of data management (widespread fame and acclaim!). Anyway, above is a photo from more innocent times (circa 1990, and a Halloween, whichever year it was) with the old Graduation Office, which has gone through a number of name and personnel changes since then. On the left is Fred (who tried to call me just as I was starting this round of chemo, so I haven't gotten back to him yet), Virjean (the supervisor), Barbara, Pat, and me. I haven't missed work one iota, but I'm feeling a pang now.

Since I know she follows this LJ, I just wanted to thank Virjean for hiring me, mentoring me, and putting me to good use over the decades. With apologies to Matt S., you'll always be my favorite boss, not to mention a fine human being.

This probably deserves a deeper dive at some point, but I wanted to spread the news.

P.S. Notice the dumb terminal and the IBM Selectric on the right side of us, both of them mine. To my left, but hidden from the photo, was a PC running DOS 6.0, as I recall.


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 7th, 2016 08:33 pm (UTC)
You'll be missed
Randy, It was a great pleasure to work with THE UW data guru. I still have much to learn.

Dec. 7th, 2016 09:10 pm (UTC)
Re: You'll be missed
Hey, Bill. I'm glad to be leaving things in your able hands. I'm sure you'll improve all the processes that I kept running through desperate applications of duct tape and WD40.
Dec. 7th, 2016 10:37 pm (UTC)
Time to think up new answers to that question (beyond '...read, seek chocolate, breathe, sweat, metabolise...' to quote Kate again).

Mixed emotions, I'm sure; as your photo implies, the good people always seem high on the list of things to miss and to remember about past employment. You beat my term of service by two years, although that was a bit more than half my life. In my case there are no photos!

I've been mostly shying away from my own deeper dive, but yours make better reading anyway.
Dec. 7th, 2016 10:50 pm (UTC)
I know I've seen more work pictures than this. I hope to find them at my desk when I go in to empty it out.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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