What Are Helpers Made Of?
- Shawna Blagojevic
- Thursday, March 26th, 2020
What are helpers made of?
For Casey Peden, Information Technology Consultant in Ogden College, a helper was made on a farm in Barren County, where he grew up working on the family dairy farm. There he learned how to build and repair things by hand. He says “I was fortunate enough to grow up before cell phones, and social media. We had an old TV with pliers to change between the 3 available channels.” During high school he also attended a vocational school to learn carpentry and computer aided drafting. “It turned out that I was pretty decent at using a computer, so I decided the weather was always consistent sitting in front of a computer and went to Bowling Green Technical School to graduate with a drafting degree.” During his last coop class, Casey received a phone call from the Architectural and Manufacturing Sciences Department at WKU offering a job running a 3D printer that would be used to connect with the industry. After this grant funded position ended, Casey was asked to move into a full-time position to take care of the AMS department computing needs. After about 10 years in this position, it merged with Information Technology Services and Casey was moved into the Ogden College Dean’s Office in order to take care of all the Ogden computer needs. There he works with faculty and staff to help them with their technology needs.
Casey was nominated by several people in Ogden College as a great example of a helper during this time of change for us all. While his normal routine consists of assisting faculty and staff with computer and technology related questions, his role now consists of learning how to put courses and labs online. This is no easy task as he has had to learn new platforms and then teach them quickly to faculty in order to get classes up and running.
Dr. Samangi Munasinghe, Associate Professor of Mathematics, said “Casey helped me remotely taking over everything and setting up things to get me ready to go. He was available for help and explained everything patiently and thoroughly. At the end of the session, we had a friendly chat that really helped all the anxiety all of us are experiencing right now. He is truly essential and valuable”.
Dr. Matthew Nee, Associate Professor of Chemistry, followed with “During this period, ITS, especially the help desk, has been swamped with requests from students, faculty, and staff. Casey has served as an immediately available resource to provide support, including laptop readying, software, and technical assistance, to the faculty as they prepare to move more fully off campus.”
Casey enjoys helping others and definitely has his work cut out for him in the coming weeks. “I enjoy all of my coworkers, and appreciate every experience WKU has offered me in my 20+ years as an employee. I love new challenges, sometimes at the expense of others just needing something working. I take pride in my job at WKU, and look forward to many more years doing what little I can to help faculty, staff and students have the best experience they can at Western Kentucky University.”