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Suzanne Buchholz, Reporter
When one steps off the elevator in the dining commons across from the multipurpose rooms in the College Center, they might notice a set of double doors to their right. Those doors lead to the Pierce College Puyallup mailroom.
For those who have seen the movie Elf, the word “mailroom” might conjure up this famous quote: “It smells like mushrooms and everyone looks like they want to hurt me.” But the Pierce mailroom is nothing like that. Instead, it’s an open room with a row of small mailboxes for each employee along one wall, adjacent to another larger room where the mail is delivered and sorted.
“The things that go on here, as far as the mailroom goes, is staff and faculty have mailboxes for whenever they get mail,” Consolidated Services Robert Crane said. “Instead of trying to get it to everybody all over the place, they get it in one location here. Everybody has an assigned mailbox, and larger departments will share a bigger mailbox so they can get their mail in one central location.”
The mailroom is part of Consolidated Services at Pierce, which also includes the receiving department and print shop that are all located in the same room. The receiving department takes in all deliveries made to Pierce, sorts them and then distributes them to the departments where they need to go. The print shop handles all printing jobs required by the faculty, including such items as financial aid and registration hand-outs, syllabi and tests. These are all services that are beneficial to the faculty and can be accessed in one convenient spot, Crane said.
Crane is the main employee in the Consolidated Services department. He said a typical day in the mailroom starts with processing print orders that professors and other faculty members put in the night before or that morning. The mail is delivered in the morning, and Crane sorts and distributes each piece of mail to the proper mailboxes. A courier from the Fort Steilacoom campus usually comes by at some point in the day to transfer items to and from the different campuses, and will help by sorting mail and other tasks while Crane takes his lunch break.
Crane said that the mailroom at the Fort Steilacoom campus is similar to the one on the Puyallup campus, but with one difference.
“At that location we have a mail machine that actually sends out all the letters that need postage from the college,” Crane said. “So all the financial aid awards or checks students get are sent out from the other campus through a mail machine.”
Consolidated Services offers a variety of services to faculty at Pierce, allowing them to focus on other tasks.
“There’s a lot of benefits of having a central location for mail to be distributed,” Crane said. “Printing saves instructors valuable time they don’t have to stand there at the smaller printers or copy machines. They can focus more on students, planning their courses.” [/responsivevoice]
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