All Accounted For
There is no typical day for Sally Shriver in the School of Civil Engineering. But that's one thing this account clerk really likes about her job. Always a "go-to" person in the school's business office, Shriver was recognized for her extra efforts with a Staff Award of Excellence from the College of Engineering in a ceremony last November.
Nominated by two of the structures' faculty members—Rob Connor and Ayhan Irfanoglu, both assistant professors of civil engineering—Shriver was awarded a Customer Service Award for clerical/service staff. The young professors described Shriver as "a patient spirit" as she continues to guide them through some of the challenging business procedures for research proposals.
It's one of the many challenges she greets head-on daily. And whether she's helping with new proposals, tracking budgets and deadlines on current projects, or taking the lead on procedures like the OnePurdue System, Shriver benefits from her ability to prioritize and multitask. But her colleagues will also tell you that she's got a great attitude and work ethic.
"We have a great team in our business office, and we really work well together," Shriver says. "I also just really enjoy working with the professors. In a small way, I feel like I am helping them accomplish their goals."
And keeping 45 researchers on budgetary track is no small task. Just ask any who are applying to the National Science Foundation or the National Institute of Standards and Technology for a few million dollars for a research project. Dutifully, Shriver divides her time between the Civil Engineering Building and the Robert L. and Terry L. Bowen Laboratory for Large-Scale Civil Engineering Research. She especially appreciates the close proximity to professors and graduate students on her days at Bowen Lab. "With no one else out there," she says, "you get to know them very well."
Her collegiality is not unnoticed by that faculty. "It is always a delight to go to her office at any time, even at the end of the working day, and be met with a smile and an understanding attitude," says Mete Sozen, the Kettlehut Distinguished Professor of Civil Engineering. "I know she works with many others on the faculty, but whenever I need her help, she makes me feel that I am the only one for whom she is responsible."
Even though it's all in a day's work for Shriver, the award did come as a rather pleasant surprise. She knew nothing of being nominated for it, she says. "But I was really thrilled and humbled to receive it."