Post #23 Departments are More than Professors
To meet your engineering department translates to more than just knowing your professors. There are many operations and functions happening that are out of your sight. The people that make your department possible are members who work diligently under your radar. Do you know who they are?
Behind the Scenes
Have you met your Department Head? Most likely there is an Assistant Department Head. They are usually professors within the school but not always. How about the administrative staff who greet students and guests, do you know who they are and what they do? It’s possible your department has a program coordinator, a business manager, an events planner or a communications manager. Your deparment may employ a business development person who works to obtain money for your school. Does your department offer graduate degrees? If so, there is probably an academic advisor dedicated to graduate students. Alongside the graduate advisor there will be a leader who directs the graduate program. Your department may also employ students! Have you considered working for your department? All of these people conduct behind the scenes work to make your department function. They all have things they can offer their students. It would be advantageous for you to get to know some of them.
Professors Can’t Do Everything
I wrote about the busy and hectic lives of engineering professors (see Post #14). I recommend you read that post from time to time. It will remind you that professors have their own problems to solve. But moreover, it may encourage you to reach out to the other department members. If it were not for the staff, administrative and development members, your department would be non-existent. Your engineering department has many different ways of offering their services to you. Professor are just one mechanism to help you become the most successful student you can be. Don’t be shy, introduce yourself and make friends with your department members. They are working for your department to offer the best services in the interest of their students – you!
In summary, there are many people working in various capacities to make your department a successful one. They all want to see their students thrive and they all have different knowledge to offer. Make it a point to meet your engineering department, they are there to assist you!