This week we will find out what it’s like to work as an administrative office assistant for University Student Commons and Activities (USC&A).
Meet Gabriela Miranda, a rising senior from Fredericksburg, Virginia, majoring in exercise science and the first face you see when you walk into USC&A’s office suite 104 in the Commons.
This position serves as the initial contact and resource at the front desk of the Administrative Office, suite 104, University Student Commons. Office assistants provide exceptional customer service for all clients that visit the office.
How long have you worked for VCU?
I have worked for VCU for about a year now, but I’ve only spent the past three months at this position. I’ve been working at the front desk of the Campus Learning Center.
What are your main responsibilities as an administrative office assistant?
I answer phone calls, take messages, distribute the mail, keep things clean and, if anyone comes in looking for a professional worker, then I get that person for them or at least lead them in the right direction.
What does a typical day look like for you?
On a typical day I would come in, change the date on the board, put up the new schedule for the conference room and tidy up around my desk area. Then I would ask around if anyone needs any tasks done and when the mail comes I distribute it.
Do you find it easy to balance being a student and a student worker?
Yes. You normally only have to do 13 hours a week here, which isn’t bad with classes. They completely work around my school schedule and I also play club field hockey so they work around my practice schedule too.
What are some suggestions for people finding it difficult to manage?
The main piece of advice I have is to definitely communicate with your boss. Know yourself and know what you can handle. Taking 18 credits and working 13 hours a week is a big load to take on and your supervisor should be aware of that.
What is one thing you really enjoy about your job?
I get as many hours as I’d like and everyone is pretty friendly in this office.
Is there anything that you have learned that you originally struggled with at the start of your job?
Transferring calls was a little difficult and taking down messages without being awkward on the phone. Leaving voicemails is difficult too, and dealing with a couple grumpy and mean people is always hard at first.
What has been one unexpected perk of working for USC&A?
I was able to meet Dr. Rodriguez which is cool. Also, the free food and a consistent schedule are perks.
What would be one suggestion to a student that is interested in working as an administrative office assistant for USC&A?
This isn’t a hard job. Just bring a positive attitude and you’ll do great.