Student workers get a shout-out for National Student Employment Week

Ben Adair

Student employees Ben Adair (right) and Maria Fernanda Corral Cervantes (center) work at the CSUMB Grad Fest.

April 8, 2022

By Walter Ryce

CSUMB’s Human Resources and University Corporation HR are teaming together to celebrate student workers for National Student Employment Week, April 10-16. 

The commemoration was initiated by the National Student Employment Association to recognize the contributions of students who work on campus in support of education, research and operations. 

And there are a significant number of such student employees at CSUMB — more than 800, according to Natalie King, Associate Vice President for Human Resources

“They are integral and invaluable contributors to our campus community,” King said. 

This week, student workers are invited to go to the Otter Student Union 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, April 14-15, to pick up an appreciation gift. 

And UP and UCorp have assembled a Recognition Toolkit of various ways that campus departments can show appreciation, from printing certificates to assembling care packages to writing a letter. 

Various supervisors of student employees also had the opportunity to sing their praises. 

Amy Marbach, a user services specialist with the Library’s help desk, said of student technology assistant Kaylyn Quintero: “Kaylyn is always willing to go the extra step for customers who come to the help desk. She is patient and great with helping customers understand technology.”

Krystie Lane with Early Outreach and Support Programs described Adrian Ortiz as one of the most dependable and supportive student peer mentors the TRIO program has had, and said their student employee Selena Raygoza embodies the values of the CSUMB Vision Statement.

Claudia Velazquez, a specialist with Conference and Events Services, was enthusiastic about her department’s student worker, Tyler Mendez.

Tyler Mendes

Tyler Mendes

“There is no task that Tyler can't do,” Velazquez wrote. “No matter if it's a large, small or high profile event that we need to prep for, I can always count on Tyler to show up on time and be on his ‘A’ game.”

Mendez himself said that the job — which includes fielding phone calls and questions and setting up conference rooms — has taught him customer service skills, shown him what a professional environment should feel like, and gives him a “rewarding feeling.” He also said that his supervisors are “very conscious” about his academics and have worked around his school schedule. 

Elizabeth Wiles 1x1

Elizabeth Wiles

As the lead student assistant for the Office of Admissions’ front desk, Elizabeth Wiles answers phone calls, tends to emails, speaks to walk-ins, and works on other special projects. She said the job has earned her new skills and, as a fulltime student, it has been convenient. She also simply likes it.

“I like the environment I am in,” Wiles said. “I feel supported and appreciated for my dedication. I also enjoy the seasonal changes. There is always something new going on in Admissions!”

Student employee Ben Adair, who works with Annual Giving and Alumni Relations, said there is plenty of variety and engagement in what he does.

“My favorite thing about it by far are the connections,” Adair said. “Whether it’s greeting new and prospective students in the front office or working with the amazing people from the other departments — having that sense of teamwork. Being a student worker has really allowed me to feel more connected to the university. Especially in my role of educating prospective students about the campus, I get to show my pride for CSUMB.”

Natalie King says that CSUMB student employees bring enthusiasm, professionalism, and new perspectives to help the campus operations run smoothly and efficiently.

“We are pleased that they have this week dedicated to them and are excited to have them back working on campus!” King said. 

But one of the inevitabilities of having student workers on the team is that they will eventually move on in their journey. 

Laura Good, a science education and outreach coordinator in the College of Science, described Juliana Cornett, a graduate assistant with the Coastal and Marine Ecosystems Program, as professional, punctual, “incredibly motivated and organized,” an eager learner who takes initiative. 

“Juliana graduates this semester,” Good said, “and although it will be bittersweet to lose her from our team, I'm excited to see her blossom in her marine science career.” 

Any students interested in on-campus jobs can go to the Otter Jobs webpage

More information, including a list of Spring 2022 student assistants, is on the Student Assistants webpage