Associate Vice President for Auxiliary Services Patricia Bando’s office is not the easiest to locate. Housed in 129 Lake Street on Brighton Campus, Bando’s workspace is at the end of a circuitous walk up three flights of winding stairs and a long loop around the third floor.
Bando may operate out of sight of much of the University community, but she is more interested in pointing out the work her Auxiliary Services colleagues accomplish each day, though many of them may be similarly overlooked or underappreciated. Specialists in the art of “getting things done,” these administrators and staff work to make sure that their labors blend into the background, creating an appearance of effortlessness.
“There are real people who put blood, sweat, and tears, and a lot of thought into the process of getting things done. The most important thing that this team can get back from the BC community is a ‘thank you,’ and just the recognition that all of their accomplishments and the work they put into finishing a task are appreciated.”
Brokamp said her team has navigated “some of the most challenging and complex problems the industry has faced. Just as people experienced food shortages and inflation at the grocery store, we came into work day in and day out trying to solve those problems, ensuring the students got the best possible ingredients and services.” She credited Assistant Buyers Cindy Yen and Mary Keady for ensuring “we received food every day and that our team always found a chance to smile and celebrate the smallest of victories.”
Reflecting on the past few years, Brokamp noted other pandemic-related challenges, such as redesigning dining halls for social distancing and coordinating donations to local shelters of “thousands of pounds of food in storage” left in the wake of students’ departure from campus in the spring of 2020. Overcoming obstacles was rewarding, she said, “but my favorite part was the people that I did it with. My colleagues in Dining and Facilities, Cindy and Mary, and the other members of the Auxiliary Services team, are the magic of BC. They have taught me lifelong lessons about teamwork, collaboration, and how to find a smile on the toughest days.”
Bando’s Auxiliary Services colleagues have appreciated her efforts to uplift the department, and are quick to say she deserves recognition more than anyone.
Bando, Norton said, changed the landscape of BC Dining: “We had a leader who cared and wanted our students to have the best dining experience.” She added that Bando’s leadership saw the introduction of comprehensive training programs and revolutionized lines of communication, creating an environment which enabled her coworkers to flourish.
The fact that Auxiliary Services employees’ efforts often go unnoticed does not correlate with the quality of their work, say Bando and Goyette.
“The processes that students encounter and use every day—and can, if it becomes routine, take for granted—don’t happen by themselves,” said Goyette.
“What we do is not magical,” Bando said. “There are real people who put blood, sweat, and tears, and a lot of thought into the process of getting things done.
“The most important thing that this team can get back from the BC community is a ‘thank you,’ and just the recognition that all of their accomplishments and the work they put into finishing a task are appreciated.”
Meghan Keefe '24 | Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences | November 2022