Going above and beyond the call of duty to help students, colleagues
November 28, 2012
Jeff Edmunds brings his “A” game to work every single day.
Edmunds is the student affairs co-ordinator at the School of Social Work and this year’s OPSEU Staff Star Award winner. The award was given at a recent special breakfast reception and recognizes the outstanding efforts and achievements of a Ryerson OPSEU staff member. Edmunds has been at the university for 30 years and says he still looks forward to coming to work every day.
“The nomination means the most because people took the time to write,” Edmunds said. “It felt good as a way to look back at my time here. Ryerson is a good place to work. I like working with young people. It’s the people you like and enjoy that keep you coming back.”
There is no typical work day for Edmunds; he deals with a variety of student issues from the moment they apply to Ryerson to the time they graduate. Whether it’s students needing help with their schedules, getting program information, or giving campus tours during Discover Ryerson days, Edmunds is the one students seek out.
“Sometimes people just want someone to talk to,” he said. “The job is more about being a good listener, helping and guiding people through. Dealing with 800 students during the school year, you learn to treat people as individuals and be adaptable. You meet many different people with many different backgrounds.”
In the nomination packages, faculty and staff said that students who graduated as many as 15 years ago continue to ask about Edmunds and want to make sure that he is told how “instrumental he was in facilitating and enhancing their education experience.” There is talk of Edmunds retiring in 2013 but he hasn’t made any final decisions yet. Although, if he were to retire, he says, he can leave on a high note after receiving the OPSEU Staff Star Award.
“It’s my honorary Oscar,” Edmunds said. “It gives me more meaning and helps to understand the 30 years I’ve worked and who I’ve worked with.”
The growth and success of the university and its reputation would not be possible without the immense talent and dedication of Ryerson's faculty and staff. The OPSEU Staff Star Award is one of many awards that are part of the university’s recognition program which is in keeping with the People First agenda.
“Your commitment is directly related to the students’ success,” said Julia Hanigsberg, vice-president, administration and finance, at the event. “Without you the university simply wouldn’t function. We do extraordinarily benefit from your service here at Ryerson.”