Oct. 27, 2020
The Office of Student Accountability & Support has long had a team in place to provide personalized assistance to students who need help with issues ranging from health to housing to food insecurity.
With the onset of the coronavirus pandemic and students entering quarantine or isolation, the need for support increased significantly, which meant the Care Team needed to grow. A lot.
At the peak of the pandemic, the team had more than 60 volunteers from various areas of campus.
Brittany Pomilee, a graduate assistant in the Office of Student Engagement, is one of those volunteers. She said volunteering on the Care Team was an easy decision. “Since I enjoy serving my community, I want to make sure my fellow Tigers are being taken care of during these crazy and unfortunate times,” Pomilee said.
Pomilee estimates she spends six or seven hours a day answering questions, providing resources and talking to students in quarantine or self-isolation. She said the work can be stressful but added, “I love getting to serve our students and reminding them that someone is here for them.”
Putting together and coordinating such a large team in a short period of time was largely the work of Assistant Dean of Students Lori Fox, Wellness Resource Center Director Christy Hutton and Office of Student Accountability & Support Director Julie Drury.
“They did a lot of work with coordinating volunteers, adjusting, tracking systems for figuring out how to track the students we call, how do we make notes,” said Molly Frank, a graduate student and Care Team volunteer.
Frank said the team has made thousands of phone calls but that the work is gratifying. “I had a lot of students who were like, ‘I didn’t want to be forgotten about.’ So that’s what we were doing,” Frank said. “Every time someone said, ‘Thank you, I’m glad you called,’ it was nice.”
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