Students seek tech help

E-operations' busy beginning

It's 12:45 p.m. on the main floor of the Mary Graydon Center and a swarm of students scramble in every direction to make their next class or munch on the last bite of a bagel.

One might not notice Terry Fernandez, director of customer services and support, sitting patiently at the e-operations help table. As the director of technical support department, she greets every student with a smile.

"I enjoy this time of year. We're definitely busy because we want to make the people at AU comfortable using technology," Fernandez said. "We want to help."

In her 13 years working full-time at e-operations, she said this fall is especially busy. Since Aug. 18, the help desk has received an average of 500 calls per day, 350 residence hall Internet installations and over 50 wireless set-ups are conducted on a daily basis. Six people are assigned to answer calls from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the help desk, AU's technology information help telephone number.

Senior Gretchen Upholt watched Fernandez enable her computer's wireless connection. It's Upholt's second year using wireless technology on campus.

In less than five minutes Fernandez connected Upholt's computer to the AU network allowing Upholt to connect to the Internet from any of the campus' 44 buildings, the Quad and the Amphitheatre.

Efficiency is a large factor to allowing students to access the Internet quickly, Fernandez said.

After earning her undergraduate degree in justice at AU, Fernandez decided to pursue a computer technology career after she enjoyed her work/study job at a campus computer lab. She continues to work in the computer labs overseeing software inquiries and managing the help desk.

"It doesn't slow down until mid-September," Fernandez said. "But this is an exciting time for my department"

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