“It all started with a bus pass. I visited Parking and Transportation Services (PTS) as an undergraduate student to get a bus pass, and the assistant director offered me a job on the spot. I wasn’t sure about it–I didn’t want anything to distract me from my studies–but he convinced me that a student job at the U was a great way to earn money while focusing on school.
“I started as a parking attendant, got promoted to a student supervisor, and then took a full-time role in the department that would allow me to take undergraduate classes for free. Eventually, I want to get an MBA at the Carlson School. My boss is supportive of me, and my professors have worked with me as well when family circumstances and illness have delayed getting my first degree.
“I’ve stayed at PTS for more than 15 years because it’s much more than parking. We are here to serve as the face of the University. A parking attendant is often the first and last person someone sees at the U, and it’s my goal to put a smile on their face and give them the best experience possible.
“The benefits here are great. I’ve been able to use vacation and sick time to take care of myself, and the gym reimbursement program rewards me for working out. I also save extra money for retirement through Fidelity [in addition to the University’s pension plan].
“I would love to see more people like me working at PTS and at the U in general. This is a job for everybody. The people I work with are the reason I’m here, and this is an environment where you’ll feel welcome.”—Farhiyo Ahmed, Operations Manager, Civil Service