(Marion) It was a dark and stormy night. The flashlight was barely shining through the heavy rain. I had a blanket over my head to try to stay dry, but it wasn’t really working. I was thinking, “I really feel bad for the deputy trying to get my car unlocked. He is totally soaked.”
Such was my fate on a Tuesday evening after class. Earlier that evening, I was driving to MTC and practicing my presentation for Business Communications. As I have written before, getting in front of the class to speak is not my favorite thing. I have improved, though, and that wouldn’t have happened if the instructors hadn’t made me face this fear. But, concerning this particular Tuesday night, I would like to focus on the wonderful janitorial staff and campus security on campus.
As implied above, I arrived at MTC a bit stressed knowing that I would be presenting my PowerPoint in class. It was actually a fairly warm, calm evening at that point. I followed my usual pre-class routine: stopped by my daughter’s office to drop off and pick up “stuff,” went to the bathroom, filled up my water bottle, stared at the vending machines to see what I might want, bought nothing from the vending machines, and then waited outside the classroom door until it was unlocked for my 6 p.m. class.
We all gave our presentations and did a good job if I do say so myself. We finished up the Business Communications class and then moved on to the introduction to Microeconomics. A little graphing, some interesting discussions and then we were excused a tad early. As is usually the case, I was the last one to get my items gathered up and started to leave. However, a glitch quickly manifested itself. My car keys were not in my bag, not in my pants pocket, not in my coat pocket! I couldn’t find them anywhere. To make matters worse, I suddenly realized that I have left my cell phone at home plugged in to charge. No keys and no way to call anyone. It was 10 p.m. AAAAAAHHH!
As I left the classroom, I was chanting over and over, “Please let the car be unlocked. Please let the car be unlocked.” As soon as I went through the front doors I realized the clear evening from earlier had turned into that cold and stormy night. I didn’t have an umbrella, although there is one in my car trunk! I got to my LOCKED car and wanted to cry. It was dark and I couldn’t see inside to tell if the keys were in the ignition. Now what? As I went back inside – thank God the doors were still open – I was hoping my keys were in the bathroom. No such luck. I then went in search of any living soul who could help me!
(Cue the angelic music.) That is when I found Landon White as he was going about his business of cleaning one of the labs. All I can say from there is that he was an absolute saint. He contacted campus security and let me know a deputy was on the way. While I was waiting just outside the front doors, he checked on me several times and even brought me some chocolate! Landon offered to stand there with me if I was uncomfortable and all the while never made me feel like I was a bother.
The deputy gave me a blanket to cover my head and the flashlight to hold while he tried to get my car unlocked. It took a while, but finally the goal was achieved. Sopping wet, he got into his patrol car and I got into my car. Excited to finally be headed home, I reached for the keys in my ignition only to realize – NO KEYS! There was no way I could get back out and tell the deputy that after all that work in the pouring rain, the keys weren’t locked in my car after all. I pretended like I was checking out something in my bag, and adjusted the mirror and anything else I could think of until he pulled out of the lot.
That’s when the light bulb went off bright and clear in my head. I left my keys in my daughter’s office when I put Avon on her desk. That area of the college is all locked up at this time of night, so I went in search of Landon again. I found him and two other members of the janitorial staff trying to take a break. “Please, could you let me look in my daughter’s office to see if my keys are there,” I asked. Landon’s colleague graciously took me into the office and there they were. Envision a bright halo of light around my beautiful set of car keys. Now I can go home! I don’t have to sleep in my car all night! Landon even gave me more chocolate! All is right in the universe again.
The moral of this story is first, make sure you know where your car keys are at all times. But more importantly, this shows how every single person at Marion Technical College goes out of their way to help anytime someone asks. They say, “No question is a dumb question.” Well the wonderful staff from and Campus Facilities and Campus Security would say, “No situation is a dumb situation!” My heart overflows with gratitude to everyone who helped me that night. If you haven’t already decided to attend MTC, you really need to check into the opportunities offered ASAP. Then all can be right in your universe too!
Has a member of the MTC staff gone above and beyond to help you? Tell us! If you would like to nominate a staff member for a Service Excellence Award, click here. The next deadline is March 15. All students who nominate a staff member will be entered to win a $250 scholarship.