RealJobDescription - Learn what people really do at work

Learn what people really do at work

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Clerical Worker

I work in the registrar’s office at a university. These days I spend my time typing up requests for transcripts and education verifications (i.e. proof you attend here, for scholarships and whatnot) and letters of certification (i.e. proof you graduated, especially since it takes 4 months for diplomas to come in the mail), as well as putting in people’s addresses as to where to mail said diplomas. And charging people for this stuff. Sometimes I print and mail them myself, sometimes students do it. 


Periodically they stick me at the front counter where I do a lot of the same typing stuff, along with other random typing involving name changes, withdrawals, diploma pickup, changing their status, blah blah blah. About half the time people ask me random questions that I have no idea how to answer them because I have only been doing this type of job for a couple of months.


Officially I work on graduation stuff, checking to see if people have their stuff in order to graduate, fixing records, ordering diplomas, going through all the diplomas and marking off who hasn’t paid their fees and thus they don’t get their diplomas until they do, mailing out some of the diplomas if you asked for it to be mailed. Occasionally I deal with e-mail, depending on who I have to ask to check someone’s graduation stuff first. 


I am basically on call for 8 hours and can have stuff dumped upon me at any time, which means that sometimes I am busy and frequently I am just sitting around surfing the net until someone hands me something else or gets back to me about something. There is even more to the job than that, but they are training me slowly.


Before that, I have done scheduling for classes who wanted extra time/study sessions, made ID cards, fixed students’ self-entered transfer work so that it will automatically equate to class credit here, written text for a webpage, and tested computer systems to see if they worked. I have somewhat gotten around a lot in the last couple of years. 


I usually say “data entry lackey” when asked, though. Who really wants to know all this information? I think my mom dozed off when she asked the other night… 


I am at my volunteer job right now. I work at the front desk of the college craft center. Mostly answering questions, checking out tools, directing people to the bathroom, advising people on craft projects, ringing them up for classes, and cleaning the building. I also teach a glass mosaic class about once a year, which boils down to showing people cool mosaics I took pictures of around town, showing them how to cut glass, then letting them figure out what they want to make. Eventually I teach them all how to grout their projects to fill them in around the edges. Like someone else said, I wish this could be my day job, but alas, it cannot due to lack of budget and they will be down to one adult paid position at the end of the year as is.

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