Tech Moving Forward:
Workers Behind the Masks

By Victor Rogers | Published June 22, 2020

Georgia Tech is taking steps to ensure the health and safety of students, faculty, and staff who will be on campus this summer and fall. This includes physical distancing in classrooms and meeting spaces, encouraging the use of face coverings and hand sanitizer, and adjusting employee work schedules to minimize physical contact.

Many jobs cannot be done remotely. Custodians, landscapers, maintenance workers, post office staff, police officers, and others have been reporting to campus and keeping the Institute going during the pandemic.

This photo essay highlights some of Tech’s employees doing their jobs while following the new health and safety guidelines.

chris conley at russ chandler stadium

Chris Conley, assistant sports turf manager with Georgia Tech Athletics, wears a mask while edging the field at Russ Chandler Stadium. He uses disinfecting wipes to clean the handles before storing the equipment. “We’re doing our part to help student-athletes get back to campus safely.” (Photo by Allison Carter)

jackie salley at post office

Mail clerk Jackie Salley scans a package to deliver to a student. (Photo by Rob Felt)

Environmental Health Services safety specialist Jerry Jackson (left) and general safety manager Jerel Harris fill bottles with hand sanitizer to be distributed on campus. (Photo by Rob Felt)

david stevenson

David Stevenson, hazardous materials specialist in Environmental Health and Safety, graduated from Georgia Tech with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry. “My favorite thing about my job is getting to use my degree at my alma mater,” he said. “Since Covid-19 started, with lab closures all over campus, our job has shifted away from lab-specific support to community support. We’re collecting and redistributing personal protective equipment (PPE) for the Georgia Tech community to get back to work, so no one has too much while others don’t have enough to do what they need.” (Photo by Rob Felt)

seth osekre

Seth Osekre, custodian, uses a disinfecting fogger. They will be used frequently in high-traffic areas across campus. (Photo by Rob Felt)

dan bonney

Dan Bonney, chiller specialist at the Holland Plant. (Photo by Jeff Wiley)

Custodian Juanita Slaton has worked at Tech for 16 years. “We’re taking extra precautions to keep everyone safe, including ourselves,” she said. (Photo by Jeff Wiley)

donna riley wipes down door handle

Donna Riley, executive assistant to the dean of the Library, uses disinfectant wipes on a door handle. (Photo by Allison Carter)

valerie edward at holland plant

Valerie Edward, stationary engineer at the Holland Plant, enjoys many facets of steam plant operation: heat transfer, thermodynamics, and mechanical applications. Her job has additional safety precautions because of Covid-19. “Following practices that have been prescribed by health authorities can be a challenge, but a necessary one for all of us,” she said. (Photo by Jeff Wiley)

salam ali in the lockshop

Locksmith Salam Ali has worked at Tech since 1999. “I enjoy being a locksmith, so every task in my job is like the next level of my favorite video game,” he said. “Covid-19 made it harder for me and everyone, with the extra precautions when touching doorknobs, levers, keys, and everything I put my hands on. Safety is the first priority to think about.” (Photo by Rob Felt)

ken poor

Ken Poor is the IT support professional manager for the President’s and Provost’s Offices. “When I'm in the office alone I take off the mask,” he said. “If I leave my office I put it on in case I cross paths with someone in the hall.” (Photo by Allison Carter)

jaydale poyette

Jaydale Poyotte, assistant director of administrative operations in the Office of the Vice Provost for Graduate Education and Faculty Development, noted, “I was always spraying disinfectant in the office and cleaning surfaces with antibacterial wipes — even before the new guidelines for cleaning were implemented.” (Photo by Allison Carter)