What time do you get here every day?
Get here at 6:15 a.m. every morning and leave at 3 p.m., Monday through Thursday.
Walk us through your day.
When I come to work, the first thing I do is check over all the paperwork. We have a daily report we get from security so we know exactly whats going on, and based on that, we will know what doors need to be opened and any duties for the day. That’s why I spend a lot of time at the information center. Throughout my day, my activities, I have to give the information receptionists their breaks. That’s why you see us there a lot.
How and why did you get to be security guard at Loras College?
I worked with the Dubuque county sheriff’s department as a special deputy for 18 years. I came here from the insurance agency that I sold to my kids. I came here in November of 2002 to work part time. I have been here 16 years full time. Just to share with you, it’s been such a joy to have the opportunity to be around college students. Today I have so much respect for the college students here at Loras and love them all. That’s why I’m still here.
What is your favorite story to tell about working here?
Service trips, obviously. First of all, there’s been an awful lot of good things that happen to me here at Loras College. The highlights of all my time here at Loras have been the service trips to Kentucky and Honduras and the trip to Italy. I’ve gotten awards, employee of the year, but the service trips have been my favorite.
What is your least favorite part of the job?
My least favorite part of the job is in the summer time, after graduation when the students leave until they return. Coming here when there are no students is like going to a tavern that doesn’t have any alcohol.
What is your favorite part?
Working with the students on a daily basis. It’s not only with the students; it’s being involved in so many activities with the students, and again the trips.
What is the biggest issue on campus?
I wish more students would get involved in more of the service trips because they really struggle to get people to go sometimes. Because there are so many rewards on a service trip. When you help people in need, you are really the one that reaps all the benefits. Because on those service trips, you become so close, you become a family on that trip, where everyone gets to pray together, work together, travel together, play together. You really develop a bond. I still communicate with people from a trip in 2004. So that bond is there. And for myself, I’m still communicating with students that I traveled on service trips with 14 years ago. And that’s special. They are truly Duhawks.
There might be a lot of people reading this who might be really unhappy right now, what is your secret to being so joyful?
Something that I learned from my father on how to be happy (it’s an old saying): if you can bring sunshine or happiness into someone else’s life, you cannot keep from yourself. I believe that too. My happiness today is really centered around my immediate family, my music, and all the students at Loras College.
I guess what most people don’t know about me is just how happy I am, and I’m alone. What a happy person I am, because I believe that my wife is still with me today. I am so thankful for my faith in God because it’s really my faith that keeps me happy. When people ask me why I’m always so happy, I tell them because I can’t think of any reason why I shouldn’t be. I can remember telling students that one of my goals when I leave Loras is that, some day down the road when they have a reunion or a homecoming, they say, “Remember that security guard from years ago? He wasn’t a bad guy.”
Something that I would suggest to everyone, is to always try to treat people the way you would like to be treated. When things happen where we need help, I believe that God always gives us the strength we need when we need it and not before.
This summer I plan to retire, but I know I’ll be taking some of the most wonderful memories with me that will keep the happiness in my life that I so much cherish.
There’s something special about campus ministry. The campus ministry is definitely my favorite department in this whole college, because of what they’ve done for me. Not just what I’ve done for them, what they’ve done for me and all the people involved in it. Every time I walk down that hall I always look to see if that door is open.
When I went to Italy, one thing that really sticks with me is that Fr. Joensen had a different mass set up. It was one of the most spiritual experiences of my whole life. And getting to see the Pope and go to Vatican, it just blew my mind. I thank Loras College for it. It wouldn’t have happened otherwise.
What are you going to do when you retire?
I’m going to travel, I will be more involved in music, and more involved with my grandkids. I want to go to Florida in the winter time. But I will always stay in contact with Loras. I’ll probably be the first one to homecoming.
“You have a nice day now!”
Due to technological difficulties, articles from the Feb. 15 issue were posted late. The Lorian apologizes for the late update.