GOODMAN: Recognizing the faces behind your daily routine

I’m a person of habit. Every Monday and Wednesday afternoon I walk into the Natural Market in the AMU, browse the yogurt shelf in search of the parfait with the most granola in it, and then purchase it from the same woman who always works at the counter.

Most days, this woman and I exchange small talk about yogurt. She’ll ask what my favorite kind is, or she’ll agree with me that the peach yogurt concoction that randomly appears every once in a while needs to never appear again. And then I’ll be on my way.

Without fail, this woman always greets me with a warm smile and wishes me well as I walk out the door. Although I’ve only had minimal interaction with her, I can tell that she is a wonderful person and that I’ll regret it if I don’t get to know her better before I graduate.

This example speaks to what, in my opinion, is one of the best things about Marquette – how kind the people who work here are. And one of the best things about being a columnist is having the freedom to write about and recognize such people who so often make my day without ever realizing it.

These are the individuals who know your name even if you don’t know theirs. These people always have smiles on their faces while they’re doing the same routine every day. In a way, these are some of the people who make this campus go ‘round.

As I’ve said before, every person deserves to know why he or she is great. So I won’t use names, but hopefully, you’ll know who you are.

Take for instance all of the people who can be found in the academic offices on campus. It doesn’t matter which office because they’re all pretty fantastic.

I’ve been lucky enough to work in the English department for the past three years. I basically get paid to answer the phone, make copies and do my homework. The best part about working there, however, is the people I interact with on a daily basis.

I get to have life chats with two women who are more entertaining to talk to than most students I know. Not only that, but these women genuinely care about my stresses, happiness and well-being. They’ve made the office one of the places on campus I feel most comfortable, and I plan to keep contact with them long after I graduate.

The other great thing about academic offices is interacting with professors outside of the classroom. News flash: They’re real people. They’re funny. And guess what? They care about you (the students) a lot.

For instance, a professor once told me that he reads my column each issue. Since then, if he particularly likes something I wrote, he stops by to talk about it. Not only have I gotten to hear some fascinating and awkward elevator stories, but the simple act of him doing this truly means a lot to me.

The individuals who work in the campus dining halls and Marquette Place are also wonderful. Each dining hall has its crazy, yet caring personalities who make eating in the residence halls much more bearable.

Most of my experiences stem from the incredible woman at the bagel station who, after three and a half years, still knows my order. They’re all great, though, and they all deserve to be thanked for everything they do.

The residence halls can’t be referenced though, without talking about the custodians. These are the people who have always, and will continue to, put up with us. They’re the ones who pick up the pieces on Monday mornings. They fix the torn-down posters, clean up the vomit, scrub down the bathrooms and take out the empty pizza boxes and Chopstix containers left in the hallways.

And after all that, they’re still nice to us.

At Marquette, we’re lucky enough to be surrounded by amazing people every day, whether it be a best friend, professor or the person you only interact with when ordering lunch. Take notice of this, and the next time someone makes your day – no matter how big or small the action may be – make sure to let them know.

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