Tuesday, April 12, 2011

A Portrait of Our Office Manager, Susan Dempsey

Sister Mai
This post will introduce a person who is very special to us in the Loyola Intensive English Program: our office manager, Susan Dempsey. This portrait of Susan was written by Sister Tuyet Mai Nguyen of Vietnam, an advanced student in the Loyola Intensive English Program.
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By Sister Tuyet Mai Nguyen

Susan Dempsey with daughters Ginger (left) and Katie (right)
on vacation in New York
Susan Dempsey has worked at Loyola University New Orleans for seven years. Her favorite task at Loyola is working with the students. As office manager for the Center for International Education, Susan works closely with students in the Loyola Intensive English Program, other international students at Loyola, and U.S. American students preparing for Loyola’s many Study Abroad programs. It is a great assignment and fun. “I get the energy that comes from this job,” Susan says.

Susan’s job is multi-faceted. She performs multiple tasks: she answers the phone, greets people who come in (both students and staff), completes immigration documents, takes care of all the bills in the office, and generally does all things required. As Susan expresses it, she does “a piece of this and a piece of that on a busy day.'

“I love the interaction with the students in general, being an international coordinator, any exchange with the students -- I love this,” Susan says in an excited voice. When she first started in this job, Susan sat in a side room. She realized that she did not deal with the students a lot; she just did this work without students’ exchange and interaction. However, as a person who greets guests, she needs to be right in the front. Therefore, eight months ago, in October 2010, it was decided to change the whole set-up in the office. Susan now sits right at the office entrance; she can be much more involved with the students and knows all of them by name. “It is happy energy,” says Susan.

When Susan is interrupted, it does not make her upset or frustrated because she enjoys helping people when they ask questions or need something to be fixed. She is happy to stop working to help them and takes her time to finish work later.

When Susan is not in the office, she enjoys being at home, which is a happy and safe place. She spends time with her two lovely and sweet teenage daughters. She also does the garden work, reads a lot, and visits with women friends. Mostly she likes to be with her daughters and their dog and two cats.

“My goal is trying to be helpful as much as I can because to come to another culture, especially in this country, it has to be daunting and unsettling. I cannot say no with the students,” Susan says. As a mother, she can imagine her daughter in another culture, meeting somebody who is warm, gracious and helpful. “Mostly, every day, I find that I love to help students,” says Susan.

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We in the Loyola Intensive English Program deeply appreciate Susan, her friendliness, and all that she does for us. Thank you, Susan.

Our thanks to Sister Mai for this portrait of Susan Dempsey. Our next post will introduce you to some of the many wonderful and diverse restaurants within walking distance of Loyola's campus.

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