Every month the Administrative/Professional (A/P) Council highlights an A/P staff member through a series of questions as another way for the Illinois State community to connect. This month readers can get to know a few A/P members as we introduce the newest members of the Administrative/Professional Council.
What is your job title and responsibilities?
Derek O’Connell (At-large member): I am assistant to the chair and undergraduate advisor for the Department of Philosophy. My responsibilities include academic advising, teaching, enrollment tracking, curriculum management and scheduling, promotion, assessment, acting as a departmental liaison, and anything else the moment requires.
Bridget Reeland (At-large member): I serve as an associate director for residential life for University Housing Services with responsibility for the following areas: apartment living, case management, residential curriculum, student government, Themed Living Learning Communities, safety & security, contracts & assignments, and move-in.
Mike Regilio (At-large member): I am the director for the College of Arts and Sciences IT. I support, through the use of technology, creating the most supportive and productive community possible to serve the citizens of Illinois State and beyond.
Chris Roberts (Academic Senate Rep): I’m a research and planning analyst with Planning, Research & Policy Analysis
Jamie Sennett (At-large member): I am a director for Alumni Engagement. Here I oversee our large alumni awards program and alumni day program. I am also the liaison for many of our campus partners to assist in alumni engagement. I also focus on alumni events for the Bloomington-Normal area.
How long have you been an employee at Illinois State?
Derek: Five years.
Bridget: I began my journey at Illinois State as an undergraduate, transfer student in 1997. I became a resident assistant that same year and was recruited to the field through the graduate assistantship. My full-time position began in 2002, although I had five years with the department by that time!
Mike: Since 2007.
Chris: I’ve been a full-time employee at ISU for 11 years now.
Jamie: Fourteen years
What do you love most about working at Illinois State?
Derek: A community of faculty and staff who care about each other’s well-being.
Bridget: I came to Illinois State for my education, but I stayed because this team welcomed me into a wonderful culture of education and support. This position and institution became my family and my calling. Embracing a goal of assisting students on their developmental paths, challenging them to expand and embrace a higher level of being, and ultimately helping to shape and influence future generations and society is such an exciting way for me to spend my professional life. I am forever indebted to Illinois State for this experience.
Mike: Our purpose and culture. We get to come to work every day to make the world better. The technology I help support cures diseases makes our drinking water better, helps us understand how and why people do what we do, among so much else. I am also enabled to directly better the lives of the student whom I work with daily in their internships as developers, front-end designers, and technical writers, and for the students that I teach in my web design and production course.
Chris: I really love our campus community. We have a very open and inviting culture and our dedication to our Redbird students is evident in all we do.
Jamie: I love the people at ISU. The faculty/staff, the students, and the alumni. It is truly a family!
When you’re not working, what are you most likely doing?
Derek: Reading for courses I teach, for the courses I take, and just because.
Bridget: I am a big fan of reading, spending time creatively either baking, cooking, or trying out a project. I appreciate music and theater and love to go to a good show or movie.
Mike: Camping, floating out on my pontoon boat
Chris: I love watching films, so if I’m not working I’m most likely sitting on a couch with a dog in my lap screening a flick.
Jamie: I am most likely running my three kids around to their sporting events or watching them play when I am not working.
What is your favorite spot on campus?
Derek: I try to walk around the Quad a couple of times a day when the weather permits it.
Bridget: I love the swing benches that were recently installed, I could sit there soaking in the sun for a long time!
Mike: I can’t pick just one. Fell Hall will always be home to me. I spent the majority of my undergrad years in the “Garden Level” at WZND and TV-10. I love taking my laptop out on the Quad, to the library, or to the Bone to be inspired by the students while getting my own work done. My current office in Stevenson 107 is a special place to me as I’ve known so many students that have gone through that office.
Chris: I love being on the sixth floor of Milner. You can go and sit in the quiet study section and look out over the plaza to the Quad. It’s both peaceful and beautiful.
Jamie: The Quad.
What are you most looking forward to in your first term on A/P Council?
Derek: I look forward to learning more about the wide range of groups that make up A/P employees at ISU, and about the Council’s role in shared governance.
Bridget: Getting to meet more of the A/P staff within our university and gaining an understanding of the various needs and issues that our council addresses.
Mike: I’m looking forward to seeing how I can continue to make an impact on the working lives of Administrative Professionals.
Chris: Before I was an AP, I served on the Civil Service Council, so my goals remain the same. I want to make sure that fellow AP members feel they are being well served and that their concerns are properly represented to various committees and to the Academic Senate.
Jamie: I am really looking forward to learning about our campus community in a different way by serving on the council. I am also looking forward to working with the other council members. It’s a great group of people!