Every other month, Random Profile spotlights a stochastically chosen staff member. This month we feature
the administrative assistant for UOP's Program for the Advancement of Geoscience Education (PAGE).
How she came to UCAR:
"I like to say I was an oxymoron--I was a long-term temporary." Eileen started at COMET in January 1995, working part time while she completed her master's degree at the University of Colorado in Boulder. She went full time and became a permanent UCAR employee in January 1996.
What she does now:
Eileen is the office linchpin for PAGE, one of UOP's newest groups. One of its goals is to bring multimedia technology of the sort developed at COMET into undergraduate geoscience classrooms across the country, basing its services to the community on the Unidata model. PAGE director Mary Marlino began working with Eileen while both were at COMET. "PAGE developed as an offshoot from both COMET and Unidata. It's been fun to be in on a new program that started from ground zero."
What she likes about her job:
"Multimedia publishing is an interesting field. I get lots of contact with the university community. The other full-time PAGE staff [Mary Marlino, Lynne Davis, and Katy Ginger] are all very talented, and Mary is an enjoyable director to work with."
Most enduring legacy from college:
Being a quick study. Eileen attended Colorado College between 1968 and 1972. The school was then becoming the nation's first to adopt the block plan, where each course is studied in series. "When you do a whole semester in three and a half weeks, there's no fooling around. CC graduates tend to be very focused and start right off the bat--there's no dawdling."
Love of lingo:
Eileen began graduate school in linguistics at CU twenty years after earning her bachelor's degree in philosophy at CC. "I've always been intrigued by language. It's fascinating to me how children acquire language, how much like sponges they are. They absorb so much in such a short period of time." She completed her master's but decided against a doctorate:
Perspective on her 110-mile commute:
"To do a Ph.D., you have to be completely committed to it."
"It's not all that bad." Eileen comes to the Foothills Lab each day from the town of Empire, halfway up Interstate 70 to the Continental Divide. She moved to Empire to help take care of her father shortly before his death in 1995 and decided to stay on with her mom. "It's actually worked out well. She's an easy person to live with, so it's no big deal." The 55-mile trip takes Eileen about 75 minutes in good weather. She normally heads to work on Highway 6 and returns on I-70. "If the weather's bad, I usually take the canyon because it's safer than the interstate."
How Eileen sees Eileen:
"A good sense of humor. Maybe a little bit unconventional."
Recent books she's read:
Cold Mountain, a novel by Charles Frazier, and Angela's Ashes, a memoir by Frank McCourt of what one reviewer called "the pinnacle of the miserable Irish Catholic childhood." Angela's Ashes was "one I really enjoyed, although I don't know if you can say you 'enjoy' a book like that."
She'd rather be:
Last summer's greatest revelation:
Eileen spent a week in August at a painters' retreat at Ghost Ranch in New Mexico. "It's nice to be able to paint steadily for three or four days." She discovered quickly that painting outside is "a different sort of activity from studio painting. You have to work faster--things dry faster, the light changes. You can't fool around."
Philosophy of life:
"Keep it simple. Be honest with yourself. Keep a sense of humor about yourself and what's going on, and you can get through almost anything." BH
Edited by Bob Henson,
Prepared for the Web by Jacque Marshall