More than 200 people stopped by Dabney Lounge and Garden on August 17 to celebrate campus employees who have been working on campus throughout the pandemic.
Sponsored by the Staff & Faculty Consultation Center (SFCC) and HR Events & Education, the staff appreciation event featured food, music, games, and activities for four hours midday.
Event organizer and SFCC director Linda Krippner says that "while some are talking about a 'return' to on-campus operations, many dedicated employees have been working in essential capacities on site throughout the pandemic period." She adds that the Institute "wanted to recognize and honor the investment and sacrifices made by our many colleagues in these front-line roles. Offering mental health support along with a break for food, music, and enjoyment is one way to show these employees they are seen and valued at Caltech."
Julia McCallin, associate vice president for human resources, says the event was an important way to take a moment to "thank those essential workers who continually kept our campus safe throughout the pandemic. They did this with great care and dedication and for this work we are forever grateful. It is because of them that the important work of Caltech was able to continue."
She notes that as the fall term approaches, the return to onsite work for those who have been working remotely will take place "with a continued focus on the health and safety of all members of our community. We look forward to welcoming everyone back to their onsite work locations in a safe and productive manner."
For the on-campus workers who were able to attend, the event was a welcome gesture and acknowledgement of their labors.
Pedro Robles, a custodial assistant, says: "It was really nice that they did something like this to thank staff. The effort that was put into recognizing us is really appreciated."
View photos from the event.