Towson University staff serve the campus with much passion and little fanfare. Below, five employees whose work is making a difference–and what they have in store for the future.
Nick Koryto, 7720 Chef
The 7720 Café has developed a different flavor since Nick took charge in August 2014.
The former Fogo de Chao chef emphasizes freshness and variety, and a genuine concern for how customers enjoy food. He loves cooking and tweaking meals to be as delicious and presentable as possible; that’s why he’s added new artisanal products and themed meals to 7720’s repertoire.
“I love making people happy with food,” Nick says. “If I can bring a smile to someone’s face because of my work, I’ve succeeded.”
When Nick came to 7720 nearly three years ago, the menu and practices had been unchanged for years. He added a pizza oven, updated the protocol to prepare foods fresh every morning, and introduced themed buffets. But it’s just the beginning. Look out for Nick’s upcoming experiments with beef and chocolate, and be sure to try out the salmon and prime rib cooked in his new sous-vide machine.
Jen Stano, Office of Human Resources Manager
Jen is the liaison between Humanim, a local career training organization, and TU. Humanim is a 10-week program that trains Baltimore City residents age 18-30 for administrative careers. Trainees go through a competitive screening process and learn the essentials of business writing, office management and professional etiquette. If they’re successful, they earn a Professional Administrative Certificate of Excellence (PACE).
Jen connects the dots for Humanim graduates to gain employment at TU. When a university department needs a temporary administrative assistant, Jen coordinates with Humanim to quickly fill that position. It’s a win-win: trainees are set down a great path for lifelong employment and success, and TU gains qualified and diverse employees.
“I love working with Humanim because it allows me to help smart, capable hard-working employees find jobs,” Jen says.
If you’re looking for an administrative assistant, talk to Jen about how you can get qualified applicants from Humanim.
Nick Gingue, Assistant Director of Auxiliary Maintenance (Facilities Management)
You may have noticed the new Panda Express in West Village this semester, or the new pavilion outside PAWS last spring. If it weren’t for Nick, those projects may not have been completed.
Nick Gingue ’12 has led many auxiliary projects on campus. He’s the liaison between Facilities Management and every non-academic department on campus, which means he listens to everyone’s needs for each project and then makes sure those needs are met. Housing and Residence life, for example, gives Nick a list of projects they want completed each year, and Nick makes those projects happen.
Nick has excelled at TU for 10 years (eight in ECS, two in Facilities) since earning his master’s degree in Professional Studies here, but supervisors describe him as humble and down to earth.
Barbara Hufnagel, Procurement Contract Administrator/MBE-SBR Liaison
Barbara is committed—to TU, to various committees and boards, to fair business practices. There’s no one project that defines Barb as an employee; it’s the time she devotes to different goals—and the care she uses when accomplishing them—that defines her work. As one business owner said: “Ms. Hufnagel should be a role model for all MBE/DBE liaisons within the state of Maryland. She works hard and is very passionate about her job.”
Two extracurricular roles in particular supplement Barbara’s work in TU’s Procurement office: she serves on the Minority Business Enterprise Advisory Committee (MBEAC), and she works with the Small Business Reserve Program (SBR). As an MBEAC board member she reviews cases in which companies have applied for MBE Certification, lending expertise and analysis to help decide whether certification should be granted. She’s also in an advisory-type position with the SBR—her main role is to teach new small business owners how to comply with procurement standards.
Roger Sheets, Director of Access Control
You may have noticed “lock” stickers on doors around campus, but you may not know what that’s all about. Safety stickers are just the tip of the iceberg, and Roger plays an important part in what the rest of us can’t see.
The safety sticker project is about protecting campus from potential active shooters. At a 2015 safety conference, TU Chief of Police Bernie Gerst learned that campus shooting deaths are related to door locks, specifically when they don’t lock from the inside. OPS reviewed campus doors, determined that 1,000 couldn’t lock from the inside and embarked on a major campaign to make campus safer. That’s where Roger comes in.
Roger helped pitch the project so it could be funded, and then organized it down to every last sticker. The project is halfway to completion, moving swiftly and efficiently under the work of Roger and his team.
Written by Tyler New