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'Outstanding' Staffer Yvonne Wu

Math Department Administrative Support Assistant Receives University Award

June 10, 2014

Seminars? Check. Guest lecturers? Done. Fullerton Math Circle? All right. For the Mathematics Department's Yvonne Wu, every day brings something new to deal with, and she does it handily say those who work with her.

To succeed at handling the growth of such activities, she developed new strategies, including implementing spreadsheets, Google calendar and department policies and guidelines — just one example of why the administrative support assistant was recognized this year as a recipient of the 2014 Outstanding Staff Member Award.

Wu is an exceptional employee who consistently seeks out opportunities for improvement and exceeds in all that she does for the department, said Jan Sheridan, administrative support coordinator for mathematics.

"She can get along with anyone. Her work ethic and willingness to serve others cannot be too highly praised. As a team player, she is without parallel," said Sheridan, who joined Bogdan Suceavă, professor of mathematics and founder of the Math Circle program, in nominating Wu for the award.

Both Wu and Isaias Hernandez, lead custodian in facilities operation, received the annual accolade. The staff members were recognized at the recent University awards program, which celebrated the contributions and achievements of faculty, staff and administrators.

"I'm honored," said Wu, who has worked in the department since 2008. "It means so much to me that people noticed the work that I do, and wanted to acknowledge it with this award."

Since the Math Circle began in fall 2011, Wu's contributions have gone beyond reserving rooms for the Saturday morning program that serves more than 100 gifted middle school and high school students, said Suceavă.

Wu provides budget and grant support, conducts meetings for the Math Circle student facilitators on such issues as preparing their payroll forms, oversees the speaker's series and manages registration for math competitions.

"The Department of Mathematics is fortunate to have someone of Yvonne's caliber and work ethic. She adapted so effortlessly to our unique needs and has helped to make this program a successful endeavor," added Suceavă.

Wu was hired to assist department staff, but has since taken on more responsibilities due to her organized approach, demonstrative abilities to take the initiative and to problem-solve. She does her job, noted Sheridan, with "a great deal of enthusiasm" and is "the go-to-girl anytime someone needs a hand."

"I try to assist people anyway I can — whether it's faculty, students or other staff members," Wu said. "We work together very well."

Her duties also involve coordinating the adoption of textbooks, overseeing student payroll, ordering supplies, handling grade-related tasks and providing backup for other departmental duties. She streamlined the department's processes in hiring student assistants — which improved efficiency — and assists with training new staff and student assistants.

A resident of Chino, Wu plans to earn her MBA from Cal Poly Pomona next June. Her career goals include "gaining more experience in the work environment that will help me in the future."



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