I started at HCC in 1997, I had been "down-sized" out at Colonial Penn (they later "down-sized" EVERYONE)
and the first thing I thought is that I need to learn something new! I loved to cook and I thought about becoming a chef until I talked
to a friend Chefy Baby who was a grad from CIA in New York and he said that it was very hard work until you got your own place or became a
food critic like he had. I had just started into computers the previous year so I went the direction of computers. I went down December 10, 1996 and
signed up for the Spring 1997 term. I took CGS 1000 (Intro to Computers), DOS 1 and Intro to the Internet. I was all ready to go and with unemployment
I did not have to worry about working yet!
Classes started in Janurary 1997 and it was very strange to be back in the classroom after about 15 years. The work
was not hard, more of a challange on the IBM 486 computers, not like my Gateway 2000 P1 133 I had at home. In the CGS 1000 class we had a lot of time to do work
in the classroom, I soon learned it was easier to do my work at home and help many of the students in class who were having a hard time with computers for the
first time. At Colonial Penn I had worked with computers for about 11 years and at home I had gotten "into" computers BIGTIME about 1993, reading EVERYTHING I
could about them, so I was ahead of all the students in the class. Dr. Pussins really knew her stuff and she kept me on my toes!!! She was involved in a car accident
that semester so she missed a lot of class, she would send the assignment into one of the lab techs who would sometimes stay in the room and help those that needed it,
it was at this time that I figured being a lab tech would be a cool job. I spent the rest of the semester helping the students in my class and doing the best work
that I could do. Dr. Pusins still has my final project that she said had been done sooo well!!!! At the end of the term I asked about a job, they did not hire till Fall
so I said I would work for free as a trial for the summer, I was still getting unemployment and since I was in school I did not need to look for another job.
So, I spent the summer working as a tech and come Fall term, I was brought on part-time.
I worked part-time for about 1 year until Dan the full-time tech asked me about taking his job, he was planning on leaving
and the other techs were not in it for the long term and he knew I was and that I would do a good job. So in the fall of 1998 I started working full-time and around that
time I started teaching as an adjunct instructor. I had done a lot of "subbing" when instructors were out and did it so well that at times I would do a lecture or a test
prep. The first classes I taught as "the instructor" was Introduction to the Internet and Web Authoring HTML. I taught these classes until I started teaching in the Cisco
Network Academy at HCC. In all, I have taught about 75 - 15 week classes at HCC over the past 8 years.
At this time, I also handled the Dale Mabry campus website, taking it from about 3 pages to several hundred. I did this for about 5 years.
I still handle a lot of the AS Division website as well as the Cisco Academy website. I am also still working full-time as a Computer Science administrator and tech -
I with the other employees in the department maintain about 450 computers, 15 printers, several servers, several projectors and about half the 4th floor of the Tech Building.
We have to make sure everything is running and in top condition for all the tech classes. We also have to help the students, staff, faculty and administrators as the interact
with the technology.
I have to say that I enjoy the job I do and the people I work with and I love helping people with technology. I can still
remember when I did not understand this stuff, so helping others comes real easy!!
Gene at work with his Cisco mug