This week, we feature Chris Klinger, user services manager in the Computer Center.
How did you come to work at Hiram?
I graduated college, got married and took a job in Texas at a university. Basically that’s where I started my IT career. Two-and-a-half years later, when we were expecting our first child, my wife wanted to be closer to family in Warren, Ohio, which brought me back here.
What are your responsibilities at Hiram?
A lot of my job functions around our Help Desk: troubleshooting, fixing breaks and fixing stuff throughout campus. I am involved with that across all aspects of the campus community, so whether it be staff or students, we support all of that. I manage a staff of about 12 students. I’m also involved with the majority of the hardware on campus. When it comes to the desktops and laptops on campus, I do all the purchasing and ordering. The user services manager piece, to me, means that I help maintain user accounts on campus, allowing permissions to certain things, setting up of new accounts, a lot of that kind of stuff.
What do you enjoy most about your current position?
Honestly it’s the students who work for me. I kind of look at them as “my kids.” They are very important to our job function, and to see the growth and development of them outside of the classroom while working with us at the Computer Center in a Help Desk capacity is kind of cool. I bring in students to work for me that aren’t computer-related majors at all, and they’ll come through and work two to four years with us and turn around and get full time technical jobs with religious studies degrees, with literature degrees, you know different stuff.
How would you describe Hiram students?
It’s a mixed bag, like any other university. I think that you’re going to have your different likes, dislikes, groups, all of that, but in general, I think that they’re happy-go-lucky, good students. They seem to be solid, solid students, especially the ones I interact with on daily basis. The work ethic, the desire to get things and the aptitude is all there. Overall the Hiram student population overall is a friendly, welcoming group.
How do you answer when asked what is distinctive about Hiram?
I talk about the family atmosphere of it. Everyone kind of knows everybody. I have been here for six years, and I can walk out on campus and see a ton of familiar faces. Now granted, my job duties almost force that since I provide support for the entire campus. At some point and time I’m going to have an interaction with a fellow staff or faculty member on campus, so we’re going to get exposure to that and begin to form those bonds and relationships. Being somewhat of a smaller campus you’re afforded the ability to go out and actually form those relationships and kind of start building the family of what Hiram is. There’s a lot of that that I see out there, and I think it’s because of the size, which allows us to interact with one another. We’re not so big that it keeps us isolated in our own little pockets.
What are your interests outside of work?
I’ve got a family; my daughter is six now. I spend a lot of time with her, and she’s awesome. I think at this point in time that the “daddy’s little girl” and “mommy’s little boy” thing plays out pretty well. I don’t have a son, but I am obviously someone’s son and I am “mama’s boy” and my daughter is definitely a “daddy’s little girl.” So obviously I spend a lot of time with my family and my wife – and then a number of different hobbies between firearms, cars, you name it. I have a lot of things I enjoy, including electronics, obviously, as a computer guy.