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SEPTEMBER 2010 UPDATE HOME
More September Features:

Research aided by Fellows program
Professors introduce local election
U of M tailgaters recycle
Theatrical group
Cash builds a firm foundation
Chando sees 'different' side of U of M
Lockhart locks in honor
Wright-Savage lauded
Adopt an Angel
Names in the news

VIEW UPDATE ARCHIVE


September 2010 Briefs

Washington Monthly magazine has listed the University of Memphis among the top 100 schools in its 2010 universities rankings. The U of M comes in at No. 100, right behind the State University of New York at Stony Brook and the University of Connecticut, and ahead of the University of Massachusetts, Boston University and the University of Tennessee. 

Dr. Joan Thomas, associate professor in the University of Memphis’ Loewenberg School of Nursing, has received a grant of $787,696 from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to prepare future nurse executives. The three-year award is one of the largest HRSA grants ever received at the U of M. 


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Cash builds a firm foundation en route to award

By Greg Russell

U of M director of special events Susan Elliott was at wit’s end. With the President’s Society’s donor recognition event set to happen last November in the still-incomplete University Center, Elliott was in a last-second quandary when she was told the venue would likely be unavailable. Enter Pam Cash.

“When all those around her were ready to say that the event could not possibly be held in the UC while it was still under construction, Pam, always solution-oriented, found a way to make it happen,” Elliott said. “I have no doubt that we were able to successfully host the event in that space because over the years Pam has cultivated the respect of professionals both on and off campus. The result was a successful event that positively impacted donor relations.”

Being able to pull-off the “impossible” is one reason Cash, U of M manager of facilities projects, received the Distinguished Administrator of the Year Award in June. She has worked in physical plant for 22 years, with the last five in her current position.

Pam Cash (second from left) was honored with the  Distinguished Administrator of the Year Award during a ceremony in June at Rose Theatre. (photo by Susan Prater)
Pam Cash (second from left) was honored with the Distinguished Administrator of the Year Award during a ceremony in June at Rose Theatre. (photo by Susan Prater)

“It is a huge honor and it means more to me than words can explain,” Cash said of her award. “For so many people who were deserving of the honor to take the time to send in a nomination for me and to say such nice things is quite humbling.”

Bricks for several new buildings – the UC and new Living Learning Residence Complex to name a couple — have been laid during Cash’s tenure, but she would be hard-pressed to zone in on her favorite one.

“To me, the University is always an exciting place to work and the major construction projects that have been in progress the last couple of years have only added to the excitement. I don't have one favorite project because they were all exciting and important, but I do have a favorite moment. At the grand opening event for the new UC, I got to witness the students enter the new facility as they sang with excited expressions on their faces. It made me realize, even more than I already knew, that this moment was the exact reason we do everything that we do.”

Cash said the uncertainty of construction work is the most taxing part of her job.

“The biggest challenge for me personally is dealing with missed deadlines. There are so many variables involved with construction and renovation projects that quite frequently predetermined schedules cannot be met, and in turn causes anxiety for University staff and the end users.”

But Cash seems to always come through.

“I am motivated by the fact that I love this University and I care about what happens to it. I do not want anything that I do to reflect negatively on physical plant or the University. And the only way I can ensure that is to work my hardest and do the best I can every day.

“I am also motivated by the great work ethic my parents instilled in me while being raised on a farm. Also, Colossians 3:23 says, ‘Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men,’ and this is also a key to what motivates me.”

Cash said she has learned from some of the best while at the U of M. “One of these people (was) Jim Hellums who retired June 30 after 32 years of service to the University. Jim was constantly pushing us to be innovative and to think outside of the box. He encouraged me and others to try and achieve things that we did not think that we could do. I would like to thank Jim for his years of service, his dedication to the University and our department, and his many creative ideas.”

Cash, who received $500 as part of the award, said away from work, “I spend my time with my family, my husband Darrel and my sons, Wesley and Jesse.

 

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