The Collegian
Saturday, April 13, 2024

Jermaine Massenburg: Three decades and counting

For almost 31 years, longer than any undergraduate student has been alive, Jermaine Massenburg has been cleaning and maintaining the campus buildings.

Massenburg has lived in Richmond her entire life and has been caring for the buildings on campus since 1981. She even met her husband on campus. She said her husband works in facilities as an air conditioning or HVAC mechanic.

Now that Massenburg has been promoted to team leader, she is in charge of coordinating the work of eight people and is in charge of many buildings. Her team consists of one person in each building and four in the Boatwright Memorial Library. Massenburg said: "I'm overseeing Boatwright, Puryear, and Maryland and Richmond halls. I get a chance to walk around and meet different people at all the buildings."

She also worked in the Tyler Haynes Commons, Sarah Brunet Hall, Gottwald and the dorms when she first began working here, she said.

Harold Wainwright Jr., a member of Massenburg's team, said, "(she is the) best team-leader around."

Bianca Spurlock, a member of the Boatwright Memorial Library staff, said, "I think she is an excellent manager and supervisor. I think she really cares about service, and she always follows up on any request, whether it be big or small to ensure the job has gotten done."

Massenburg said: "I'm always willing to give a helping hand where needed. I always like to have a positive attitude, and I like to work in a positive environment. I try to keep my team motivated as much as possible."

Spurlock said, "Everything we have had happen here, whether it's spills or leaks, she has been great in supervising [the team members] to get it done."

Besides caring for the buildings of Richmond, Massenburg said she enjoyed photography and had taken three photography classes. Her first class, she said, was a beginner class, and her husband bought her a new camera.

Now, Massenburg said, "I'm doing a family tree with pictures of my great-great grandparents, which is unlike other family trees, which just give names."

Besides making her own family tree, Massenburg also said she made DVDs and was in the process of completing one now. "Last weekend, I did a surprise birthday party that turned into an engagement party," she said.

In the future, students may see Massenburg in photography classes on campus. "I was looking in the book to see what they offered now, so I could brush up on what I have learned," she said.

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Along with photography, Massenburg said she enjoyed spending time with her family and friends. "I love getting together with family; it doesn't have to be a holiday. We make it special," she said.

Contact reporter Amanda Minnitte at amanda.minnitte@richmond.edu

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