Today is the retirement of a well-loved and long serving member of staff, Linda King. Linda worked at the School for fourteen years, starting off in Room Bookings, moving to the Department of Infectious and Tropical Disease as it then was, and then finally over to the Teaching Support Office.
Here Linda talks about her time working at the School, and how she plans to spend her retirement.
“I originally came to the School as the Room Bookings Officer and in those days we used a very large book and everything had to be written in pencil, so that it could be corrected easily. I had used an electronic booking system where I worked before and it was decided that we needed to move to a similar system. I instigated the Room Booking System that we still use today.
I then worked in the ITD Teaching Office as a Course Administrator and then became one of the Team Leaders, then Manager in the Teaching Support Office for the last ten years.
Over the fourteen years that I have been at the School I have donated blood (taken by Carolyn Stanley) assisting many research projects for both staff and students. Carolyn has recorded all the visits and has told me that I have donated seventy times and given 1941 mls of blood. It has made me feel I am doing my bit for research at the School.
One of the best memories I will take from the School was being invited to go to Swaziland with the ICEH group and this was a truly memorable experience. We were to visit Dr Pons at the Good Shepherd Hospital in Siteki to try and raise the profile of his work. He was the only Ophthalmologist in Swaziland and we were to visit him to increase the participation of London based staff in projects in Africa.
We spent the week on his farm and went to the hospital each day to watch him work, we even watched him in the operating theatre performing cataract surgery, something I thought I would never do, and no, I didn’t faint! We did have some down time as well and went on Safari and tackled the rapids on the Great Usutu River, which was great fun!
As he only had one text book at that time I also managed to persuade publishers to donate text books to him so that he could build up a reference library for his students.
All my colleagues past and present in the Teaching Support Office are and were brilliant and I would like to say a big thank you to them all for making coming to work so pleasurable. I would also like to say a big thank you to Ruth Ellis for not only being a great boss but also for her friendship over the last seven years.
And to Zoe Hope – we worked together in the ITD Teaching Office for a number of years until I was merged into the TSO and Zoe went to the ITD Admin Office, we have remained friends ever since and I will miss our Friday lunchtime coffee breaks together.
I am looking forward to retirement, and the prospect of being able to just get up and go off whenever we please, as my husband and I are avid motorcyclists. We have five grandchildren, two great grandchildren and one on the way so I am sure they will keep us busy from time to time. We also love gardening and growing our own fruit and veg, so I think I will have plenty to do.
And of course I will be able to keep in touch with all my colleagues at the School through Facebook, seeing how they are getting on and what they are getting up to.”
We would like to thank Linda for her hard work and dedication over the years, and wish her all the best in her retirement!