Daniel Chambliss

“Untapped Potential? Appreciating the Administrative Assistant,” by Daniel Chambliss, the Eugene M. Tobin Distinguished Professor of Sociology, was recently published in the journal The Department Chair.

Chambliss wrote about the value of a well-trained academic administrative assistant (AA), noting that though “often underappreciated, sometimes completely unnoticed, your AA is actually a linchpin of the College’s organizational machinery.”

Academic office assistants, Chambliss said, are the “administrative center of a department, are available all day long, and are intimately familiar with the allocations of time, space, money, supplies, and positions—in short, with the material realities of power, of getting things done.”

“If we faculty, staff supervisors, department chairs, and deans all took AAs a bit more seriously, then our work lives would improve—a lot,” he concluded.

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