Georgetown School of Continuing Studies Hosts SAMs

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

By Sam Mullins

It was an educational afternoon for the DowntownDC Business Improvement District’s (BID) Safety/Hospitality and Maintenance (SAM) employees Oct. 1 when Georgetown University’s School of Continuing Studies (640 Massachusetts Ave NW) hosted the SAMs’ employee of the month meeting in their state-of-the-art auditorium.

Georgetown’s LEED Gold certified downtown campus has more than 91,000 square feet of classroom, office and meeting space including 30 classrooms, 14 group study rooms, a digital media lab and broadcast studio, an interfaith chapel, a library, bookstore, café and lounge areas.

The School of Continuing Studies (SCS) offers 14 graduate degree programs and Georgetown’s only part-time bachelor’s degree program.

The DowntownDC BID in March formed a research partnership with SCS to afford both Georgetown and the BID new opportunities to collaborate on interdisciplinary research, coordinate faculty and student research projects and jointly promote and distribute research findings to key stakeholders.

[Read more about the SCS/BID partnership here.]

In 2013, the BID recognized SCS as the Landmark Development Project of Downtown for bringing new energy to Downtown and reimagining the educational experience. [Link here]

SAMs this month had the opportunity to meet in the SCS building, which is marked by a stunning four-level open atrium.

SAM Safety/Hospitality Supervisor Michael Creed opened the Oct. 1 meeting and thanked SCS for providing the venue. Associate Dean of Operations Sissel Malmbekk welcomed the SAMs and thanked them for their work keeping Downtown clean and safe.

SAMs learned a short history of Georgetown University from 1789 to the present day, including its numerous appearances in pop culture. Upcoming public events in Downtown including the Million Man March, various concerts at the Verizon Center and fall and Halloween-related activities were discussed to address their impacts on the BID.

Each year, the BID’s SAMs lend their time and manpower to a special cleanup partnership with the First Trinity Lutheran Church (address) This fall, Maintenance SAMs Wayne Cain and John Morton helped spruce up the public space around First Trinity’s block by removing trash and landscaping tree boxes.

BID Maintenance Services Manager Ronald E. Jones gave a special thank you to Cain and Morton for assisting in this annual cleanup effort.

BID Director of Operations Everett D. E. Scruggs praised the SAMs for their work keeping downtown clean and orderly during the recent visit from Pope Francis. SAMs helped empty trash cans, cleans sidewalks and directed visitors during the pope’s three days in the District.

The Safety/Hospitality SAMs with the most outreach recorded for the month were then acknowledged. They were: Sandra Tapscott, Alyce Easterling, Antoinette Odom, Montee Saunders, Rayshawn Boseman, Donna Riley and Lawrence Alston.

The BID often receives letters of appreciation from visitors and citizens for the SAMs’ hard work.

[Read recent SAM appreciation letters here.]

Last month, Scruggs shared that the Fire and Emergency Medical Service Manager from Engine 2 in the BID wrote to thank SAM Ethel Frye and her team for a job well done concerning the area around the station house. A tourist visiting D.C. also wrote the BID to thank SAM Brenda Holmes for her above-and-beyond work in assisting with directions and restaurant suggestions stating, “Brenda really made our evening.”

After telling a humorous fable about remaining dedicated to your role and working hard, Scruggs invited Malmbekk to announce the employees of the month. This September, the awards went to Safety/Hospitality SAM Alyce Easterling and Maintenance SAM Lorine Simon.

Alyce Easterling predates the DowntownDC BID, having worked to keep Downtown clean and safe since 1997. Easterling and her coworkers, some of whom also remain at the BID today, experienced first-hand the evolution of Downtown. Easterling won employee of the month twice before. She said her favorite part of her role at the BID is being outside and “working with people of all kinds of backgrounds.” Easterling, a native Washingtonian, said she also appreciates receiving “thank you’s” for the services she provides.

Lorine Simon said she “can’t count” the number of times she has won the honor of SAM of the Month. Simon has been with the BID for 14 years. She described the feeling of winning as “joyful” and said the best part of her job is when people from downtown thank her for keeping the area clean. Her favorite part of the BID is the varied nightlife and weekend offerings she enjoys with her friends. Simon wanted to send a special mention to her coworkers and managers for their support and for selecting her as employee of the month.