Every long-term institution has employees that, over the years, define the institution.
At Clayton State University, one of those individuals for the past 25 years has been Dirk Morrell, who joined the staff at Clayton State on Oct. 1, 1986, as a delivery clerk. This coming Friday, Dec. 23, 2011, Morrell will retire as the head of Mail Services and Inventory Control, and it is safe to say that Clayton State will never be the same again.
You see, Morrell is one of a kind, a true original with an original sense of humor who is arguably one of the most mnemonic individuals to favor the University with his presence. A quick Q & A with Morrell, on the occasion of this retirement, speaks for itself. For instance, when asked about his spending 25 years at Clayton State, he says, “I was just going to be here until I found a `real job.’”
Q. What are your plans for after you retire?
A. Watch TV and stay out of trouble. Staying out of trouble will almost be a full time job.
Q. What was your most memorable moment during your time at Clayton State?
A. When Dr. (Susan) Hornbuckle got her hair cut short.
Q. Who was the most memorable person you have known at Clayton State?
A. Dr. Donna McCarty. She showed me that a person could be a liberal and still have some common sense.
Q. Who is your all-time favorite Clayton State person?
A. I cannot put one person in that category, but the staff of Clayton State are some of the best people I have ever met… they always keep things going.
Q. What’s been the biggest change in Clayton State since you started working here?
A. I would have to say the expansion of the campus. I remember when Budget & Finance, Accounting Services, HR, Payroll, VPAA ( 2 people), President, Development, Financial Aid, Admissions, Registrar, Computer Center, Mail room and Continuing Education where all housed in the A Building, which I think is now called Faculty Hall. Oh yeah, and Public Safety had a big closet in the Student Center.
Q. What advice do you have for whoever takes your job?
A. Keep a smile on your face.
Q. What advice do you have for the rest of the Clayton State staff?
A. Keep on looking out for each other.
Q. What is one interesting thing about Dirk Morrell that no one at Clayton State knows?
A. I comb my hair to hide my bald spot. I know that no one has ever noticed it.
Q. Who or what will you miss the most about Clayton State?
A. The people.
It’s safe to say that the people of Clayton State will miss him as well.
A unit of the University System of Georgia, Clayton State University is an outstanding comprehensive metropolitan university located 15 miles southeast of downtown Atlanta.