Trever Fike, University Commons Coordinator: The Man Behind the Curtain

By schwartzsa | February 17, 2012

Trever Fike, University Commons Coordinator, joined the Arcadia’s Office of Student Engagement in August 2011 and has since created, implemented and maintained the Commons’ policies and procedures. In just a few short months, he’s personally trained a team of employees who ensure the safety, ease of use and overall comfort of every member on Arcadia University’s campus on a daily basis.

Since it’s opening on Jan. 23, the Commons has quickly become the most popular hangout on campus. But while students chow down at the Chat, play a round of air hockey in the game room or enjoy a few quiet moments in the fireplace lounge, most remain blissfully unaware of the work that goes on behind the scenes. Fike is the man behind the curtain. In his role, he oversees the operations within the facility and collaborates with Conference Services and the Facilities team, for the scheduling and staffing of events, as well as any amenities or maintenance that space requires.

“There’s something for everyone here,” says Fike of the Commons. “I’m getting to know everyone on campus, getting to see their personalities and how they interact with the building. I love that the Commons was built for the students and it’s my priority to keep this building as student-oriented as possible.”

It’s been a busy introduction to the campus, as he prepared for a smooth transition into a new space. Fike worked closely with Josh Stern, Dian Taylor-Alleyne, Julie DiTrapano and other members of the campus staff to write an extensive 16-page Commons Policies and Procedures handbook.

It was also his responsibility to staff and train all of the Commons’ employees. He created two new student-worker roles, the Student Building Manager and the Information Desk Attendant, to be present during all hours of operation. He took on difficult task of identifying the individuals who would fill these shoes, effectively choosing the face and leaders of the Commons. So he worked closely with Heather Weaver, Assistant Director of Student Engagement, to appoint 11 of the previous game room staff who were willing to step up to the position. Fike also trained 25 new Information Desk Attendants to provide information on the building regarding special events, activities or club meetings.

To ensure that his new staff was comfortable and confident in their new roles, Fike was present at every single student worker’s first shift. With the building’s operating hours spanning from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m. That certainly made for some long days.

“In the last few weeks since the Commons has been open, I think everyone has done a really fantastic job,” says Fike. “I’ve tried to provide [student workers] with as much information as possible so that way they can provide assistance to everybody. When I trained them, I told them that they shouldn’t be afraid to say, ‘I don’t know,’ however, the proper way to go about it when helping members of the community is to say, ‘I don’t know but I will find out for you.’” All attendants are equipped with radios to ensure they can access the correct information instantaneously.

Fike joined the Arcadia community with an extensive background in facility operations. Though he has mostly worked within athletic departments, he’s enjoyed his transition into a role that is geared towards overall student life.

While it was a great experience working for a bigger university, he notes feeling anonymous within that atmosphere. “Despite being there for several years, there were people within my own building who didn’t even know who I was or what I did,” he says. “That’s not going to be an issue at Arcadia University. I feel like a lot of people already know who I am and what I do and I feel like this is exactly the type of atmosphere that I’m really going to excel in.”

Fike holds Bachelor’s degree in Corporate Communications from Susquehanna University and Master’s degree in Administration from West Chester University. His hobbies include running, golfing and traveling, though they’ve taken a back seat as something more precious came into the picture with the birth of his daughter, Kahley, in July 2011. Currently, he and his wife, Allison, are sharing in the joy of being new parents.