Following her graduation with an associate degree in secretarial science, Debbie Ingling made her way back to the Clark Technical College Business Office and began her new job as the first switchboard operator and secretary; that was on July 12, 1972. On May 29 of this year, she will officially retire from Clark State Community College.
In her 37 years with Clark State, Ingling has provided administrative support for many offices within the College including the President’s Office, Academic Affairs, Admissions Office, Arts and Sciences Division, Business Office/Cashier’s, Business Division, Public Services Division, Agriculture Division, Health Division, Engineering Division, Computing Services, Continuing Education, Conference Services, Records and Registration, Financial Aid, Educational Services and Student Affairs.
In 1987 Ingling returned to a full-time position in Educational Services as the division secretary. In June 2002 her title was changed to administrative assistant to the dean of student affairs, and she currently reports to Dr. Edward Busher, dean of student support services, and Nina Wiley, dean of enrollment services.
“Debbie’s contributions to Clark State will have a lasting effect on the institution,” said Wiley. “Her personal touch and genuine concern for our students will be greatly missed.”
Regardless of how many positions Ingling successfully held, she said the most prominent change she has seen at Clark State has been the technology. “The day-to-day use of technology has evolved from typewriters to the use of computers with the need to stay current and learn various forms of software,” she said. “Duplication of documents evolved from the stencils and mimeograph machine to the current Xerox copiers.”
Ingling also pointed out that during her time at Clark State Community College, the Leffel Lane Campus also grew from only two buildings in the early 1970s to the current six buildings.
“Clark State has been more than a job to me,” said Ingling. “It has been my home away from home for 37 years. Some of the co-workers have become my best friends, and they almost feel like my family.” Like their mother, Ingling’s three children also received degrees from Clark State and have gone on to have successful careers and lives. “Clark State has always been a consistent presence in my life.”
Ingling made the decision to retire so she could spend time with her family – including five grandchildren – and friends. She would also like to do some traveling and gardening.
“My hope is that my customer service and life skills have helped to contribute to the success of students that I have served over the past 30-plus years.”