The Foreign Service Journal - October 2014 - page 19

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL
|
OCTOBER 2014
19
It’s All (Tech) Hands
on Deck
T
here are sections of posts with
an almost unlimited budget that
request highly technical systems that
neither they nor the people who work for
them understand.
If a system fails or malfunctions, they
ask for more systems and more tech-
nology. When something breaks, in an
emergency they turn to the only technical
persons at post.
At many posts where there are no
security engineers or technicians, the
facilities managers and the locals can
wind up working on some very sophisti-
cated—and in some cases, dangerous—
systems that no one has training on.
Anonymous Facility Manager
We Are Organized
O
MSs can organize the hell out of
anything we want to.
Llywelyn Graeme,
Office Management Specialist
We Don’t Make the
Bureaucratic Rules
T
o my generalist colleagues: When
you are an under secretary or
ambassador and in a position to make
change, just remember how much you
hated the bureaucracy and how di cult
it was to get things done within the State
bureaucracy.
Remember that the Washington-end
requirements are often as big a headache
for me as they are for you. Change them,
and you’ll help us do our jobs better.
Hunter Crowder,
General Services Officer
There Aren’t Enough of Us
I
’ve only been working with the depart-
ment for ve years now. However, in
the last 10 years or so our programs have
expanded rapidly.
For example, the English Access
Microscholarship came into being world-
wide in 2004.
is program has grown
and grown, and to date it has provided
after-school English classes to more than
100,000 students in over 80 countries. In
addition, now we have more E-teacher
courses, webinars, MOOCs (massive
open online courses) and AmericanEng-
lish.state.gov.
I think the biggest issue for RELOs is
still sta ng.
ere are just not enough
RELOs, FSNs working on English Lan-
guage Programs, or Civil Service col-
leagues in the Bureau of Cultural and
Educational A airs to meet the huge,
ever-growing demand for our programs.
I think we currently have 29 or 30
RELOs for the entire world. RELOs in
Africa cover 15 to 17 countries each. And
with hiring freezes and attrition, we don’t
have enough D.C.-based sta either.
n
Diane M. Millar, Regional English
Language O cer
Remember that
the Washington-
end requirements
are often as big a
headache for me
as they are for
you.
Hunter Crowder,
GSO Specialist
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