The Durban University of Technology (DUT) continues to commend all its essential workers for their dedication and commitment in providing services to the community during the COVID-19 pandemic. DUT’s Communications team’s Waheeda Peters spoke to Ms Nerina Reddy, a Desktop Consultant in the Client Services section within the Information and Communication Technologies Services (ICTS) department.
Q: Kindly tell me about your role at DUT?
A: “I am currently a Desktop Consultant in the Client Services section within the Information and Communication Technologies Services (ICTS) department. I assist the DUT staff community with all desktop related support and I am based at the ML Sultan Campus.”
Q: How long have you been in that role?
A: “I have been employed in the department since August 2008. This is my 14th year in the ICTS department and my 24th year at DUT.”
Q: Please describe yourself in a few words?
A: “I am a friendly, considerate and conscientious person who is always dedicated to family, friends and work.”
Q: How has it been like working during COVID-19?
A: “The anxiety and uncertainty at the beginning of the pandemic led to stressful work situations, due to the fear of being exposed to the virus, when onsite support was required. However, finding the balance between working from home and the office allowed me to continue offering IT support with a reduced fear of exposure.”
Q: How do you deal with the fear of contracting COVID-19 and losing loved ones due to this virus?
A: “Prior to the vaccine, I was extremely afraid and quite stressed, especially with loved ones (and myself) having comorbidities. Not being able to attend funerals of loved ones, was indeed the most painful experience during this pandemic. I am still afraid of contracting the virus, however I am very grateful to be vaccinated and I diligently follow all protocols daily.”
Q: What is your daily motivation?
A: Striving to make a positive difference in someone’s day, be it a family member, friend or work colleague. Feeling blessed keeps me motivated to continuously do my best and to always have an attitude of gratitude.”
Q: Please take me through a normal day in your life?
A: “My work day generally starts by responding to emails and Teams messages from staff requesting IT related assistance; setting up appointments with staff, as per daily IT support calls that are logged.
I also attend workshops, seminars and meetings as scheduled and try to include some postgraduate research when I have some spare time.”
Q: What are your thoughts about the vaccine and its importance to students and staff?
A: “As previously mentioned, I am truly grateful that I am vaccinated. I think it’s extremely important for everyone to get vaccinated against this dreadful virus. It’s for the safety and protection of both you and your loved ones. I understand people’s apprehensions regarding the vaccines but losing a loved one, due to this virus, should far outweigh the fear of receiving the vaccine. All scientific data indicates their validity and efficacy.”
Q: What do you like to do in your spare time?
A: “I try to maintain a daily exercise routine and also enjoy leisurely walks on the promenade. When opportunity allows, I spend time with my family and friends.”
Q: If you had one wish what would it be?
A: “I wish for a vaccine that is a 100% effective against infection, from any COVID-19 variant, is developed soon, so that booster shots are not required.”