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Black Excellence: Building Environmental Technician Darnell Jones

Black Excellence Building Environmental Technician Darnell Jones, College of Natural Resources, Darnell Jones, feature
Photo courtesy of Darnell Jones.

As building environmental technician for the College of Natural Resources, Darnell Jones plays a valuable role in keeping our college safe. When there is a positive COVID-19 case, Jones leads efforts to disinfect the area.

We recently spoke with Jones about his experience as a Black professional in his field. The following Q&A is a part of a Black History Month series highlighting the outstanding contributions Black faculty, staff and students have made to the College of Natural Resources.

Tell us about your role in the College of Natural Resources.

I’m at work from 4 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. I make sure I have on my PPE, but if we have a COVID case, we block off the area and wait 24 hours before cleaning and disinfecting the area to the maximum.

Tell us about some of your earliest memories of being outside.

My memories are of playing outside, playing football, basketball and softball.

What has it been like as a Black, Indigenous, Person of Color (BIPOC) to study within your field and/or pursue your career?

As a BIPOC, I have enjoyed my career working with a diverse group of co-workers.

What challenges have you faced in pursuing your career?

Some of the challenges I faced come with backing up management. Another challenge for me has been the push into a possible management role, knowing I enjoy my position and the job I do.

Do any specific memories or experiences in your career stick with you?

The people I’ve met over time and the relationships I’ve made have stuck with me throughout my career.

Tell us about someone who supported and encouraged you to pursue your work.

As far as Mr. Darrell Carter, he has supported me overtime. He also helped me to grow in the position I’m in.

Why are you passionate about your field or work?

I enjoy learning new things … being able to help my team is what drives me.

What advice would you give to young BIPOC professionals entering your field?

The advice I would give a young person is to do the best you can every day and ask questions.