They walk the halls with us and work diligently beside us. However, many of us are not aware of “behind-the-scenes” staff who ensure Georgia Regents University is a premier institution in which to work and learn.
In an effort to show our appreciation to these employees, Georgia Regents University has started the GReport series Unsung Heroes as a way to highlight individuals or professions that make a substantive yet unrecognized contribution to the university and our community.
Today, we highlight Thaddeus Sands, Pest Control Specialist with GRU Environmental Services.
If there’s something strange in your Georgia Regents University office, who are you going to call? Thaddeus Sands.
As Pest Control Specialist for GRU Environmental Services, it’s Sands’ job to rid the campus of any pesky critters who have found their way into offices and classrooms. He takes care of everything from ants, cockroaches, bats, birds, and foxes to opossums and snakes.
He is responsible for the pest control of 74 buildings between the Health Sciences Campus, Summerville Campus and Forest Hills Campus.
“There’s never a dull moment. Every day is interesting,” Sands said. “It’s to a point where you don’t want to miss a day a work because you never know what you might get.”
On June 8, he responded to a complaint of an opossum in a building. It didn’t take much to get the marsupial to leave; it walked behind him right out the door, Sands said.
On June 11, he captured a non-venomous juvenile rat snake on the Health Sciences Campus. As often as he can, he relocates snakes to Phinizy Swamp Nature Park.
This time of year, snakes are common visitors on campus, Sands said, as are ants and cockroaches.
“An ant is easiest to get rid of. You can find a trail – most times someone has some food. The hardest thing, I’d say, is a bird because they can fly away,” Sands said.
Sands has been with GRU for two years, having worked previously for the Richmond County School System in pest control. He has also worked for Terminix and Orkin. He fell in love with the line of work during an internship at a pest control company while getting his degree in marketing.
“I love doing what I’m doing. No pests, no worries. That’s our motto,” Sands said.
Do you know someone or a department that should be featured in GRU’s Unsung Heroes series? Email us your suggestion at GRU_News@gru.edu