Meet Your Colleagues: Julian McCarthy

by Green & Gold News  |   

Meet Your Colleagues is a weekly feature highlighting employees who make a positive impact at UAA through their work every day. This week, we're featuring Julian McCarthy. For questions or to nominate someone for an upcoming feature, please contact University Relations at

Julian McCarthyJulian McCarthy

Development Coordinator
University Advancement

How do you contribute to student success?
By bringing the community together through events both in person and virtual, I've been lucky to assist in raising support for the full diversity of UAA's programs. By giving a helping hand to some of the best and most student-oriented development officers in the state, I've had the opportunity to assist in some very spirited projects.

How long have you worked at UAA? Why did you decide to join UAA?
I've worked at the university since September 2016. I joined as a member of the Phonathon, a group of students whose primary purpose was alumni outreach. The job had it challenges — it involved a considerable amount of updating old records and listening to what felt like a never ending song of dial tones. What initially grabbed my interest was the comical stories of alumni who shared tales of their rebellious days in college. Some days went great, others dragged on, but each day got easier as more students joined and that office became like a second home. I eventually went on to become a supervisor there, and took up a second job working as an event coordinator for Conference Services here at UAA. After I finished up my degree in Natural Sciences and Psychology, I was offered an opportunity to continue as a staff member with University Advancement. My life up to this point had been just school and work, but I'd come to stop seeing it as something to do just to pay the bills. Work was a welcome distraction from the years of constant essays and last-minute cramming. When your job becomes something to look forward to rather than dread, you know you've found a good place. Coworkers can make or break any job, and the staff members I work with here have made this an incredible place to be.

What is the most common question you receive at work?
After I've received back all the necessary RSVPs, culinary and venue info, the most common question comes after an event has taken place: "Who is beneath the mask of UAA's enthusiastic guest and mascot Spirit?" A question that will never be answered...

What do you enjoy most about working at UAA?
What I enjoy most about working at UAA is the welcoming vibe the office has. Also the fact that I never have to get seasick or smell something awful for days on end. After growing up in Kodiak as a commercial fisherman, it was a welcome change of pace from the prior 20 years of my life.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment while working here at UAA?
My greatest accomplishment would have to be the diversity I've enjoyed while working here. It's often hard to get outside the rut of working with only those you can see in your own office. Fortunately, I was able to get some experience in several other areas before I was accepted into this staff position, which has made communication throughout the entirety of the university, student body and community far easier.

What is your favorite Alaska activity?
My favorite Alaskan activity would have to be rollerblading. Okay, I understand that probably isn't the top of the list of activities most people would think of when listing ALASKAN activities. It probably wouldn't even make the list. What should be kept in mind though is this state has beautiful landscapes, some intimidating hills and gorgeous trails. It's really easy to just get outside and find a trail without having to worry about having to drive there first.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself.
I'm a determined and very hard worker. For instance, when I was challenged to eat a burrito weighed at six pounds, this guy proved he was more than a workaholic! He was also a guy who made potentially poor, but very tasty, health choices, and succeeded in them.

Creative Commons License "Meet Your Colleagues: Julian McCarthy" is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
August Archive