In CAB Corner, we ask a member of our Customer Advisory Board (CAB) to share some insights about their life as a parking professional. In this edition, we spoke to John Prush, our current CAB Chairperson and Deputy Director of the Management Services Bureau at Michigan State University.
How did you find your way into parking?
As a student at Michigan State University 28 years ago, I started working with the police department as a parking lot attendant for football games and other special events. By the following semester, I was promoted to a student supervisor position. The year was 1993, so right at the precipice of the dot-com bubble, and I helped bring online parking services to fruition. I was fortunate to obtain a full-time position in information technology at the department a few years later (working with T2 Terminator and PowerPark!) and now serve as the Deputy Director of the Management Services Bureau, which includes parking operations, access control, and building security, plus IT for the police department.
What do you love about what you do?
I’m passionate about technology and love to implement products and services that utilize cutting-edge solutions to make for an awesome customer experience. The best of these also produce efficient operations with happy employees and happier managers
What is something you do to make your office a fun place to work?
Since you can change the customer logo in Flex’s system settings, I had a run of creating custom MSU Parking logos based on the holidays or seasons and changing the logo at night for a fun morning surprise. Did you know you can use animated GIF files?! I took a break on this, but it’s time to make a comeback! The parking team also likes to host themed potluck luncheons in the office and even started an annual pumpkin carving contest at Halloween.
What are the biggest challenges you are facing over the next year?
MSU is targeting a freshman class of 8,800, which is the largest to enroll since at least 2006. In addition, starting this year, both first and second-year students will be required to live on campus. After a year of mostly remote learning, this will be a significant swing for the parking operation.
What do you do when you are not focusing on the world of parking?
I enjoy traveling and camping with my wife and two children. While we have our favorite places to go, it’s always exciting to explore new locations and find great bars and restaurants. When not working or traveling, you can usually find me at the piano!
Our CAB members are listed on the Community page of our website. They are always willing to help, so don’t hesitate to reach out!