Engineering Professional Development
Each day, for more than 30 years as a program associate with the Department of Engineering Professional Development, Diane Lange has focused on meeting people’s needs.
Since joining EPD in 1977, Lange has supported almost 2,000 continuing education courses and worked with more than 20 program directors. When a program director schedules a course, the arrangements fall to Lange. She works closely with the speakers, interacting with them daily to set up transport and lodging, put together course materials such as brochures and handouts, and make sure the classroom is outfitted with any resources and technology the speaker needs.
Working under the pressure of planning numerous conferences, Lange has built a reputation for helpfulness and professionalism. She demonstrates patience and efficiency when handling varied needs and unexpected glitches. Her resourcefulness and unflappable demeanor ensure a positive experience for program directors, conference organizers and participants.
“Diane exhibits considerable flexibility, coordination skill, and persuasiveness in tasks such as soliciting information, arranging schedules, and obtaining course materials from these on-the-go, heavily committed individuals—a testament to her personal skills,” says a colleague.
Lange’s consistent efficiency is even more impressive given the changes in technology over the past 31 years. What began as a job of working with typewriters and parcel post has become a juggling act of digital media, E-mail and fax. According to Lange, “The change is what keeps it interesting.”
Although she enjoys the challenge, a large part of Lange’s motivation comes from pride in representing UW-Madison and the College of Engineering. As a liaison between staff and faculty in the college and outside speakers and course participants, she feels a strong sense of responsibility. “If I do a good job, it’s a good reflection on the department,” she says.
And the image she reflects is stellar. “Diane epitomizes the professionalism, organization, and effectiveness required in a position which extensively interacts with the outside community,” says one speaker. “Diane has been an essential contributor to the success of the conferences sponsored by the College of Engineering.”