Enrollee Name: Paula Whittington
SEE Position Title: Office Manager for the Office of Environmental Education
Location: U.S. EPA Headquarters, Washington, D.C.
Supporting EPA SEE Program Since: October 2015
Job Description at the EPA: Ms. Whittington supports the Office of Environmental Education (OEE) where she’s responsible for assisting in the organization and coordination of office operations, procedures and resources. Her duties include oversight of administration functions such as scheduling meetings and appointments, organizing supplies, and greeting visitors. She also facilitates OEE’s resources and libraries databases and serves as the primary records contact. She frequently assists with OEE’s educational events by identifying and arranging technical and instructional resources. Ms. Whittington recently utilized her IT strengths to create an office SharePoint site to better connect HQ EPA OEE and its ten Environmental Education (EE) Regional Coordinators throughout the country. She has received three Certificates of Appreciations for her steadfast team spirit and relentless can-do attitude.
Ms. Whittington was attracted to the SEE Program and her particular position because of her strong interest in EPA’s educational mission and vision, and was eager to transfer that interest to the children and adults in her community! In preparing for her initial interview for the position, she learned that the EPA has expansive resources related to educating the public on environmental issues. However, Ms. Whittington was concerned whether this information was being communicated within her local community’s schools. To her surprise, she found that the State of Maryland did utilize some of the EPA educational components. After additional research on the topic, she was hooked on improving and increasing environmental education resources for the community, particularly the black community. Due to her love of learning and teaching, she knew that she would be (and IS!) an asset to the EPA Office of Environmental Education.
Prior to joining the SEE Program, Ms. Whittington served as a Program Analyst for the US Coast Guard. Her background spans more than 20 years of working as a contractor for the government, various software corporations, and educational institutions as a SME Information Technology Manager/Instructor. She holds an AA Degree in Business Administration from NYCCU, a BS Degree in Computer Science from Temple University, as well as several Information Technology and managerial certificates. Over the years, Ms. Whittington has earned many accolades and certifications, and she continues to dedicate her efforts towards the adult learners, as well as engaging children – ages 5 through 12 – in Practical Arts and Technology Workshops applying STEM initiatives.
Outside of work, her interests consist of being a Member of (FREED) Female Re-Enactors of Distinction, which is a Black Female Civil War group emerging from the Black Civil War Museum in Washington DC. FREED members act out known and unknown people from the Civil War era. In addition, she enjoys writing and illustrating children’s books, writing poetry, drawing, listening to music, singing, reading, and creating arts and craft projects.
In her own words: “My fellow SEE’s are awesome. They not only bring in the talent and experience, but they bring with them the drive to excel; and reach even higher heights in the work environment. The SEE’s give and share so much without hesitation. I am overjoyed to be a part of this organization. Prior of August of 2015, I had never heard of NEW Solutions; nor the SEE program. It’s a great place for any “Baby Boomer” to apply their experiences, and to gather a host of new experiences!”