Congratulations to Kris Monroe, College of Western Idaho’s (CWI) Staff of the Month for March 2020. Monroe is a Sponsor Billing Coordinator in Accounts Receivable and has been with the College for nine years. Prior to CWI, Monroe’s first career was right out of high school as a retail manager for Radio Shack. She later worked at Micron for 20 years operating and programming inspection equipment and training new technicians and engineers.
“I was laid off after the economic downturn of 2008 and needed to make a career change,” she said. “This led me to the Applied Accounting program at CWI. The wonderful instructors and students in the program helped me to enjoy every day. With so many positive experiences, CWI was one of the first places I considered when seeking employment after graduation.”
As a student at CWI, Monroe was a work study for Tutoring Services and in the computer labs. Upon graduation, she was hired as a Financial Aid Specialist. She often jokes she is on her third career and still trying to figure out what she wants to be when she grows up.
“Kris exemplifies what it means to be a collaborator, a critical thinker, and a constant advocate for students,” said a coworker. “She sees processes in ways that many of us do not and can find efficiencies to better improve how we all work together. I appreciate her candid approach, her honesty, and how she strives to make all of us better at what we do. In all of her work, she sees the students as the most important factor.”
Keeping students first is a desire Monroe shares with all the faculty and staff at CWI. As a former CWI student herself, Monroe remember how much she appreciated the care and attention she received from staff as she began her educational journey, namely from Judith Orwig, an administrative assistant in the President’s Office.
“I think back to my early days as a student and trying to bypass the long waits on the phone. She would always get me to the person I needed,” Monroe said. “Judith is an unsung hero of the College. Her constant positive attitude and assistance with anything that is needed is valued more than I can say. Judith has been part of my journey from the very beginning. Dedication like hers is what makes CWI such a great place to be.”
Originally from Oregon, Monroe moved to the Treasure Valley when she was 11 years old. She and her husband have been together since 1983. In current pursuit of her bachelor’s degree from Boise State University, she stays very busy.
“Between work and school, I unfortunately don’t have a lot of time for hobbies, but when given the chance I do enjoy fishing, camping, and road trips. Vacation to me is a road trip and the opportunity to share trips of my childhood with my own son which has been one of the great joys of my life.”