Spotlight: Old Timers Talk UCCSC and Give Advice to First Timers

Posted by Lisa Bono, IT Communications Manager, UCSC. Two long-time attendees of the UC Computing Services Conference (UCCSC) from UC Santa Cruz talk about how attending the conference throughout the years has shaped their work lives. They also give great advice for the first timers attending the conference in July.

Scotty Brookie (green shirt) attended his first UCCSC in 1989 at UC Santa Barbara and has been attending the conference every year since. He’s currently the IT Director/Divisional Liaison for the UCSC Arts Division and is responsible for the IT needs of Art, Digital Arts & New Media, Film & Digital Media, History of Art & Visual Culture, Theater Arts, and Music. He manages the computing budget, ensures that divisional faculty and staff have appropriate equipment, software and services, and is technical lead for the division’s web presence.

Here’s what Scotty said when asked about his most memorable UCCSC experience, “It is not an exaggeration to say that my first UCCSC changed my life. Back then, there were few people in my line of work, but I met someone doing similar but more advanced work at UC Santa Barbara. When a position at UC Santa Cruz opened up, I encouraged him to apply, and he became my boss, then associate chancellor, and is still a friend.”

“I also have fond memories of touring the underground tunnels at UC Irvine, enjoying the blazing heat at UC Davis, Riverside and Merced (we don’t get much of that at Santa Cruz), picnics in Santa Barbara and geeky sophisticated evenings at UC San Francisco.”

Here’s what motivates him to keep attending UCCSC, “The wealth of knowledge held by my colleagues systemwide, the smorgasbord of interesting sessions, the camaraderie, time to reflect on my work in a relaxed setting, and a renewed appreciation every year of the university’s mission.”

Scotty’s advice for the UCCSC first timers is enthusiastic, “Explore! Attend some sessions that have nothing to do with your job. For example, I gained some indelible insights at sessions from the UCSF nursing school. Eat with people you’ve never met. And get to know people from your campus better. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. The UC system is marvelous and byzantine, and no one expects you to understand it all.”

Bruce Horn (red shirt) attended his first UCCSC in 1998 at UC Santa Cruz and has been attending the conference every other year since. He was also UC Conference Ambassador representing UCSC for five years. Bruce is in charge of the day-to-day operations of the media and computing equipment in the general assignment classrooms at UCSC. In addition, he set ups and operates media equipment for campus events, assist with videography of events and classes, supervises distance education and test scoring services, and supports the campus equipment checkout facility.

Bruce has many memorable UCCSC experiences. Here’s his favorites, “Exploring the enchanting Riverside Mission Inn and UC Riverside campus in 2004 with colleagues from UC Santa Cruz and from other campuses. Overall, I have enjoyed great benefits from discussing work and non-work topics in a relaxed casual setting with staff whose responsibilities are very similar to mine, as well as those whose duties intersect with mine in one area or another. UCCSC has helped me to learn who to call when I am stumped by a particular problem. I have made many great friendships across the UC system and have deepen existing ones.”

Here’s what motivates him to keep attending UCCSC, “Networking with staff who have found solutions to some of the problems we are dealing with and learning about new projects elsewhere in the UC system that might be of benefit to our students and faculty or help our staff accomplish some of their tasks more efficiently. And of course, seeing old friends!”

If you know Bruce, you know that he has this magnificent ‘radio’ voice, so imagine that voice as he presents advice to the first timers attending UCCSC, “Introduce yourself to other attendees and ask questions. Some of us may get caught up in socializing with old friends, but we are always happy to add new friends to the conversation. If you have questions for any of our presenters that you are not able to get to during their presentations, find them during meal times, introduce yourself and ask your questions.

“Bring your business cards with you to help keep in touch with people you meet who work in your same area, are working on a project that you are interested in, or just become good friends with during the conference.

“Sign up for the UCCSC mailing list to continue the conversation the rest of the year: If you are a little shy about introducing yourself, ask your campus UCCSC ambassador to introduce you. You can find the list of this year’s ambassadors at: Have an interesting project that you have been working on? Please consider submitting a presentation proposal for next year’s conference.”

I’d like to thank Scotty and Bruce for sharing their UCCSC memories and for giving fantastic advice to over 80 first time attendees. We can’t wait to welcome you to the conference in July!

If you have questions, contact the UCCSC planning committee at



Comment (1)

  1. Mark Cianca

    Nice to see two of my favorite UCCSC old timers! I guess that makes you super old timers. Best wishes for a successful UCCSC this summer.


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