Order in the dorms

  • Published
  • By Airman John Linzmeier
  • 22nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
Every week, three residents of the McConnell Air Force Base dorms are selected to leave their normal jobs and fill a temporary position as bay orderly.

Bay orderlies engage in basic janitorial work and small handyman projects such as moving furniture and maintaining utilities during their week-long assignment.

"It's important to have a bay orderly so that these Airmen know how to take care of their actual home," said Staff Sergeant Marcus Drayton, 22nd Civil Engineering Squadron Airman Dorm Leader of Building 350. "There are 186 rooms in this building, with just two Airmen per week taking care of them."

Airmen 1st Class Colton Fogler, 22nd Maintenance Squadron metals technician, and Patrick Hennings, 22nd Medical Operations Squadron medical technician, were both assigned as bay orderly for dorm Building 350 for the week of June 3 to 7, 2013.

"I was excited when I was assigned." said Hennings. "In the medical group, we rarely get these types of duties. It was a nice break to experience something else on base outside of the clinic."

Airmen are chosen from squadrons on a weekly rotational basis. 

Just like a regular duty day in a squadron, Airmen check in with their dorm "supervisor" for daily tasks and have to complete a checklist.

"It's great for teambuilding and also helps teach the Airmen personal responsibility," said Drayton. "The unique thing about the experience is that each week will not be the same."

While completing everyday tasks, orderlies are often exposed to leadership and professional development opportunites as well.

When we have generals or commanders coming through the dorms, bay orderlies are involved  and gain experience with briefing leadership, said Drayton.

Most Airmen residing in the dormitories here have recently transitioned from a technical school, where they were responsible for maintaining their inside and outside living environment. Upon arriving at McConnell AFB to start their operational career, they are only required to keep their dorm rooms orderly and ready for inspection.

"Working as bay orderly reminded me of the details we would do every day in technical school," said Hennings. "It's also better than hiring a full time janitor, because it helps the Air Force save money."

The beautification responsibilities given to bay orderlies give many Airmen an experience they may not have had since they were in a training environment.

"I feel that if everyone here got to take on the bay orderly position," said Hennings, "they would definitely take even more pride in the way they take care of the dorms."