Inside DELTA: 5 Questions with Kaitlyn Tarley

Kaitlyn Tarley has been a dedicated employee at DELTA in the Online and Distance Education unit for four years. After working as a temporary staff member for one year, Tarley took on a full-time role as a testing associate.

Tarley is originally from Fairmont, West Virginia, and she attended the University of North Carolina at Asheville where she earned a bachelor’s degree in general biology with a minor in environmental studies. 

After earning her degree, Tarley took a break from her education and moved to Raleigh to search for a job. She took on a short assignment with the National FFA Organization on NC State’s campus and joined the DELTA Testing Services staff in 2016 before choosing to continue her education. In 2018, Tarley began working on her master’s degree in the liberal studies program with a concentration in global environmental sustainability and policy at NC State.

Now, Tarley works to ensure that DELTA’s Testing Services  provides an efficient, monitored and professional testing environment for NC State students.

How would you describe your position to someone unfamiliar with DELTA?

Tarley and her college roommates on graduation day at UNC Asheville.

Tarley’s everyday responsibilities involve checking students in and out of the test center, ensuring academic guidelines are followed by instructors and guaranteeing that no academic dishonesty occurs during testing.

Even though Tarley primarily works to provide a professional testing experience for students, she and her colleagues support the greater DELTA organization with projects that require assistance.

“We surprisingly do more than just the testing components of it,” Tarley said. “We do a lot of behind-the-scenes work as well.”

As a testing associate, Tarley handles off-campus proctoring to provide testing for students away from NC State and assists DELTA staff in collecting test data. She also guides instructors in setting up classes in Moodle, preparing exam settings and reviewing Respondus videos. Tarley works closely with students and instructors to resolve testing issues.

“We are working with instructors and students, constantly communicating with them through phone calls and emails.”

Responsibilities for Tarley and DELTA testing staff have changed in recent months since the switch to online classes at NC State due to COVID-19. Tarley has spent more time assisting professors as they learn to use more online learning technologies and begin testing online.

“The rise in online proctoring has become a lot more dramatic over the past few months with COVID-19.”

What is your area of expertise?

“I am personally in charge of training temporary staff, coordinating our paper exams and assisting with our testing email.”

Tarley and her puppy, Paisley, on a hike in the DuPont State Recreational Forest.

Tarley considers training to be her area of expertise within DELTA. It is important to ensure that all employees are trained in case of sudden changing circumstances, and Tarley’s experience in training employees allows DELTA to prepare for such situations.

“In terms of our day-to-day and overall duties, we try to make sure everyone is trained across DELTA, just in case someone were to leave.”

What has been your favorite experience at DELTA?

Tarley’s favorite experiences at DELTA have been team-building exercises, particularly a trip to an escape room where she was able to work with colleagues to solve puzzles and overcome obstacles. 

“We try to do plenty of team-building activities, and those are always fun.”

Tarley appreciates being able to bond and spend time with her coworkers outside of work, especially during team-building activities.

“I enjoy getting to hang out with my colleagues outside of work and getting to know them a little better.”

Her appreciation for team-building activities led Tarley to join DELTA’s activities committee. As part of the activities committee, Tarley organizes virtual trivia nights to give herself and DELTA staff members a chance to interact with each other while working remotely during COVID-19.

“I have loved being on the activities committee. Trivia specifically has been a huge success,” said Tarley. “It has certainly looked much different this year, but it has been a great way for me to connect with the greater part of DELTA.”

What do you enjoy most about your job?

“I enjoy the people that I work with the most.” 

Tarley is grateful that she is able to work for an organization with a diverse team of individuals. Her colleagues keep her daily work life interesting and exciting.

“People within DELTA are very talented, especially in terms of being artistic,” Tarley said. “I think we are very fortunate to be a part of DELTA as an organization.”

What do you like to do in your spare time/outside of work?

Tarley and her college a cappella chamber group singing at the White House’s Winter Festival during the Obama administration.

“I like to stay busy, so I like to do a little bit of everything.”

Tarley enjoys crafting, decorating, organizing, writing poetry, relaxing in her hammock and watching Disney movies after work. Tarley has a puppy that she loves going on adventures with, which she considers to be one of her favorite activities to do in her spare time. Tarley feels that most of her colleagues do not know that music has been one of her lifelong hobbies.

“I love music, and that is something I have been doing pretty much my whole life.”

Tarley has enjoyed singing since she was young, and she sang in a chamber choir group in college. She played in a marching band through middle and high school and in a jazz ensemble for one semester. She has learned to play five different instruments, including the piano, violin, guitar, trumpet and French horn.

DELTA is looking forward to Tarley’s continued work within the Testing Services team, especially in this unprecedented time.