What’s it like to work for Launch? We joined Launch Support Specialist Darren Rush for a day of computer programming.
7:41 a.m.: Every morning, Launch Support Specialist Darren Rush starts his day by uploading a Dropout Detective file. Dropout Detective is a tool built within Canvas, Launch’s learning management system, and it allows Launch to notify districts when their students are failing or inactive. Darren works behind the scenes to make sure these notifications take place.
8:17 a.m.: Once his Dropout duties are complete, Darren moves on to his next task: managing his email inbox. “I usually look for anything involving Launchpad first,” Darren says. Launchpad is our liaison portal that allows Launch partner districts to enroll and manage students in Launch courses, and Darren had a major part in creating it. Now he helps manage it.
9:24 a.m.: “Hello, how can I help you?” Darren answers a phone call from a partner district. “Sure, I’ll get that uploaded on our end.” Once a district’s Launch liaison registers for a Launchpad account to enroll students, they must gain access to the portal, Darren approves their information and gives them this access. This process never takes longer than 24 hours, but it can happen immediately with a call or an email.
11 a.m.: Lunch time! Darren steps out with a few of his coworkers for a midday meal. Today they’re going to eat Indian food—his very favorite!
1:11 p.m.: Darren is back at work, and he’s staring at a screen filled with dozens of lines of numbers, symbols and letters. “I’m working on writing some code for Launch Tools,” he says. Launch Tools is another one of Darren’s creations, and it was built to assure all Launch courses run smoothly. “Most of what I do is on the backend—it involves processing student records and auditing course information,” Darren says.
3 p.m.: Darren is still working on writing code, and he’s in a wonderful mood. “I really like programming the most, out of anything,” he says. “This is definitely my favorite thing about my job.”
3:53 p.m.: As the afternoon winds down, Darren makes a quick trip to the office putting green for a brain break. Digital Developers Justin Thomas and Brad Maples are putting a few balls, and Darren—who is also known as the Launch office’s official golf commissioner—is asked to confirm a ruling. “Fair!”
4:12 p.m.: After he congratulates Justin on his victory, Darren grabs his backpack and heads for the door. He’s headed home to his family—he and his wife, Katrina, have a 4-year-old, a 2-year-old and a baby on the way. “Bye guys—see you tomorrow!”