In the Spotlight: Elahe Russell, Office of Accounting Services
Graduate Staff Spotlight, October 2017
1. What factors influenced your decision to work at LSU?
I grew up in Baton Rouge living very close to LSU. My mom, sisters, and I are all LSU alumni, thus LSU has always been a significant part of my life. We were all able to discover something about ourselves to help us be successful during our time here as students. From playing on the Indian mounds as a small child to being a student worker during my undergraduate tenure, LSU has become a second home to me. I was fortunate to begin my career in Accounting Services over 18 years ago and have been afforded many opportunities to have a successful and rewarding career here.
2. What is your current involvement with the LSU graduate student community?
Currently, I serve on a Student Focus Group (comprised of graduate students) on which we recommend enhancements to the fee bills and registration related communication.
Through my role in the focus group, I am able to directly propose new ideas and request feedback from the students that such proposals will affect. As LSU embarks on the Student Systems Modernization project, I look forward to additional opportunities for continued involvement in the graduate student community.
3. Please describe some of your day-to-day duties and responsibilities, and share what you enjoy most about your role.
My major responsibilities include oversight of the financial statements for LSU and related entities, investment and cash management, debt issuance, capital asset accounting, student billing and receivables, and customer service. Having served on the Workday implementation team, I continue to be very heavily involved with system enhancements and changes based on feedback from the LSU community. What I enjoy most about my role is that each day is faced with new opportunities and challenges. There is truly never a dull moment.
4. What is a cause you are passionate about in both higher and graduate education?
Higher education is a constantly evolving, energetic arena with a sole aim of supporting the academic goals of our students and future community leaders. There is no greater feeling than having a hand in the future of our city, state and country. I am passionate about making university communication as efficient as possible for students who come from all over the world to pursue graduate degrees at LSU. Graduate students, especially those who are not necessarily familiar with the university and procedures upon enrolling here, are of great value to LSU, and I am passionate about working to improve our processes that impact them.