12/21/2016 Staff

Hidden F&M: F&M Warehouse

This magazine article is part of Fall 2016/Issue 87
  • F&M Warehouse Image Credit: Matthew Lester
  • F&M Warehouse Image Credit: Matthew Lester

The rush-hour traffic has subsided at the intersection of College and Harrisburg avenues on a quiet autumn morning. Students walk to class one final time before fall break, and stores along College Row begin to open their doors.

Breaking the relative silence is the roar of two large trucks: one carrying fresh seafood to nearby Mr. Bill’s, the other a FedEx truck hauling packages destined for offices and departments across the F&M campus. The FedEx truck slowly turns past Mr. Bill’s and down a driveway to the nerve center of the College’s deliveries—the F&M warehouse.

The truck backs into a loading area, where F&M’s warehouse and delivery specialist, Tracy Miller, emerges. Dozens of packages—carrying everything from blue books to pet food—roll down a conveyor belt manned by Miller, who sorts them for students, faculty members and professional staff. Deliveries for students go to the mail room on the lower level of Steinman College Center, while a scanning system notifies faculty and professional staff of pending arrivals.

Behind the conveyor belt lies the cavernous warehouse itself. The vast room with brick walls was formerly home to Frey Lutz, a Lancaster-based heating, air conditioning and plumbing company. Now it houses large stacks of boxes on tall shelves, books, crates and old machines. It also serves as storage space for hundreds of timeworn desks from Keiper Liberal Arts Building, which recently underwent a massive renovation.

The massive space also has a quirky side. In one corner, a large cage encloses a mishmash of random materials including computer parts, sneakers and glue. A large fish is prominently displayed on the front of the cage, not far from a B-52s poster and a dart board—each speaking to the distinctive spirit and personality of the space, and those who have worked there.

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