“I don’t just work for the HS Activities department; I work for the school. I work here 8 hours a day, and anytime anyone calls or needs me, I’ll go and help. Any problem, any tough job, don’t fear – call me, text me, and I’ll come over and get the job done.”
Dominic Paul has been a long-serving member of the community, having worked at ISKL for the past thirty years. Originally part of the Maintenance department, he has been working with the HS Athletics department and helps set up the equipment for Physical Education classes and IASAS tournaments.
Here is Dominic’s story:
Tell us more about yourself.
I was born in KL, and my whole family comes from here. My father worked at General Hospital, and we stayed at the quarters there. In my family, I am the second eldest, and I have two younger sisters and a brother. I have three children – twin boys, then a third boy. The twins are 23 now, and the youngest is 19. They are my life!
Before working at ISKL, I was at the F & N company for 4 to 5 years and, after that, at Sunway, cutting grass on the highway for three years.
Soon after, I came to ISKL Ampang and took on a gardening job at the Melawati campus in the Maintenance Department. I worked at the Melawati campus for 9 to 10 years, then shifted to the Ampang campus for two years.
After that, when the IASAS tournaments started, the activities staff would sometimes take leave, and my supervisor would say, “OK, nobody’s here to help in the Activities Department, so you’re going to help them.” I went to assist them many times for many IASAS events. And then the Activities Director, John Smith, said, “I want Dominic. “I got to work there a lot, and one day he asked me if I could join the Activities department.
At that time, there were three gardeners, and after two of them stopped, I was alone and took care of everything maintenance-wise on campus. I was watering, fertilizing, mowing the grass, and caring for the fields. Then one day in 2002, I came to work, and they told me I was to start officially working in the Activities Department.
Please describe your job role and daily activities.
Early in the morning, I help the PE department set up their classes – be it badminton, volleyball, etc. Before the teachers and students come in, my colleague, Sundra and I set up everything so the students can go in and start doing their games and class.
We help with the rest of the classes during the day. Let’s say one class has badminton, and the second class is volleyball; we clear up the badminton equipment and set up the court for volleyball. After volleyball is over, we will remove the equipment and set up basketball for the following day.
What is the most challenging part of your job?
I am not a laid-back and relaxed person, so I am happy to take on tough jobs. Sometimes even the facility department calls, asking, “Dominic, can you help me?” I don’t just work for the Activities department; I work for the school. Everyone calls me for help, and that’s not a problem. I work here 8 hours a day – and anyone who calls me, I’ll go and help. Any problem, any tough job, don’t fear – call me, text me, I’ll come and do it.
What is your most memorable moment so far at ISKL?
One day, we went to the National Stadium in the early morning, around 4:00 am. We were setting everything up – such as equipment for the high jump, hurdles, and suddenly it started raining! We had no raincoats, but we still managed to finish our task.
That morning I came to school, and Mr. Grant Millard, the HS Principal at the time, said, “Dominic, I know you are working very hard. I see you here early every morning, and even at night, you’re on campus. So what I want to do, is give you a room to stay in on campus.” I said, “Sir, you’re joking.” He said. “No! You’re here every time, morning and night!”
I avoid taking MCs (medical leave); even though we are allocated 20 MCs in a year, I only take one day. In the past thirty years I’ve been working here, I have only fallen sick sometimes.
Can you tell us more about your hobbies and interests? What do you do after work?
I play soccer on Sundays with other staff, friends, and neighbors. Sometimes we do training, and every two to three months, we participate in some soccer games. I also do part-time gardening on the weekends.
Do you know of any student, teacher, parent, or staff who always have an anecdote to tell, love to share some insights into their passions and interest, or simply is a Panther through and through? Nominate them to be featured in our Panthers of ISKL stories by sending in your submissions here.