ACMS Aces: Scott Calman

Scott CalmanAcademic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) provides UC San Diego with many different services ranging from student email to virtual software labs to the learning management system Ted. These services are supported by the servers in the ACMS computer room. Systems Administrator Scott Calman is part of the Computing Infrastructure team that keeps these servers running.

Scott primarily supports Windows servers, with some work on Linux and Macintosh servers sprinkled in from time to time. Since starting with ACMS, one of Scott’s biggest projects has been configuring systems with VMware virtualization software to allow multiple servers and services to run on the same physical hardware. Services such as email and the campus LMS will run more smoothly and efficiently once this configuration is finished.

Scott first came to UC San Diego in 2002 when he joined the Department of Psychology. He later moved to the Jacobs School of Engineering, supporting the Structural Engineering program. “UCSD has a mission of educating young people and furthering research and those are two things I fully stand behind. I’ve never felt better about a job than I have here,” Scott said when describing why he came to UC San Diego. “I go home feeling like, ‘Well, I didn’t just make another widget today.’ I’m furthering knowledge.”

Immediately prior to joining ACMS, Scott worked for the California Institute of Technology at the Palomar Observatory. Scott lived on the top of Palomar Mountain for two years with his family while he provided technical support for the Observatory where he worked during the day shift to prepare the telescope for the night staff who would do research in the evening. The experience was fun for Scott and his family. “Two years up there was really awesome for my kids. They got to live in the snow while still being in San Diego,” Scott said. “I did a lot of hiking and really learned the area very well.”

Systems administration is not Scott’s first career. He worked as a plumbing contractor before going back to school. “I never would have really considered [IT] had I not taken a series of tests that showed I should be a programmer through a vocational program,” Scott explained. During his technical training, Scott moved to server support and networking and has never looked back.

When he is not working on computers, Scott takes pleasure in restoring classic cars. “I grew up in a family where we’ve been restoring cars pretty much most of my life so I’ve done a ’27 Cadillac, ’36 Cadillac, 1929 Graham Paige, [and] a ’26 Dodge 1 ½ ton truck,” Scott said. He is currently working on a 1930 Austin 7 (“a tiny, little English car—think clown car…it’ll go 30 [mph] downhill with the wind behind it”) and a 1964 Dodge (“my fun car”).

Thanks for all of your hard work keeping things running smoothly under the hood here at ACMS Scott!

ACMS Aces is a series of articles that highlights the dedicated employees of Academic Computing & Media Services at UC San Diego. Keep checking back to find out more about the people behind the magic at ACMS!

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