Michael Powers

Humans of UCSF: Michael Powers

Columnist
Graduate Division

“I grew up in New Jersey (2 towns away from the Jersey shore) but moved to Phoenix in 1981 because I wanted to see the Southwest. There, I was trained to work on alarms. I stayed in Phoenix less than a year; I couldn’t handle the heat. On the day I left, it was 118 degrees.

I moved to the Bay Area in 1981. I worked for ADT, Pacific Auxiliary Fire Alarm (where I did installation work at Mount Zion, St. Mary’s and CPMC), and at Siemens Building Technologies (where I was involved in modernizing the fire alarm across the SFGH campus). I wound up working in a lot of hospitals.

Not every technician is comfortable working on systems of this size, but I like it. I feel proud to have a role in supporting the educational, research, and healthcare mission of UCSF, and in keeping the campus safe.

I like troubleshooting. It’s a little like detective work. When I receive a warning on the system, I explore why it is being displayed. Some problems are more easily fixed than others.”

Michael Powers

UCSF Campus Life Services Fire Alarm Technician

Photographer: Robert Hood