|2022, AIF, Feature, NC State, Staff, think and do
Toby Tung Wins Pride of the Wolfpack Award
By Christopher Winkler
Congratulations to our Instrumentation and IT Manager, Toby Tung, for winning the NC State Pride of the Wolfpack Award!
Toby “The Wizard” Tung: The Man, The Myth, The Legend
Why should the Wolfpack be proud of Toby? One could focus on his instrument prowess and ability to fix anything. We all have stories of Toby climbing into an electron column, lassoing an electron, and riding it down to the sample ala the iconic scene in Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove. We’ve all seen Toby walk into a room, grab control of a computer, and in a flurry of command prompt windows and keyboard shortcuts straight out of a Hollywood hacker flick, fix some seemingly impossible issue in an instant. Toby can run any instrument within the AIF and he can keep them running, but that’s not the only value Toby adds to the AIF and NCSU.
We can leave Toby in charge of an instrument while we recover and recharge, and worry for nary a second knowing that our instrument is in the best possible hands. We can dump near infinite amounts of service samples and training requests on Toby’s shoulders, with nary a complaint from him. We can call Toby in a state of near panic when an engineer needs a very specific and very rare part, and Toby shows up with the part in hand. We can call Toby in a state of total panic when the lab is flooded, and Toby shows up with fittings and tubing and fixes everything. This is the selfish perspective of the lab manager, however, and Toby is so much more than simply the valet of your Ferrari.
Above all, Toby provides hope and inspiration. A user calling Toby is often doing so because they broke something, or are afraid they broke something, or because they are completely lost. Toby takes their call and tells them everything will be okay, and they know he’s right because Toby carefully and gently guides them back to safety. Just talking to Toby gives you hope because Toby perpetually exudes calmness and a sense of relief, which are the very emotions in short supply during the midst of a crisis. Despite wearing a dozen hats and constantly putting out fires, Toby dedicates himself to education and outreach. Whether he’s teaching elementary and middle school students about science during summer camps, or interacting with high school students during materials camps, or encouraging undergraduates to enroll in Materials Science, Toby constantly inspires the next generations of scientists and engineers. For all these reasons and so many more, Toby is more than deserving of this “Pride of the Wolfpack” award. Congratulations, Toby!
Toby is an absolute joy to work with, his expertise, knowledge and professionalism is a tremendous asset for the students and faculty at NCSU. CAMAL has relied on Toby to train us on the SEMs, TEMs, and FIBs which has allowed us to perform research and characterize our novel materials in a timely manner. Toby never fails to answer our call and is always happy to help us, and we never have easy samples to help with!
Dr. Chris Rock, Associate Research Faculty at NC State University
Toby is one of the most empathetic persons I have ever met and worked with. He is a good friend and colleague and has his own magical way to explain things. In a simple word, he is just AWESOME!
Dr. Ruksana Baby, X-ray CT Postdoctoral Researcher at NC State University
Please join us in congratulating Toby for winning this award!
Pride of the Wolpack Award
This award recognizes individuals who demonstrate university values. Recipients receive a certificate and mug sponsored by NC State Bookstores and designed exclusively for Pride of the Wolfpack winners.