Scott Perrigo is a Cambridge lifer. He was born and raised in the “city of squares,” and he has worked in MIT’s Copytech facility for 30 years as of this June.
“One of the things about working at MIT for so many years is it can make you feel old because the students aren’t aging — they just graduate,” Perrigo jokes. “But it’s always nice to meet new people and see new personalities.”
Part of what Perrigo likes about the many personalities of MIT is their international backgrounds.
“I meet a lot of interesting people from all around the world,” Perrigo says. “It gives you an interesting perspective on things. I really enjoy that part of what I do.”
Copytech is a full-service print/copy facility dedicated to meeting the communications needs of MIT's community. Perrigo works in computer support for Copytech, where he handles printing jobs including large format printing. He says people such as his longtime colleague June Milligan, who worked with Copytech as a customer relations and marketing manager but recently retired, have helped motivate him to advance himself in the department.
When he’s not working, Perrigo is often walking with his wife, Crystal, and playing with his dog, Holly, who has become a minor celebrity on campus.
“In the summer, I’ll bring Holly onto campus for a couple of days — but she’s a very needy dog so I have to take a half day,” Perrigo says. “On weekends, I’ll spend hours with her just tossing the ball around in the back yard. I also live by the ocean now on the North Shore, so we love to take walks on the beach.”
Over the years, Perrigo has accumulated many stories, from eccentric printing requests regarding the purported arrival of aliens, to journeying to campus to print student diplomas in the midst of Covid-induced lockdowns.
But one story sticks with Perrigo more than others. In 2001, his brother passed away suddenly. While he was arranging the funeral, MIT community members including Senior Administrative Assistant Lee Corbett stepped up to support him. For the gathering after the funeral, which was near MIT’s campus, a group of Perrigo’s colleagues and customers rented out the Vannevar Bush Room in the heart of MIT’s campus and provided food in the form of a potluck. They also handled the setup and cleaning for the event.
“It made everything so much less stressful,” Perrigo says. “MIT really is like a family. If something happens to you, you’ll be amazed at how the community can come through.”
Q: What are you most proud of about working at MIT?
Perrigo: The community can be like one big family. People really band together during tough times. The shooting of [MIT Police Officer] Sean Collier was tragic, but the community really banded together to support each other. It makes you feel connected.
Q: If you had to teach a class or start a program at MIT, what would it be and why?
Perrigo: We always joke about this at Copytech. It would be: How to properly prepare your printing needs for a conference on campus. We service the whole campus, so we’re a busy department. Things can get pretty hectic, especially right before Commencement. But people often expect overnight turnarounds. We have to explain to them that we do the best we can to accommodate everyone’s needs. We have pulled off quite a few short turnaround times due to the commitment of the team I work with.
Q: What advice would you give to a new MIT employee?
Perrigo: Buckle up and enjoy the ride.