Shuhong Mandel

From keeping roads protected to brightening the mornings and afternoons for students, crossing guards keep pedestrians safe and are essential to our Tino community. Shuhong Mandel has worked for six months as a crossing guard at the intersection of Finch Avenue and Stevens Creek Boulevard near Main Street Cupertino. She said she enjoys her work as a part of the Cupertino community.

“It feels like an honor to work for the students,” Mandel said.

Before working as a crossing guard, Mandel was a cafeteria worker for Cupertino High. However, she quit a year later due to the strenuous work. While searching for other options, her friend and fellow guard, Xin Hou, introduced her to the prospect of being a crossing guard. 

On weekdays, Mandel spends forty minutes every morning and again in the afternoon working as a guard, occasionally picking up a double afternoon shift to help in busy areas. She arrives every morning before 7:50 a.m. to prepare for the morning traffic. 

Being a crossing guard near Main Street allows Mandel to be active in a pleasant environment. She appreciates the scenery, weather and open area as she walks along the intersection, guiding students and managing vehicle traffic. Watching the roads leaves little time for chatting, but Mandel still appreciates the small talk she makes with students. 

“Whenever I say something, they respond nicely,” Mandel said, “We cannot talk that much, but they still make my day.” 

Aside from all the fun, being a crossing guard requires serious responsibility. Mandel has to pay attention to the cars while helping students cross the roads, ensuring the vehicles stop completely so the students can walk safely. “I am the extra eyes for the kids,” said Mandel. 

Mandel and Xin Hou have noticed that drivers turning right on Finch do not wait for students to finish crossing the street, so they have to warn the students to watch out. Mandel’s greatest priority is student safety. 

“It’s pretty dangerous if [cars] go very fast,” Mandel said, “Drivers have to be very, very careful.”

Despite the difficulties, Mandel is proud of her work. Said Mandel, “I don’t know how much, […] but I do feel like I’m helping.”