Passport Services Welcomes New Manager

The Office of Global Engagement recently welcomed Paula Cook to Passport Services as the new manager of the office. Together with Passport Assistant Grace Kavanagh, Cook supports the internationalization efforts of the university by providing an important service to the campus and the community.

Paula Cook

What is your background?

I’ve had a varied career with my bachelor’s degree in English from Duke University. I taught first-year composition at Emory University, served as an international communication specialist at an environmental nonprofit in Mexico (where I lived for four years and also served on the Coral Monitoring team), and served as Registrar at first the North Carolina Botanical Garden and then the UNC School of Government.

What are you doing in your new role at NC State?

As the passport services manager, I’m working to increase our engagement with both the on-campus and off-campus communities. Our goal is to continue strengthening our support of the Office of Global Engagement’s public service mission and scholarships that extend the benefits of study abroad to more students. By providing convenient, friendly, expert service to not only NC State but also the community at large, we help provide access to the whole world of possibilities that passports provide: for academic research, personal and professional development, cultural exchange, and more. 

Grace Kavanagh

What’s new at Passport Services?

We’re excited to now offer appointments five days a week.

We have appointments weekdays (Monday to Friday) from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. plus Tuesday and Wednesday evenings from 5 to 8 p.m. Appointments are required for passport applications; just go to our website to make one: go.ncsu.edu/passport-services 

We also created special hours for photos only: Mondays and Thursdays from 5 to 7 p.m. We also have special hours for assistance with passport renewals and photos on Mondays from 2 to 4 p.m.

So far, the new hours have been a big hit! 

What can you tell us about Real ID?

By this time next year, anyone wanting to travel by air – even for domestic flights – will be required to present REAL ID-compliant identification in order to go through a TSA airport security checkpoint or board a federally regulated commercial aircraft.

The good news is, a U.S. passport qualifies as a REAL ID.

The best time to apply is now, before the spring rush. On our website, you can book an appointment (appointments are required) and find out what you’ll need to bring:
go.ncsu.edu/passport-service.

When you’re not managing Passport Services, what do you enjoy in your free time?

I love getting out in nature, turning our yard into a native plant and wildlife habitat, and playing and enjoying music together with my husband (a proud NC State alum!) The Triangle has so much to offer in each of these regards, and we love being here in Wolfpack country!