Monday, November 25, 2013

Dr. Pimentel Talks About His New Job

After 11 years of teaching History at Vol State, Dr. George Pimentel doesn’t need an introduction to most folks on campus. He takes on the role of vice president for Academic Affairs in January. He most recently held the post of interim dean of Social Science and Education at Vol State. He has been the director of the Honors Program since 2011. So, what does he intend to do in the new position?

“I want to create a team atmosphere. I may be in my new role, but I still have this connection with the faculty. I want to communicate in each direction and as much as possible. We need to collectively have a vision for where we need to be in ten years, beyond what is thrust on us.”

Dr. Pimentel holds a Doctor of Arts degree in History and an Ed.S. in Educational Administration and Supervision from Middle Tennessee State University. He also has an M.A. in History and B.A. in History from MTSU. He served in the US Army and was deployed as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom from 2003-2004. We asked if his military experience provided insight into academic life and administration.

“In my military experience you learn to work within a massive organization,” he said. “There is debate time and then there is action. Once a decision is made, you have to work to make it happen in the best way possible. I want input and alternate ideas. If you have a better way of doing it, let’s talk about it.”

Prioritization is the big topic on campus this school year, and Dr. Pimentel will be in the middle of some tough decisions.

“I’ve completed prioritization for honors. We’ve written them for Social Science and Education. Once you start the process it makes sense. A lot of the fear is the unknown. We’re worried a bit too much about this. I don’t have this overwhelming fear that we’ll be cutting things or cutting people.”

Here are three things you might not know about the new vice president for Academic Affairs:

1. He played hockey for ten years in high school and adult leagues.

2. He speaks German and Klingon.

3. He has three children and his wife has three children, much like the Brady Bunch. They have 12 grandkids.

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