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Longtime PCCC Employee Receives Honorary Degree

 

Ed Valentin Receives Honorary Degree at the 45th Annual Commencement and Retires After 38 Years of Service to PCCC

 
Posted June 7, 2017

 
In a touching and surprise moment at the 45th Annual Commencement, longtime PCCC employee Eriberto “Ed” Valentin was awarded an Honorary Associate in Applied Science Degree.

Now the Manager of Plant Operations at the PCCC Main Campus in Paterson, Ed started his 38-year-career at PCCC in 1979 as a custodian and was promoted to Maintenance Person, then Manager of Mechanical Services, before attaining his current position in September, 2014. He will retire at the end of June.

“Few people have shown more dedication to the College,” said President Steven Rose as he presented the award to Ed during the May 18 morning ceremony. “Ed came to PCCC at the age of 17,” President Rose told the audience. “His salary then was $5,000 a year.” 

In a joyful highlight of the ceremony, Ed joined President Rose and guests and administrators on the dais where he donned a graduation cap and gown, proudly displayed his award, and raised his fist in victory as the audience cheered.

“I was shocked,” said Ed following the ceremony. “I thought I was going to be recognized for my years of service, but I never expected the honorary degree.”

A Woodland Park resident who grew up in Paterson, Ed reflected on his long career. “PCCC has been good for me,” he said. “I’ve had my life here.”

When asked what satisfaction he derived from working at PCCC for nearly four decades, Ed replied, “I enjoyed helping students and making them comfortable here. Making sure everything was clean and proper, so students could work and think better was my goal,” he said. “I hope I accomplished that.”

The camaraderie Ed enjoyed with his colleagues was another important part of his PCCC experience. “I worked with Dr. Rose a long time,” said Ed. “He’s been good and fair to me. I didn’t think at first I would be doing this much, but I’ve become a part of the College.”

Ed showed special regard for his boss Brian Egan, the Associate Vice President of Facilities Management & Planning at PCCC. “Brian really helped me and guided me, especially on the management side,” said Ed. “He made me who I am right now.”

As for the team he supervises, Ed had only praise.  “I have a great staff, too,” he said.  “Without  all these people I mentioned, I don’t think I would have went this far.”

Though Ed admits he will miss PCCC, he is looking forward to retirement. He plans to take some time off, then possibly work part-time until his wife retires next year from her job in a medical office.

“We’re planning to move to Florida,” he said. “We have family there, we like it there, and it’s time now to turn the page to a new life. “

 
Congratulations, Ed.
Thank you for your years of dedicated service to PCCC.
We wish you a happy and healthy retirement.