Wednesday, May 23, 2018
Education

Proven talent, fresh start

BROOKSVILLE — Stan Giannet has always made it a point to immerse himself in the community.

As the provost of Pasco-Hernando Community College's North Campus, Giannet has served on a host of boards and committees, led training workshops, given keynote speeches and routinely met with community stakeholders.

Many Hernando leaders agree: His presence is invaluable.

Especially at the Hernando County Sheriff's Office.

For years, Giannet, 44, a psychologist, has lent his expertise to Sheriff's Office crisis response team training sessions, helping to run training scenarios and offering critiques and advice.

And he does it all at no cost.

"He's got a very caring heart," said sheriff's Col. Mike Maurer. "He's always offered himself and his expertise."

But after seven years leading the Brooksville campus and serving as its community voice, Giannet is moving on. On July 1, he will become provost of the new Porter Campus at Wiregrass Ranch in Wesley Chapel.

"I'm deeply honored and humbled that I was chosen to be the founding provost of what will be a flagship campus at this institution," he said.

He expects the central Pasco campus to grow rapidly.

Donna Burdzinski, the current dean of student enrollment and retention at PHCC's West Campus in New Port Richey, will take over Giannet's responsibilities in Brooksville.

The new campus is expected to open in January. Giannet, who lives in New Port Richey and earns a base salary of $108,942, said he will spend the first months in his new job building the faculty and staff and, of course, forging new relationships in the community.

He knows a little bit about that.

Giannet has been a staunch advocate of the United Way of Hernando County, serving on its board for nearly seven years, said executive director Kathy Jones.

"Dr. Giannet pushes you without you even knowing it," Jones said. "He pushes you to that next level.

She said Giannet has been a constant source of ideas and that she has learned a lot from him.

One of his biggest influences: creating a strong ethics committee.

He emphasized the importance of a good ethics committee and strong stewardship of the agency's roughly $500,000 annual budget, Jones said.

Aside from that, she said Giannet is caring and compassionate.

"He makes me want to be a better person," she said.

He also puts everyone around him at ease, she said.

One other thing everyone notices: Giannet does it with style.

"He's probably one of the sharpest-dressing guys," said Maurer, of the Sheriff's Office.

Added Jones: "His hair always looks good."

Giannet quickly moved up the ranks at PHCC after beginning as an adjunct professor about 20 years ago.

In 1997, he was hired as a full-time professor of psychology, later becoming dean of the division of arts and sciences and, eventually, provost in Brooksville.

"My roots with the college are very deep," Giannet said. "I've been driven with passion and energy and enthusiasm — focused on things that provide meaning for me and focused on helping people."

During his tenure as provost, Giannet has shepherded the North Campus through a time of tremendous growth — and subsequent contraction with the opening of the Spring Hill Campus in 2010.

Between 2005 and 2010, Giannet said, the North Campus saw a 67 percent increase in the number of full-time students, including a 94 percent increase in students seeking associate of arts degrees and a 102 percent increase in students going for associate of science degrees and technical certificates.

Over roughly that same period, there also was a boom in course offerings, which Giannet said was a priority for him. The campus added 309 classes, including more online and hybrid online/face-to-face courses.

Many of the additions were workforce courses, providing more opportunities for people wanting to go into social work or become a paralegal or an emergency medical technician/ paramedic.

But one of the things Giannet is most proud of is that the majority of students on campus say they are pleased with the education they are getting and with PHCC.

In the most recent student satisfaction survey, 94 percent of the students said they were satisfied with faculty instruction. Even more — 98 percent — said they were satisfied with the physical campus.

"It's always humbling to me," Giannet said.

Danny Valentine can be reached at [email protected] or (352) 848-1432.

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