By: Rebecca Reese, Editor in Chief
Over the summer, students received emails upon emails of major changes that this school year would bring.
One of them being Joseph Bertolino moving on from Lyndon State College and pursuing a new position closer to his family.
“The process was quick. In a span of a few weeks [Bertolino] applied and got hired,” Interim President Nolan Atkins said. “It all happened very quickly and it was somewhat unexpected…but it was great. It’s a wonderful opportunity for Joe.”
From Atkins’ understanding, there were two potential candidates, both former college presidents, on a list of potential replacements for Bertolino– both of which declined the offer. This before Bertolino called him.
“I had no aspirations to be a college president. I have three kids and this job demands a lot of time, effort and energy,” Atkins said.
Atkins was formerly the Academic Dean at LSC.
The Vermont State College Chancellor called that afternoon, offered the position and gave Atkins a couple days to think about it.
“After I got over the initial shock, I said they’re only asking me to do this for 10 and a half months,” he said. “So I had a conversation with my wife, additional conversations with Joe, to see what this would look like and to see what I would be responsible for.”
President Atkins made the transition between positions on August 15.
He said his day-to-day work will not be much different. Atkins will still be focused on academics, but will now be added to bigger conversations with the Board of Trustees and become an essential part of the unification discussion.