Featured Colleague – Joe Sarrubbo

By Stephanie McMillen

Joe Sarrubbo, manager of student services on the West Campus, views his job as a partnership with students to ensure they reach their educational, career, and life goals.

“As manager of the Answer Center, it is my goal to ensure each student feels welcomed, respected, and acknowledged when they visit our office,” Joe explained.  With his team, he stresses the importance of providing each student with authentic, person-centered service and using every interaction as a learning opportunity.

Attesting to Joe’s ability to meet the challenges of ensuring a positive student experience, Kate Martin, student services advisor, said, “Joe is a wonderful manager and I trust in his [abilities]. There have been many challenging situations that Joe handled exceptionally well.” Somehow, Katie explained, students and family members will walk into Joe’s office upset, but come out smiling.

Adding to this, Jon Sowell, student services advisor, said, “I love the fact that [Joe] is not only our supervisor, but is also a team player in helping us work with students in any given situation.”

While his work with students is conducted outside the classroom, Joe’s position allows him to watch as students progress down their own pathway to graduation – something he said is extremely gratifying.

“Each one of our dynamic students has their own story to tell and I want them to realize that our deep commitment to their success is at the core of our work.”

Joe began his Valencia career in May 2003 and prior to his current position, served as a student services specialist for the East Campus Answer Center and as the coordinator of admissions and records for East Campus.

“I feel very fortunate to work at a learning-centered college like Valencia,” Joe said. “I love how we place an emphasis on learning, removing barriers, affordability, access, and responding to the needs of our growing community.”

Joe has an associate degree in liberal arts and sciences from SUNY Rockland Community College in Suffern, New York, as well as a bachelor’s degree in liberal studies and a master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Central Florida (UCF).

In his free time Joe enjoys traveling, especially taking road trips, dining out, attending sporting events, festivals and cultural events, and spending time with friends and family. “I am a huge UCF fan,” he exclaimed. “I have so much UCF memorabilia in my office that students ask if my office is the UCF DirectConnect office!”

Know of someone doing great work at the college? Send their name to us at The_Grove@valenciacollege.edu so they can be one of our featured colleagues!


  • Carol J. Millenson said:

    I am pleased to see that Joe has been selected as a featured colleague. I have enjoyed meeting and getting to know Joe over recent years, predominantly through our AFC association. He has a very contagious attitude that I am sure spills over to all with whom he works, both students and staff. His sense of Valencia and his role on behalf of our students "oozes" out of Joe.

    PMTue, 27 Nov 2012 18:08:16 +0000Tue, 27 Nov 2012 18:08:16 +0000pm12,6:08 pm

  • Amy Love said:

    Joe is always there to help and assist in any way he can. I can rely on Joe to give an accurate and quick response to any student issue that I may encounter…he is the go to guy! Thanks Joe for your support and dedication to Valencia and the students!!

    AMWed, 28 Nov 2012 10:41:50 +0000Wed, 28 Nov 2012 10:41:50 +0000am12,10:41 am

  • Lisa Larson said:

    I am so happy to see Joe featured here. He is part of the good stuff that makes Valencia so great! He has been there to help me on numerous occasions through the years as I learned the ropes at Valencia's West Campus Student Services area. I agree with his philosophy of helping students achieve their goals and have tons of respect for his commitment to them and Valencia as an institution. His collaborative style is contagious and I look forward to many more years of working together.

    AMWed, 28 Nov 2012 10:53:41 +0000Wed, 28 Nov 2012 10:53:41 +0000am12,10:53 am

  • Angela Trujillo said:

    Congrats to Joe for being featured. He is an excellent example of a genuine person! Joe is always willing to assist and advocates for students whenever possible. He makes every interaction a learning one for students and collaborates well with everyone at Valencia!
    Keep up the great work Joe!

    PMWed, 28 Nov 2012 12:33:50 +0000Wed, 28 Nov 2012 12:33:50 +0000pm12,12:33 pm

  • Amy Bosley said:

    Joe – so glad to see you featured. I've had many opportunities to work with you and always find that you bring reason, focus, and a fresh perspective to any conversation. You make our work better. Congrats!

    PMWed, 28 Nov 2012 19:30:24 +0000Wed, 28 Nov 2012 19:30:24 +0000pm12,7:30 pm

  • Darryl Pirmal said:

    You and your team provide great service to the college and I have always been assisted with a smile. Thanks for being such a wonderful person and making our Valencia students welcomed upon entering the Answer Center. You Rock.

    AMThu, 29 Nov 2012 06:46:15 +0000Thu, 29 Nov 2012 06:46:15 +0000am12,6:46 am

  • Donna Deitrick said:

    Joe….."YOUR THE BEST", thanks for all the help through the years! Glad you were featured for the above and beyond you constantly deliver to the greater good of the college.

    AMThu, 29 Nov 2012 08:47:59 +0000Thu, 29 Nov 2012 08:47:59 +0000am12,8:47 am

  • Gloria Sprankle said:

    Joe – you have always possessed the "right stuff" when it comes to leading a Team/ So glad to see you featured here – you deserve it!!

    PMFri, 30 Nov 2012 21:50:46 +0000Fri, 30 Nov 2012 21:50:46 +0000pm12,9:50 pm

  • Carol Traynor said:

    Love Joe. He's a real advocate for students.

    AMWed, 12 Dec 2012 09:55:28 +0000Wed, 12 Dec 2012 09:55:28 +0000am12,9:55 am

  • Karen Murray said:

    My experience serving on a committee with Joe was really positive and memorable. I'm glad to see him featured in The Grove.

    PMTue, 19 Nov 2013 20:28:26 +0000Tue, 19 Nov 2013 20:28:26 +0000pm13,8:28 pm

  • Jeff Hogan said:

    I saw the link today and was surprised to learn that he was the manager of the answer center. Joe is a prime example of grooming leadership from within. He is now one of the Dean's at Valencia.

    PMTue, 03 Jun 2014 15:48:03 +0000Tue, 03 Jun 2014 15:48:03 +0000pm14,3:48 pm

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