Every month the Administrative/Professional (A/P) Council highlights an A/P staff member through a series of questions as another way for the Illinois State community to connect. This month readers can get to know Nate Carpenter, director of convergent media in the School of Communication.

As director convergent media, what do you do?

I get to wear a lot of different hats, including serving as the primary IT specialist for the School of Communication, managing day-to-day operations for five computer labs, teaching courses related to communication media and technology, and coordinating research and activities in the Social Media Analytics Command Center (SMACC).

How long have you been an employee at Illinois State?

This summer will mark my sixth year as an “adopted Redbird.”

What do you love most about working at Illinois State?

I love the sense of community and opportunities to collaborate with so many passionate, committed, and caring people.

What is one fact about yourself that might surprise people?

A lot of people assume that I have a degree in computer science because of the work I do in the SMACC, but I actually have a series of humanities degrees: a Bachelor of Arts in English (Calvin College); a master’s in rhetoric and technical communication (Michigan Tech); and a doctorate’s in rhetoric, theory, and culture (Michigan Tech).

When you’re not working, what are you most likely doing?

When I’m away from campus, I’m usually spending time with my family or pursuing hobbies such as origami, fishing, and reading. I’m also a Twitter addict.

What is your favorite spot on campus?

The second floor atrium of Fell Hall. It’s my favorite spot for two reasons: first, because I’m incredibly proud of the two labs—the Communication Innovation Center and the Social Media Analytics Command Center—that I have had the opportunity to build there, and second, because it overlooks Redbird Plaza where you can see the changing seasons and all the graduating students having their pictures taken with the Reggie statue.

If you could have a meal with one famous person (living or deceased), with whom would it be and why?

Sir David Attenborough, the naturalist and narrator for the BBC Planet Earth/Blue Planet series. I can imagine that he is full of some pretty wild stories.