Calvin Holt of Franklin, associate professor of mathematics, has retired after 36 years of teaching at Paul D. Camp Community College.
Calvin has worked under the direction of all seven presidents at PDCCC, starting as assistant professor of mathematics in 1976. Until 2002, he also taught computer courses. “In the 80s and 90s, computers were new and we had an influx of students wanting to take those classes,” he said.
A math major in college himself before the time of calculators, he completed his Bachelor of Arts degree at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C., and soon after joined the Peace Corps. As a volunteer, Holt served as an on-site instructor of modern math for elementary school teachers in the Philippines.
After three years of varied experiences there, he returned to the United States and earned his master’s degree from the University of Florida, majoring in mathematics education. While continuing to take advanced graduate courses at the University of Florida, he was employed by several schools in Florida before coming to PDCCC. “I was looking at jobs in Virginia to move closer to home,” he said. “I grew up in Staunton.”
In addition to teaching, over the years he has served on nearly every committee in the college, several times as chair. He also served once as president and twice as secretary/treasurer of the PDCCC Faculty Association. He served as faculty advisor to both education and business administration programs, even meeting with students in the summer while not officially on duty. He received the PDCCC Educator of the Year Award sponsored by the Franklin-Southampton Area Chamber of Commerce and was a PDCCC Faculty Showcase Award recipient sponsored by the Virginia Association of Community Colleges.
Holt has been an active member of the Virginia Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges (VMATYC). He served as its secretary for four years, and said, “In 1999, the VMATYC annual conference was held on the PDCCC campus, and I was in charge of hosting the event. Over 90 math instructors from community colleges across the state attended.” He was also chosen as one of two Virginia delegates to represent VMATYC at the annual conventions of the American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges (AMATYC).
Although he is looking forward to some relaxing vacations, Holt will miss his connection to the students and the opportunity to work directly with them.
One of his favorite aspects of teaching, he said, is “seeing the students catch onto something they did not know before. I enjoy working with them one on one. I could help them the most that way. Our new MTE (Math Essentials) courses, which we just implemented in the spring semester 2012 will facilitate more of this one-on-one instruction.”
Holt will remain busy with his volunteer work as board member and treasurer of Southampton/Franklin Habitat for Humanity and as chair of St. Jude Catholic Church Finance Council. He plans to do more traveling with his wife, Nita, enrollment services coordinator at the college.“We like to travel, and we hope to do more,” he said. “Our trip to Alaska this summer completed our goal of visiting all 50 states.”