Spotlight: Kent Carpenter, Musician and OIT Director at UCM

Posted by Desiree Silva, IT Communications Officer, UCM.  Kent Carpenter has been working in information technology for nearly 20 years, so it’s safe to say he’s seen a lot of changes since he began his career. When Carpenter started his first job out of college, laptop computers had just started to be manufactured, the Internet was still in its infancy, and smart phones weren’t so smart. Yes, a lot has changed over the years. But what hasn’t changed is Carpenter’s dedication to providing the best service possible for the customer.

“I am a driver for quality services and an advocate for the customer while balancing out the needs of the operations,” said Carpenter, director of the Office of Information Technology (OIT) at the University of California, Merced. Carpenter has been UCM’s OIT director for six months, and spent much of his career working IT at major insurance companies before making the move to education with Pearson Education in Denver.

A graduate of Cal State University, Northridge, Carpenter said he enjoys working in the higher education environment. “I had a great experience at CSU, Northridge, along with my three best friends,” he said. “Working for UC Merced reminds me of the great experience I had during those years.

“I appreciate the drive and cause of higher education in general: educating our students by enriching their lives but also in making this world a better place. I would eventually like to see corporations relocate to Merced because of the talent pool coming out of our campus and keeping this talent here in the Central Valley.”

Carpenter earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science at CSU, Northridge. He received an MBA in Business from Cardinal Stritch University in Wisconsin. He also has an IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) Foundations certification, along with a Project Management Professional (PMP) certification.

Carpenter’s focus as UCM’s OIT director is “to continue to improve on the customer experience.” He is building on the OIT department’s service offerings and driving more self-help functions, while streamlining processes.

While he likes to keep the technology running smoothly, he’s also open to adventure outside of work – he enjoys hiking, fishing and mountain biking. He’s also a talented musician, playing the trumpet, guitar, banjo, mandolin, and piano. Carpenter has been married 23 years to his wife, Darlene, and has two children, Matthew, 18, and Camryn, 16.

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