THE PACE CHRONICLE

Life in Reverse: Rachel Carpenter

Jack Fozard, Feature Writer

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“I actually spent more time growing up not in the United States than I did in the US.”

Rachel Carpenter is the Assistant Dean of Assessment and Planning at Pace, and might be hard to find if you’re looking for her.

Tucked away in the SDCA office behind boxes and multiple glass-paned walls, her office sits in the back to the left, steps away from the rest of Kessel, yet peacefully isolated from the noise Kessel brings.

The boxes piled up around the office almost soundproof the room, dotted by what must be a dozen picture frames, bookshelves filled with more than enough material to last the semester and then some.

It is here that Rachel is home. As a world traveler, growing up as an army brat, this is clearly the place she has decided is home, having been here since 2010.

“I feel like I did life in reverse. A lot of people might spend their whole life one place and then, at about 21, 22 they’ll be like ‘For the next 20 years I’m going to spend it anywhere but here’ I kind of did the reverse,” Carpenter recalls.

“I spent the first 30 years of my life moving and doing all of that and now I’m like, this is really strange to live somewhere where I know my neighbors, where I’ve seen my neighbor’s kids grow- I never had that neighborhood experience.”

Her dark eyes scan the room, never quite settling for too long on one place. Once a prospective U.S. Ambassador, Carpenter now looks to a PhD in Business, with her knowledge of Russian and Japanese languages being assets in her new endeavors.

When choosing between a 3-letter intelligence agency and an open position at her alma mater in Indiana, Carpenter took the surefire Hall Director position and never looked back.

Her demeanor is guarded, intelligent and focused; eager to answer yet reticent to divulge any specifics- it’s easy to see how she might’ve been an intelligence officer in another life.

Here, conversing with students at the front desk and working diligently back in her office, is where Carpenter’s home is now. As a proponent of StrengthsQuest, she is focused on the strengths of others as a member of the SDCA (Student Development and Campus Activities) that seeks to give students the tools to develop further as students and as people.

The front lobby sucks in all the noise and loud casual conversation from the lounge and cafeteria, but in the back it is quiet and peaceful, a nice respite from the tiresome moving parts of the otherwise loud student center. Carpenter has found her rest here at Pace after a lifetime worth of travel and so have her skills, and here they will stay.

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