September 3, 2019, marked the start of a new era at Georgia Tech. On this day, Ángel Cabrera began his tenure as the Institute’s 12th president. Watch his first day on the job unfold through photos, videos, and stories.
“It’s the first day of school,” President Cabrera says with a smile. He’s unpacking boxes and setting up his office.
“I’m going from ‘getting here’ to ‘being here.’ I’ve been here as a student, as an alumnus, as a parent. But this time it’s a very different experience.”
Before his first meeting, President Cabrera gets a quick tutorial from Jennifer Tomasino, Institute Communications, on the content management system he’ll be using for his blog. He is looking forward to sharing his insights and experiences as Tech’s president with the campus community.
“It was given to me by a good friend from Jordan, and it's made many stops with me,” Cabrera says of the one-of-a-kind nameplate that sits on his desk. “It's definitely different from most standard office nameplates.”
It’s time for the first meeting. The morning begins with President Cabrera’s cabinet — his closest advisors and the deans from all six of Georgia Tech’s colleges. This is a day of firsts for many in the room, including Susan Lozier, who begins her tenure as College of Sciences Dean and Betsy Middleton and John Clark Sutherland Chair.
“Presidents come and presidents go, but when they’re around, they change everything about what a university is.”
— Charles Isbell, who is also a Tech graduate and in a new leadership role this semester as dean and John P. Imlay Jr. Chair of the College of Computing, talks about the first meeting with President Cabrera this morning and the search process that led to his hiring.
The Faculty Executive Board is made up of elected members who serve three-year terms. This meeting is the first opportunity for President Cabrera to talk to members of the faculty. “Thank you — thank you — for what you do every day,” he tells them.
Cabrera welcomes Georgia Tech staff leadership to his office. David Brown is chair of Georgia Tech’s Staff Council, which represents more than 3,700 employees on campus. Cara Joy Wong, past chair, is a proud Georgia Tech alumna who graduated with a degree in business administration.
“It’s an honor to meet the president on his first day. It says a lot that he is taking time out of his schedule to meet with us,” Wong says.
“I want to spend part of my first day learning about what it’s like to be a student at Georgia Tech.” —President Ángel Cabrera, eating lunch with student leaders in Clough Commons
Like any new employee, President Cabrera’s first day included a visit to Human Resources. He proudly displays his new BuzzCard bearing his status as a faculty/staff member.
A different kind of class photo. After visiting HR, Cabrera pauses for a photo with Georgia Tech students who are also starting new jobs on campus today.
Eric, a student from Bogotá, Colombia, races across Ferst Drive near the Campus Recreation Center to greet the new president. “¡Hola, President Cabrera!” The two converse in Spanish. “It’s an honor and an inspiration to have a president who speaks Spanish,” Eric tells him.
Civil engineering major Donald Gee hops off his bicycle to talk with the new president. Gee plans to attend Cabrera’s first Institute Address on Thursday.
Welcome home, President Cabrera.