Volume 79 | Issue 5
September 2011

Filip Pongratz, Temple University

Name: Filip Pongratz
Title: Associate Director, Student Center Operations
Union: Student Faculty Center
Institution: Temple University
Location: Philadelphia
Years in the profession: 8

Five Fun Facts
First job: Event director for a medical conference company
Dream movie role: Indiana Jones
Proudest moment (and biggest challenge): Making the decision to move from England to the United States for a girl … who is now my wife
Guilty indulgence: Yellow cake with chocolate frosting
Retirement dream: To live somewhere with big mountain skiing nearby (California, Utah, the Alps)

Q. What is your primary responsibility?
A. To oversee all operations of the Student Faculty Center on Temple University’s Health Science Center campus. This includes the departments of student activities, student organizations, campus recreation, and a conference center. In addition, I supervise special events at the Medical Education Research Building for the School of Medicine.

Q. What would your staff, colleagues, or students say about you?
A. I genuinely enjoy coming to work and am willing to go the extra mile to help students and staff. I always have a smile on my face and do not mind getting my hands dirty. Staff would say I am not just their supervisor but a mentor as well.

Q. What’s one innovation or project of which you’re proud to have helped implement?
A. Being asked to develop all policies and to manage special events within the new Medical School building on Temple University’s Health Science Center campus.

Q. What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned while working in the profession?
A. Attention to detail is key, and learn to roll with the punches. At larger institutions, where red tape and politics are more pervasive, everything takes just a little longer to accomplish. Do not let roadblocks deter you from challenging the status quo.

Q. What is one phrase to live by or bit of advice you might have for future generations of union professionals?
A. I try to live my life with the philosophy that you work to live, not live to work. This allows me to have an excellent work/life balance. Naturally, loving what you do helps to make any semblance of work not seem like work in the first place. Having a positive attitude every morning and arriving at work with a smile on your face will always improve everyone else around you.

Q. Is there anything else you would like ACUI members to know about you?
A. I am from London originally. I love sports, specifically football (soccer), skiing, and golf. I would not be surprised if any children I have learn to ski before they can walk.