Dr. Carlos Campo: Leading Regent University into the Future
By Cheryl Wilcox
The 700 Club
He’s passionate about education and committed to his student body. Meet Dr. Carlos Campo, President of Regent University.
"We are going to challenge you to know who you are in God," Dr. Campo tells students. "We are going to challenge your intellect, and we are going to challenge your emotions. You are going to graduate Regent with a skill set that goes far beyond the market."
Dr. Campo’s desire to pursue excellence is birthed out of his own family heritage. As a first generation Cuban American, he credits much of his success to his parent’s fortitude.
"They made a way for all of us kids," Dr. Campo tells The 700 Club. "My father came to this country; he had $20 in his pocket. He was in New York City and had a dream and made it come true. My mother basically at the age of 13 was orphaned, and she and her sister had the fortitude to walk to a local radio station and audition for a show and made it. They literally made a way for themselves and for us. Those are the sorts of stories those from our generation tell often of our parents."
His mother, Betty Clooney, was a singer. His aunt, Rosemary Clooney, was known as one of America’s most beloved performers. His father, Pupi Campo, graced the stage as a legendary Latin orchestra leader and recording artist.
"I grew up around people that were really talented. Dad and Mom certainly instilled those qualities in me never, never believe mediocre is okay."
Campo’s father’s determination encouraged him to pursue his dreams.
"He was an immigrant, who didn’t speak a word of English, came to this country with nothing except a dream to be an entertainer and be a successful one. He was able to achieve that, so, he also worked very hard. This idea of hard work was something dad established in me."
His mother instilled in him a love for literature and the Lord.
"My mother reading at my bedside was my earliest memory. There was discovery in the narrative that, of course, my mother brought to life. A lifelong entertainer, she was a wonderful reader, and to have that wash over my ears and into my mind developed in me a love for learning."
Tragically, his mother died of a brain aneurysm when Dr. Campo was just 17. He recalls, "When we lost our mom, we made a commitment to one another as a family, not unusual in Latino family. We said we know that God has called us to ministry and we know God has called us to one another."
Dr. Campo says he knew he was called to the classroom. He taught at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and received numerous awards as an outstanding educator.
"When I was in the classroom, I was blessed with phenomenal students. They pushed me to greater heights as an instructor."
Dr. Campo credits his wife of 30 years, Karen, with the unconditional support that led to his successes in academia.
"When you think about God’s blessings and his graciousness, Karen is absolutely that. She is my rock. She has been at my side all of these years."
She’ll continue to be there as Dr. Campo assumes leadership of Regent University from founder Pat Robertson in August 2010. The two share a vision to extend the University’s global reach.
"We are a school that strongly emphasizes our roots, and our roots are absolutely Christian. Our faculty are people [who] say, 'Not only do I want you to be the best lawyer, the best educator you can, but I want you to be the best human being you can be.'"
Learn more about Regent University.
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