After 38 years at the University as both a student and an employee, Deputy Vice Provost for University Life George Koval retired this week. Koval had been deputy vice provost for University Life since 1977. His position will not be replaced. "I think he is the best of Penn -- someone who personalizes the institution in a way that is unforgettable," VPUL Valarie Swain-Cade McCoullum said. "He always put students first. That's his legacy he leaves to all of us." Koval was recruited from upstate Pennsylvania to play football for Penn in 1957. He enjoyed great success on the varsity team as the quarterback and captain. And during his senior year, Penn lost only one game. Off the field, he was a student in Wharton and member of the Sphinx Senior Honor Society. After graduation, Koval went to work in Penn's Student Employment Office and coached football as well. This started him on an extremely wide-ranging career in student service at the University. He has worked in almost every office in the VPUL -- including Student Financial Services, WXPN radio, Residential Living and Residential Maintenance. Almost 250 members of the University community honored Koval Wednesday at a reception in the Penn Tower Hotel. McCoullum presented Koval with a "Resolution of Appreciation Award." Koval's colleagues also paid tribute to their friend in a series of speeches. He was described as an avid golfer, lottery-player and "a simple country boy," by various friends. Associate VPUL Larry Moneta, who gave Koval a football on behalf of the Athletic Department and the VPUL, affectionately related how Koval got all the way through his career without ever using e-mail -- although it got harder and harder for him as time progressed. "It was either send an e-mail or retire," Moneta joked. "So he decided to retire." In his speech, Koval was very thankful to the colleagues who have befriended him throughout his time at the University. He said he was admitted to Penn in exchange for nine Saturdays of football per year for four years. "I know I got the better deal," he said. "Thirty-six days has parleyed into a pretty good career."Comments powered by Disqus
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