Each Friday we will be introducing you to one player on the American Sentinel University team. Everyone works hard to make sure our students reach their goals through supporting students and constantly improving our curriculum. When our students graduate with a relevant, innovative healthcare degree we all win!
Meet Vice President of Marketing, Bret Nickel
If you were a healthcare worker, what area would you like to work in (pediatrics, ER, etc.)?
I would like to work in epidemiology – especially looking at the cause and origin of diseases, transmission, and outbreak investigation. I am a data geek. I love numbers, research, spreadsheets, and charts. The analysis and investigation aspects of epidemiology would be right up my aisle. I would probably draw the line at working with data. I have no desire to handle “zombie apocalypse viruses” or climb into one of those yellow encapsulated CDC suits.
What is your favorite inspirational quote?
“You never fail until you stop trying.” – Albert Einstein.
There are two ideas within this quote that I find very empowering. First, the fear of failure is a good motivator, but it can also limit you to only attempting the things you know you have a high probability of achieving. In order to stretch myself, to learn, to grow, I have to embrace failure. I came to the realization that if there was not a probability I might fail at the goals I pursued then I wasn’t aiming high enough.
The second idea is the value of persistence and the willingness to try again. I may not succeed because of my effort, my skill, or my approach. However, I can always improve on any of these and try again.
What is your favorite part about your position with American Sentinel University?
I have worked in a number of industries throughout my career. However, there is something about educating healthcare professionals that is uniquely rewarding. Helping students find their way to American Sentinel University and seeing them advance their knowledge, skills, and careers, as well as improve their lives and that of their families is great. Being able to do that for healthcare professionals who in turn give so much back to our communities is really special. I get to see the faculty and staff of this university care for and support those that are usually the caregivers.
If you could meet any president, living or dead, who would it be?
I have a president “crush” on Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson was a founding father with a significant impact on the formation of our country: serving as the third president, second vice-president, first secretary of state, principal author of the Declaration of Independence, diploma, delegate, orchestrator of the Louisiana Purchase (which doubled the size of the United States), and founder of the Library of Congress and the University of Virginia. He was a student of a diverse range of subjects: philosophy, religion, architecture, surveying, mathematics, horticulture, and mechanics. Although not the most outgoing personality, I find him fascinating.
My interest originally stemmed from Jefferson being the president on the nickel (my last name). There are Jefferson mementos all around my office; however, I don’t think anyone ever makes the connection. It is my inside joke. Well, it was…until now!
What is something about you that would surprise your co-workers?
My co-workers often ask my why I have a name plate on my desk that reads, “Mr. Wolfdog.” The name plate was a gift from my wife. It’s a reference to a 2013 Old Spice video spoofing how the company took a wolf from the wild and made him Director of Marketing to promote the brand’s new “Wild Scent” collection. The name plate is an exact match with the one in the video. The wolf, who speaks English, with the aid of a voice collar, describes how he plans to seduce you with his marketing, “that is my marketing, that I just did to you.” All the while trying to curb his wild instincts. It’s a hilarious take on marketing.
What is your favorite movie or TV show?
I am a movie fanatic. It’s hard to pick a favorite. My stock answer to this question is usually “Ben-Hur,” the 1959 epic that won eleven Academy Awards. This movie has it all: story, spectacle, drama, action, emotion. The only movie genre I don’t watch is horror; gives me nightmares.
A few TV shows I’m currently following are “House of Cards,” “The Voice,” “Blacklist,” and “The Americans.”