Q & A with A-B Tech President, Dr. John Gossett

John D. Gossett, Ed.D., officially took office as A-B Tech’s seventh president on July 1. He was most recently president of McDowell Technical Community College in Marion since 2016.

His 32-year career in higher education began as a Business Administration instructor and department chair at Mayland Community College. He also served Mayland as Assistant Vice President for Academic Services, Associate Vice President for Workforce Development, Director of Research and Planning, and Vice President of Student Development.

He joined McDowell Tech in 2012 as Vice President for Learning and Student Services. Gossett also has served on numerous local, regional and statewide boards and committees in support of community college education and economic development initiatives. His professional interests include community and small business development, as well as leadership development for staff and students.

Gossett holds a B.S. in Marketing from the University of Tennessee, an M.B.A. from Appalachian State University, and an Ed.D. in Adult and Community College Education from North Carolina State University. His doctoral dissertation focused on the role of community colleges in economic development.

He and his wife Julie are the proud parents of four adult children, two daughters-in-law and one grandson.

Below are some questions Community Relations and Marketing asked Dr. Gossett in order to get to know him.

CRM: Tell us about your family

JDG: Wife Julie, Four children (2 men, 2 women), two daughters-in-law, one grandson, two boyfriends (that are growing on me) and eight dogs between the 11 of us.


CRM: What was the last book you read?

JDG: “61” by Lee Child.  I’m late to the Jack Reacher books.  


CRM: What was the last book you read and actually enjoyed?

JDG: See above answer.


CRM:  Favorite movie or TV show?

JDG: Comedies.  Life is too short not to laugh


CRM: Any guilty pleasures?

JDG: If there is ice cream in the freezer, it won’t last long


CRM: Groundhogs or Bears?

JDG: Bears (editor’s note: Now we know who to call when a bear gets in the Simpson Building)


CRM: Best way to spend a weekend?

JDG: Golf in the AM, hike in the afternoon, dinner with my bride


CRM: If you were to enroll at A-B Tech, what classes would you take?

JDG: Anything where I could make something.  I wish I was better with my hands


CRM: Which classes would you teach?

JDG: Business.  


CRM: Dog or cat?

JDG: Dogs!  We have a 14-year-old Shih Tzu named Mojo


CRM: What’s your hidden talent?

JDG: Sarcasm is my love language


CRM: Favorite sport?

JDG: Golf to play, college football to watch


CRM: Favorite team? 

JDG: Tennessee.  Say “Rocky Top” three times and I’ll be forced to sing it loud and off key.  Haha


CRM: What is your passion?

JDG: Helping people get where they want to be.


CRM: As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

JDG: Pitcher for the Braves.  Yes, even back in the rotten years.


CRM: Favorite band/music?

JDG: Jimmy Buffett from way back.  Listening to Carolina R&B Shag Dance (Beach) music right now.  


CRM: Anything else you want to include?

JDG: We are thrilled to be here and look forward to meeting everyone


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