Featuring our GCATD Past President, Michele Miller. In 2018, she served as GCATD Chapter President. Michele suggests if you're considering volunteering to make it a priority. She admitted were times when she wanted to quit because there was so much going on, but stayed because it was something she was doing for herself. Later she realized her tenure on the Board was a learning experience and has stretched her in ways she couldn’t have imagined or have planned.
Q: Tell us a little about yourself.
I’m an only child from Louisville, Kentucky who attended the University of Tennessee, Knoxville where I received my Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics. After which, I took a job as a part time teller until I could find a “real job”. Needless to say, I moved to Ohio shortly thereafter for a management trainee role for a Savings & Loan and have been in banking ever since. After a few mergers and changing banks, I transitioned from branch management to a learning and development role as a facilitator at PNC Bank. I, then, decided to learn more about the learning discipline by completing a Masters (MAEd) in Adult Education which catapulted my career into Instructional Design, Training Project Management and Training Management. I later completed a Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) which has helped considerably in my current role within the training organization at PNC. On February 10th, I will celebrate 29 years of service with PNC. I’m currently living the single life in Liberty Township.
Q: Share details about your role with PNC.
PNC is a Main Street Bank focused on providing the best customer experience, developing talent and being involved with our communities and providing value to our shareholders. As Sr. Learning Manager within the training organization (PNC University), I manage a small but mighty team (Administration Office) that oversees a $30MM training budget, 59 vendors with corresponding contracts and invoices, realty services occupancy planning for ~250 learning professionals and 143 training rooms, our business continuity plan and our reinstated annual plan process which systematically aligns training strategies to business goals. I typically describe my role as managing the “business of learning.”
Q: What is it you enjoy most about being in a learning role?
I love seeing people have that “aha” moment when they have learned something. However I can contribute is fine; be it facilitating, designing or developing materials, coaching or mentoring others. I especially like working with people to first determine their passion then to encourage them to pursue that passion, providing tools and resources to assist. I have a pretty good track record of seeing my employees promoted within training or even move outside into other areas. Several are now my peers. I have also been known to mentor those interested in learning and development.
Q. Where is your ultimate vacation destination?
I’ve had the opportunity to visit some cool places like France, Luxembourg, Seattle, Vancouver, Victoria, St. Croix, and Disney to name a few. I even went on a Caribbean cruise and loved it! However I also enjoy nice, quiet Bed and Breakfasts. They are much more “homey” than hotels so anywhere I can drive to one is great. I typically meet a college friend in Gatlinburg annually for a girl’s weekend at Blue Mountain Mist BnB that has a spa next door of which we also take advantage. I also enjoy the Cornerstone Inn in Nashville, Indiana. I hope to go to the Holy Land with my church this year and would like to go to Spain, England and Mexico at some point.
Q: Tell me about your involvement with GCATD.
I’ve been a member of GCATD for about five years. I joined as a development opportunity for myself and to meet local training professionals. We were going through Learning Transformation in our training organization and I knew I needed to learn more about the profession and glean from others. At that time I had basically no local network since all my work colleagues where in other states.
I started as a member of the Professional Development Committee after joining National, then became a Board member as VP of Professional Development. Soon after I was elected President Elect in 2017 which began my three year term and now I am Past President. I have also worked on the Conference Committee helping to review proposals.
Q: What advice would you give to others interested in volunteering?
Volunteering is great on all fronts. I initially volunteered for myself, but found that I had something to offer to others. I have built a larger network and great friendships. If you do plan to volunteer, make it a priority. There were times when I wanted to quit because there was so much going on, but I stayed because it was something I was doing for myself. It has been a learning experience and has stretched me in ways I couldn’t have imagined or have planned. Also when you volunteer don’t try to do too many things or be on too many committees. Stick with one thing (large or small) and give it your best. Someone needs it. You have a lot to offer. As a matter of fact, GCATD needs you! It all starts with a conversation. Reach out! I’d love to meet you for coffee or lunch if you want to learn more.
Q: What do you like to do for fun?
I love to sing, read, crochet, attend Christian concerts, cultural events and watch Hallmark movies! I’m very involved with my church and live out my passion for learning and for people as a Bible Class teacher and Director of Morning Greeters. Also, I have often been called a “wedding in a box” since I have officiated, coordinated, sang and been in weddings.