Gary came to UNC Charlotte from New Jersey in February 2017. He worked as an academic advisor at Rutgers University – Newark for Student Support Services (SSS) . SSS is a federally funded TRiO program aimed at retaining and graduating first-generation, and limited income college students. Gary graduated from Rutgers University with his Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and his Master's Degree in Liberal Studies concentrating on Public Administration, Education, and Global Affairs. Gary is passionate about grooming students as they prepare to navigate the professional world. He is dedicated to the mission of student growth and success. His counseling philosophy is geared toward student empowerment. He strives to teach students to become proactive, self-sufficient individuals who learn to search for and use available resources. Mr. Martinez welcomes all students from diverse cultural backgrounds, and is an advocate for inclusivity, as he encourages students to tell their stories. He enjoys spending time with his family outdoors, fishing, recreational sports (basketball/flag football), playing djembe and guitar, and barbequing.