Utica, NY (WIBX) - "I don't remember having a day where I didn't want to come to work."

That's Utica College's Athletic Director, Jim Spartano.

Tonight at 7 p.m., he will be honored by the Utica College campus for his dedicated service.

Spartano has been employed by the college since 1973, starting as head baseball coach. He eventually worked his way into the role of athletic director in 1982, where he has been ever since.

During his tenure, Utica College was transformed from a small Division I school into a thriving Division III program with 25 NCAA-sponsored sports.

Spartano said the reason he has stayed in his position for so long is simple; it gives him the opportunity to be a mentor.

"The one compelling excitement and service, we provide a service,  would be, we have to remember it's about our students," Spartano said. "We've had our day. I've had my day on the field, and it was wonderful.  But when I coach, and I'm sitting at this desk, it's now about the students."

Utica College will celebrate "Jim Spartano Night," during tonight's basketball game against Hamilton College, in the Clark Athletic Center.

Those planning to attend are encouraged to wear orange in support of Spartano, who will be recognized throughout the night.