Dr. Paul Arcario Named Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs at LaGuardia Community College

Long Island City, NY—Dr. Paul Arcario, an academic leader in higher education who over the past 24 years  has served LaGuardia Community College as both a professor in the Department of Education and Language Acquisition and a Dean of the Division of Academic Affairs, has been appointed Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs.

In this newly developed position, Dr. Arcario will provide leadership for both the Divisions of Academic Affairs and Student Affairs.

“The opportunity to align the divisions around the shared goal of student success is a very exciting mission to me,” said Dr. Arcario.  “I firmly believe that facilitating student success is the joint responsibility of both divisions: learning and development results from what happens outside as well as inside the classroom, and in the integration of the two.”

“As the Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Arcario will build upon his strong record of leadership and innovation,” said Dr. Gail O. Mellow, President of LaGuardia. “And he will foster greater alignment based on a history of collegial and productive relationships; and in all ways, help the College to prosper and flourish more strongly than ever.”

Although Dr. Arcario has spent the majority of his LaGuardia career in the Division for Academic Affairs serving as Dean, he has collaborated very closely with Student Affairs, most notably on the creation of an award-winning First-Year Experience program.

“I am confident that as Provost I will be able to draw upon the productive working relationships I have already established with student affairs in order to better align the initiatives and operations of both divisions,” he said.

Dr. Arcario, who has a doctoral degree in Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) from Teachers College, Columbia University and speaks Mandarin Chinese, joined the College in 1988 as an English of a Second Language instructor.  In 1994, he became the program’s chairperson, a position he held until 1998 when he was appointed Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs.  He was promoted to Associate Dean in 1998 and one year later was made a full Dean.

Dr. Arcario authored over $14 million in grants that funded faculty development, academic programs and student development initiatives.  Among the grant-funded projects he launched, was the award-winning Center for Teaching and Learning, which supports faculty development; the creation of the ePortfolio program; and Project Quantum Leap, which is designed to improve developmental math outcomes for students; and two STEM grants that enabled the College to create its first two science degrees—biology and environmental science. 

He was also responsible for leading the college-wide development of the LaGuardia’s annual strategic plan as well as the day-to-day management of divisional initiatives and activities.

His contributions to higher education have been acknowledged by the academic community.  In 2007 he received the “Outstanding First-Year Student Advocate” award from the National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition, and his programs have helped LaGuardia garner numerous awards, among them the Bellwether Award in Instructional Programs, the MetLife Institution of Excellence award and the Institution of Excellence award from The Policy Center on the First Year of College. 

He has authored textbooks and publications on ESL, the first year experience and LaGuardia’s ePortfolio; produced educational videos for teaching ESL, including the first American English language-teaching video broadcast in The People’s Republic of China; and presented his work at national conferences. 

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 LaGuardia Community College located in Long Island City, Queens, was founded in 1971 as a bold experiment in opening the doors of higher education to all, and we proudly carry forward that legacy today. LaGuardia educates students through over 50 degree, certificate and continuing education programs, providing an inspiring place for students to achieve their dreams. Upon graduation, LaGuardia students’ lives are transformed as family income increases 17%, and students transfer to four-year colleges at three times the national average. Part of the City University of New York (CUNY), LaGuardia is a nationally recognized leader among community colleges for boundary-breaking success educating underserved students. At LaGuardia we imagine new ideas, create new curriculum and pioneer programs to make our community and our country stronger. Visit www.laguardia.edu to learn more.