Arcario most recently served as the college’s provost and senior vice president for academic affairs, managing a $40 million annual budget and leading faculty recruitment and development.
He will take over for outgoing president Dr. Gail Mellow, who is stepping down on August 1 after 19 years at the helm, while the search for a permanent leader begins.
CUNY Chancellor Felix V. Matos Rodriguez made the announcement, along with the appointments of interim presidents at York College and Lehman College, last week.
“These individuals have already distinguished themselves for outstanding service, to say nothing of their versatility, ingenuity and longevity,” Matos Rodriguez said in a statement. “I am confident that they will be assets, and three of them will help our campuses to chart forward progress during a period of transition.”
Arcario joined LaGuardia in 1988 as an ESL faculty member in the Education and Language Acquisition Department, and became chairperson of the program in 1994.
He then joined the college’s academic leadership team as assistant dean in 1998. He became provost and senior vice president in 2012.
Arcario was given the 2019 Distinguished College Administrator Award from the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, as well as the “Outstanding First-Year Student Advocate” award in 2007 from the National Resource Center for the First-Year Experience.
He earned his doctorate and master’s degree in education from Columbia University Teachers College, and a bachelor’s degree in English from New York University.
Arcario began his career as an English language teacher at the China Institute of America. After teaching English in Taiwan for two years, he came back to New York City and took a position at Queensborough Community College as coordinator of Asian affairs.
He lives in Manhattan with his partner Donald Walker, whom he married in 2010.