President John Nazarian, who was born and raised in Pawtucket, is a 1954 graduate of Rhode Island College. With over 40 years of experience with the College as a student, teacher and administrator, President Nazarian was appointed to the College’s highest office in May, 1990.
He holds a bachelor’s degree in education, a master’s degree from Brown University (1956), a second master’s degree from the University of Illinois (1961) and earned his doctorate from New York University in 1967.
His professional career at RIC began as an instructor of mathematics and physics in 1954 following his graduation. He was promoted to assistant professor in 1958, associate professor in 1967, and full professor in 1971. By then, President Nazarian had already been appointed the College’s first Associate Dean of Arts and Sciences. Two years later he was named Special Assistant to the President for Institutional Research and Planning, a position he held until 1977, when he became Vice President for Administrative Services. From 1981 and through the next nine years, President Nazarian served the College as its top financial administrator, Vice President for Administration and Finance.