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Congratulations to Dr. William A. Covino!

Congratulations to Dr. William A. Covino!

Anthony Julian Tamburri (June 13, 2013)

Cal State University Los Angeles has its first new president in 33 years. And he is an Italian American!


Cal State University Los Angeles has its first new president in 33 years. And he is an Italian American! The University’s Board of Trustees has named Dr. William A. Covino, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs of California State University, Fresno, as President of California State University, Los Angeles.

Covino replaces James Rosser, who is retires this coming June, after a long and distinguished career.

“I am honored to join a university as outstanding as Cal State L.A. and look forward to engaging with students, faculty, alumni and the community to build on its strengths and create opportunities for the future. […] The university is uniquely positioned in a global center for the arts, technology and the economy and it boasts a student population as diverse as the city it serves. Cal State L.A. truly reflects the changing face of California in the 21st century.”

Covino served as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Fresno State since 2009. Before joining Fresno State, Covino spent eight years at Florida Atlantic University, where he chaired the Department of English and was Dean of the College of Arts and Letters. As Dean at FAU, its College of Arts and Letters grew impressively, one unit being the Ph.D. Program in Comparative Studies, which, at his departure, had close to one hundred students enrolled half of which were funded.

Covino is no stranger to Italian Americana. His support of the field was amply demonstrated when he was dean at FAU. The Ph.D. in Comparative Studies graduated as many as four students in Italian diasporic studies during his tenure as dean; and there were more to follow. 

Covino has also held faculty positions at the University of Illinois at Chicago and San Diego State University. He earned his B.A. in English from the University of California, Los Angeles; his holds two M.A. degrees from CSU Northridge and the University of Southern California; and he earned his Ph.D. in English from USC in 1981. 

I had the pleasure of working with him as both Chair of the Department of Languages and Liniguistics and as Associate Dean for Research, Graduate, and Interdisciplinary Studies under his deanship.

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