Kutztown University names acting president

Dr. Carlos Vargas-Aburto

Dr. Carlos Vargas-Aburto has been named acting president of Kutztown University by the institution’s Council of Trustees, effective July 1, 2014.

Vargas will step in for Dr. F. Javier Cevallos, who will become the president at Framingham State in July. Cevallos has been KU’s president since 2002.

Vargas’ appointment follows Kutztown University’s succession plan for acting president. He is currently KU’s provost and vice president for academic and student affairs, and has been the school’s chief academic officer since 2006.

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“We are extremely pleased to have Carlos Vargas accept the role of acting president at Kutztown University,” said John Wabby, chair of the Kutztown University Council of Trustees. “Dr. Vargas brings a wealth of experience to the position, as well as outstanding institutional knowledge. We have full confidence in his ability to continue the level of excellence and leadership Dr. Cevallos brought to KU the past 12 years.”

Vargas came to Kutztown from Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio, where he served as provost and vice president for academic affairs since November 2003. Prior to that, he served in several roles at Kent State University (Ohio) for a total of 18 years. From 2000 until 2003, he was the director of the program on electron beam technology. He was also Kent’s associate dean for research from 2001 until 2002. He served as interim assistant dean for research from 1998 until 2000. From 1996 until 1998, he was appointed interim assistant dean for the School of Technology. He started his tenure at Kent State in 1985 as a professor, and continued to teach until his departure from the university.

“I am honored to be asked to serve as Kutztown University’s acting president,” Vargas said. “I look forward to continue working with our talented faculty and staff in maintaining excellent service to our students and the community.”

Vargas-Aburto began his career in higher-education at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), from which he received his Bachelor of Science degree in physics in 1971. He was the university’s senior associate researcher for the Institute of Geophysics from 1978 until 1980, and held the same role for UNAM’s Institute of Physics from 1980 until 1984.

Vargas-Aburto earned his Ph.D. in physics and aerospace science from the University of Michigan in 1978. He has Master of Science degrees from Michigan in physics (1975) and aerospace science (1974).

Kutztown University has started a national search for a permanent replacement for Cevallos in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education.