“I was the first child in my family to go to college. My family was hesitant and my Dad wanted me to go to work. Mom supported me and Dad gave in. I was scared beyond belief. I soon found out that a caring faculty and staff were on hand and ready to help. I got involved in Student Affairs and really never left. I joined organizations and was really involved. CCRI (or RIJC at the time) was and continues to be a focal point in my life. This place is a treasure that no one should ever forget.”
Robert Carosi’s dedication to the Community College of Rhode Island was only overshadowed by his enthusiasm for the school. Since graduating from CCRI (then Rhode Island Junior College) in 1997, he spent over two decades helping to further the success of CCRI students through his involvement in student organizations. He also worked to foster a sense of community among his fellow CCRI graduates as a shining example of achievement for current CCRI students.
A tireless leader, Carosi served as president of the CCRI Alumni Association for 20 years and was a founding member of the CCRI Foundation. For several years, he served as executive director of Rhode Island Vocational Industrial Clubs of America (VICA) for Cranston schools. VICA is national organization designed to train students for careers in industrial, trade and health occupations.
Carosi also served as chair of the Board for the National DECA North Atlantic Regional Council, national parliamentarian for the National VICA Directors’ Association, chair of the National VICA Region I Conference, chair of the National VICA Credentials Committee, and president/chair of the Board for the Cranston Historical Society.
In 1998, Carosi was named National VICA Director of the Year, received the Hall of Fame Award from the Cranston Historical Society, and was recognized by the City of Cranston for his professional and charitable contributions to the city when Mayor Traficante proclaimed June 16, 1998 as “Robert Carosi Recognition Day.”
For many years, Carosi served as the state executive director of SkillsUSA, Rhode Island, most recently headquartered at CCRI’s Knight Campus. He championed the achievements of career and technical students from around the state and served as an adviser to CCRI’s student government. He was inducted to the college’s Society of the Knights in 2003.
Carosi established a scholarship in honor of his parents, Alice and Albert Carosi, which is given to CCRI students who demonstrate leadership in student-run organizations and are pursuing programs in the areas of trade, industrial technology and health. He passed away in 2006.