Arthur J. N. Scavella

Degree: Ed.D. in Educational Administration and Supervision

College/School: School of Education and Human Development, College of Arts, Sciences & Education

Arthur Scavella was determined to never settle. Diagnosed from birth with a rare disease that causes joints in the arms or legs to be permanently bent or straightened, doctors told Arthur’s family he would never walk and would likely have intellectual disabilities.

His mother, Gloria, quit her job at the U.S. Postal Service to care for Arthur. By age 6, he had weathered countless surgeries to ensure he could walk. He learned to play the cello in elementary school and continued through high school, where his music teacher inspired Arthur to make teaching music his career.

He graduated high school with honors and earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from FIU. But Arthur still had a ways to go in fulfilling the one request his mother made of him and his sister when they were children – to earn the highest degree in their field.

Arthur came back to FIU and set his sights on earning a doctorate in educational administration and supervision. His dissertation focused on whether children who participated in band performed better on standardized tests – they do. Arthur credits professors Peter Cistone and Thomas G. Reio, Jr. for helping him persevere and keep his promise to his mother.

Arthur plans to become a principal or administrator in Miami-Dade County Public Schools, where for the last nine years has been director of bands and orchestral studies at Arthur & Polly Mays Conservatory of the Arts.

By Chrystian Tejedor
Account Manager, College of Arts, Sciences & Education