Dr. Ara Karakashian

Dean, Business, Culinary Arts, and Hospitality Management

Dr. Ara Karakashian
Culinary Conference Center, Room 218B
Journal Square Campus

Certificate, Diversity & Inclusion, Cornell University - 2022
Ed.D., Educational Leadership, Rowan University - 2020
MBA., Hospitality Management, Johnson & Wales University - 2002
B.S., Food Service Management, Johnson & Wales University - 2000
A.A.S., Culinary Arts, Johnson & Wales University - 1998

Dr. Ara Karakashian (Dr. K) has been the Dean of the School of Business, Culinary Arts, & Hospitality Management since March 2020. Dr. K has taught Hospitality Management, Culinary Arts, Business, & Humanities courses since 2007. He has also coordinated the culinary arts and baking & pastry programs at the college. Currently, Dr. K is also leading the Accounting, Baking and Pastry, Supply Chain Management, and Cannabis programs at the college.

Dr. K played a significant role in developing Hospitality Management curriculum at the college. Dr. K came to HCCC with management experience at hospitality properties in Rhode Island and New Jersey. Having owned and managed a 50-seat luncheonette, he also brings entrepreneurial experience this institution. 

Dr. K serves on the Achieving the Dream Implementation team for the Hudson Helps Resource Center, President’s Advisory Council on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (PACDEI), Curriculum & Instruction Committee (since 2011), All College Council (former Chair & Vice Chair of the Steering Committee, Chair of Technology Committee, Development & Planning Committee) and American Culinary Federation Re-accreditation. He is actively involved in secondary and higher education advisory boards within Hudson, Passaic, Middlesex, and Monmouth Counties.

Dr. K has led the implementation of Cannabis curriculum at HCCC. Working with 4 local retail dispensaries, he helped negotiate agreements to provide for co-marketing opportunities, special events, scholarships, externships, and mandatory employment of HCCC graduates. Recently, the Board of Trustees of HCCC approved an agreement with LIM College in New York City, serving as one of the first articulation agreements for cannabis between a community college and a baccalaureate-granting institution in the United States.

A servant leader who speaks English, Spanish, Armenian, and Arabic, Dr. K guides and assists students, faculty, and staff in achieving their goals. He is a first-generation college graduate who believes in establishing opportunities, fostering success, and launching successful futures for all graduates. Dr. K maintains an open-door policy for all who require his assistance.