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Dr. John J. McGrath

Chairman of the Board, CEO & President at American Collegiate Acquisitions, Inc.

About Me

Dr. John J. McGrath is currently the Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer and President of American Collegiate Acquisitions, Inc. (ACA), a company whose mission is seeking, acquiring, owning and operating fully accredited proprietary colleges in the United States.

For more info, visit http://americancollegiateacquisitions.com

Dr. McGrath is also the President of Empire Education, which owns Mildred Elley College with campuses in New York and Massachusetts. As President, McGrath works with the Chair of its Board of Directors with respect to the academic, administrative and financial operations of the parent company and the college.

During his professional career, Dr. McGrath has been the Chairman, CEO and President of a public company that owns and operates colleges in New York and Pennsylvania. His experience in academic administration also includes being the Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer, President, Assistant Vice President, Campus Dean, Department Chairman, Distinguished Professor, and Professor at multiple colleges.

Dr. McGrath served as a Professor of Law and Criminal Justice at Mercy College, Graduate Adjunct Professor at Long Island University, an Adjunct Associate Professor at Fordham University, and a Distinguished Professor of Business at TCI College. His specializations include Constitutional Law, Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure Law, Business Law, Evidence and Jurisprudence.

John’s experience in academic administration includes serving as a Campus Dean and Assistant Vice President at Mercy College where he opened and supervised seven new Extension Centers throughout New York. Subsequently, John opened an additional three Extension Centers at other New York colleges. He has opened and supervised more fully accredited College Extension Centers than any other college administrator in New York State.

As the former President of Educational Video Conferencing, Inc. (EVCI), Dr. McGrath grew the company to become a leader in offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs through videoconferencing. Specifically, he negotiated and executed long-term contracts with approximately 20 leading colleges and universities to offer their degree programs to employees at major corporations through videoconferencing technologies. The institutions included: University of Notre Dame, St. John’s University, Adelphi University, Manhattan College, Mercy College, and the College of Insurance.

Additionally, Dr. McGrath negotiated and executed long term contracts with over 15 large institutions including Merrill Lynch Global Training and Development, Citibank North America, American International Group and Lockheed Martin Corporation. Collectively, he raised over $100 million from public and private investors for this initiative.

His company partnered with Bell Atlantic for a new Telecommute to College and University Program. By 2000, it was Bell Atlantic’s second largest marketing initiative on the eastern seaboard of the United States.

EVCI went public on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange in 1999. By 2000, the business model evolved into owning and operating colleges and became EVCI Career Colleges Holding Corp. The colleges acquired included Interboro Institute, the Pennsylvania School of Business, and TCI College of Technology.

In addition to President, Dr. John McGrath also became the Chief Executive Officer in 2003 and Chairman of the Board of EVCI in 2007. He has extensive experience with running a public company and working with both public and private investors. For example, EVCI was named the #1 Stock in Westchester County (suburb adjacent to NYC) in 2003 for enhancing shareholder value. In 2007, EVCI raised approximately an additional $20 million dollars from Private Equity Investors.

Up until 2015, Dr. McGrath also served as CEO and President of TCI College in New York City. For over a decade, he oversaw the overall academic, administrative, and financial operations of the College. Under his leadership, TCI became the second largest two-year for-profit college in the New York City metropolitan area with approximately 4,500 full-time students.

John is very familiar with regulators, regional and state accreditors, the U.S. Department of Education, and college regulatory compliance. TCI is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and separately by the Regents of the State of New York. It is also accredited by the Electronics Board Engineering Technology. TCI is consistently ranked in the top three Associate Degree Colleges in America for Engineering by Community College Week. The Ophthalmic Dispensing Degree Program is accredited by the Commission on Opticianry Accreditation and it is consistently ranked #1 in New York State. The Paralegal Degree Program has the distinction of being recognized by the American Bar Association.

Dr. McGrath’s Bachelor’s Degree is in Philosophy (Summa Cum Laude) from Long Island University. He also studied for his Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice at Long Island University before moving on to earn a Ph.D. (Highest Honors) in the Criminal Justice Program from the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Fordham University.

The Doctoral Dissertation he wrote was a 483-page comparative analysis of the national liberation movements in Northern Ireland, South Africa and Algeria with specific reference to the development and interrelationship of political ideology and military strategy.

John is also a Professor of Irish History. He participated in the CNN worldwide debate focused on the Northern Ireland Peace Process and has spoken and debated extensively on Irish history and the peace process in Northern Ireland. For approximately 12 years, he was one of the principal speakers throughout the United States on the topic of Constitutional Constructs for Peace in Northern Ireland.

Additionally, John was President of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in Stamford, Connecticut and an executive member of the Brehon Law Society in New York City. In 2005, he was voted Man of the Year by the Nassau County Police Department on Long Island. Recently, he was chosen to be the 2016 Master of Ceremonies in New York City for the upcoming celebration of the100th Year Anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rebellion in Ireland.

Dr. John J. McGrath has engaged in post-doctoral work in Entrepreneurship at the University of Notre Dame and was selected and attended Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education’s Program for Experienced College Presidents.

My disciplines and areas of professional expertise include…

Current work

As CEO and President of American Collegiate Acquisitions, Inc. (ACA), Dr. McGrath is currently engaged in raising capital from institutional and strategic investors to acquire colleges. Additionally, he is in the process of conducting due diligence on potential colleges for ACA to acquire. He and his executive team are currently working on a new Business Plan with sophisticated financial modeling with respect to acquiring colleges and concomitant return on investment.

Education

Experience

  • American Collegiate Acquisitions, Inc. (ACA)

    • 2015 - Present Chairman of the Board of Directors, CEO and President
  • Empire Education Corporation

    • 7/2016 - Present President
  • TCI COLLEGE

    • 2007 - 2015 Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors, CEO and President
  • EVCI Career Colleges Holding Corp.

    • 2000 - 2015 Chairman of the Board of Directors, CEO and President
    • 1997 - 2000 Co-Founder, Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors, and President
  • Mercy College

    • 1996 - 1996 Special Assistant to the President
    • 1992 - 1995 Assistant Vice President
    • 1990 - 1995 Dean, White Plains Campus
    • 1989 - 1989 Chairman, Department of Law and Criminal Justice
    • 1980 - 1996 Professor, Associate Professor, Assistant Professor, Instructor

Teaching

TEACHING PHILOSOPHY: As a College President, I actively promoted faculty intellectual engagement and scholarship in their academic disciplines. Academic freedom is at the core of college and university life. I believe that faculty should continuously engage in advancing their critical thought processes, especially for the discovery of new knowledge. My greatest existential awareness as an undergraduate philosophy major was that the truth regarding the transmission of knowledge for good teachers lies first in their capability to intellectually reason and challenge the minds of students.

The art of teaching clearly lies in the ability to effectively communicate. When I hire new faculty members, or consider applications for promotion in academic rank for existing faculty members, my highest priority is not an assessment of academic qualifications and professional experience – it is, clearly, do I believe that this individual is a great teacher in the classroom. Having an extremely intelligent professor that cannot clearly and effectively communicate, and challenge minds, is not providing a college education. Of course, I fundamentally believe that excellent academic qualifications and, if possible, real life professional experience are central to the professoriate, but those competencies must be leveraged through the ability to effectively transmit knowledge.

As an undergraduate and graduate professor, I would always have two primary goals for all my courses: 1) Make sure that students had a comprehensive understanding of the subject matter – both from a theoretical perspective and a practical assessment standard, and 2) Make sure that I am intellectually challenging students to think independently and thereby enhancing their reasoning capacities with respect to the creation and logical construction of new intellectual ideas.

I often quoted Aristotle in my classroom: “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it”. I love challenging students with controversial ideas. Active participatory exchanges between students is fundamental to my pedagogical philosophy. And, I always tell students not to be afraid to ask any question -- and intellectually challenge me. It is exciting, dynamic and fun. My other favorite quote that I relate to students comes from Albert Einstein: “A person that never made a mistake never tried anything new. Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds”.

My academic specialties include Constitutional Law, Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure Law, Evidence, and Jurisprudence. I also have taught courses on Irish History and have spoken and debated issues with respect to the Northern Ireland peace process throughout the United States. In almost every course, I create a syllabus and class outline that includes objective sections along with a creative essay for the midterm and final examinations. Additionally, most of my courses require a research term paper which is separately evaluated on the following four standards: 1) Originality, 2) Creativity, 3) Accuracy, and 4) Research and Documentation. Student class participation is also a key metric for my evaluation of intellectual and practical understanding of the course.

I also believe very passionately that professors have an obligation to do everything reasonably within their power to make sure their students understand the material required in the course. That means working with students outside the formal classroom, providing help through the library and/or learning center, engaging with academic support staff such as retention counselors and academic advisors, and most of all, if possible, being a caring friend to students.

One of my most rewarding experiences is when a former student comes up to me in an unexpected place and says, “I remember you. You helped me to think independently and search for the truth”. I will take those moments into the hereafter.

John J. McGrath, Ph.D.

Honors

  • Graduated "Summa Cum Laude," Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy

    Long Island University

  • Graduated with "Highest Honors," Ph.D.

    Fordham University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

  • "Star Award" as CEO and President of EVCI Career Colleges Holding, Corp.

    NASDAQ

  • "Visionary Vanguard Award" in recognition of successful entrepreneurial initiatives as CEO and President of TCI.

    TCI College Community

  • Secured final accreditation for TCI College of Technology

    Middle States Commission on Higher Education

  • Opened more fully accredited Extension Centers than any other college administrator in New York State.

  • “Program of the Year Award” for opening the Mercy College Extension Center in Mount Vernon, New York

  • “Program of the Year Award” for opening the Mercy College Extension Center in Portchester, New York

  • "Key to the City"

    Mount Vernon

  • Principal: CNN coverage of debate on “Constitutional Constructs for Peace in Northern Ireland”

    Fordham University

  • Master of Ceremonies: "Irish Race Convention," Jacob Javits Convention Center, New York City

  • "Man of the Year"

    Nassau County Police Department, New York

  • Ocean Lifeguard Awards: Triathlete and long distance swimmer

Publications

Research

CURRENT RESEARCH AT AMERICAN COLLEGIATE ACQUISITIONS, INC: Fundamental knowledge with respect to the creation and accreditation of new “Allied Health Care Degree Programs”, both on-campus and on-line, to meet the expected occupational demand
globally.

Courses Taught

  • Jurisprudence

    Mercy College

  • Paralegal Studies

    Mercy College

  • Evidence

    Mercy College

  • Criminal Procedure Law

    Mercy College

  • Criminal Law

    Mercy College