Jack N. Arbolino

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Jack N. Arbolino CC '42 MA '57 is best known as the creator of high school Advanced Placement tests. On the side, he managed to write fiction for the New Yorker, host TV shows, serve as an adviser to President Johnson, and enjoy other such leisure activities.

At Columbia, he studied English, played varsity football, and graduated Phi Beta Kappa. During his time fighting overseas during World War II, after graduation, he was a frequent correspondent with the great Columbia professor Mark Van Doren, who remembered him fondly in his autobiography. After the war, he returned to Columbia and earned his masters while working as an associate dean.

He notably defended the liberal arts by stating that they existed "so that later in life when you knock on yourself, somebody answers."

A member of the Columbia College Council, Arbolino received the Dean’s Award for “Outstanding Service to the College” as well as for service as chairman of the Columbia Alumni Trustee Nominating Committee.

Arbolino was later an advocate of the Columbia War Memorial, writing in support in a 1995 edition of Columbia College Today.

His son Philip Arbolino and grandson Jonathan Arbolino both also graduated from the college, in the classes of 1968 and 1993 respectively.

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