Francis Arpan, Ph.D. was born in Wagner, SD and is an enrolled tribal member of the Yankton Sioux Tribe. He is President of Sisseton Wahpeton College. He has previously worked in higher education at Aims Community College (Greeley, CO), South Dakota State University (Brookings, SD), Southern New Hampshire University (online), and the University of South Dakota (Rapid City, SD).

Aside from a career in higher education, Dr. Arpan served in the US Air Force as an Egress Systems Mechanic at Eielson AFB, AK. Dr. Arpan received his Ph.D. in Sociology from South Dakota State University, received a MA in Educational Administration-Higher Education from the University of South Dakota, and received a BS in History/Sociology from Black Hills State University. Dr. Arpan has worked for Sisseton Wahpeton College since 2016, first as an adjunct instructor, then as a researcher leading an ongoing project exploring barriers and facilitators to tribal student educational attainment and success, and now in his current position as a full-time faculty member.

Dr. Arpan’s research experience includes his ongoing research with tribal students at Sisseton Wahpeton College, research assistant doing data collection for Horizons Project, and evaluation research for an NSF scholarship grant with the Department of Engineering at South Dakota State University. His teaching experiences include a variety of social science classes and he has taught in a variety of classroom environments, online included. Dr. Arpan’s passion is centered around education, developing a greater understanding of the issues that affect Native American students and how to address those issues, and how to increase the research capacities of Native American communities.