Robert is a first generation college student. His father is from Camiling, Tarlac who immigrated to California at the age of 18. He previously served as a Vice Principal, Counselor, and Varsity Basketball Coach at Kailua High School;

earned a Ph.D. in Educational Administration at UH Manoa; a M.S. in Counseling at Cal State Los Angeles; and a B.A. in Psychology from Chaminade University. His research interests include the retention and persistence of underrepresented, ethnically diverse students.