Roy Cravzow received a BA in Spanish from Lehigh University; an MA in Spanish and a Certificate in Latin American Studies from Columbia University(1963), where he first met Gregory Rabassa; a Fulbright Fellowship to Brazil 1964–65, encouraged and promoted by the late professor of Spanish and Portuguese, Raymond Slayers; and a PhD in Comparative Literature (Portuguese) from CUNY in 1984.  His PhD work was directed first by Professor Sayers until his retirement.  All comprehensive exams and dissertation guidance were then supervised by Professor Rabassa.

Cravzow taught Spanish and Portuguese at Lehigh University in1965-67, filled in for Portuguese teachers on leave at Columbia and CUNY  in 1967–68 (arranged by professor Rabassa), and then, with his constant support, served as an Adjunct in Spanish and Portuguese at Queens College from 1968 though 1989.

In 1974, using the knowledge of Brazilian culture learned under the tutelage of Professors Victor Valenzuela of Lehigh, Raymond Sayers, and Gregory Rabassa, plus his field experience in Brazil, he started and still runs an export business with Brazil serving clients in the paper and food service industries with machinery and parts for their factories.