Elizabeth City State University

Elizabeth City State University (ECSU) is a public, historically black college located in Elizabeth City, North Carolina. ECSU, which enrolls nearly 2,500 students in 37 baccalaureate programs and three master's degree programs, is a member-school of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, as well as a member-institution of the University of North Carolina system.

Elizabeth City State University
Ecsu seal.png
Motto"To Live is to Learn"
TypePublic, HBCU
Established1891; 129 years ago (1891)
Parent institution
UNC System
ChancellorKarrie Dixon[1]
Location, ,
Campus200 acres (0.81 km2)
ColorsBlue and White
AthleticsNCAA Division IICIAA
ECSU wordmark.png


Lane Hall (1909), the oldest campus building

Elizabeth City State University was established by the North Carolina General Assembly on March 3, 1891, as the State Colored Normal School at Elizabeth City, in response to a bill calling for the creation of a two-year Normal School for the "teaching and training [of] teachers of the colored race to teach in the common schools of North Carolina." Peter Weddick Moore was its first leader.[2] The school provided training for teachers of primary grades.

The campus quadrangle and six surrounding buildings are included in the Elizabeth City State Teachers College Historic District, listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1994.[3][4]

In 1937, the school made the transformation into a full four-year teachers college and was officially named Elizabeth City State Teachers College, while expanding its role to include the training of principals as well. In 1939, the college awarded its first bachelor of science degrees in its program of elementary education.[5] Within the following twenty-five years, the college expanded its offerings to include a vocational-technical program and a total of thirteen academic majors.

In December 1961, the college gained membership in the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. In 1963 its name was changed to Elizabeth City State College. In 1969, its name was changed to Elizabeth City State University to reflect expansion and the addition of graduate programs. When the University of North Carolina System was formed in 1972, ECSU became one of the system's sixteen constituent universities and entered into its current phase of development and organization.[6]

List of Chief Executive Officers[7]Edit

  • Peter Weddick Moore, A.M., LL.D. (Principal, 1891–1928, President Emeritus, 1928–1934)
  • John Henry Bias, A.B., LL.D. (President, 1928–1939)
  • Harold Leonard Trigg, Ed.D. (President, 1939–1945)
  • Sidney David Williams, A.M., D.PED. (President, 1946–1958, President Emeritus, 1969–1974)
  • Walter Nathaniel Ridley, Ed.D. (President, 1958–1968, President Emeritus, 1988–1996)
  • Marion Dennis Thorpe, Ph.D. (President, 1968–1972, Chancellor, 1972–1983)
  • Jimmy Raymond Jenkins, Ph.D. (Chancellor, 1983–1995, Chancellor Emeritus, 1995–present)
  • Mickey Lynn Burnim, Ph.D. (Chancellor, 1995–2006)
  • Willie J. Gilchrist, Ed.D. (Chancellor, 2006–2013)
  • Charles L. Becton, J.D. (Interim Chancellor, 2013–2014)
  • Stacey Franklin Jones, Ph.D. (Chancellor, 2014-2015[8])[9]
  • Thomas Conway, Ph.D. (Interim Chancellor, January 1, 2016[8]-2018)
  • Karrie Gibson Dixon, Ed.D. (Chancellor, 2018–present)[10]


ECSU's campus encompasses 200 acres (0.81 km2), mostly flanked by residential districts.


ECSU offers 28 baccalaureate degrees and four master's degrees in one of the following academic departments:[11]

  • Aviation Science
  • Business, Accounting and Sport Management
  • Health & Human Studies
  • Helen M. Caldwell Department of Education & Psychology
  • Language, Literature & Communication
  • Herman G. Cooke Department of Natural Sciences
  • Mathematics & Computer Science;
  • Pharmacy & Health Professions;
  • Social & Behavioral Sciences; Technology
  • Visual & Performing Arts

ECSU also offers special programs that appeal to various interests and fields of study, including the honors program (for high-achieving students), military science, study abroad and Viking Fellows for education majors.[12]

Student lifeEdit

Students can choose to be involved in various on-campus organizations, including fraternities, sororities, radio station WRVS-FM, campus TV station, and intramural sports.[13] Students are able to join the Student Government Association to help make campus life more interesting for student continuing to enroll here. Also, students can choose to apply to Vikings Assisting New Students to lead the New Student Orientation and answer any questions that parents or student may have about the school and campus life


As a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, ECSU's athletes, known athletically as the Vikings, compete in the Division II athletic conference known as the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA).

Notable alumniEdit

Anthony Ray 1977, Creator Producer and Host of the Nationally Syndicated HBCU NATION RADIO SHOW SIRIUSXM HBCU Channel 142. Thought Leader, Author, Founding Pastor of World Missions Church. Founder, President of The James Solomon Russell College Prep Academy for Boys located on the campus of St Paul's College, Lawrenceville, Va

Name Class year Notability Reference(s)
Reggie Langhorne 1984 Former NFL wide receiver
Anthony Hilliard 2009 professional basketball player
Larry Johnson, Sr. 1973 Former NFL linebacker, current assistant head coach at The Ohio State University; six-time Maryland high school Coach of the Year
Jethro Pugh 1964 Former NFL defensive tackle
Mike Gale 1970 Former professional basketball player in both the ABA and the NBA [14]
Johnnie Walton 1975 Former NFL quarterback with the Philadelphia Eagles and the Boston Breakers of the USFL.
Everett McIver 1993 Former NFL offensive guard
Bobby Futrell 1985 Former NFL defensive back
Tim Cofield 1985 Former NFL and CFL linebacker
Stanley Bryant Former NFL and current CFL offensive lineman


  1. ^ "Chancellor's Office". www.ecsu.edu. Retrieved 2018-05-18.
  2. ^ Newbold, N.C. (1939). Five North Carolina Negro Educators. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina. pp. 88–114.
  3. ^ Tom Butchko (September 1992). "Elizabeth City State Teachers College Historic District" (pdf). National Register of Historic Places - Nomination and Inventory. North Carolina State Historic Preservation Office. Retrieved 2015-02-01.
  4. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
  5. ^ Wadelington, Charles W. "Elizabeth City State University". NCpedia. North Carolina Government & Heritage Library. Retrieved 19 January 2017.
  6. ^ "Our History". Elizabeth City State University. Elizabeth City State University. Retrieved 27 January 2017.
  7. ^ "Presidents/Chancellors". Elizabeth City State University. Elizabeth City State University. Retrieved 27 January 2017.
  8. ^ a b "Elizabeth City State University chancellor abruptly quits". Retrieved 18 February 2017.
  9. ^ "News - Daily Advance". Retrieved 18 February 2017.
  10. ^ Journal of Blacks in Higher Education
  11. ^ "Academic Affairs". Retrieved 18 February 2017.
  12. ^ University has programs that appeal to various interests and fields of study, including the honors program, military science, study abroad and Viking Fellows for education majors.
  13. ^ "Student Life". Elizabeth City State University. Elizabeth City State University. Archived from the original on 2 February 2017. Retrieved 27 January 2017.
  14. ^ "NBA/ABA Players who attended Elizabeth City State University". databaseSports.com. Archived from the original on 2006-05-06. Retrieved 2008-04-05.

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 36°16′52″N 76°12′54″W / 36.28120°N 76.21512°W / 36.28120; -76.21512