Dr. Anthony Graham is now the Provost at Winston-Salem State University, after serving as dean of the College of Education at N.C. A&T State University. As an undergraduate at UNC-Chapel Hill, Anthony found his passion in education, and it has never felt like "work." As a scholar, Anthony focuses on effective pedagogies that engage K-20 African American male students. Prior to his work at N.C. A&T, Anthony was a high school English teacher. He holds a B.A. from Carolina and received his Masters of Education and Doctorate of Philosophy in Curriculum and Teaching from UNC-Greensboro.
What statistic have you recently heard that surprised (disturbed) you?
Eighteen percent of U.S. public school students are Black, but an estimated 40% of all students expelled from our U.S. schools are Black.
When and where were you learning at your best?
The Master’s program in English Education at UNC Greensboro where I learned to value and express my voice without fear, intimidation, or cowardice.
Which skill would you most like to master?
What do you consider your organization's greatest achievement?
The faculty and staff in the College of Education at North Carolina A&T have been extremely successful increasing our enrollment with people who aspire to become educational leaders committed to transforming the communities where they reside and work.
If you could change one thing about public education, what would it be?
Rather than change something about public education, I would prefer to change the public’s perception of teachers as “just a teacher.” Teaching isn’t rocket science; it’s much more challenging because an effective teacher must (a) know one’s content, (b) understand how to teach that content in a variety of ways, (c) build rapport with students and parents as well as gain their trust, (d) leverage these cultural funds of knowledge in one’s instruction, (e) analyze, interpret, and explain data, (f) experiment, admit and accept failure, then bounce back to learn from it, (g) educate and engage the community, and (h) counteract negative narratives of the profession while sustaining an ethos of care, optimism, and faith. This profession isn’t for the faint of heart.
What is your current state of mind?
I am extremely determined to make a difference in our educational system in spite of the partisan bickering that ultimately marginalizes and disenfranchises our children.
Which living person do you most admire?
I admire my two older sisters who are 20 years older than I. I have long admired their faith, resilience, and commitment to family.
What is your most treasured possession?
A voicemail message that my mother left for me two days before she passed away in 2010. It’s a constant reminder to enjoy every second of your life because the next second isn’t guaranteed to anyone.
What is your most marked characteristic?
What were you really into when you were a kid?
I loved writing short stories, scripts, and screenplays based on characters from the cartoon G.I. Joe.