Dr. Vertricia L. Harris Alum Profile

Oxford, North Carolina native Dr. Vertricia L. Harris is a two-time alumna of ECUDr. Harris received her BA in exercise and sports science with a minor in gerontology and earned her master’s in adult education. Dr. Harris earned her Doctorate of Education in organizational leadership from Gardner-Webb University. Dr. Harris recently received the 2020 “40 Under 40” leadership award from ECU’s Division of Student Affairs. 

After earning her bachelor’s degree, Dr. Harris worked as a physical therapy technician at a skilled nursing facility. With a genuine love and passion for the aging population, Dr. Harris used her skills in the area of gerontology to improve their quality of life physically, socially and emotionally. 

Dr. Harris has gained valuable professional experience through her roles at Wilson Community College and Lenoir Community College, working as an adult basic education instructorShe was promoted during her tenure at Lenoir to the position of coordinator of transitional and career studies.

Dr. Harris is currently the director of adult secondary education and transitions programs at Wake Technical Community College. Under her leadership, Wake Tech continues to “Lead the Way” with co-enrollment opportunities for adult secondary education learners, transition opportunities for English as a Second Language learners, adult secondary education programming for the immured population and the adult high school program.

Dr. Harris is also the vice president of the Eastern North Carolina Chapter of the National Council of Black American Affairs (ENCNCBAA). This organization promotes the academic success of African American students and supports faculty, staff and administrators. The group advocates for equality, success and professional development for educational practitioners.

Dr. Harris also serves as the vice president of the East Carolina University Black Alumni Chapter (BAC). The BAC seeks to bridgthe gap between alumni age groups, focused on diversity and equality, and increasing alumni support for the current student body and staff.

Dr. Harris has a passion for serving arisk students and exploring and implementing nontraditional educational pathways. It is her desire to be an integral part of the success of all aspects in the areas in which she serves adult education and transitions communities. She is also committed to advocating for the importance of mental, physical, and emotional wellness. When Dr. Harris is not in the classroom or working in the community, she teaches dance. Through her natural gifts and training, Dr. Harris teaches ballet, tap, lyrical and liturgical dance to all age groups. 

 Dr. Harris takes great pride in being a part of the prestigious Pirate family and continues to give back through service and resources. Attending East Carolina University was an amazing journey. The importance of diversity, service, and dedication permeated throughout all of my experiences at ECUI’m committed to being a catalyst for effective and positive change in my community and beyond. 

Dr. Harris’ advice to current students? “Life is about evaluating and re-evaluating and you can never be afraid to start over.  So, enjoy your educational and professional journey. Dgreat things, connect with great people, and lead with humility.”