Elizabeth City State Vikings

Elizabeth City State University
File:Ecsu seal.png
Motto "To Live is to Learn"
Established 1891
Type Public, HBCU
Chancellor Willie Gilchrist
Students 3,100
Location Elizabeth City, North Carolina,
United States
Campus 200 acres (0.81 km2)
Colors Royal Blue and White
Nickname Vikings
Website www.ecsu.edu
File:Ecsu Viking.png

Elizabeth City State University (ECSU) is a public, historically black college located in Elizabeth City, North Carolina, in the United States. ECSU enrolls nearly 2,500 students in 37 baccalaureate programs and three masters degree programs, 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 was established by the North Carolina General Assembly in 1891 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." This was to provide training for more teachers of primary grades.

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. 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.

List of Chief Executive Officers

  • Peter Wedderick 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-present)


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

Student life

Students can choose to be involved in various on-campus organizations, including fraternities, sororities, radio station WRVS-FM, campus TV station, and intramural sports.


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 alumni

Name Class year Notability References
Reggie Langhorne 1984 former NFL wide receiver
Larry Johnson, Sr. 1973 former NFL linebacker, current defensive line coach at Penn State University, and 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 [1]
Johnnie Walton 1975 former NFL quarterback with the Philadelphia Eagles and the Boston Breakers of the USFL.
Ronald M. Leigh, Sr. former NFL defensive end for the New England Patriots
Everett McIver 1993 former NFL offensive guard
Bobby Futrell 1985 former NFL defensive back
Tim Cofield 1985 former NFL and CFL linebacker
Kenny Williams 1989 A former professional basketball player

External links

  • Official website
  • Official athletics website
  • Student yearbooks from 1925-2008


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

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