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Double Eagle Appointed to Higher Education Post

Linda Strong-Leek, Ph.D.

Story By: Torrean Stallings, Office of Communications and Marketing Intern

Alumna Linda Strong-Leek, Ph.D., ’88, ’90, has been appointed provost at Berea College.

Prior to her appointment, Strong-Leek served as vice president for Diversity and Inclusion, associate vice president for Academic Affairs and professor of women’s and gender studies and General studies for the college.

Strong-Leek joined the Berea College faculty in 2002 as an associate professor of women’s and gender studies and general studies. She has held a number of leadership roles at the college including interim chair of women’s and gender studies program, chair of the African and African American studies program and associate vice-president for Academic Affairs.

“I am the person I am because of the NCCU’s English Department. The professors on campus between 1982-1990 challenged me to live up to their high expectations,” said Strong-Leek. “My professors never doubted my potential even when I doubted myself. They provided me with a wonderful path and excellent examples of how to live out NCCU’s motto.”

Before joining Berea College, Strong-Leek served as an English professor at Florida International University.

Her accomplishments include several literary works and articles. In 2009, she wrote “Excising the Spirit: A Literary Analysis of Female Circumcision.”

Strong-Leek’s current research efforts focus on the novels of Caribbean women writers. She is currently developing a manuscript about the Mami Wata figure in the novels of contemporary Caribbean Women Writers.

The Double Eagle obtained a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in English and educational administration from North Carolina Central University. She also earned a doctoral degree in English from Michigan State University. 

“I am forever grateful for the mentorship and care I received at NCCU,” she adds.

She received additional training as a Fulbright Fellow in which she taught the first class focused on African women writers at the University of Zimbabwe in Harare in 1998. She also participated in the National Endowment for the Humanities Program on African American history at the University of South Carolina in 2007.

“Follow your dreams, work hard, and search for what is meaningful. At the end of the day, doing what you love provides one with much more satisfaction than seeking a profession based only one’s capacity to earn lots of money,” she advises aspiring higher education professionals.

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