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National Program Selects Student Affairs Professional

Toya Corbett, Ph.D.

Toya Corbett, Ph.D., finds her career inspiration in cultivating students and seeing them excel beyond their beliefs.  

Because of her deep passion for student success, she has been selected to join 24 leaders in higher education as part of the second cohort of the Minority Serving Institutions Aspiring Leaders 2019 program.  The mentorship program is designed to promote diversity among higher education leadership and prepare future leaders of minority serving institutions.

“Participating in the Minority Serving Institutions Aspiring Leaders Program will provide a wealth of knowledge and tangible experiences that will assist in my current role at NCCU and prepare me for future leadership opportunities at any minority serving institution,” said Corbett.

With more than 15 years of higher education experience, this emerging Eagle leader currently serves as assistant vice chancellor for NCCU’s Division of Student Affairs and dean of students, a role that has tremendous influence on the student experience. Specifically, Corbett’s ambition to impact the growth and development of young women has also sparked her interest to ultimately serve as a president for a women’s college. 

“I love working in higher education because it gives me an opportunity to give back to students. My passion is to help students grow, develop a plan for the future and obtain it,” Corbett says. “We must reach back and help others obtain success.”

Corbett previously served as executive director of the university’s Office of Student Engagement and Leadership (SEAL). Under Corbett’s leadership during the 2015-16 academic year, SEAL launched the Rock The Mic Lecture Series, which welcomed notable guest speakers such as Ambassador Andrew Young, Dr. Angela Davis and Nikki Giovanni to campus.

In addition to her program mentor, Dr. Roslyn Clark Artis, Benedict College president, Corbett also looks to additional successful leaders in higher education for motivation including: Johnson O. Akinleye, Ph.D.; Johnnetta B. Cole, Ph.D.; Ruth Simmons, Ph.D.; and David Wilson, Ed.D. 

Uplifting minority students is not only the essence of her passion, it also fuels her entrepreneurial spirit. Her clothing and accessory line, Black Genius Apparel, seeks to promote the intellectual ethos of Historically Black College and University students and graduates while empowering, inspiring, and affirming racial pride. She also conducts dining etiquette training as “The Etiquette Doctor.”

In her spare time, she enjoys partaking in cultural experiences and indulging in history with trips to museums and viewing documentaries. Corbett is also an active member of the Sigma Tau Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. As member of the sorority for 25 years, she has served on the International Board of Directors and several international committees. She also believes in giving back and established a scholarship with her best friend at their alma mater, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Corbett holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, as well as master’s and doctoral degrees in African American studies from Morgan State University.

“The University of North Carolina at Charlotte made me a leader, Morgan State University made me a scholar,” she adds. 

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