Should 25 Years Feel Like Forever or Only Yesterday?
In 2024, I celebrate an anniversary that is special to me, 25 years of close affiliation with America’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), especially those in my home state of Mississippi. While I had been on the campus of Tougaloo College as a guest, I was hired at the college, often called the “Cradle of the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi,” as a tenure-track assistant professor in 1999. One week into my academic career, I was appointed chair of the Department of English and Modern Languages. Yes, with no administrative experience and very little teaching experience, I was entrusted with a coveted appointment for which many people must work long and hard. I do not take the significance of that vote of confidence for granted.
Originally published: January 9, 2024
Author: Chris Gilmer
Institution: West Virginia University, Potomac State College
Published by: Diverse Issues in Higher Education