President of Guilford Technical Community College
Distinguished 2011 NC State College of Education Alumni
I returned to North Carolina State University after over 20 years as faculty member and an administrator and my studies at the College of Education were like a capstone project. My doctoral studies provided me with a national and international perspective and was very valuable to me as a leader.
The program helped me understand and research issues facing community colleges nationally. All my experience prior to this came from my time at a midsized rural community college. Understanding current issues is so important in a leader’s development. The quality and extensive experience of the faculty at the College of Education provided such a rich field of instruction. It inspired me to be a better leader—to learn more, to strive to a higher level of leadership practice for our community colleges.
Students should know that it is very rewarding to work in and lead at various levels. The program provided by the College of Education at NC State provides the foundation to learn a lot more than you would get in your day-to-day involvement on the job at the community college.
Dr. Parker is currently serving as President of Guilford Technical Community College with over 40,000 students and five campuses. GTCC is one of three colleges in the nation leading a Gates Foundation initiative called Completion by Design which studies policies, procedures, and pathways to help improve completion rates of young at-risk minority students. Prior to coming to Guilford, Dr. Parker served as President of Vance-Granville Community College. Among his many accomplishments there he established four Early College High Schools, one for each of the counties in the Vance-Granville service area.