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2021-2022 Graduate Student Ambassadors- Valencia Hicks-Harris

Program Area of Study

Ph.D., Teacher Education and Learning Sciences (TELS), Educational Equity


Valencia Harris is a Raleigh native. She is an educator that has taught both elementary and STEM education for the past 14 years. Harris is a second-year doctoral student studying Educational Equity at NCSU and the founder of the non-profit organization, Empower All Inc. (Raleigh). Her educational and career experiences have fueled her drive to diversify the teacher pipeline, push culturally relevant pedagogy as standard, increase the presence of students of color in STEM, and create an equitable education for all students. 

Why NC State?

I decided to return to NCSU to complete my doctoral degree because of the College of Education’s determination to cultivate culturally competent educators.

One insight gained so far…

One important insight that I have learned thus far is the importance of equipping our youth with the terminology that will allow for them to not only show up in academic spaces, yet they will be empowered to SPEAK UP!