WSSU Chancellor Elwood Robinson has announced that he will retire from the helm on June 20, 2023. UNC System President Peter Hans has announced Anthony Graham, provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs at WSSU as interim chancellor.

WINSTON-SALEM, NC – Winston-Salem State University Chancellor Elwood Robinson announced that he would retire after over 39 years of higher education service. The announcement came Monday via a message to the campus community.

The University of North Carolina System President Peter Hans has announced that Anthony Graham, provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs at WSSU, will become interim chancellor, effective July 1. Robinson will work closely with Graham throughout the spring semester to transition leadership.

Anthony Graham, provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs at WSSU.

Graham has been the chief academic officer at Winston-Salem State University since 2018. Previously, he was dean of the College of Education at North Carolina A&T State University. He was also professor of educator preparation at North Carolina A&T and chair of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction there. He began his career as a high school teacher.

“Dr. Graham is a respected educator and seasoned academic leader whose research has focused on student success,” said Hans. “I know he has the commitment and skills to lead Winston-Salem State through a smooth transition.”

A native of Kinston, N.C., Graham earned a bachelor’s degree in English at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a master’s degree in education and doctorate in curriculum and instruction from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Since 2015, Robinson has led Winston-Salem State University as its 13th chancellor. During his tenure the university’s endowment grew to more than $100 million and the university completed $145 million in capital projects, including major renovations, two new residence halls and a new science building.”

“Chancellor Robinson has provided steady leadership for Winston-Salem State, including noteworthy achievements such as a new center for entrepreneurship, a record $30 million donation from philanthropist MacKenzie Scott, and strong rankings in economic and social mobility for the university’s graduates,” said Hans. “I know all Rams join me in thanking him for his dedicated service to the campus and the state.”

In 2020, Chancellor Robinson was named one of The Ten Most Dominant HBCU Leaders by the HBCU Campaign Fund. Citing his leadership for making great strides in integrating what students learn in the classroom into every element of campus life. Also, recognizing WSSU for maintaining the highest six-year graduating rate of any of the UNC System’s minority-serving institutions and was ranked as Money Magazine’s no.1 public HBCU for 2019-20.

HCF Founder, President, and CEO Demetrius Johnson, Jr., and the organization commend Chancellor Robinson for an exceptional job well done and thank him for his devotion to the mission of WSSU. We appreciate his leadership and wish him the best in his future endeavors.


Winston-Salem State University (WSSU) will send its football team to Canton, Ohio next labor day weekend for the third Black College Football Hall of Fame Classic.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame and WSSU jointly announced the Rams’ participation in the Black College Football Hall of Fame Classic 2022 on Friday.The Rams’ athletics administration also announced that nine-year NFL veteran Robert Massey had been promoted from the position of interim head coach to head coach that same day.

The 2022 Black College Football Hall of Fame Classic tentatively is scheduled for Sept. 4 at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium. The HBCU Campaign Fund (HCF) has tentatively added the Black College Football Hall of Fame Classic to its 2022 Sixth Annual HBCU Football and Recruitment Tour line-up.

WSSU’s opponent, along with ticket information and other details about the 2022 Black College Hall of Fame Classic weekend, will be announced in the comings weeks.

“We are thrilled to host Winston-Salem State University in the third Black College Football Hall of Fame Classic,” said Adrian Allison, Chief Relationship Officer at the Pro Football Hall of Fame. “Fans of the Classic can expect Coach Massey to bring an energetic team ready to kick off its season in the shadow of the shrine of football. Additionally, the school’s ‘Red Sea of Sound’ band will continue the tradition of having fans experience one of the best halftimes in sports.”

Robert Massey, head football coach at Winston-Salem State University.

Last season, the Rams finished in third place in the Southern Division of the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association with Massey serving under the title of interim head coach.

Massey has played nine season in the National Football League following his collegiate career at North Carolina Central University, where he was a standout defensive back who earned All-CIAA honors twice and All-American honors as a senior. He ended his playing days third on the team’s career interception list.

Selected in the second round of the 1989 NFL Draft by the New Orleans Saints, Massey was named to the 1989 NFL All-Rookie Team after starting all 16 games and contributing five inceptions on a team that finished with a 9-7 record. He also played for the Cardinals Lions, Jaguars and Giants.

Another NFL Legend, Eddie George, made his college coaching debut in Canton this year with Tennessee State. His Tiger fell to the Grambling State Tigers 16-10 in the second Black College Football Hall of Fame Classic.

In the inaugural Classic in 2019, Alabama A&M topped Morehouse 35-30 on a last-second touchdown pass.

The game in 2020 was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


WINSTON-SALEM, NC –  Winston-Salem State University (WSSU) has received recognition for its participation in a new program that aims to close the completion gap and promote social mobility nationwide.

According to a press release by the university, WSSU is one of seven mentor institutions in the program, through the Foundation for Student Success (FSS).

The program – set to impact 100,000 Black, Latino and American Indian students at 12 mentee institutions – was introduced at the inaugural National Student Success Conference in Tampa on Feb 22. Case studies from WSSU and the other mentor institutions also are available on the FSS website.

“There are many national projects to support institutional transformation for student success,” said Foundation for Student Success Executive Director Dr. Sally Johnstone. “But the work of the Foundation for Student Success is more personal than most. These mentor institutions are sharing their successes and failures while ‘holding the hands’ of their mentees as they beign their long journey to shift their campus cultures.”

WSSU was chosen as a mentor because of its high student success rates. Through the program, WSSU is providing guidance and support to Savannah State University, Langston University, and University of Michigan-Flint to promote social mobility.

In addition to WSSU, selected institutions are: California State University, Channel Islands; Los Medanos College; Rutgers University, Newark; San Jacinto College; Santa Fe College; and University of South Florida.

FSS will continue to track the institutions working together toward reducing their equity gaps and changing the culture of their campuses. The lessons learned will be shared widely with practitioners and thought leaders in the field of higher education to shape the future of the student success movement for years to come. WSSU’s Office of the Provost is leading the initiative.


About Winston-Salem State University
Winston-Salem State University fosters the creative thinking, analytical problem-solving, and depth of character needed to transform the world. Rooted in liberal education, WSSU’s curriculum prepares students to be thought leaders who have the skills and knowledge needed to develop innovative solutions to complex problems. Founded in 1892, WSSU is a historically Black constituent institution of the University of North Carolina with a rich tradition of contributing to the social, cultural, intellectual, and economic growth of North Carolina, the region and beyond. Guided by the motto, “Enter to Learn, Depart to Serve,” WSSU develops leaders who advance social justice by serving the world with compassion and commitment.

About the Foundation for Student Success

FSS was founded in 2016 and is housed at the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems (NCHEMS) in Boulder, Colorado. The mission of FSS is to stimulate and support the use of predictive analytics and other emerging technologies to help institutions of higher education identify at-risk students and to develop interventions to increase their chances of success. To accomplish the mission of FSS, the Board has targeted three student populations: Black, Latino, and American Indian. The data FSS and NCHEMS gathered and analyzed on the success rates for these students indicates serious equity gaps across the country.