In Memoriam: Maya Angelou, 1928-2014

Maya Angelou, author, poet, dancer, actress, civil rights activist, and the Reynolds Professor of American Studies at Wake Forest University, has died at her home in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. She was 86 years old.

Professor Angelou was born Marguerite Annie Johnson in St. Louis in 1928. Her brother gave her the nickname Maya and she adopted the last name Angelou in the 1950s, which she adapted from her first husband’s surname.

In 1969, Professor Angelou published the critically acclaimed I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (Random House), a story about her growing up in the racially segregated South. It was nominated for the National Book Award. She followed up this memoir with five additional autobiographical works. In 1993 she read her poem “On the Pulse of the Morning” at the inauguration of President Bill Clinton. In 2011, President Obama presented Professor Angelou with the Medal of Freedom.

Wake Forest University issued a statement which read in part, “Dr. Angelou was a national treasure whose life and teachings inspired millions around the world, including countless students, faculty, and staff at Wake Forest.”

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Get the JBHE Weekly Bulletin

Receive our weekly email newsletter delivered to your inbox

Latest News

Alcorn State University Recruited for Federal Student Pathway Program for Careers in Public Service

The Pathway Public Service Program was established in 2019 to develop the next generation of diverse, qualified, and motivated public health servants. Over the past five years, the program has hired over 100 student interns.

Five Black Scholars Selected for New Faculty Positions

The five Black scholars who aer taking on new roles are Khadene Harris at Rice University in Houston, Nakia Melecio at the Georgia Institute of Technology, Bettina Drake at Washington University in St. Louis, Arlette Ngoubene Atioky at Goucher College in Maryland, and Kandi Hill-Clarke at the University of Memphis.

Getty Images to Preserve Digital Photo Archives at Delaware State University

Currently, Delaware State University's photo archives contain thousands of photographs taken over the course of the university's 133 year history. Thanks to a new partnership with Getty Images, those images will be digitized and made available on gettyimages.com.

Porché Spence Recognized for Outstanding Commitment to Advancing Diversity in Ecology

Dr. Spence currently serves as an assistant professor of environmental studies at North Carolina A&T State University. Throughout her career, she has developed several educational programs geared towards introducing students of color to environmental science fields.

Featured Jobs