About Us - Staff

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Meet the Staff

CLCE Professional Staff

Dennis McCunneyDennis McCunney, Ph.D., Director

1611 Old Cafeteria Complex, 252-328-2802

Dennis is responsible for the administrative oversight and strategic direction of the Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement. He joined the CLCE team in August 2012. Dennis earned a B.A. in philosophy from Loyola University Maryland, M.Div. from Weston Jesuit School of Theology/Boston College, and a Ph.D. in higher education administration from Morgan State University’s School of Education and Urban Studies. His dissertation research focused on the formation of student culture around civic engagement and activism. Before coming to ECU, Dennis worked at Loyola University Maryland's Center for Community Service and Justice coordinating leadership development and co-curricular service-learning programs. He also served as a social justice minister at Canisius College in Buffalo, NY. His professional interests include leadership development, service-learning, campus-community partnerships, social justice education, and qualitative research methods.

Recent Publications:
"Inclusive Assessment: Toward a Socially Just Methodology for Measuring Institution-Wide Engagement"

"Community-Campus Partnerships: Using Lessons Learned to Chart a Path for the Future."
"Moving from Traditional to Critical Service-Learning"

Tara Kermiet, Associate Director for Curricular Programs

109 Mendenhall Student Center, 252-328-1554


Nichelle Shuck, Associate Director for Student Leadership and Educational Programsnichelle resized

1604 Old Cafeteria Complex, 252-328-6979

Nichelle serves as Associate Director of Student Leadership and Educational Programming.  Nichelle’s responsibilities include overseeing all co-curricular programming and student leadership opportunities.  She supports community partnerships and ECU’s relationship with North Carolina Campus Compact.  Nichelle is a recent graduate from Kent State University where she received an M.Ed. in higher education administration and student personnel.  She also received a college teaching certificate and will complete her community college leadership certificate by 2015.  Nichelle received her B.A. in speech communication with a concentration in public relations from Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio.  She spent two years serving as an Ohio Campus Compact AmeriCorps VISTA and VISTA Leader at Kent State University.  Most recently, she worked at Kent State University as a graduate assistant coordinating community service opportunities.  She also worked as a part-time graduate assistant in Residence Life at Ursuline College in Pepper Pike, Ohio. Outside of work, Nichelle enjoys being outside to soak up the sun, playing with her two cats, gardening, spending time with family friends, as well as attending community events. She also enjoys reading, cooking, baking and attempting Do It Yourself (DIY) projects.

Emily Dixon, Office Coordinator

1604 Old Cafeteria Complex, 252-737-2501

A native of Greenville, NC, Emily serves as Office Coordinator for the Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement. Emily's responsibilities include overseeing the financial and administrative needs, managing the student employment process and basic marketing needs and physical upkeep of the office. In addition, she assists the professional and student staff as necessary and serves on various projects outside of the office for the division. Emily is a graduate of Liberty University's School of Business with a Master of Arts in Business Management and Leadership. Emily is also a graduate of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology with a Minor in African-American Studies. Not new to Student Involvement and Leadership, she previously worked at the Ledonia Wright Cultural Center as the Program Assistant. Outside of work, Emily enjoys staying active in her two fraternal organizations, Tau Beta Sigma National Honorary Band Sorority, Incorporated and Order of the Eastern Star, as well as the UNC General Alumni Association. She also enjoys reading, playing video games, working out, spending time with family and friends and traveling back to Chapel Hill for football and basketball games.


Lauren Howard, Assistant Director

1614 Old Cafeteria Complex

Lauren serves as the Assistant Director of Leadership and Civic Engagement. Originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, Lauren is excited to join the Pirate Nation! She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Communication Disorders at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio. As an undergraduate, Lauren was involved in Student Senate and held other leadership positions in student organizations. After graduation, she worked in the Office of Undergraduate Admissions as a First-Year Admissions Advisor at Ohio University. In 2012, Lauren received her Master of Education degree in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at Virginia Tech. While at Virginia Tech, Lauren was the Graduate Assistant for Leadership Development and the Graduate Advisor for the Student Government Association. Upon graduation, Lauren served as a Coordinator in the Multicultural and Leadership Development Office at Florida Gulf Coast University in sunny Fort Myers, Florida. It was her involvement during her undergraduate and graduate school, as well as professional career, in which she developed her passion for the development of student leaders and the field of student affairs. As a student affairs professional, Lauren's interests are leadership development, service learning, student conduct, assessment, and access and success initiatives.Lauren loves everything about Cincinnati and the state of Ohio (sports, family, and friends). In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, watching reality shows, working out, and meeting new people.

Suzannah Lott, Assistant Director

109 Mendenhall Student Center, 252-737-4988

Suzannah serves as Assistant Director in the CLCE office. Following graduation from Louisiana State University with her master's, Suzannah joined the Office for Leadership and Service-Learning in August 2015. Suzannah facilitates the preparation and execution of the Chancellor's Student Leadership Academy and the Leadership Resource Team, and represents the office in planning ECU's Tunnel of Oppression program. Previously, Suzannah served as a Leadership Consultant for Sigma Kappa Sorority while living in Georgia and Missouri. She received her B.A. degree from Virginia Tech in History with a minor in Film Studies. 

Victoria Barfield, Graduate Assistant Victoria Barfield resized

Victoria is originally from Goldsboro, NC, and is a recent graduate of East Carolina University. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Nutrition Science and also received recognition for her secondary major in Psychology. She is currently pursuing a master's degree in Nutrition Science. Victoria developed a passion for leadership and service in her early years of high school, which continued throughout her undergraduate experience. Victoria enjoys meeting new people, service her community, cooking and practicing yoga.



Lauren Rideout, Graduate Assistant Lauren Rideout resized

Lauren completed her undergraduate degree in Recreation Management at Appalachian State University. She is currently studying Recreational Therapeutic Administration at ECU and hopes to become a Recreation Therapeutic Specialist and work alongside the military at Fort Bragg. Lauren grew up in many different places as a member of a military family, but her family currently lives in Bluefield, West Virginia. Lauren is excited about the opportunity to work with the Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement by assisting with the Walter and Marie Williams Leadership Awards Program. She hope to learn and grow as a leader not only in her community but in her profession.


Lizzie Shepard, AmeriCorps VISTA member Lizzie Shepard resized

Lizzie was born and raised in Winston Salem, NC. She is a recent graduate of Queens University of Charlotte where she earned a B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Spanish. Her college experiences and time abroad in Buenos Aires, Argentina and Guatemala gave her a worldly insight of the current problems and issues that many individuals face. She hopes to work with ECU, the Intergenerational Community Center, and Third Street Community Center to enlighten others about the importance of volunteerism while working against social injustices in her community. In her free time she enjoys traveling, meeting new people, volunteering and spending time with friends and family.



Jade Umberger, AmeriCorps VISTA member Jade Umberger resized

Jade grew up in a small farm town in Central Illinois and went to college in a significantly larger farm town called Normal, Illinois. She is a recent graduate of Illinois State University in Normal with a B.S. in Family and Consumer Sciences sequenced in Food, Nutrition, and Dietetics. After participating in many Alternative Breaks volunteer trips during college, Jade decided she hadn't reached her full capacity in volunteering so she decided to take it further and become an AmeriCorps VISTA member. Combining a passion for health food with an appetite for learning and a dash of volunteerism thrown in, she hopes to spread knowledge and resources to cultivate healthy futures in the Greenville community. During her year of service she will be working with Cultivate Greenville, a local community gardening network, and a nutrition program being piloted by Campus Kitchen at ECU. When she's not in the office, Jade enjoys baking, watching Parks and Rec, and planning her next adventure.

Click here to learn more about Jade's AmeriCorps goals and how you can be part of her efforts to increase local production of, knowledge of and access to healthy food by and for low-income Greenville residents!