Jan. 22, 2024   


Leha Byrd 

ECSU Communications and Marketing   

Email or 252-335-8745 

ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. (Jan. 22, 2024) - A portrait showing a modern-day depiction of Ruby Bridges by Nags Head artist James Melvin will soon be on loan to Elizabeth City State University (ECSU) for three months, beginning Thursday, Feb. 8, 2024 at 2 p.m.  

Bridges, 69, is best known as the young, Black student who was the first to integrate the all-white William Frantz Elementary School in New Orleans, La. in 1960, following the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education that declared segregated schools unconstitutional. 

The portrait will be on display in the university’s G.R. Little Library through May and is a partnership with College of Albemarle. 

Leading up to the portrait’s residence, the student-led 1704 Media Productions team is hosting three screenings of the movie, Ruby Bridges, on Thursday, Jan. 25, Tuesday, Jan. 30, and Tuesday, Feb. 6.  

“Ruby Bridges and her story are a symbol in the black community – and the world – of the ills our society has endured and how far we’ve come,” said Clarence Goss, assistant professor of graphic design and faculty director of 1704 Media Productions. 

Goss said educating the campus community about the story of Ruby Bridges will keep past and present trials and victories at the forefront of students’ minds and consciences. Bridges was only six years old when she was escorted into the school by U.S. Marshals. Throughout her life she has remained an activist for racial equality. 

ECSU screenings for Ruby Bridges are below: 

  • Thursday, Jan. 25, 2024, 6 p.m., Johnson Hall  
  • Tuesday, Jan. 30, 6 p.m., Ridley Student Center, Room 206  
  • Tuesday, Feb. 6, 6 p.m., G.R. Little Library


Elizabeth City State University provides students with a high-quality, affordable education as one of North Carolina’s leading four-year public institutions that is part of the University of North Carolina System. ECSU develops leaders who are courageous, resilient, and empowered through excellent student-centered, experiential learning. We offer baccalaureate, professional, and master’s degrees across a wide variety of interests. Excellence is the standard at Elizabeth City State University – success is our legacy. Come to Discover. Leave to Conquer. Visit