Sept 22, 2023  


Leha Byrd

ECSU Communications and Marketing  

Email or 252.335.8745

The Elizabeth City State University (ECSU) Community Connections Performance and Lecture Series is hosting “A Conversation with the Cast” Homecoming Edition at 8 p.m., Sept. 28 in the Mickey L. Burnim Fine Arts Center. The panel discussion will feature cast members from the late 1980s-1990s sitcom A Different World, a spin-off of The Cosby Show. Panelists include Jasmine Guy, Dawnn Lewis, Cree Summer, Kadeem Hardison, and Darryl M. Bell. The discussion is part of the university’s weeklong span of homecoming events entitled “Vikings Unleashed: A Different World,” and will be moderated by Coast Live Host and News Anchor April Woodard.

During its six seasons, A Different World was loosely based on life for college students attending a Historically Black College or University (HBCU). The first episode aired Sept. 24, 1987. The event’s dialogue will lend toward the livelihood, longevity, and importance of HBCUs, said ECSU Associate Vice Chancellor of Student, Alumni and Constituent Engagement and Deputy Chief Kevin Wade, Ed.D., the university’s homecoming chairperson.  

“Even though this sitcom aired more than 30 years ago, its lessons and values remain a part of the HBCU culture and student life,” he said. “We’re honored to have cast members visit campus and lead us in discussion on what it took to make the sitcom successful, and what elements of those storylines still ring true today.”

Free event tickets are available here and must be presented at the door. The event is being sponsored and supported by several entities including Truist Bank, ECSU student fees and private donations.


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