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Howard University > News Room
Press Release  
Release Date: Tuesday, January 3, 2012 11:18 AM
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Media Contacts:
Rachel Mann
Communications Specialist

Taja Ellis
Office of University Communications

Howard Basketball Coach Takes a Stand Against Bullying

Kevin Nickelberry
Kevin Nickelberry

WASHINGTON (December 14, 2011) – Howard University Men’s Basketball Coach Kevin Nickelberry shared his personal account of the impact of bullying to a gymnasium full of elementary school students at Cleveland Elementary School’s “Bullying Awareness Week” last month.

“Dream big and don’t let bullying stop you from achieving your dreams,” said Nickelberry.

Pamela Parker, the physical education director at Cleveland Elementary, invited Nickelberry to share his experiences with bullying and to provide an interactive dialogue with the students. The goal was to teach ways to prevent bullying. His approach went beyond a spirited lecture.

Coach Nickelberry shared his own story of being bullied throughout his adolescent years in school. He explained how he was teased because he had dreams of playing on a basketball team, but was shorter than average basketball players. He said his peers teased him so badly that he would sometimes avoid attending school.

“Some days, I would fake being sick so I could stay home and not face being bullied,” said Nickelberry. “It was a horrible way to spend my years in school. And that’s why I’m here sharing my story with you all today—hoping to inspire you all not to be a bully; and if you are one, to stop being one.”

Coach Nickelberry, a native of Washington, D.C., was rated among the Top 25 “Up-and-Coming” college basketball coaches by The Sporting News and in 2008. He graduated in 1986 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from Virginia Wesleyan University. He began his coaching career as the head women’s basketball coach at Columbia Union College in 1991 and moved to Howard University for four seasons, from 1994-1998.

Coach Nickelberry was named head coach of the Howard University men’s basketball program in May 2010. He has coached basketball at various schools in the country and internationally for more than 22 years. He has also traveled the nation to speak to thousands of students about bullying and bullying prevention as part of his “No Bullying Campaign.”


Howard University is a private research university that is comprised of 13 schools and colleges. Founded in 1867, students pursue studies in more than 120 areas leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. Since 1998, the University has produced two Rhodes Scholars, two Truman Scholars, a Marshall Scholar, 24 Fulbright Scholars and 11 Pickering Fellows. Howard also produces more on campus African-American Ph.D. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University, call 202-238-2330, or visit the University’s Web site at

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