Anthony Atkins

This academic year, University Relations is celebrating five years of We Are UNCW! We have done almost 300 profiles of our outstanding faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends. As part of the celebration, we will have a gallery showcase from August 22 through September 22 in the Boseman Gallery, located in Fisher University Union. We couldn't print hundreds of portraits, of course, but we selected 30 photos to include in the gallery showcase – and we have a digital slideshow to highlight the other 200+ portraits! Some of our profilees have graduated, been promoted or retired, or moved, but we are proud to share these snapshots of who they were at the time that these stories made their “We Are UNCW” debut. We hope you enjoy this look back, and we are looking forward to telling all the stories that lie ahead!


Aug. 28, 2018

UNCW’s strong sense of community and welcoming atmosphere initially brought Associate Professor of English Anthony Atkins to the university in 2005.

“When I took the job, I was excited about the high quality of education and the great opportunities that UNCW provides to students,” said Atkins. “I’ve always really enjoyed the people and the geography of southeastern North Carolina. It feels like home.”

As a young student, Atkins did not see himself becoming an associate professor for a university such as UNCW. He was born and raised in the small town of Dallas, N.C., and had to work hard in order to find opportunities for himself throughout his education. Atkins received a Bachelor of Arts in English and American literature from East Carolina University, a Master of Arts in rhetoric and composition from ECU, and a Ph.D. in rhetoric and composition from Ball State University.

At UNCW, he makes it a priority to help students find opportunities to further their education and careers, often meeting with them to conduct research, prepare for job interviews and perfect resumes.

“The students we have here are very exciting. They are smart, bright and definitely willing to work,” he said. “When they are successful, it makes me feel like I’m doing a good job.”

His favorite class to teach is rhetorical theory, which looks at the art of language and communication as a means of persuasion. He also does calligraphy, which he finds is a good way to keep his mind stimulated and continuously learning.

Atkins is passionate about researching and publishing; currently, his focus is on applied learning and its impact on college students. In March 2018, he served as conference chair for the 12th Annual Conference on Applied Learning in Higher Education.

“My goal is the same every year: always become a better educator than I was the year before,” said Atkins. “I’m always seeking out things to research and publish. I’m always looking for my next project.”

- Sarah Ann Craven ’19