ECU alumna shares life-altering experience

An East Carolina University graduate who helped transform the life of a Goldsboro teen will share her experience at 7 p.m. Feb. 20 in Hendrix Theatre on campus. She will also speak at 2 p.m. in Rivers 226 in the College of Human Ecology.

Becky Vinson was 25 years old, struggling to support a daughter and working her way through college when she adopted 14-year-old Jimmy Graham. Graham had been shuffled among family members for much of his life. At one point he was turned over to social services and placed in a group home.

Vinson brought Graham into her home, guiding his school performance from failing grades into academic excellence. He earned a basketball scholarship from the University of Miami, where he graduated with a double major in business management and marketing. He switched to football, and now plays in the NFL as an All-Pro tight end for the New Orleans Saints.

Vinson earned a bachelor’s degree (2003) and a master’s degree (2010) in nursing from ECU. She lives in Arizona, where she works as a nurse practitioner.

Her visit is co-sponsored by ECU Campus Recreation & Wellness, the Student Activities Board, Residence Hall Association and East Carolina Alumni Association. The event is free and open to the public.

For additional information, contact David Gaskins at (252) 328-6387 or visit the Sports Leadership Series website at