Nicole Kathleen Harrison, class of 1992


In this interview, captured during Brown University’s 2018 All-Class Black Alumni Reunion, Nicole “Nikki Strong” Harrison, class of 1992, details her activism within theatre and dance programs on campus.

Harrison begins by sharing her childhood in Spanish Harlem and her education at the Chapin School in New York City. She discusses how she learned about Brown, mentions her request to visit two students on campus before choosing to attend, and explains how that affected her decision-making process. For the majority of her interview, Harrison dives into specific memories from her career at Brown, centering on her activism within her department. She details her roles in various protests to push the Department of Theater Arts and Performance Studies and their productions to be more racially inclusive. Harrison specifically describes her experience contesting a professor within that department.

Due to the details shared in this interview, the transcript and audio are restricted until January 1, 2039, after which date the materials will become available. For questions about this interview, please contact the Pembroke Center Archivist at

Recorded on September 22, 2018 at Brown University, Providence, RI
Interviewed by Mary Murphy, Nancy L. Buc ’65 LLD‘94 hon Pembroke Center Archivist

Suggested Chicago style citation: Harrison, Nicole Kathleen. Interview. By Mary Murphy. Pembroke Center Oral History Project, Brown University. September 22, 2018.


Nicole “Nikki Strong” Harrison was born and raised in Spanish Harlem in New York City. She attended the Chapin School in New York through the A Better Chance Program. During her time in high school, Harrison was an avid dancer and actor, which she then went on to pursue at Brown University. After completing her degree from the Department of Theater, Speech, and Dance, in 1992, she began her wide-ranging career as educator, activist, and radio personality. She is a popular radio personality in Washington, DC, and has worked on-air at 1090 WILD and Magic 106.7 in Boston, HOT106 in Providence and WBAI in New York City, among many other stations. She hosts the news and entertainment show “The Scene” on SiriusXM 141 H.U.R. Voices, serves as musical director for “The Flow” at XM Satellite Radio and World Music station XM100 WorldZone. Harrison has also been teaching ballet, modern, and jazz dance for several years.