Q & A... T.J Tipper
T.J. Tipper, the strength and fitness specialist at NCCU, was born in 1967 in Clarksburg, West Virginia. He has
two older sisters, one in New Martinsville, West Virginia, the other in Dallas. He also has a twin sister living
in Hillsborough. Tipper is not married and has no children. Tipper is always willing to lend a helping hand to anyone.
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in a small town in Pine Grove, West Virginia.
Did you attend college?
Yes, I am a graduate of West Virginia University and I went to graduate school at NCCU.
What did you study in college?
I majored in Sports and Exercise Science.
What made you decide to choose the field you are in now?
I think my grade school influenced me a lot. All we did was play sports. So, you either played sports, hunted or
fished, and I don't like to do that.
What career steps led to your career as a strength and fitness specialist?
I did internships that are standard in this field.
How long have you been working in your current position at NCCU?
I have been here since 1996.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I enjoy the students.
What are some of your past jobs?
I basically did the same job, but in a different location. It was more of a commercial setting.
Tell me a few of your duties as strength and fitness specialist?
I am responsible for anyone who walks into the weight room, organizing teams, fitness prescriptions, paper work, and
maintenance of the equipment. I even sweep the floor.
How did you get the nickname T.J.?
When I was born my father gave me the option of choosing what I wanted my name to be (to be called by). I chose
T.J. It's a family name.
How would you describe your relationship with the students?
I would describe my relationship as good.
What do you like to do for fun?
I like to kayak, mountain bike, go surfing, and I love the ocean.
Have you ever received any awards for a job well done at NCCU?
Yes. Just recently I received one. Actually, it was last week in the Miller Morgan building. It was an appreciation award.
What are your short term goals in life?
I want to buy a house.
What are your expectations for the weight training programs at NCCU?
I would like to see it open longer hours. I would like to have more students help with the teams. I would like for
more students and faculty to come to the weight room and I would like to see Julius Chambers in here.
What type of equipment would you add to the weight room, if any?
We need rubber mats for the floor and I would love to have air condition for climate control.
What are some words of encouragement you would give to a student that is interested in this field?
Don't be in it for the money, although you can become rich if you work hard at anything you do. Do it because you
love to do it.
Thank you for sharing your time with the Campus Echo.
Interview & transcription by DeShelia Hall