Ashleen Williams recognized for showing exemplary promise as higher education leader
Ashleen Williams (center), a doctoral student in history at the University of Mississippi, welcomes a group of first-generation transfer students to campus. Williams, who teaches in the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, has been honored as a future leader in higher education. Photo by Logan Kirkland/Ole Miss Digital Imaging Services
January 19, 2021 by
A doctoral student in history at the University of Mississippi has been awarded a prestigious honor for future leaders in higher education.
Ashleen Williams, who also teaches in the university’s Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, is among nine recipients of the Association of American Colleges and Universities‘ annual K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award. The award recognizes graduate students who show exemplary promise as future leaders of higher education and who are committed to academic innovation in the areas of equity, community engagement, and teaching and learning.
The awards honor the work of K. Patricia Cross, professor emerita of higher education at the University of California at Berkeley.
“This award is particularly meaningful because of who the award is named for and the example K. Patricia Cross set for young educators for excellence in teaching and learning,” Williams said. “This award is also a chance to connect with other graduate students and scholars across the nation who are committed to questions of equity and community engagement, and I’ve felt very inspired by learning from the work they are doing.”
Among other activities, Williams’ award recognizes her involvement in the Honors College First-Gen Student Network, which helps first-generation students navigate the college experience. She created a lecture series given by successful first-generation Mitchell, Truman and Fulbright scholars.
Williams came to the Honors College from Montana, following excursions to Northern Ireland and the Middle East. As a 2013 Mitchell Scholar, Williams travelled to the University of Ulster to earn her master’s degree in applied peace and conflict studies.