As salutatorian of the class of 2012, Alexia Williams' Spelman journey has been a rewarding and enriching experience. In addition to studying abroad in Lima, Peru, and Malaga, Spain, Williams has studied Afro-Peruvian folklore and slave identities as a UNCF Mellon Mays Undergraduate Research Fellow, and conducted research at Princeton University in Afro-Peruvian poetry and performances as forms of peaceful protest.
Making her mark with a 3.97 GPA, Williams, an English and Spanish double major, has also has served as co-chair of the Model U.N. Team, competed at the Harvard World Model United Nations Conference in Taipei, Taiwan, and was a student ambassador and class vice president during her freshman year. A member of several honorary organizations including Phi Beta Kappa, Williams also volunteers at Herndon Elementary School.
Following graduation, she plans to tutor inner city seventh- and eighth-grade boys in English and Spanish at the West End Boys School, a boarding school in Louisville, Ky. Williams also plans to pursue a doctorate degree in comparative literature, with sights on becoming a college professor.
In Her Own Words
My mother, Dr. Sheron Williams, graduated from Spelman in 1981, and instilled in me the discipline, persistence and eagerness to learn what she knew would motivate my pursuit of academic excellence during my time at Spelman. However, upon entering Spelman, I could not have anticipated the numerous study abroad and research opportunities that are available to a new generation of Spelman women.
Study Abroad Makes the Difference
During my time at Spelman, I was able to study abroad at the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru in Lima, Peru and also at the University of Malaga in Malaga, Spain. As an English and Spanish double major, these study abroad experiences shaped by understanding of the Hispanic world as I witnessed the marginalization and exclusion that Afro-Peruvians and African immigrants struggle with daily. As a UNCF Mellon Mays Undergraduate Research Fellow, I enhanced my understanding of black Peruvian culture by studying Afro-Peruvian folklore and slave identities. I continued this research during the summer of my senior year at Princeton University, where I studied Afro-Peruvian poetry and performances as forms of peaceful protest.
Involvement is Key
In addition to my study abroad and research experiences, I have been involved in many extracurricular organizations while at Spelman. I am co-Chair of the Model United Nations Team, and competed at the Harvard World Model United Nations Conference in Taipei, Taiwan. I am also a Student Ambassador and was Vice-President of the class of 2012 my freshman year. I am a member of several honorary organizations including Phi Beta Kappa. I have volunteered at Herndon Elementary School and am currently a mentor to a seventh grade girl at Parks Middle School.
A Bright Future Filled With Hope
Next year, I will be teaching English and Spanish classes to inner city seventh and eight grade boys in Louisville, Kentucky as I apply to graduate school for a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature. I plan on becoming a college professor to continue Spelman’s legacy of scholarship and service.