Hometown: Morrisville, MO
Currently Resides: Springfield, MO
All Degrees: AA General Studies
“The expenses college brings was something my family couldn’t afford, and I am thankful that I was able to use my A+ scholarship to achieve my degree debt free!”
There were many different factors that contributed to Ashlyn Williams’ decision to go to Missouri State-West Plains, but what drew her in were the intercollegiate athletics. “I was first interested because they gave me a chance to continue my athletic career as a Grizzly cheerleader,” Ashlyn said. “That was a huge achievement for me. Then, learning more and more about the school, I felt called to go there.”
Another factor was the one-on-one interaction with instructors that MSU-WP offers. “Coming from a small high school, a big four-year university was very intimidating and scary for me,” Ashlyn said. “But Missouri State-West Plains had smaller class sizes and such a community-oriented atmosphere! As soon as I stepped foot on campus, I felt welcomed and knew that it was the perfect fit for me!”
For Ashlyn, all of her experiences at Missouri State-West Plains were amazing. “The faculty welcomes you with open arms and is always willing to lend a helping hand,” she explained. “The Missouri State-West Plains campus is family to me and always will be!”
“The West Plains campus helped me accomplish my goals by being an affordable college with an extraordinary amount of opportunities!”
Though it only took place over two years, Ashlyn’s experiences at MSU-WP have deeply impacted her life, and she credits becoming involved on campus as the best choice she ever made.
“Going to school events like Welcome Week, bingo nights, cookouts, and so much more helped me create life lasting friendships,” she said. “Also, being a part of the Student Ambassador program was very rewarding. I was able to come out of my shell and show off how amazing Missouri State-West Plains is to prospective students! I want other people to know just how much it has to offer!”
As a new student on campus, Ashlyn was nervous being hours away from home, without knowing a single person. But, within a week, the university had become her home away from home.
“The faculty was so incredibly welcoming! The more involved I became on campus, the more friendships and connections I created. Programs like the Student Ambassador program and the Grizzly cheer team helped me become comfortable going up and creating conversations with community members and prospective students,” she said. “Missouri State-West plains helped me learn great communication and leadership skills that I will use in life and my future career goals!”
“My greatest achievement during my time at Missouri State-West Plains was being able to accomplish so much in a short two years!”
Ashlyn admits she kept very busy as a full-time student, but she loved every minute of it. Between being an advocate for the campus, giving prospective students tours and helping them envision themselves on campus, as well as being a student athlete, she invested heavily in the campus community.
She plans to do the same on Missouri State University’s Springfield campus. “My future plan is to transfer and get my bachelor’s degree in interior design,” she said. “I also was able to get two years of collegiate cheer under my belt to prepare me for Missouri State University’s cheer team, which I will be continuing in the fall.”
“My advice to prospective students is to take chances and get involved! Go to Welcome Week events, ball games, movie nights,” Ashlyn said. “All those things will bring you closer to your peers and to the staff on campus and will only make your experience even better!”