My mother worked as an elementary school teacher from the time I was seven until I was twenty. She was the reason I first decided that I wanted to teach.”

Ashleigh’s Story

Ashleigh Lewis grew up in the suburbs of Columbia, S,C,, where her family instilled in her a love of education and the ambition to pursue new goals. “Each time my sister won an award or received an honor, it became my next goal.” Ashleigh graduated from high school as valedictorian the year after her sister had done the same.

In college, Ashleigh pursued a biology degree with the intent to enter a career in medicine. “However, something embedded in my personality drew me back to teaching.” She decided to follow in her mother’s footsteps. In her sophomore year, Ashleigh changed her major to her favorite subject of math, and began taking education courses. She went on to complete her undergraduate degree in mathematics with a minor in psychology and an education cognate; and to earn a master’s degree in teaching.

Ashleigh also credits her father with giving her encouragement. “He believed in me more than anyone else, and gave me the courage to pursue my dream and teach.”