|Ashley Greenlee talking to AALCI founder Joycelyn Moody at the African Burial Ground in NYC|
The AALCI prepares a select group of rising juniors from different universities across the country to join the professoriate by providing rigorous mentoring, innovative academic training, and a stipend. Institute Fellows cover materials concerning African American Studies and literature. In addition, they take GRE prep courses and participate in research workshops.
In addition to the workshops and formal sessions, one important benefit of Ashley's participation in the program in Texas, was her coming in contact with people from different geographic locations in the U.S. and even beyond. "I was lucky enough to meet people from other countries and able to open my mind about their customs and reasons behind them," she said.
Ashley found the journey to New York City intellectually rewarding, especially her visit to the African Burial Ground. "I learned how disconnected I was from my ancestors," she said. "As a student growing up, we may have read about the slave trade, but that connection isn't really made. I did not feel physically or mentally connected until I actually stood near the graves and felt their presence [at the African Burial Ground]."
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