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First-Generation Student Spotlight: Casey Williams

Casey Williams; first-generation student profile 2021
Casey Williams; Interdisciplinary Studies first-generation student profile 2021

In honor of First-Generation College Student Celebration Month, UA Little Rock is profiling some of its outstanding first-generation students.

Casey Williams is a first-generation student from Fort Smith, Arkansas.

What is your major?

My major is Interdisciplinary Studies, focusing on professional and technical writing, history, and political science.

What does it mean to you to be a first-generation student?

It means breaking barriers and setting your own course in life as you explore the possibilities of the world.

How did your family react when you told them you wanted to earn a college degree?

My parents were proud. My husband Craig is the most supportive man I’ve ever met. He has believed in me when I didn’t believe in myself.

What has been the most rewarding aspect of college so far?

I love being able to do what I love in writing but also having the ability to study political science and history. It meant I was able to pursue all of my passions and have a more complete understanding in my studies.

What made you choose UA Little Rock?

I came to dance here as a little girl for dance recitals and fell in love with the campus. I told my mom when I was eight that I wanted to go here, and she told me to go for it!

What do you plan to do after graduation?

I’d love to write for a local magazine. I also want to work for the Ronald McDonald charities as they supported my family immensely when we had our baby girl, Olivia prematurely. I want to give back and help tell other people’s stories so their voices are heard. Everyone has a right to their voice.

Do you have any advice for future first-generation students?

The acceptance letter that you get is your treasure map. Use it and know no one can take it away from you. Life is full of mountains to climb and narrow dark valleys. With an education, determination, and hard work, you can guide yourself to opportunity. You are worth pursuing, just like that treasure.