Life sometimes can take you down an unexpected path, which was the case for Residence Hall Director for the University of North Texas at Dallas, Ashley Spearman.  

“I grew up in North Carolina, went to school at North Carolina Central University and worked at two universities within the state,” said Spearman. “When my grandfather passed away this past June, I felt there was no reason for me to be in the Carolinas because my mom lives in Dallas.”

At the time, Spearman’s current position at Winston-Salem State University was ending. Despite not having a job lined up, she decided to take a leap of faith and move to the southwest.

“When I got here, it just motivated and pushed me to make sure I was taking the necessary steps on getting a fresh start,” added Spearman. “I’m so thankful things have worked out so far.”

With UNT Dallas opening its first residence hall this past fall, Spearman accepted the opportunity to join the university as its Residence Hall Director in August.

“Working here and interacting with the students, you see that they do not really see a lot of black women or African Americans in general in this type of position,” said Spearman, who also has a Master’s degree in Higher Education from Florida International University. “It was very important for me to choose this institution to work at because I wanted let them to know that there are other options and obstacles you can navigate through to be successful.”

Spearman’s journey is an example of never knowing where life can take you. As long as you trust the process, things will work out for the best.

“Whatever plan that you think may be where you want to go, it might not be for you and that was the case for me. I do believe that everything happens for a reason and God knows where you’re supposed to go.”