Brandy Williamson ’18

Photo of Brandy Williamson ’18

Name: Brandy Williamson ’18

Hometown: Harlem, New York

Academic focus: Education and Psychology major

Proudest accomplishment at Mount Holyoke: As a first-generation student, my proudest accomplishment at Mount Holyoke is maintaining above a 3.0 GPA for all eight semesters. There has been many times throughout the year where I felt like giving up or questioned being here. But I continued to remind myself that it will all be worth it at the end and I’m glad I’ve been able to make it this far.

How a close connection with a faculty member has shaped you: My squash coach, Erin Robson, is one of the reasons I applied early decision and is also part of the reason why I’ve had a great college experience. For all four years, Coach Robson has been someone I can trust and be myself around. She is so motivating and encouraging. This has really shaped who I am today. She has provided me the confidence I needed to overcome challenges, on and off the court. She believed in me when I didn’t believe in myself.  

Favorite course you thought you might not like: I thought I wasn't going to like Critical Race Theory in Education, based on the syllabus, the workload and the structure of the class. But it turned out to the best class I have taken here. Professor Ana Soltero-Lopez was absolutely amaaaaaazing. She brought the material to life and made the readings engaging by the way she structured the class, which is what I thought I wasn’t going to like. It ended up being great. This course made me even more passionate about going into education and creating change.
Favorite Five College experience: My favorite Five College experience is Good Vibez Thursdays, which is an open mic I had started for people of color. This always turns out to be an great night, with incredible people sharing their talent and engaging in conversation.

How Mount Holyoke has shaped your global outlook: I can absolutely say that I am not the same person I was four years ago. The people I’ve met and the relationships I’ve formed have taught me a lot about race, gender, sexuality and much more. I have learned that injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere. Mount Holyoke has taught me how to be an advocate for change, not just when it benefits me, but for the greater good.   

Future plans: After graduation I will be moving to Miami and teaching elementary school through Teach For America. I plan to stay in education and eventually teach high school math. My goal is to provide my students the support they need to be successful and to do my best to fight education inequity.