Ashley Meiller

MA in Educational Studies: Educational Leadership and Policy (LEADPOL)

Ashley  Meiller, School of Education

Student Status: Current student, full time

Geographic Region of Origin: Pine Plains, New York

Previous Education: 

Marist College, Poughkeepsie, New York - Dual degree in Psychology/ Special Education.

Prior to Joining the Program

Prior to joining the program at U-M, I taught fifth grade at a Leader in Me elementary school in Raleigh, North Carolina, where I also coached Girls on the Run, collaborated on the Lighthouse Team, and advised the Student Lighthouse Team. Previously, I taught fifth grade special education on military post on the island of Oahu in Wahiawa, Hawaii, where I coached LegoRobotics.

Why the Educational Leadership and Policy (ELP) Program? 

I selected the ELP program because I connected with the mission and vision of the program. Between the depth of faculty experience and the built-in internship opportunity, I was convinced that U-M was the best fit for my interests and learning style.

My interests lie in school leadership, teacher collaboration, and professional development opportunities that positively impact academic achievement and growth. After graduation, I plan to work in the education policy field, where I can support teacher collaboration and professional development as means to elevate student achievement.


Since September, I have been interning (and working) as the Program Assistant for Ready, Set, Go Blue! (RSGB!) at the University of Michigan's Center for Educational Outreach (CEO). Specifically, I manage a team of six in implementing a curriculum that encourages a college-going culture among 4th and 5th graders at an elementary school in nearby Ypsilanti, MI.

At CEO, my major projects have included revising the RSGB! curriculum, providing professional development and training for my team, and implementing a full staff professional development at a local Ypsilanti elementary school. 

Individualized Course of Study

Courses I have chosen include:

Additionally, I am currently completing an independent study, where I work on a teaching team for Dr. Barry Fishman's undergraduate course in Video Games and Learning. 

While designing your own individualized course of study can be overwhelming, I selected my courses based on my long-term career goals, preferred interests in education, and research contributions of the faculty member.  

Highlights of the Michigan Experience

My three highlights are: quality of coursework, internship opportunity, and cohort. The faculty at U-M are vehemently committed to providing a top-tier educational experience that facilitates the development of your knowledge and challenges your perspective. Likewise, my internship has been invaluable in developing my management and leadership skills as a practitioner. Lastly, my cohort is small, yet incredibly diverse, which has enriched learning opportunities within the Michigan experience.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Equity was the single most important issue that brought me to U-M, where I have been fortunate to grapple with this concept in every course. My graduate experience has permitted me the opportunity to dig deep into this issue, consider solutions to advance initiatives, and identify action steps that can contribute to a more equitable future for our children.

Ashley invites prospective students to contact her with any questions about her experiences in the program or as a full-time student. 

Meiller’s program of study:
Educational Leadership and Policy