Honors Alumni

We’re proud to share updates from some of our Honors graduates! If you took part in the Honors Program at UNC Asheville and would like to let us know what you’re up to these days, please complete this form. We’ll be delighted to share your experiences, as well.

Gray Barrett (May 2016)

Gray is currently a Ph.D. student of political science at Emory University. His graduate work there focuses on human rights, repression, and inequality. These are topics he began studying in earnest while a research assistant in the Political Science Department at UNC Ashevile and learned a great deal more about during his postgraduate study at the University of Oslo in 2016 and 2017, where he was supported by a year-long Fulbright Scholarship. He will be working for the US Department of State during the summer of 2018. Gray thanks the Honors Program for helping him develop the ability to ask probing questions across several disciplines.

Kelly Olshan (May 2015)

Kelly Olshan is a visual artist and arts administrator currently living in NYC. She graduated from UNC Asheville in 2015 with a BFA in Painting, receiving that year’s valedictory Manly E. Wright Award. She went on to receive her MA in Arts Administration from Columbia University, publishing her master’s thesis on professional development training for arts graduates in the Journal of Arts Management, Law, & Society. She currently serves as Queens Council on the Arts’ Artist Commissioning Coordinator, where she manages a new program that administers fiscal and professional development resources to artists and arts enthusiasts. At the Council, she was recently promoted to likewise oversee a portfolio development program that helps high school students get into art school and transition into a career in the arts. As a practicing artist, she continues to exhibit throughout NYC. You can follow her art practice at kellyolshan.com.

Emily Reed (May 2014)

Emily is currently a graduate student in biology at North Carolina State University, where she also recently became a Global Change Fellow for the Southeast Climate Science Center at NC State, for which she is charged with co-organizing four seminars over the semester. The first of these seminars, which Emily led, was a panel on climate justice in which one of the panelists, environmental racism expert Louie Rivers III, referenced ideas from Michelle Alexander and Paulo Freire, scholars whose work Honors seniors are given a chance to engage with. She credits the Honors Program for giving her the skills and confidence to run this seminar.