Ashley N. Pointer

Vice President and President-Elect, VCU Holmes Scholars Program

Ph.D. Student, School of Education
Expected Graduation: May 2023
Program Area: Counselor Education

Ashley Pointer TallEducation

  • Ph.D. in Education, concentration Counselor Education, Virginia Commonwealth University (anticipatory May 2023)
  • M.A. in Forensic Psychology, The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
  • B.A. in Psychology, Texas Southern University
  • B.A. in Administration of Justice, Texas Southern University

Line of Research

My research line addresses social determinants of Black mental health by examining the contribution of antiracist pedagogy and practice to enhance social equity, economic mobility, and wellness in the Black community. Additionally, I have an interest in exploring mass incarceration as a social determinant of Black mental health across the lifespan.

Selected Research and Scholarship

Wheeler, N.J., Kozachuk, L., Pointer, A., & Man, J. (Under Review). Family adjustment in parents of a child with a disability. Journal of Counseling and Development.

Association for Counselor Education and Supervision 2021
“The RARE occasion: Bringing awareness and building strategies for Recruiting, Advocating, Retaining and Empowering Black Students in counseling.”—Ashley Pointer, Virginia Commonwealth University; Joshua Watson, Texas A & M University-Corpus Christi; Nigel Simmons. Texas A & M University-Corpus Christi

National Association of African American Studies & Affiliates 2020 National Conference 2020
“African American School Success and Academic Resilience among Black Children of Incarcerated Parents,”—Amanda Castillo, Howard University; Bahiyyah Muhammad, Howard University, Ashley Pointer, Howard University (accepted but canceled due to COVID)

Southern Sociological Society 2020 Annual Meeting 'Sociology in Action' 2020
#WeGotUsNow: Activism and Community Engagement Among Children of Incarcerated ParentsAshley Pointer, Howard University; Bahiyyah Muhammad, Howard University (accepted but canceled due to COVID)


Professionally certified, Ashley Pointer is a Licensed Graduate Professional Counselor for the state of Maryland, Qualified Mental Health Professional-Adult for the Commonwealth of Virginia, Nationally Certified Mental Health First Aid Instructor specializing in Higher Education and Public, and a Nationally Certified Safe Dates Instructor. She has experience teaching in District of Columbia Public Schools and co-teaching master’s level counseling courses, as well as counseling experience with nonprofit private practice OneHeartt in Baltimore, Maryland. She served as program coordinator for Catholic Charities Anchor Mental Health Integrated Community Care Program, young adult internship program manager with the Urban Alliance Foundation, and as executive director for Polarus Behavioral Health. She currently serves as graduate assistant to the dean of the VCU School of Education and the director of the VCU Child Development Center, supporting the iCubed Early Education and Family Institute. She performs research that bring awareness and influences policy with strategies that have the greatest potential to dismantle educational inequities that lead to income inequalities.

What does the Holmes Scholars Program mean to you?

As a Black woman from low socioeconomic status, the Holmes Scholars Program means access, growth and community. As a critical race theorist, the Holmes Scholars Program allows for a distinctive platform of minority narrative and opportunities that support it. It brings representation, saturated research, collaborative efforts and community connectedness. It highlights the values of our differences and create opportunities to move our communities forward and remove barriers that suppress our growth. The program ensures minority representation and valor in the Academy of Academia and the communities we impact.

Curriculum Vitae