After working in social justice and advocacy for over a decade, Reginauld Williams ’21 confronted barriers that he realized would only come down if he earned a bachelor’s degree.
“It had gotten to the point where, after doing work in the community for over a decade, I systemically kept hitting walls,” he says. “In some sense, this hurts to say because no matter what type of formal education people receive, they’re worthy and valued to bring their voice into any conversation.”
An avid advocate for equality and a proponent of on-the-job learning, Williams understood that he needed a formal education so he could be present where the decisions were being made.
"I’m a firm believer that while I’m working to change the conditions, I can also change myself.”—Reginauld Williams ’21
“I’m a firm believer that while I’m working to change the conditions, I can also change myself,” says Williams, who made his next step Endicott’s Van Loan School for a bachelor of arts in liberal studies.
Endicott was a good fit because it allowed Williams to apply his experiential knowledge for college credits, as opposed to retaking classes. While working full-time as the communications director for the Massachusetts Budget & Policy Center, Williams pursued his degree during the COVID-19 pandemic as a completely remote student.
“Being able to work with a flexible institution, with instructors and advisors who were invested in my success and made sure I had the opportunities to learn in a way that also met my needs as an adult learner, was one of the most valuable experiences I’ve had in my life,” Williams says.
As he balanced financial aid challenges, a demanding work schedule, and the stressors of living during a global health crisis, he credits his advisor Dr. Marcelo Juica, Director and Co-Founder of the Endicott College Boston campus, and thesis advisor Dr. Dolores Calaf for their support, as well as the Alray Scholars Program for investing in his education.
Calling Endicott “the cherry on top” of his education experience, Williams appreciated all the help and encouragement he received from the College. “The empathy that I received from Endicott and the recognition that no individual student’s experience is a cookie-cutter replica of another was priceless,” he says. “Endicott’s willingness to work with us to be able to complete our undergraduate experiences after stepping away from higher education, for one reason or another, demonstrated that institutions are embracing nontraditional student challenges head on. That made it the right program for me.”
Though Williams’ first time on the Endicott campus was for his graduation in 2021, he says, “I couldn’t have imagined having a remote experience and still being and feeling this connected.”
Today, Williams is pursuing a master’s of public policy at Tufts University, where he plans to focus on community development, social welfare, and the intersections of technology and public policy.
Williams concludes that without Endicott, “I wouldn’t be where I am today, I wouldn’t be in this master’s program—a year ago, this was not within a tangible grasp for me. Life comes at you fast, and Endicott helped prepare me for that.”
“Life comes at you fast and Endicott helped prepare me for that.” —Reginauld Williams ’21