April 19, 2017

Jessica Pope
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator

Ann Williams Recognized at Georgia Collegiate Honors Council Conference

Ann Williams

VALDOSTA — Ann Williams’s “Connections to the Past: An Ethnographic Study of the Connection Between Modern Mayans and the Ancients” won first place for Best Paper in the Social Sciences at the 2017 Georgia Collegiate Honors Council Conference.

Williams, 21, described her research as “a case study that looks at how different factors, such as religion, education, personal history, and economic status influence how modern Mayans in Belize relate to their ancestors.” She collected the data during a four-week ethnographic field school experience in Belize with VSU’s Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Criminal Justice.   

Williams expects to graduate from Valdosta State University with a Bachelor of Science in chemistry, with a minor in anthropology, in May. Her future plans include an internship with the Georgia Department of Education, followed by some hands-on experience working as a chemistry laboratory technician before continuing her education. She plans to eventually pursue a Doctor of Philosophy in analytical physical chemistry.  

Dr. Matthew Richard, a faculty member in VSU’s Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Criminal Justice, supervised Williams’s award-winning research.

Williams is a very active member of the Honors Student Association and Student Members of the American Chemical Society at VSU, both of which afford her numerous opportunities to serve the university and neighboring communities. She has earned the Hugh C. Bailey Family Scholarship and the Julia Wisenbaker Sumerford Scholarship, as well as a spot in Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges in 2016.

Williams is the daughter of James and Karen Williams of Grayson, Georgia.

Each year, the Georgia Collegiate Honors Council invites students to submit proposals that represent excellent undergraduate work. This year’s conference, which was hosted by Columbus State University, was built around a “Reaching for the Stars” theme, and students were asked to share their best academic or creative work with honors students and faculty from across the state.

Valdosta State University had a total of seven Honors College students selected to present at the Georgia Collegiate Honors Council Conference.

Melissa Wilcox of Carrollton, Georgia, presented “The Effects of Native Language on Trombonists’ Playing Abilities.”

Shain Johnson of Waycross, Georgia, presented “On the Efficacy of the Sonogashira Carbon-Carbon Coupling Protocol Toward Further Modifications of the Polyoxotungstate Anion, [PW12039(NC6H4-I)]3-.”

Caitlin Mozzo of Adel, Georgia, presented  “Shaping the Universe: An Examination of Steven Universe’s Depiction of Modern Society.”

Dan Nix of Nashville, Georgia, presented “Why Present a Theodicy to Defend a Theory of Knowledge? An Examination of Descartes’s Theory of Error.”

Hunter Pope of Remerton, Georgia, presented “Alternative Medicine: How Holistic Medicine is Used in Czech Republic Along with Art Therapy.”

Nicholas Anderson of Kennesaw, Georgia, presented “The Effects of Race and Biased Language on Public Opinion of Criminal Justice.”

The Georgia Collegiate Honors Council is committed to the promotion and advancement of honors education in institutions of higher learning in the state.

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