Montrischa M. Williams, is a researcher at AIR with more than five years’ experience studying trends and factors that impact the enrollment, persistence, and degree completion of underrepresented students along the educational pipeline. Her work specifically focuses on post-secondary transitions and pathways, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education, and college student development.
Currently, Dr. Williams provides professional development training and technical assistance to high schools in Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana that use data-driven decisions to develop and implement dropout prevention strategies for students that are off-track for high school graduation. In addition, Dr. Williams serves as the qualitative lead on a National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded study that is centered on understanding the role of STEM culture on the persistence and degree completion of students in STEM Masters-to-PhD Bridge Programs. Dr. Williams has also served as a content expert for the College and Career Readiness and Success Center, where she led the development and delivery of products that were used to support State Education Agencies (SEAs), Federal Regional Comprehensive Centers’ members, in their effort to conceptualize and implement CCRS policy and practices.
Prior to joining AIR, Dr. Williams, played a key role in the database development and data collection of Project STEP-UP, an NSF-funded grant that was used to examine factors that impact their enrollment, persistence, and degree completion in the sciences at large public research universities. She also worked with AVID programs to deliver workshops on college readiness for 8th grade students, and examined the implementation of Race to the Top and its impact on college readiness in two grantee school districts. Dr. Williams presents her work at national educational conferences and State Education Agency convenings and has published articles on science identity; the impact of accountability on college readiness in high poverty, high minority high schools; and the organizational structures of STEM programs and their impact on service delivery.