Patrice and Ashira Spotlight
- Friday, February 5th, 2021
Patrice and Ashira, sophomores in The Mahurin Honors College, “met by chance” and formed an amazing, powerful friendship. Ashira Gibbs, from Brentwood, TN, is majoring in Marketing with a minor in Dance, and Patrice Powell, from Louisville, KY, is majoring in dietetics and nutrition. So how would two girls with diverse majors and hometowns meet and form such a strong bond? Patrice and Ashira agree that The Mahurin Honors College had a major impact in the formation of their friendship:
“If neither of us went to honors, I probably would not have ran into Patrice at these random moments such as H-4 (Honors Freshman Orientation Retreat) or during the time between H4 and MASTER Plan” Ashira revealed.
Both expressed that their time at The Mahurin Honors College has been amazing because they have cultivated life-long connections that make them feel like they are home even when they are miles away from the familiarity and comfort of their hometowns: Patrice stated, “it really does feel like this is your family away from home… especially in the Honors College, great leaders really welcomed us and made us feel like we’re their family”.
The familial-like bonds of the MHC are well reflected in Patrice and Ashira’s friendship. Much like sisters, the two act as each other's accountability partners, encouraging one another to participate in the diverse range of activities available to them through both the MHC and WKU. Both Patrice and Ashira served as H4 Counselors, welcoming in the newest class of MHC scholars this past summer, and both currently serve as Spirit Masters, the official ambassadors for Western Kentucky University. The pair’s favorite tradition is to sign up for random activities.
Both stressed that incoming students should get out of their comfort zones, participate in various activities around campus to strengthen their network, and “to not get discouraged, even in times of COVID”.
At the start of quarantine, Patrice and Ashira made a joint Instagram called @thespiritofpashore; their goal with the account was to spread positivity, “keep the spirit”, and document new activities they tried on the Hill. The inspiration for the username was derived from a combination of their first names and a fun spin on the University’s well known motto: “The Spirit Makes the Master.” Ashira and Patrice also use their platform to share information about meaningful causes. In the @thespiritofpashore account bio, they have posted a link to a Black Lives and Voices Matter Fundraiser, noting that they want to encourage others “to not have stereotypes going in, and to keep your mind open to what others may be going through that some will probably never understand”.
Patrice and Ashira serve as a great example of the incredible friendships and bonds that are possible as a member of The Mahurin Honors College at WKU. They have already made a lasting impact on the Hill, and we can not wait to see what other amazing adventures lie ahead for this duo.