Ashley B

Year Entered 



Ashley has held previous careers as an educator, queer rights and abortion activist, paralegal, and cake decorator to name a few. A proud graduate of the University of Florida, where she obtained both a B.A. (2010) and M.Ed. (2011) in math and science education. Later, through her time as a paralegal for a civil rights organization, she developed an interest in prison conditions and daily experiences of incarcerated people. This led her to a return to the university setting where she obtained a M.S. in criminal justice (2020) from Texas State University. Her thesis utilized a secondary data set of survey responses from people held in long-term administrative segregation. Interactions between additional restrictions and guard behaviors were analyzed against respondent mental health and self-harm rates to investigate daily conditions and analyze the impacts of solitary confinement.

While her previous research interests include the criminological (solitary confinement, wrongful convictions, and the death penalty), she has chosen to prioritize research on the HIV/AIDS epidemic of the 1980s. Ashley is currently working on a content analysis focused on newspaper coverage of the AIDS epidemic in an effort to understand the transition from moral panic to criminalization of the virus for certain populations. Other research interests include popular culture depictions of the AIDS epidemic, the interaction of news source and conspiracy theory belief on COVID behaviors, and how popular culture interprets and informs abortion policy throughout the past 50 years.