Stepping Up: Nubia Williams, Center for Community-Engaged Teaching and Research

Each summer, Duquesne partners with the Alliance for Refugee Youth Support and Education (ARYSE) to host the PRYSE Academy summer camp for immigrant and refugee students in the Pittsburgh region. While the camp is usually held at Duquesne, it will be held virtually this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nubia Williams
Nubia Williams

Nubia Williams—a doctoral student in the School of Education’s Educational Leadership Program—is a graduate assistant in the Center for Community-Engaged Teaching and Research (CETR). She serves as a coordinator for the summer camp and is a liaison between Duquesne and ARYSE.

“Nubia is hardworking, flexible and a joy to work with,” CETR Assistant Director Angelle Pryor said. “She is a wonderful role model for Duquesne students, as well as for the students who are served by our community partners.”

Nubia mentors staff at PRYSE Academy, which comprises students from local universities. This year, in response to heightened issues of racism and social justice, she has facilitated diversity-and-inclusion trainings and one-on-one meetings with staff members to help guide their relationships with their students.

During the camp, students engage in academic learning with their teachers, including classes in English as a second language (ESL). They also participate in cultural activities to highlight the diversity among those in attendance.

Nubia has even made daily home deliveries to nearly 20 students during the camp to bring them free supplies and activities to complement teachers’ lesson plans.

Even though the camp looks different this year, Nubia said it has been encouraging to see the students’ excitement and willingness to learn and gather virtually.

“It’s been an eye-opening experience to see how we could all come together and make it work,” she said.

Thank you, Nubia, for helping make this year’s summer camp a success!

Stepping Up

We’re recognizing individual Duquesne employees who are going above and beyond in their job duties (beyond transitioning to online services) to serve our students, our campus and local community during these uncertain times. To submit an individual for nomination, email Emily Stock at