Faculty Spotlight

Ashley Loftis ’07
Instructor of Mathematics

Sept. 2020

NCSSM loves their alumni! In fact, walking the halls of our Durham campus, you see our alumni in every aspect of the school; whether it’s in the classroom, in the residence halls, or on the sports fields, our alumni choose to come back and stay close to the NCSSM community. It’s certainly no different in the NCSSM Online program! NCSSM’s own Ashley Loftis, Class of 2007, is an instructor in the Mathematics Department, starting her fourth year at NCSSM and third year teaching in the Online program.

After graduating from NCSSM, Loftis attended NC State University to earn her two bachelor’s degrees, one in mathematics and one in math education, and continued on to earn a master’s degree in mathematics education from NC State. A member of the Wolf Pack forever, last year Loftis began her work towards a Ph.D. in Teaching and Learning in STEM with an emphasis in post-secondary mathematics, also from NC State. Asked why she made the decision to go back to school, Loftis said, “It’s always been a personal goal for me. I was a first-generation college student and attending NCSSM really inspired me to set a personal goal to earn my doctorate. It’s more about the personal accomplishment than it is about my job.”

It’s an election year, and with the spotlight on important races at the top and bottom of the ballot it’s never been more important to be an informed citizen who understands the tools that power our democracy! Loftis is teaching a course titled “Topics in Civic Mathematics” that introduces NCSSM students to the mathematics behind voting theory, apportionment, and gerrymandering, among other topics that help quantify and inform decision-making that impacts civic engagement. Loftis enjoys teaching this course, stating that she loves how the course “shows students how math is in everything they read and do. Students have started the course by analyzing articles and seeing how persuasion can also play a role in addition to mathematics they’re studying.“

Loftis began her teaching career in Alamance County Schools, teaching for six years at Cummings High School. When not in the classroom, she loves to travel. In the last few years she’s visited Thailand, Egypt, Cambodia, Israel, and more! While spending a summer in Thailand, Loftis worked with teachers at the KVIS School, providing teachers with pedagogical strategies to enhance student participation in their classroom. Loftis is looking forward to graduating with her Ph.D. so DOCTOR Loftis can celebrate by taking a long-planned trip to explore more of Africa.