Nur Abdalla

Nur Abdalla - Community Impact Manager, ARTSmemphis  

“It was important for me to go to a program where I could get tangible work experience and make a viable career as an Applied Anthropologist. Thanks to the program, I came out of grad school with the skills to do work I care about.  


Lydia Babcock

Lydia Babcock – Senior Research Associate, AcademyHealth 

"I think that medical anthropology is more critical than a lot of other health systems health services researchers. And that was something that my current employer really valued, because they are looking for more transdisciplinary, cross sector collaboration... Anthropology equipped me to have a more critical lens that attends to systems level thinking and I think that my colleagues value that as well."


Marie Dennan

Marie Dennan – Assistant Director of Programs, Big Green 

Getting the MA in Anthropology was really one of the best experiences I’ve ever had for so many reasons. It was definitely the most challenging thing I’ve ever done academically, and I just learned so much. I really loved all the classes and all the professors, and I have made lifelong friends. I really think it prepared me in a lot of ways for what it is that I do now.” 


Nadine McLean

Nadine McLean - User Experience Design, Meta 





Dr. Nikia Grayson (DNP, MPH, CNM, FNP) - Chief Clinical Officer, Choices Center for Reproductive Health 


“My advice would be to remember why you got into the work. Remember the communities that you want to care for. Always be accountable to the communities, right? I think that's really big for me to be accountable to the communities that we serve. And tell the stories of those who whose voice are usually not amplified. That's a really important part of it.”  

 Chris Reeder Young

Chris Reeder Young - Senior Director of Research and Policy, Habitat for Humanity of Greater Memphis 

Anthropology is a social science that teaches you how to be a good steward of peoples's stories and experiences. You get to be kind and compassionate, but also be significantly powerful in your ability to make change. And it can look like anything you want it to look like, but it's always going to focus on being a liaison and a bridge builder between different groups of people who might need your listening ears. 


Kyle SImpson

Kyle Simpson - Senior Researcher, Atlassian 

“I think being an applied program helps you kind of come down from the theoretical implications of research and get to things you can do to start fixing this problem that we've observed. There was a pretty heavy emphasis on participatory styles of research, and I've always had my best luck, my best ability to affect change in organizations, not by writing really good research reports, but by making research accessible and understandable to key stakeholders. We do that through bringing them into the research and making research collaborative.” 


Jenessa Spears

Jenessa Spears – Portfolio Manager and Anthropologist, Consilience Group, Co-Chair Community Advisory Board 

“I didn't really think it would be possible to have such a balance of creativity and structure of really having an authentic transdisciplinary perspective... The things that we get to do, the people that we get to work with are some of the most passionate professionals you'll literally ever meet.” 


Paige Walkup

Paige Walkup – President, Caissa Public Strategy, Co-Chair Community Advisory Board  

“I would 100% recommend the Master’s program because of the job placement, networks, and connectivity to ensure career opportunities. And the fact is, our faculty and our network listen to interests and home in on that.” 



Austin T. Wyatt - Qualitative Research, University of Memphis, Department of Criminology.  

Ph.D. Candidate, School of Urban Affairs and Public Policy 


“Well, the beauty of anthropology is it trains and instructs, it sort of gifts you with a very specific way of viewing the world and approaching questions.” 

“Your relationship with your advisor is important; my relationship with my advisor got me through the program. Graduate school is a lot more than attending classes and making the grades. It’s learning to balance life and owning responsibilities. So, I would definitely say make sure your advisor is the right person for you.”