Asheli S. Atkins, MBA
Texas A&M University
Department of Sociology
Areas of Interest:
Racial & Ethnic Relations
African American Entrepreneurship
Sociology of Entrepreneurship
Asheli S. Atkins, MBA is an entrepreneur and Sociology Ph.D. candidate at Texas A&M University studying race, ethnicity, entrepreneurship, and organizational theory. In her research, she developed a multidisciplinary framework to examine the strategies Black entrepreneurs use to navigate barriers in the market. With the use of qualitative methods, Asheli analyzes the experiences of her participants and uncovers the strategies they construct, while also learning how personal and professional experiences with racism, discrimination, sexism, and power dynamics influence their decision-making processes as entrepreneurs. This data assists her as a researcher, business consultant, and small business advocate. Asheli uses her research to equip entrepreneurs with tools and strategies to avoid and/or limit their experience with barriers that may hinder their business success. Additionally, Asheli is interested in diversity in innovation, organizational structures as it relates to productivity and ethical behavior, as well as self-actualization among women in corporate environments.
In 2018, Asheli joined the Texas A&M University Entrepreneurship Minor Steering Committee where she assists in the implementation and teaching of a campus-wide entrepreneurship minor. This opportunity allows Asheli to bridge her experience as an M.B.A. and sociologist as she works alongside distinguished scholars and professionals. Additionally, Asheli works with the May’s Innovation Research Center as a Qualitative Researcher, collecting data on product innovation among Houston based accelerators and incubators. In these role, Asheli illustrates her ability to utilize her multidisciplinary expertise in her research, teaching, and service.
As a graduate instructor, Asheli taught Introduction to Sociology where she discussed topics ranging from Weberian bureaucracy, classical and contemporary theorist, critical race scholars, and socialization. Prior to this experience, she worked at Prairie View A&M University’s Undergraduate Medical Academy where she worked as the Program Coordinator and Leadership & Ethic instructor. In this role, Asheli instructed pre-med, pre-dent, and pre-med students in a wide range of topics to prepare them on their transition to professional school. These topics included emotional intelligence, implicit bias, leadership styles and methods, and decision-making.
Asheli is the co-founder of Attucks England, LLC, a turnkey consulting firm she operates alongside Warren Luckett & Cornell England. Asheli also runs a social media platform used to promote, educate, and advocate for Black-owned businesses in and around Houston.
Asheli previously worked with organizations such as Women’s Inflection Point, Houston Minority Supplier Diversity Council, and the Greater Houston Black Chamber. She is also a member of the Houston Black Leadership Institute (HBLI) Inaugural Class. Asheli received her Master’s in Business Administration from Texas Woman’s University and a Bachelor’s degree from Prairie View A&M University in Communications.