Auburn Family

The Inspiration Behind Ashley Moates' Big Dream

Each year, a new Miss Auburn is elected by the student body after rounds of interviews and a week of campaigning around campus. This year, Ashley Moates can continue sharing her platform, AUsome Dreams.

Each Miss Auburn has a story behind her platform, and Ashley Moates’s inspiration is her younger sister, Anna, who is living with down syndrome. (Photo, right, courtesy: Ashley Moates)

“She inspired me to do this platform because she has passions, goals and dreams just like I do, but she doesn’t always have the opportunity to make those happen because those opportunities are not always out there for her,” Ashley Moates said.

“I started AUsome dreams so that Anna and others like her can come to Auburn and find out what they are passionate about and make the dream come true at Auburn University,” she said.

Through AUsome Dreams, two wishes have been granted since the campaign began. One of those was Anna’s wish.

“Anna loves to sing, and write songs,” Ashley Moates said. “Since my sister and I have been in the Auburn University Singers group, Anna’s dream is to be in the group.”

Anna Moates learned a piece of choreography with the Singers and performed it on stage in front of an audience. 

“It was wonderful to get to sing and dance with the AU Singers," Anna Moates said. “It was the most incredible experience of my life, and I will remember every second of it.”

She was also named an honorary Auburn University Singer.

“It was an awesome experience to look over at her dancing beside me on stage and see the biggest smile full of joy on her face because she was in her element,” Ashley Moates said. “She loves being on stage and doesn’t get the opportunity to be on stage very often.” (Photo, left, courtesy: Ashley Moates)

As Ashley’s Miss Auburn dream came true, she began looking forward to making AUsome Dreams come true for people living with disabilities.  Ashley hopes to establish a collegiate program at Auburn University that accomplishes her dream.

“This program will allow people with disabilities to have a tailored curriculum specific to their unique abilities and needs," she said. “They can have the ultimate Auburn experience just like you and me because they deserve to continue their education and interact with people their own age.”

She and her sister dream of an all-inclusive university and this is the beginning.

“It is my dream to be a student at Auburn University,” Anna Moates said. “Ashley’s platform means the world to me, and I am so honored to have inspired something so incredible.”

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