Ashley Powers is a freelance magazine writer who lives in Brooklyn. She often writes about people who, by choice or by chance, have ended up on the outskirts of society. Her latest piece for The California Sunday Magazine, "The College Try," is an intimate look at why so many college students are teetering on the brink of hunger and homelessness.

As a contributing writer for California Sunday, she has written long-form features about anti-government extremists in Las Vegas, a community run by followers of polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs, and a 36-day manhunt for a mentally unstable loner in California redwood country. Her work has also appeared in Washingtonian magazine.

Previously, she was a national correspondent for the Los Angeles Times based in Las Vegas, where she covered politics and breaking news and wrote features on showgirls, wedding chapels, legal brothels, and a memorial service for a side-of-the-highway shoe tree. In Los Angeles, she was part of a team that dug through thousands of documents to show how the nation's largest archdiocese mishandled priests accused of abusing children.

She is a 2017 recipient of New York University's Reporting Award, which funds projects on under-covered topics. Her work has won the Society of Professional Journalists Sigma Delta Chi Award, the National Headliner Award, and honors from the Society for Features Journalism, the Religion Newswriters Association, and the Los Angeles Press Club. She has also been a fellow at Columbia University’s Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma and Loyola Law School's Journalist Law School, and a recipient of the Wesleyan Writers Conference scholarship for journalists. 

She is a co-director of the Princeton University Summer Journalism Program, a 10-day journalism and college admissions program for low-income high school students.

To read her next long-form piece when it publishes, sign up here.