Williams High School’s college advisor heading to Harvard Law

By Charity L. Cohen

Special to The Alamance News

As Sam Timmons walks through the campus of Williams High School, the phrase “What’s up, Mr. Timmons,” can be heard from groups of students passing by.

School is out for the summer, but part of the campus is still buzzing with activity from pre-season football workouts. Timmons, who has served as the school’s college advisor, shoots up a hand, nods his head, and flashes a smile at each group before responding with, “Hey, what’s up, guys!”

This visual representation of the rapport Timmons has built with his students at Williams is one that he will miss.

“I want to be an advocate, and increase opportunity for folks, and in a way, that’s what I’ve been doing with the College Advising Corps,” Timmons said.

After spending one year working with the College Advising Corps, the 2022 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill grad is leaving Burlington and heading to Cambridge to study law at Harvard Law School in August.

The Raleigh native has always been a proponent for the success of young people.

Throughout college, he tutored at a local community center as well as served as a mentor for minority first-year college students.

“I’ve always been passionate about education, I always enjoyed working with young people, and so I think this just kind of fit that interest, even if it didn’t fit my legal interest, per se,” he said.

Between studying for the LSAT, curating a flawless portfolio, and applying for law school, Timmons spent much of his time building bonds with students and preparing them for college.

Timmons jokes that part of what helped him reach the students was his ability to recite current pop culture references and being a member of Gen-Z – but he realizes now that he and his students had more of a symbiotic relationship. By helping them with their college admissions, they were also inspiring him as he applied to law school.

“It was fun to be on that parallel journey with my students, applying while they did, and sometimes having to remind myself of advice I was giving them,” he said.

Now, with his recent acceptance into Harvard Law, Timmons looks forward to continuing to help others develop and prosper through constitutional and employment law.

“I think there’s many different ways to advocate for folks and create opportunity – education is a powerful way to do it, but I think the law is, too,” he said.

With his sights set on Cambridge, Massachusetts, he will never forget the unique experience that working with the young people in Burlington offered.

“I hope that I’ve inspired someone, but really, I’ve drawn inspiration from them,” Timmons said. “The kids here are resilient, they’re creative, some of them are doing more than I was doing in high school, and so it really has been a joy.”