Meet the Program Directors

MayfieldDr. Michael Mayfield has been the Faculty Director of the Wilson Scholars Program since 2017 and has worked closely with the program since its inception.

Mayfield earned a Ph.D. in Geography from the University of Tennessee. He holds the title of Professor of Geography and was the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education at ASU from 2010-2017. He served as Faculty Coordinator of General Education from 2007-2010 and is the former chair of the Department of Geography and Planning. He recently received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the Department of Geography at the University of Tennessee and the Plemmons Leadership Medallion at ASU. He was a recipient of a UNC Board of Governors Excellence in Teaching Award in 2000.

He teaches geomorphology, hydrology, introductory physical geography, senior seminar, and a graduate seminar in global change at ASU. His teaching duties with the Wilson Scholars Program include a seminar for the first-year Wilson Scholars with an integrated, study-abroad experience. Mayfield has led over 20 study abroad trips to Costa Rica, Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru. He has published articles in a variety of scientific journals and book chapters in hydrology, geomorphology, and global change.

Mayfield is an avid kayaker, having paddled over 100 rivers in North and Central America. He is the author of the original guidebook to rivers in Costa Rica. His other pastimes include mountain biking and snowboarding. Mayfield is the father of three grown children and has two grandchildren. He and Misty Mayfield have been married since 2004, and they enjoy travel, multi-day rafting trips in the western U.S., and hanging out with their cats.


Joanie Andruss has served as the Assistant Director for Scholarship Programming since 2017.

Her passion for experiential learning and global engagement stems back to her great-great-grandfather who went to Alaska in search of gold at the age of 17. Exploration has always been a part of her heritage, yet it remained unexpressed until a Gilman International Scholarship experience set her on an unexpected trajectory. In the years since, she has followed a zig-zagged path across the globe.  Prior to joining the administrative team of the Wilson Scholars Program and Nationally Competitive Scholarships at Appalachian, Joanie has experience as a Fulbright Teaching Fellow at the University of Montenegro, an English Language Fellow and Teacher-Trainer in Timor-Leste, a cross-cultural researcher for sustainability awareness in Macedonia, a developer of a transformative study-abroad program for pre-service teachers in Samoa, and an advisor to prospective Fulbright appliants in the U.S. and abroad.

Joanie is committed to helping students find ways to connect their Appalachian education to their future goals through the her involvement with the Wilson Scholars Program and Nationally Competitive Scholarships.