Ashford was a student at The Cooper Union from 1976 to 1981 – with a year hiatus hitchhiking and training across Europe and North Africa and a brief period of study at The Free Academy Psychopolis in Den Haag. At Cooper he was mainly invested in the course wrk provided then under the rubric “Sculpture” – and given the times, it was an area it was loaded with contrasting outlooks on education and diverse philosophies of art. Ashford had repeated semester studies with Hans Haacke, Dore Ashton, Robert Breer, Martha Rosler and Reuben Kadish (find more on Reuben’s work here _(link) as well as shorter term work with visiting artists Charles Simmonds, Louise Bourgeois, Nicholas Marsicano, Vito Acconci and many others. During his tenure at Cooper, Ashford became invested in progressive narratives of art education as an instructor in The Saturday Program and committed himself to becoming a teacher in the public schools immediately after graduation at Boys and Girls High Schoo in Bedford/Stuyvesant Brooklyn. (1981 – 1985). For more on his early teaching experiences, please see here _(link)