An Interview with Jessica Mundy


Jessica Mundy is a first-year graduate student in the English department. She is participating in the Graduate Teaching Assistantship program at Radford University. As part of this program, Jessica teaches CORE 101 this semester under the guide of a mentor teacher and will teach CORE 102 next semester. We had a chance to sit down and talk with Jessica about her background, her time at Radford, and her teaching style.

Jessica is from Roanoke, Virginia and says she chose to come to Radford University because it felt “just like home.” She received her Bachelor’s degree from Radford in May and immediately enrolled in the graduate program and the GTA program. She says that she enjoys swimming in her free time.

As for the kind of classroom environment that Jessica tries to foster, she said it is a benevolent dictatorship. “You have to be flexible to your student’s needs and show them that you’re understanding but also tell them, “This is the standard that you need to meet and, when we come together, we can create something awesome.”” Jessica says she wants to incorporate different perspectives into her classrooms to take students a bit out of their comfort zone and expose them to cultures they might otherwise not learn about.

Jessica says that her greatest strength in the classroom is her ability to be confident and let students know that she is a resource for their education and their growth. “I think that if you’re strong in your ability, your students feel a strong identity in you as a teacher and can say, “Oh, she knows what she’s doing. This is someone I can rely on for things and someone I can come to. She shows ability and strength.””

Jessica finished the interview by saying one of the interesting things that she wants her students to know is that she has been published in the field of educational grant writing. “I’m a published author when it comes to grant writing. I’ve had a couple of grants published. That gets a face from my students. It’s in chemistry education. That also throws people for a loop. But I’m not in there with beakers and graduated cylinders. It’s about the education aspect because I love education so much.”