Get to Know Our GTA Mentors: Ingrid Johnson

Hello Hokie Writers!

The next to last installment of Get to Know Our GTA Mentors features Ingrid Johnson. Ingrid received her MA from Virginia Tech in 2014.

Q: How many years have you taught at Virginia Tech?

A: I taught my first class at VT in 2013 as a graduate student. After graduation in 2014, I worked as an adjunct between VT and RU before being hired full-time in Fall 2016.

Q: What’s it like teaching Hokies?

A: For the most part, I find that our students are very interested in being a part of the classroom community, whether they are deeply invested in the subject matter or not. What this means is that they generally come to class ready (and willing) to participate and try to do their best work. People get sick of hearing this (all the time), but I really do love my students.

Q: What’s your most memorable teaching moment?

A: The truth is, my most memorable teaching moments involve times when everything has gone horribly wrong. I mean, I love getting cards and cookies at the end of the semester, but when your lesson plans fall apart or there’s some conflict in the classroom, that’s when you learn the most about this profession. And, don’t worry; it will definitely happen to you at some point! Taking those negative moments and turning them into positive learning experiences strengthens us as educators.

Q: What made you want to be a mentor for English GTAs and what are you looking forward to most?

A: I’ve always wanted to help new teachers be more comfortable and confident in the classroom. I believe that teaching is a privilege while also understanding that it is hard. My mentor in graduate school helped me tremendously, and I look forward to the opportunity to return the favor to my mentees.

Q: Can you give us a popular culture recommendation?

A: I am the worst person to ask about popular culture. I’m pretty sure that if an outsider were to look at my streaming services’ queues, they would assume that I was an 85-year old granny from a quaint English village. I mostly watch British Detective shows (Vera, Dalziel and Pascoe, Lewis, Morse, etc.), but I also love the show QI, which *may* be more interesting to most folks(?).

Q: What’s your #1 unpopular opinion?

A: Hamburger Helper is delicious. (I probably shouldn’t share that, right?)

Wishing you a happy February,

The Virginia Tech Composition Team