Question: Give an example of how you have advocated for graduate student needs and experiences on your campus or in your work.
Stacy Wittstock: I am an active member of the Graduate Teaching Community at UC Davis. GTC is an interdisciplinary group of graduate students from across campus that meets once a week to discuss issues related teaching and pedagogy. In particular, we are committed to promoting inclusive pedagogies and resisting deficit-model perspectives of students in our home departments. I have facilitated several sessions of GTC, including one on developing more nuanced approaches to cheating and plagiarism (using the CWPA statement on Defining and Avoiding Plagiarism), one that highlighted problematic labor conditions for graduate students, adjuncts, and contingent faculty on college campuses, and most recently, one on supporting second language writers in the classroom. In sum, through GTC I have had the opportunity to help support my fellow graduate TAs as they balance being both teachers and students.
I have also promoted the need for better teaching support for graduate TAs as a graduate student researcher for the Center for Educational Effectiveness at UC Davis. Specifically, over the last year I have developed several series of “Just-in-Time-Teaching” resources for faculty and graduate students across campus, covering a variety of topics, from designing and assessing effective writing assignments, to supporting multilingual and international students, to addressing microaggressions when they occur in the classroom. I was also recently appointed to an internal search committee to choose the next chair of the University Writing Program at UC Davis, where I will represent the needs of graduate TAs in the UWP.