“Go Tell that Man You want to go to Grad school” – Episode 066

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Episode 66 – “Go Tell that Man You want to go to Grad school”

Hosts: Dr. Jeremy Waisome & Dr. Kyla McMullen

Guest: Dr. Jessica N. Jones




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Episode Description:

In this episode, Jessica shares her experience of starting the “CodeIT Day” program at Clemson University, which aimed to introduce middle school students to computer science. She discusses the importance of representation in the field and the impact of culturally relevant pedagogy. The conversation also touches on the transition to the University of Florida and the shift in lab dynamics. Plus, there’s a hilarious discussion about “Wizgate” with a surprise guest from a previous Modern Figures episode. Join in as they reminisce about their time in the lab and the unique culture they created.

Key Takeaways:

  • Community and Culture in Academia: The importance of maintaining a supportive and inclusive lab culture during the transition from Clemson University to the University of Florida.
  • Educational Technology: The significance of initiatives like CodeIT day in introducing young students to computer science using fun, interactive methods.
  • Culturally Relevant Pedagogy: Insight into Jessica’s research focused on improving reading fluency among African American second graders by integrating cultural elements.
  • Graduate School Challenges: Discussion around the trials of research that relies on the participation of young students, highlighting the unpredictable nature of working with children.
  • Lab Days Reality Show: A reflection on the unique experience of being part of a lab that was the focus of a reality show, showcasing the day-to-day life of graduate students.

• Code IT Day: https://www.codeitday.com/
Lab Daze: https://hxr.cise.ufl.edu/LabDaze

Jessica’s Bio:-::

Dr. Jessica N. Jones, of Richmond Virginia is currently a Human-Systems Research Scientist for the US Navy.

Dr. Jones holds three post-secondary degrees. She is a 2011 graduate of Hampton University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and a minor in Leadership Studies. Next, Dr. Jones graduated from Clemson University in 2014 with a Master of Science in Computer Science with a concentration in Interactive Computing. Finally, in 2018 Dr. Jones earned a Ph.D. in Human-Centered Computing from the University of Florida where her research included usable voting systems, interactive tutoring systems, culturally relevant learning, and broadening participation in STEM. Dr. Jones is the creator of CodeIT Day, a program that introduced middle school students to Computer Science via robotics while providing examples of diversity in Computing through the program’s volunteer staff.

Dr. Jones is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated® and currently serves as the technology chair for her chapter.