MU
Oak Leaves

September 14, 2018

Mistie Potts


Mistie Potts, new assistant professor of education, has a passion for changing the lives of children through education. Now, she is eager to change the lives of future educators.

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Student-Oriented Approach Suits New Professor

Noah Tong


Manchester University has an energetic, new professor in the education department, and she’s ready to make a difference in students’ lives. Mistie Potts, recently hired assistant professor of education, is looking forward to teaching courses in educational psychology as well as classroom management conflict resolution during the 2018–2019 school year.

“Being a teacher, I wanted to do more for my students and see more growth in them,” she said. “Educational psychology gives us more tools to see how children learn and how we can provide better interventions for them.”

Her passion for these issues has a long history. After completing her undergraduate degree at Indiana Purdue Fort Wayne through the Indiana University program for education, she earned her masters at Ball State University. Potts is currently a doctoral candidate in educational psychology.

Potts has professional experience in a myriad of other roles during her career. From 2003 to 2016, she served as an employee at Whitko Community Schools, first as a teacher, and then as an educational diagnostician. She often tested students on IQ and achievement to see if kids qualified for special education services. Potts later taught developmental psychology as a graduate teaching and research assistant at Ball State.

The culmination of this experience led her to North Manchester, Indiana. She became a faculty member to begin influencing how new teachers impact the lives of children. “That way I can make a bigger difference not just in my own classroom,” she said.

Despite her success at other institutions, Manchester provides a unique appeal that she could not overlook.

“There is a bigger focus on teaching and developing the whole student here," she said. “Ball State is a research-focused institution, which is great, but I love teaching and working with students, so for me, this was a better fit. The students already seem so welcoming and kind. There is a real feeling of community here, and even a stronger focus on family too.”

“I try to make my classroom interactive, collaborative, and interesting,” Potts continued. “I try to make things relevant to their career and give them a lot of examples from real life. I don’t like to just lecture at them from the textbook.”  It’s no surprise then that she enjoys engaging with students’ ideas. “I love to read and hear student feedback, hearing about their class schedules or their different stresses,” she said. “I guess just getting to know the people is my favorite part.”

Outside of teaching, Potts can be found refurbishing antiques, gardening or playing with her beagle and 5-month-old French bulldog. She also has two sons in high school and another son in the sixth grade.

“I guess you could say my hobbies are going to sporting events!” Potts said jokingly, referring to her children.