Episode 083: Jessica Waters, 2013 Rhode Island Teacher of the Year

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In this episode of MEP, Jessica Waters, 2013 Rhode Island Teacher of the Year, shares her background that led to her being a dedicated teacher, and she also talks about Mayoral Academies and what she’s trying to do there from a learning model perspective.

Guest Bio:

Jessica Waters, 2013 Rhode Island Teacher of the YearJessica Waters is the Director of Next Generation Learning Partnerships for Rhode Island Mayoral Academies.  She holds a degree in Secondary Education, Biology and Chemistry from Rhode Island College. Jessica is a member of Amgen Bruce Wallace Biotechnology Lab Program and the Rhode Island Science Teacher Association (RISTA). Mrs. Waters was awarded the Peter McWalters Professional Educator Award in 2012. She is also the 2013 Rhode Island Teacher of the Year. Mrs. Waters is currently working on her Master’s in Educational Leadership leading to principal certification. She is very involved in many state teams, including: Educators in Action, Distinguished Educators, 2014 Rhode Island Charter School Application Advisory Committee, and Common Core State Standards State Ambassador. Successfully balancing career and family, she is happily married and the proud mother of three girls.

Show Notes:

(02:01) Jessica’s background

(11:38) You did a lot of growing up very early on in your early teens, and I’m interested in that development process. Were you always that determined and resilient? Or did the environment breed that and set the foundation for you? Is this something that your students, especially the disadvantaged youth, is this something, from a non-cognitive perspective, that can be taught or guided or mentored?

(15:10) It’s a difficult thing. I’m fascinated with the topic of adversity and how it creates opportunities for people if they have the right tools to be able to utilize it effectively.

(18:40) Let’s talk about the Mayoral Academies. Can you talk to us about the process for the development of the school, the model that you’re trying to get accomplished here.  And also, as the director of next generation learning partnerships, how are you trying to scale that to interested leaders and other models.

(26:25) Do you have a book that’s most influenced you, and why?

How Children Succeed by Paul Tough

(27:14) What about documentaries? Do you watch them and if so, do you have a favorite?

anything about food

(28:45) If you could have dinner with one person you admire past or present, who would it be and why?

Malala Yousafzai


Twitter: @jwaters1607

book: Who’s the New Kid in Chemistry?: Exploring Uncharted Waters

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