Graduate Student Spotlight: Micah-Jade Stanback


Micah-Jade Stanback, a second-year Ph.D. student in English Studies from Hershey, Pennsylvania, specializes in children’s and young adult literature, as well as nineteenth-century American literature.

Before coming to TCU, Micah-Jade attended the University of Southern Mississippi, where she obtained the BA and MA in English. After graduating, Micah-Jade went on to teach high school English. After a year in the classroom, however, she felt her heart tug her back to graduate studies. “I’ve always known that I’ve wanted to teach,” Micah-Jade explained, “but my passion is more at the level of higher education.”

She also cites the opportunity to research and contribute to current literary conversations as motivators for her studies: “I think children’s literature is undervalued because we think it’s simple. I wanted to join the conversation and say yes, there is value in what children read because it shapes how we grow up.” Micah-Jade is currently researching black childhood in the nineteenth century.

When asked what her favorite part of TCU has been thus far, Micah-Jade talked of her relationship with the TCU English Department faculty. “A lot of my professors have encouraged me to not be afraid to put my voice out there and show my expertise,” Micah-Jade said. It was this advice that encouraged her to present her Master’s thesis at the invitation of another university, for which Micah-Jade thanks TCU’s supportive faculty.

Micah-Jade offered the following advice to undergraduates in the English Department: “Remember that what we do is important. It’s important to be able to tell people we’re not just learning about literature, we’re learning to be thinkers. What you do matters, and at the end of the day we know what we want to say, how to effectively say it, and how to decipher anything we read.”