GHC Sites > Michelle Abbott > About Me

About Me

Michelle AbbottPhoto of Michelle Abbott

Associate Professor of English

School of Humanities                                                                        

mabbott@highlands.edu  

404-545-8676   

A little about me...

I started teaching almost by accident. I went to graduate school to learn more about creative writing, not to be a college professor. Shortly after I finished my MAPW, I saw a listserv notice seeking part-time English teachers. I thought, “Why not?” That semester I learned many things including the fact that I love teaching writing and literature.

I have two published short stories–one in GHC’s own Old Red Kimono–but my novel writing projects are currently on hold because I’m back in graduate school...again. I’m currently a student at GSU, working on my PhD in Medieval and Victorian literature. My main research interests are the legends and literature of King Arthur. (Watching Monty Phython and the Holy Grail is a Christmas tradition in my family.)

I currently live with my three cats and two dogs. I love animals and rescue as many as I can. My first child was born during Spring Break in 2013, and he is an animal lover too! In 2016, our family was completed by the arrival of my twins. Ours is a chaotic, sometimes very loud, household of laughter, barking and banging toys that helps me better understand the needs of non-traditional students who must balance family life with college life.

At the age of sixteen, I attended college for the first time as a dual-enrolled student. My first degree was in nursing, and most of my career has been spent in Pediatric Intensive Care.

I’m a Yankee. I grew up in Michigan, about an hour north of Detroit and not too far from Canada. I love the Great Lakes, Coney Island Restaurants, Pepsi, and snow at Christmas. My favorite things about the South are the hospitality and spicy, yet sweet barbecue. 

As an educator, I believe in the power of having a growth mindset, the need for flexibility in online courses, and the importance of off hours instructor availability. Students give up the interactions and safety net of the traditional classroom for a variety of reasons, but most common is a need for schedule flexibility. I try to honor that in my classes. I also believe an instructor needs to be available to online students outside of standard business hours. Teaching entirely online gives me the opportunity to be available on many evenings and weekends. Most importantly, instructors should cultivate a growth mindset in every class and with every student. The “magic” of shifting our mindset and opening up to the possibilities and lessons of repeated practice are a gift every student should take away with them on graduation day. 

~Michelle

Education:

1994                            Diploma of Nursing, Hurley Medical Center School of Nursing

2000                            Bachelor of Arts in Theatre, University of Michigan-Flint

2003                            Master of Professional Writing, Kennesaw State University

current student            Doctorate of Philosophy in Literary Studies, Georgia State University