Jennifer Stayton

Host, Morning Edition

Jennifer feels very lucky to have been born and raised in Austin, Texas. An English teacher at her high school, St. Stephen’s Episcopal School, once suggested to the class that they tune in to KUT 90.5 for Paul Ray’s “Twine Time.” She has been a public radio fan ever since.

Her original career path – Psychology – took a back seat to radio after she started volunteering at the Williams College student radio station during her time there.

Jennifer has worked for commercial and public radio stations in news, production, music, and sales in Austin; Syracuse, New York; and Western Massachusetts. She has a Master’s Degree from Syracuse University in Radio-Television-Film. She has won awards from the Syracuse Press Club and Texas Associated Press Broadcasters.

Jennifer has been the local anchor and host of “Morning Edition” on KUT since May, 2004. She is also the co-host of KUT’s “Higher Ed” podcast.

Jennifer serves on the Advisory Committee for KTSW 89.9 at Texas State University in San Marcos, Texas. She is also a member of the Communication Major Advisory Council for Concordia University in Austin, Texas. She is a member of Women Communicators of Austin and serves as a Mentor in the organization.

Her husband Charles, stepdaughter Samantha, and cats Tidbit and Durango are very patient with her early hours and strange schedule!

Ways to Connect

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT News

Just this week, C40 renewed the City of Austin's membership for three more years. C40 describes itself as "a network of the world’s megacities committed to addressing climate change."  So, how is Austin doing in reaching its goals to address climate change and manage the impacts that are already here?

In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton discuss a provocative question: does it really matter where you go to college? The answer can be complicated, and it partially depends on what you are looking for.

There has been a lot of talk in recent months about creating and maintaining healthy and respectful environments – especially in the workplace. But what about in the classroom? In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton discuss the keys to keeping the classroom an open and respectful place.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

The anticipation of holiday gatherings can be a tense time for some. Unresolved disputes among family members or friends can make for difficult times together during what is supposed to be a festive time of year. But what if one short phrase could help dissipate some of that tension?

In school, our reading choices are mostly dictated by what is assigned for classes or from reading lists. But once we are out of school, the decisions are up to us.  In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton discuss the joys and impacts of lifelong reading.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Former Austin City Council member Laura Morrison is challenging Mayor Steve Adler this Election Day. Both candidates talked with KUT about why they are running and where they stand on some pressing issues in Austin.

One reason often cited by non-voters for their lack of participation goes something like this: "My vote doesn't really count" or "How can my one vote make any difference?" Voter turnout among college-aged students is traditionally low in midterm election years. But this year is shaping up to be different.

In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton discuss how to sustain that interest even when national politics are not so charged.

Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger calls his "Effective Thinking and Creative Puzzle-Solving" class at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, the "Seinfeld" of classes. Why? Burger claims that class is about nothing. In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton discuss why that kind of class is actually about something pretty profound.

Julia Reihs / KUT

Texas author Ben Fountain's latest work of nonfiction has a provocative title: Beautiful Country Burn Again. Does he think the country has "burned" before and is it due to burn again?

Remember the character on the 1970's tv sitcom "Welcome Back, Kotter" - Arnold Horshack - who enthusiastically waved his hand in the air and bounced up and down in his seat because he always wanted to answer questions in class? For many students, speaking up in school is actually something they try to avoid. In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton discuss the dynamics of classroom dialogue.

Gabriel C. Pérez/KUT

There is an old adage about conversations to avoid in "polite company." Politics and religion top that list. But given what is in these news these days, that is not really possible. So, is it possible to keep things civil while agreeing to disagree about politics?

Choosing a major is a rite of passage for higher education students, and it can feel like a – dare we say it –major decision with lifelong implications. In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton discuss what could – and sometimes should –go into choosing a major plan of study.

University of Texas System

It may not feel like it, but it's flu season. Though the virus typically reaches its peak in winter, when exactly are you supposed to get your flu shot? 

Dr. Coburn Allen, an infectious disease specialist, physician and associate professor of pediatrics at UT Austin's Dell Medical School, says, like many factors surrounding the flu, it's all about timing. 

A provocative column this year in The Chronicle of Higher Education laments the rise of what the author calls the "promotional intellectual." Dr. Jeffrey J. Williams of Carnegie Mellon University believes the old adage in academia of "publish or perish" has evolved into "promote or perish." In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton discuss promoting one's academic work.

Most people do not necessarily enjoy being told when they are wrong. The formal education experience can at times seem like it is full of those moments - between corrections, grades, comments and evaluations.  In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton discuss ways to correct without rejecting.

High school seniors have something extra added to their workload in the fall semester. Those who are going on to college have to navigate the college application process. In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton dissect that annual dash to compile transcripts, test scores, essays and teacher recommendations.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

The new school year is well underway, and that means the new football season is, too. And midterm elections are coming up soon. It seems like whether our team or our candidate loses, people have a harder time being good sports – or gracious losers – these days.

The author of a summer op-ed in the New York Times (no, not that op-ed!)  believes girls would benefit from more drilling on math to "break the cycle of dislike-avoidance-further dislike" and help them build confidence in their math skills (which research has shown are pretty similar to boys' math skills).  In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton  discuss the op-ed's call for gender-based additional academic practice and how to undo lingering biases about gender and academic performance.

Remember those old film strips in school that would advance frame by frame, fueled by an annoying beep? Instructional media has certainly improved quite a bit since those days. In this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed," Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and KUT's Jennifer Stayton discuss if better videos make for better learning.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

"Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it. "

Versions of that saying have been attributed to different people throughout history, but they all carry the same basic meaning: We have a lot to learn from where we have already been. The new director of the LBJ Presidential Library in Austin believes the tumultuous year of 1968 holds many lessons for today.

Julia Reihs/KUT News

People experiencing homelessness in Austin aren't just on street corners asking you for money. There's a less visible population that has some service providers worried.

The episode was originally posted on May 20, 2018.

Business and industry sometimes say they find students are not prepared for work – or the working world in general – when they graduate from college. Liberal arts institutions, meanwhile, say they are preparing flexible and well-rounded students who are ready to tackle anything.

How can this disconnect be bridged? Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger and I explore the relationship between academia and industry in this episode of KUT's podcast "Higher Ed."

Emree Weaver for KUT

Central Texas students are back in class for the 2018-19 school year. It can be a busy time, searching for just the right notebook and adjusting to earlier alarm clocks and busier afternoons and evenings. But adult caregivers and children are encouraged not to ignore feelings that can crop up during the back-to-school season.

This episode was originally posted on Feb 4, 2018.

A lot of people have input when it comes to formal education: teachers, students, administrators, staff and parents for starters. In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss who out of all those groups, though, is actually in control of the quality of the education provided.

This episode was originally posted on Jan. 28, 2018.

Those in higher education have a lot on their minds these days: the new tax law, immigration, affordability, the cost of education and how these things impact teaching and learning. Educators are also thinking about how people discuss those topics.

In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss how people with different opinions can have fruitful and thoughtful conversations in and out of the classroom.

Texas A & M Forest Service

A wildfire has burned about 557 acres in Burnet County. As of Wednesday, the Park Road Fire is 90 percent contained, according to the Texas A&M Forest Service. The service initially reported about 150 homes had been evacuated, along with Inks Lake State Park and a fish hatchery. Residents returned to their homes Tuesday, and Inks Lake State Park has partially reopened.

This episode was originally posted on Jan. 21, 2018.

We know what it means to "like" something. But does that word carry extra meaning in education and learning? What does it mean when students say they "like" a class or fear a teacher doesn't "like" them? In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger explore perceptions and realities of "likes" in education.

Gensler/Precourt Sports Ventures

The City of Austin late Friday released the terms of its deal with Precourt Sports Ventures for construction and management of a Major League Soccer stadium in Austin. Precourt owns the Columbus Crew soccer team and wants to move the Crew from Ohio to Texas.

This episode was originally posted on Dec. 17, 2017.

There has been an ongoing debate in education about a staple of the school landscape: homework. Do students get too much? Too little? What role does - and should - homework play in education? In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss all things homework.

This episode was originally posted on Dec. 10, 2017.

"Whaddya get?" That's the question students often ask each other after graded exams or papers are handed back. Competition among students persists in education. In this episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss if that kind of competition is ever productive or useful for learning.

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