Meet Lerona Dana Lewis, PhD, new professor in Black Youth Studies at the University of Ottawa

Faculty of Education
Five college students sitting on grass
The Faculty of Education community extends a warm welcome to Professor Lerona Dana Lewis.
Lerona Dana Lewis

When Lerona Dana Lewis first encountered the Francophone education system in Montreal, she wondered how parents who did not speak French, particularly parents from the Anglophone Caribbean, were helping their children navigate schooling in a new language and cultural setting. Thinking about the challenges faced by newcomers marked the beginning of a scholarly journey; eventually leading her to do a PhD, with a focus on parental involvement in education. 

Combatting Anti-Black Racism

“I am delighted to be joining the Faculty of Education at the University of Ottawa,” she said, “there are many professors doing excellent work to combat Anti-Black racism across the university and in schools K-12, and I anticipate my research will complement, expand upon, and move into innovative directions. Today, progress has been made in recognizing the severe negative effects of Anti-Black racism on the prospects of Black youth, but the research community must remain vigilant to ensure that the gains already made are not erased by future political decisions.” 

Teacher education and social justice

Professor Lewis completed her doctoral studies in the Faculty of Education and a postdoctoral fellowship in the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University, exploring the culture of faculty development in medical education. Her primary areas of expertise are school, family, and community relations, and the social practices that shape Black children's schooling experiences in K -12 contexts. She has extensive experience in Teacher Education with a focus on science education from a social justice perspective. Her approach to research design draws from mixed methods and arts informed methodologies and her research interests encompass developments in education in English-speaking and Francophone Caribbean countries.  

Her most recent publications include Changing Black Youth Futures (2022), coauthored with the LaSalle Multicultural Resource Center in Montreal, and The education system of Grenada: The place of national identity in educational development , in the edited volume The education systems of the Americas(2021).

Explore the full corpus of her scholarly contributions.