[PROFILE] Everything You Should Know About Nigerian-US Professor, Dr Uju Anya


Uju Anya is a Nigerian professor and researcher known for her views on feminism, sexuality, and activism on Twitter.
On September 8, 2022, her views on Queen Elizabeth made her the topic of discussion on the microblogging platform.
Here is everything to know about her.

Early Life

Uju Anya was born on August 4, 1976. She was born to a Nigerian father while her mother is from Trinidad and Tobago. She hails from Enugu State where was born. Her mother secretly took her and her brother to the US when she was age 10 to escape from her abusive father.

Education

Anya graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Romance languages from Dartmouth College in 1998. She bagged an MA in Brazilian studies from Brown University in 2001. She also holds a Ph.D. in applied linguistics from UCLA (2011).

Career

Uju started her career as a Teaching fellow with the Phillips Academy Andover in 1998, where she taught introductory, intermediate-level high school immersion Spanish classes.

In 2001, she became a visiting lecturer in the Portuguese Language at the Dartmouth College Department of Spanish and Portuguese. Uju coordinated the Portuguese program’s curriculum and pedagogy in this capacity, including cutting-edge multimedia resources, inquiry, social emphasis, and critical language studies emphasis on Afro-Brazilian culture.

Uju joined the Rassias Center for World Languages and Cultures as a Master Teacher in 2003. She taught and designed English Language immersion courses for executives in Tokyo, Japan, and Portuguese Language for U.S. executives in Brazil.

From 2005-2007, Uju worked as a Lecturer of Spanish and Portuguese Languages at the UCLA Department of Spanish and Portuguese. She then worked with the UCLA Department of Applied Linguistics as a Lecturer, Applied Linguistics & Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL).

Dr. Anya has previously worked as an assistant professor of clinical education at the Pennsylvania State University; visiting assistant professor, and a faculty director of the Dartmouth College Portuguese language study abroad program in Salvador-Bahia, Brazil.

In 2016, Uju was appointed as an Assistant Professor of Second Language Learning, Department of Curriculum & Instruction Research Affiliate, Center for the Study of Higher Education at The College of Education at Pennsylvania State University.

She is currently an associate professor of second language acquisition at Carnegie Mellon University.

Anya specializes in sociolinguistics, applied linguistics, and second language learning with a particular focus on race, gender, sexual, and social class Identities in the language classroom. She also has expertise in diversity, equity, and inclusion in educational policy and Curriculum design.


She is a polygot and can speak 6 languages, English, Igbo, Spanish, Italian, Russian, and Portuguese.

Personal Life

Uju Anya is a lesbian who is proud of her sexuality. In a past interview, she revealed how she was attracted to both boys and girls as an adolescent. She also dated women while in college. However, at age 28, she was under pressure to get married. She soon got married but was openly bisexual. However, towards the end of end of their marriage, she realised she was lesbian and was attracted to only women. This ultimately led to their breakup.

Their divorce was finalized in 2021 after they had lived separately for 4 years.

She has two children with her ex-husband. Anya is an atheist.

Awards

Some of her awards include:

  • Penn State College of Education Outstanding Teaching Award
  • American Association for Applied Linguistics First Book Award
  • ACTFL/Middlebury Research Forum Invited Scholar
  • USC Rossier School of Education Faculty Teaching and Mentoring Award
  • Dartmouth College Thurgood Marshall Dissertation Fellowship
  • Centro Latino for Literacy Manos Amigas Volunteer of the Year Award
  • Eugene Cota-Robles Fellowship for Doctoral Studies at UCLA
  • Irene Diamond Fellowship for Graduate Study at Brown University
  • Phillips Academy Andover Spanish Teaching Fellowship




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