Three Women Join the African American and African Studies Department at Michigan State

Three new scholars in the department of African American and African studies at Michigan State University will help strengthen and broaden the base of expertise in the department bringing a focus on Black feminisms, Black genders studies, and Black sexualities studies.

Trimiko Melancon will join the department as a full professor with tenure. A scholar, cultural critic, and documentary filmmaker, Dr. Melancon is an expert in critical race, gender and Black feminist and sexualities studies. She was an associate professor of English and Africana studies at Rhodes College in Memphis. Dr. Melancon’s book Unbought and Unbossed: Transgressive Black Women, Sexuality, and Representation (Temple University Press, 2014) received the College Language Association Creative Scholarship Book Award.

Dr. Melancon earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Xavier University of Louisiana. She holds a Ph.D. in African American studies from the University of Massachusetts.

LeConté Dill will join the faculty as an associate professor with tenure. She has served as the director of public health practice and clinical associate professor in the department of social and behavioral sciences in the School of Global Public Health at New York University. Additionally, since 2015, she has been a research associate for the African Centre for Migration and Society at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Dr. Dill is a graduate of Spelman College in Atlanta, where she majored in sociology and creative writing. She earned a master of public health degree from the University of California, Los Angeles and a doctor of public health degree from the University of California, Berkeley.

Gianina K. Lockley will join the department as a research associate. Since 2019, Lockley has served as an instructor in the department of theatre, dance, and performance studies at the University of Maryland College Park. In 2020, she founded Jasiri Consulting, an organization that offers online tutoring, college planning, life coaching, and online courses focused on race and popular culture. Her research interests include Black feminism, performance studies, critical race theory, dance studies, and contemporary African American theatre.

Lockley is a graduate of Howard University in Washington, D.C., where she majored in chemistry. She holds a master of fine arts degree in interdisciplinary arts and media from Columbia College in Chicago and is a Ph.D. candidate in theatre, dance, and performance studies at the University of Maryland College Park


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