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Renée Wilks

Graduated: 2016, Masters in Pan African Studies

Thesis title: Exploring the differences in girls’ and boys’ learning from their teachers’ perspectives in a coed high school in Kingston, Jamaica

Alumni information

Recipient: Cerificate of University Teaching, Future Professoriate Program; Volunteer/Community Organizer/Coordinator for Black History Community Development Program at Beauchamp Branch Library, Syracuse, New York 2016

Graduate Student Information

Renée Wilks is a trained and qualified educator who received her B.Ed. in Language and Literacy with honours from The Mico University College in September 2010 in Kingston, Jamaica. She is the first member of the 2016 cohort to successfully complete and achieve her MA in Pan African Studies. Her educational focus centers on education and the socio-political transformation of students learning on a global scale. As such, her research encapsulated “Exploring the Differences in Girls’ and Boys’ Learning from their Teachers’ Perspectives in a Coed High School in Kingston, Jamaica.” This is an interdisciplinary research that centered on issues of education in Caribbean societies with an inspection on gendered learning, literacy development and cultural studies in neo-colonial societies through mixed method approaches.  

Renee’s research investigated myriad socio-cultural and political factors that are perpetuated in society’s mainstream with her analytical focus on contemporary Jamaica. In light of this, her study incorporated a structural analysis of contemporary Jamaican society predisposed from post colonialism (neocolonialism), gender stigmatization and afforded male privileges due to patriarchy. From a gendered lens, her research provided insight of girls’ and boys’ performativity, their academic investments shaped through cultural experiences and their attitudes towards learning. The students’ modes of social achievement and expectations were influenced from teachers’ standpoints, expertise, implementation of strategies and development of the curriculum. A critical issue emphasized throughout the research was parental involvement, influence and value placed on learning as well as the impact of politics in the education sector.

At present, she is engaged in extensive voluntary work both nationally and internationally to establish equitable relations. Thus, through her dedication as a proficient educator, manager and organizer, she continues to focus on disenfranchised individuals (youths and adults). As a part of her individual contribution, she works to developing diverse communities, establishing effective interaction and communication for sustaining common grounds in health and education. 

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African American Studies
200 Sims Hall
Phone: 315-443-4302
Fax: 315-443-1725
Email: aas@syr.edu

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