Bachelor of Commerce (Honours)
Major in Administration – Concentration in Management and Labour Studies
The University of Windsor

Master of Education
Human Development, Learning, and Culture
The University of British Columbia

Biography

Peter Wanyenya is a “son of the soil” with roots in eastern Africa. He also calls Toronto, Ontario home and serves as the program advisor for over 90 undergraduate scholars in the University of British Columbia (UBC) International Scholars Programs. He also provides support to the UBC World University Service of Canada Local Committee and Student Refugee Program. Peter also co-manages the UBC Really? Campaign, which promotes intercultural understanding and respect for diversity on campus.

Peter is driven by core values of equity, diversity, and intercultural understanding. He is particularly invested in initiatives that foster the wellbeing of children and youth, and leverage their potential. Drawing from his deep commitment and passion for positive social change Peter is a national policy working group member of the National Alliance for Children and Youth and has recently completed a one-year term as co-program coordinator for the B.C. Society for Intercultural Education, Training, and Research. He continues his community engagement as a Board Director for the Access to Media Education Society where he was an active program participant in an art-based media education and community engagement program for marginalized youth and through the organisation coordinated the BC-wide anti-oppression project for children and youth in elementary and secondary schools. Peter is also a Board Director for Kick Starts Arts, a non-profit Arts and Education organisation.

Prior to his current engagements he was actively involved in access to education advocacy for low-income youth and served as an “at-risk” children and youth worker in multiple inner city communities in Toronto, and led educational programming for Indigenous children at UBC and at the Musqueam Nation village.

Research

My current scholarly interests are: children and youth, critical media education, and anti-oppression pedagogy. My current project investigates a media/digital arts intervention program for youth experiencing social oppression, which identify them as socially marginalized on the basis of gender, race, ethnicity, sexuality, Indigenous ancestry, and perceived immigrant status. This project will examine the transformational impact of this program, by providing marginalized youth with critical media skills and training, centering on anti-oppression analysis.  As well as learning to digitally capture their histories of oppression, the participants will receive further training as anti-oppression facilitators, learning to conduct workshops in schools and community settings where they will share their personal narratives and show how individual and collective action can lead to a more inclusive and caring society.

Selected Publications

Lester-Smith, D. & Wanyenya, P. (2013). She Wonders Why the Little Caged Bird Sings: The impacts of Aboriginal Male Incarceration on Aboriginal Women and Children’s Health. Paper presented at the American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, San Francisco, California, USA. April 2013.

Wanyenya, P. & Vadeboncoeur, J. (2012).Transforming space to place: Indigenizing science and math education through sociocultural and Indigenous place-based theories.” American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. April 2012.

Evans, V. & Wanyenya, P. (2011, December). Youth perspectives on the challenges and opportunities of newcomer youth integration. Cultures West.  Retrieved from http://www.amssa.org/files/CulturesWest/CulturesWestWinter2011-12.pdf

Lynn Rosa Memorial Prize: Leadership and Knowledge Mobilization through Public Engagement
Charlotte Douglas Fee Graduate Award