Uju Anya Biography

Uju Anya is a researcher and professor of applied linguistics at Carnegie Mellon University. The primary focus of her critical discourse studies is to investigate the roles that race, gender, sexual orientation, and social class play in the acquisition of a new language through the perspectives of African American students. On August 4, 1976, she was brought into the world by a Nigerian father and a Trinidadian mother. Uju was born and raised in the state of Enugu. Uju is also famous for her support of the LGBTQ community. She has publicly declared she is a lesbian after her divorce from her husband.


2011 Ph.D., Applied Linguistics

University of California, Los Angeles

2001 M.A., Brazilian Studies

Brown University

1998 B.A., Romance Languages

Dartmouth College


In 1998, Uju began her career as a Teaching fellow at the Phillips Academy Andover, where she currently teaches Spanish immersion classes for high school students at the introductory and intermediate levels.

In the year 2001, she started working as a visiting lecturer in the Portuguese Language for the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at Dartmouth College. Uju served in this capacity and was responsible for the coordination of the curriculum and pedagogy of the Portuguese program. This included the incorporation of cutting-edge multimedia resources, inquiry, social emphasis, and critical language studies emphasis on Afro-Brazilian culture.

In the year 2003, Uju began her career as a Master Teacher at the Rassias Center for World Languages and Cultures. She taught and designed English Language Immersion courses for executives in Tokyo, Japan, and she taught and designed Portuguese Language Immersion courses for executives from the United States in Brazil.

Uju was a Lecturer of Spanish and Portuguese Languages at the UCLA Department of Spanish and Portuguese from 2005 until 2007; he worked there from 2005 until 2007.

After that, she became a lecturer at the UCLA Department of Applied Linguistics, where she was responsible for both Applied Linguistics and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESL). During his time in that role, Uju was responsible for instructing students at the graduate and undergraduate levels in applied linguistics, TESL, and service-learning in TESL courses, in addition to academic writing and research skills.

Uju was given the position of assistant professor of clinical education in the College of Education at Pennsylvania State University in addition to his other responsibilities.

Uju was given a position as an assistant professor in the department of curriculum and instruction research affiliate at the center for the study of higher education in the college of education at Pennsylvania State University in the year 2016.

At the moment, she holds the position of Professor of Second Language Acquisition in the Department of Modern Languages Associate at Carnegie Mellon University.


Uju was married before her divorce. She had two children with her former lover. Uju announced her divorce via a Twitter post, stating that she and her spouse have just finalized their divorce paperwork. She also indicated that she is free and has no plans to wed.




Following the passing of Queen Elizabeth II on September 8, 2022, Uju Anya sent out a tweet that many people found to be offensive. This led to her becoming embroiled in a web of controversy.

The tweet, which was later deleted because it violated the terms of service for the microblogging platform, called the Queen “a chief monarch of a thieving, raping, and genocidal empire.”

She wrote, “I heard the chief monarch of a thieving ra*ping genocidal empire is finally dying. May her pain be excruciating.

The tweet was met with enormous backlash from the Twitter community, who viewed her opinion as insensitive, while others applauded it.


Honors and Awards

  • 2020 Penn State College of Education Outstanding Teaching Award
  • 2019 American Association for Applied Linguistics First Book Award
  • 2019 ACTFL/Middlebury Research Forum Invited Scholar
  • 2015 USC Rossier School of Education Faculty Teaching and Mentoring Award
  • 2010 Dartmouth College Thurgood Marshall Dissertation Fellowship
  • 2010 UCLA Graduate Division Dissertation Year Fellowship (declined)
  • 2008 Centro Latino for Literacy Manos Amigas Volunteer of the Year Award
  • 2007 Eugene Cota-Robles Fellowship for Doctoral Studies at UCLA
  • 1999 Irene Diamond Fellowship for Graduate Study at Brown University
  • 1998 Phillips Academy Andover Spanish Teaching Fellowship