Jalessa Bryant

Photo of Jalessa Bryant

Jalessa Bryant is a fourth year doctoral student in the Multicultural Education area of the Curriculum and Instruction Department. She earned a bachelor’s degree in American Studies at the University of California, Berkeley focusing on Sociocultural Strategies for Child Development with a minor in Education in 2011. Jalessa joins the University of Wisconsin, Madison with several years of experience in schools and community-based spaces in California and Rhode Island where she served as an educator, administrator, and community organizer. Her commitments to liberation movement center insurgent methodologies for teaching and learning. Her primary research interest lies at the intersection of teacher learning, Black studies, and visual culture. She is interested in the ways the arts enable transformations of self in pre-service teachers as well as speculative possibilities for pedagogy and the design of learning environments. She believes working side by side with communities is required for critical scholarly work and transformative qualitative research.

Jalessa’s research explores critical perspectives of learning in and through the arts, teacher learning, and black education.

Awards and Honors:

  • Phi Kapa Phi Honors Society 2020
  • Wisconsin Center for Research in Education Training Program 2018-2022
  • Education Graduate Research Scholar Fellowship 2018-2022
  • Network Fellowship 2018-2019
  • RISD Recognizes Excellence in Diversity & Inclusion Award 2017


Nasir, N., ross, k., McKinney de Royston, M., Givens, J., & Bryant, J. “Dirt on My Record:” African American Male Students’ Perceptions of Discipline & Pedagogies of Resistance. Harvard Educational Review 83(3), 489-512, Fall 2013.

Conference Presentations

  • Bryant, J. (2021, May) Black Feminist Perspectives on Anticolonial Relations of Care. Paper Presentation at the Relations of Care Across and After Worlds Conference, Madison, WI.
  • Bryant, J. (2019, October) James Baldwin on Liberation Praxis in American Schooling. Paper Presentation at the National Association for Multicultural Education Conference, Tucson, AZ.
  • McKinney de Royston, M., Bryant, J., Anderson, K. (2019, April) Black Womanist Pedagogies & Black Counter-publics: Gwen Marshall & Her School. Paper Presentation at the American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, Toronto, CAN.
  • McKinney de Royston, M., Bryant, J., Anderson, K., Baxa, M. (2018, November) Black Women Teachers as Race Women. Paper Presentation at the American Educational Studies Association Annual Meeting, Greenville, SC.