Professor Jason Arday profile
Jason Arday is one of our former lecturers and gained his Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education and PhD in Education here at LJMU.
In March 2023 he takes up his second professor post with the University of Cambridge, having previously worked as a Professor of Sociology of Education at the University of Glasgow’s School of Education. Upon his appointment into that role in autumn 2021, he became the youngest Black professor in the UK.
His research focuses on race inequalities within the education sector with a specific focus on racial and intersectional inequality in higher education. Areas of his work have also focused on mental health in education, cultural studies, race and politics, education policy and decolonising the curriculum.
During a visit to LJMU in November 2022 as a keynote speaker at an Equality, Diversity and Inclusion event, Jason was delighted to finally return to the university where he credits the leadership team for affording him the opportunity to really launch into his academic career. “Coming back here, where it all began, is the best buzz I’ve had,” he told former colleagues during the visit.
He was born and raised in south London and much of his childhood was spent with speech and language therapists. At three years old, Jason was diagnosed with global development delay and autism spectrum disorder, and he did not learn to speak until he was 11. His family were told it was likely he would need lifelong support, but he defied all expectations by achieving a BTec and then a degree in PE and Education.
“Jason made a big impact on our LJMU students and encouraged them to be brave, challenge current practice, and push their boundaries of knowledge and understanding.”
– Professor Phil Vickerman
He only learnt to read and write at age 18 and found a kindred spirit at LJMU - when he worked as a lecturer at LJMU's IM Marsh campus - in the form of Pro-Vice Chancellor (Student Experience) Professor Phil Vickerman. Phil failed every GCSE aged 16 but went on to find a passion for learning, teaching and education after attending college and supervised Jason during his time at LJMU.
PVC Phil Vickerman said: “As soon as I met Jason when we interviewed him for a lecturing post his enthusiasm, grit, and determination to make a difference shone through. Jason made a big impact on our LJMU students and encouraged them to be brave, challenge current practice, and push their boundaries of knowledge and understanding.
“I am proud to call Jason a friend as well as colleague and we have regularly kept in touch since he left LJMU. I am not surprised how Jason’s career has progressed and the high esteem he is held in nationally and internationally.
“I have gained significantly from Jason’s views on higher education and diversity.”