LeConté Dill


FacultyAfrican American and African Studies

Associate Professor


A scholar, educator, and poet, Dr. LeConté J. Dill is an Associate Professor of African American and African Studies at Michigan State University. Guided by Black Feminist epistemologies and using qualitative and arts-based research methods, Dr. Dill has a commitment toward transdisciplinary, community-accountable scholarship. Her work focuses on the safety, resilience, and wellness strategies of urban Black girls and other youth of color.

Born and raised in South Central L.A., Dr. Dill earned her B.A. in Sociology from Spelman College, her Master of Public Health degree in Community Health Sciences from the University of California Los Angeles, her Doctor of Public Health degree from the University of California Berkeley, and was a Post-Doctoral Fellow in Health Policy in the Satcher Health Leadership Institute at Morehouse School of Medicine. Her scholarship is critically informed by years of working in partnership with youth and community organizers, health educators, and policy advocates at community-based organizations and public health departments on issues related to chronic disease prevention, violence intervention, and juvenile justice. A Research Associate at the African Centre for Migration & Society at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa, Dr. Dill also previously served on the faculty at several schools and programs of public health across the U.S.

Dr. Dill has been writing creatively from a young age. She was a Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop Fellow in 2016, a Small Orange Press Emerging Woman Poet Honorable Mention in 2019, and an Honorable Mention for the Zócalo Public Square Poetry Prize in 2021. Dr. Dill also integrates poetry into her ethnographic research with participants in what she has coined as “participatory narrative analysis.” Dr. Dill’s scholarly and creative works have been published in a diverse array of spaces, such as the Du Bois ReviewAmerican Journal of Public HealthJournal of Adolescent ResearchJournal of Poetry TherapyPoetry MagazineThe Feminist Wire, and Mom Egg Review.

Dr. Dill is deeply committed to teaching and mentoring. She actively works to amplify students as co-learners and co-scholars. Recently certified as a mindfulness instructor, Dr. Dill’s emerging work around “centering wellness” integrates meditation, poetry, and somatics for students, other researchers, and community partners.


LeConté J. Dill (2015) Poetic Justice: Engaging in Participatory Narrative Analysis to Find Solace in the “Killer Corridor,” American Journal of Community Psychology, 55:1, 128-135, DOI: 10.1007/s10464-014-9694-7

LeConté J. Dill & Emily J. Ozer (2016) “I’m Not Just Runnin’ the Streets”: Exposure to Neighborhood Violence and Risk Avoidance Strategies among Urban Youth of Color, Journal of Adolescent Research, 31:5, 536-556, DOI: 10.1177/0743558415605382

LeConté J. Dill, Mercedez Dunn, & Orrianne Morrison (2016) The Enduring Atlanta Compromise: Youth Contending with Home Foreclosures and School Closures in the “New South,” The Du Bois Review, 13:2, 365-377, DOI: 10.1017/S1742058X16000217

LeConté J. Dill (2017) “Wearing My Spiritual Jacket”: The Role of Spirituality as a Coping Mechanism Among African American Youth, Health Education & Behavior, 44:5, 696-704, DOI: 10.1177/1090198117729398

LeConté J. Dill, Bianca Rivera, & Shavaun Sutton (2018) “Don’t Let Nobody Bring You Down”: How Urban Black Girls Write and Learn from Ethnographically-based Poetry to Understand and Heal from Relationship Violence, The Ethnographic Edge, 2:1, 57-65, DOI: 10.15663/tee.v2i1.30

LeConté J. Dill & Emily J. Ozer (2019) “The Hook-Up”: How Youth-Serving Organizations Facilitate Network-based Social Capital for Urban Youth of Color, Journal of Community Psychology, 47:7, 1614-1628, DOI: 10.1002/jcop.22216

LeConté J. Dill (2021) Breathe into Believing. Hypatia, 1-11. DOI: 10.1017/hyp.2021.42

University News

College of Arts & Letters Students Receive UURAF First-Place Awards for Research
Published May 8, 2023 in College of Arts & Letters
Several College of Arts & Letters students earned first-place awards for their presentations at the 2023 University Undergraduate Research and Arts Forum (UURAF). The 25th UURAF at Michigan…Read now »
Faculty Voice: Envisioning Wellness and Justice for All
Published January 5, 2023 in College of Arts & Letters
Dr. LeConté Dill is a scholar, educator, creative writer, and artist guided by Black Feminist ways of being and knowing. With a commitment toward transdisciplinary, community-accountable…Read now »
Growing an Innovative Curriculum: New and Updated AAAS Courses for Fall
Published August 17, 2022 in College of Arts & Letters
Four pictures of AAAS faculty.
Michigan State University’s Department of African American and African Studies (AAAS) continues its upward trajectory with the addition of five new or revised courses for the Fall 2022…Read now »
New BA Degree in African American and African Studies Now Offered at MSU
Published March 29, 2022 in College of Arts & Letters
For the first time in Michigan State University history, undergraduate students can major in African American and African Studies.  This semester, MSU’s College of Arts & Letters…Read now »
Sonic Introductions Reflect Love of Self, Community, and AAAS
Published February 4, 2022 in College of Arts & Letters
The Department of African American and African Studies (AAAS) faculty wish to motivate and inspire others by sharing, through personally created Sonic Introductions, what inspires them in their work…Read now »
AAAS Department to Offer Several New Classes in Spring 2022
Published December 1, 2021 in College of Arts & Letters
Six portraits of AAAS faculty members.
The Department of African American and African Studies (AAAS) is offering several new or revised undergraduate courses during the Spring 2022 semester that each, in their own way, highlight and…Read now »
Poet, Educator, and Public Health Change Agent Joins AAAS Department
Published October 21, 2021 in College of Arts & Letters
A community-accountable scholar, educator, and poet, LeConté Dill joined MSU’s Department of African American and African Studies (AAAS) on September 16, 2021, as an Associate…Read now »
College Welcomes 27 New Faculty and Staff Members
Published September 7, 2021 in College of Arts & Letters
This semester, the College of Arts & Letters is pleased to welcome 27 new faculty and staff members. Please join us in welcoming the following people to the College: Alena…Read now »
AAAS Department Welcomes Three New Faculty Members
Published August 23, 2021 in College of Arts & Letters
Portraits of 3 smiling women with short dark hair.
The Department of African American and African Studies (AAAS) will welcome three new faculty members as the 2021-2022 academic year begins. In September 2021, Trimiko Melancon,…Read now »
MSU Recognizes College of Arts & Letters Groups and Individuals for Excellence in Diversity
Published February 12, 2015 in College of Arts & Letters
close-up of a red brick building and an iron gating
Groups and individuals who have exemplified diversity and inclusion in extraordinary ways will be honored with Excellence in Diversity Awards at the 2015 All-University Excellence in Diversity…Read now »