Dr. Elena Merenda is the Assistant Program Head of Early Childhood Studies at the University of Guelph-Humber. Since 2015, Dr. Merenda has worked alongside the Program Head with all administrative and academic aspects of the program; managing and guiding faculty with course development; supporting student initiatives; and managing the redevelopment of the program curriculum. Dr. Merenda has more than 15 years of experience in early learning and therapeutic settings. Her background is in early childhood education, with a specific expertise in therapeutic play and supporting families with children who have special needs. Dr. Merenda holds a Masters of Art in Early Childhood Studies from Ryerson University and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership from Western University. In addition to her experience at the University of Guelph-Humber, Dr. Merenda has taught academic courses at Humber College ITAL, she was the Program Advisor for a continuing education stream of the Early Childhood Education program at Humber College ITAL, and she has spent multiple years supervising students practicing in the field.