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UNC SCHOOL of SOCIAL WORK    December 2020
What's new
First students admitted to new 20-Month AS Program 
The nine students will begin classes in January 2021.

Zerden approved for permanent tenure
Zerden has served as the senior associate dean for MSW Education at the School of Social Work since 2016.

Joy Noel Baumgartner joins the SSW faculty  
Baumgartner will be a tenure-track associate professor and will hold an administrative appointment as director of global mental health initiatives for the School.

Al-Wazni selected as Social Work Health Futures Fellow
The Social Work Health Futures initiative is funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and led by Portland State University.

A field experience with COVID-19 research
MSW student Jillian Riley has been working with researchers to learn how children and their families are coping with stress during the pandemic.

Brittney Chesworth receives UNC Grad School 2021 Impact Award
The Impact Award recognizes discoveries of direct benefit to North Carolina and is funded though the Graduate Education Advancement Board.

Ph.D. student Melissa Villodas explores racial identity and racism in new podcast, "Mix(ed) Tape
Villodas recently discussed the podcast with WUNC's Frank Stasio.

Call for abstracts: Poverty, Inequality and Social Development
GSDI is co-organizing the 22nd Biennial Conference of the International Consortium for Social Development.

Faculty and student recognition and news
Clinical assistant professor Tauchiana Williams was appointed by Gov. Roy Cooper to serve on the Social Work Certification and Licensure Board for the State of North Carolina.

Associate professor Betsy Bledsoe and associate professor Kathryn Collins from the University of Maryland School of Social Work were selected to receive a two-year award in partnership with the International Rescue Committee to bring the intervention program Trauma Adapted Family Connections (TA-FC) to families with minor children who are enduring trauma and living in poverty. The award is funded by the Kansas Department of Children and Families. The faculty members and their team are working to reach families who have additional barriers due to linguistic access and cultural marginalization.

Associate Professor Amy Blank Wilson graduated from the two-year Thorp Faculty Engaged Scholars Program this month. The Carolina Center for Public Service recently honored Wilson and her fellow graduates during a virtual ceremony.

Ph.D. student Hayden Dawes was co-awarded a $30,000 grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Research Scholars Program for the project, “Impact of COVID-19 and Racism on BIPOC Experiences with Mental Health Services: Implications for Health Equity.” Dawes, who was recently named a RWJ Health Policy Research Scholar, is working with fellow scholars from Boston University on the study, which will examine policy implications for mental health coverage and access.

Ph.D. student LB Klein co-authored the article, “Centering minoritized students in campus interpersonal violence research," in the Journal of Family Violence. Klein, Ph.D. graduate Brittney Chesworth, assistant professor Cindy Fraga Rizo and professor Rebecca Macy also co-authored, “Protocol schools can use to report commercial sexual exploitation of children to Child Protective Services,” in the journal, School Social Work. Klein also was awarded a scholarship from the Caucus of LGBTQ Faculty & Students in Social Work to cover next year’s Society for Social Work and Research membership fees and conference registration.

Ph.D. student Sarah Godoy co-authored the article, “Collaborative responses to commercial sexual exploitation as a model of smart decarceration,” in the journal, Social Work.

Ph.D. students Gerard Chung, Quinton Smith, and Joseph Frey, and associate professor Paul Lanier co-authored the article, “Associations between depression and parenting of fathers in Head Start and parental self-efficacy as a protective factor,” for Children and Youth Services Review. Chung also presented a paper on “Impact of intimate partner violence on parenting and children’s externalizing behaviors: Transactional processes over time” for the Methodist Welfare Services Singapore webinar on Parent-Child Interaction Therapy.

MSW students Piere Cruz, Dana Dahringer, Kiva Jordan and Michael Crilly, have been awarded the Governor’s Institute Scholarship. The institute provides funding for graduate students in the Master of Social Work, Substance Use and Addictions Specialty Program. The statewide initiative was created to enhance the education of future professionals to treat people dealing with substance use disorders and addiction treatment and recovery. Applicants are chosen based on the need for such specialists in the state, rural area of interest, and financial need. The institute awarded the School $12,000 to support the selected students education.
Why giving matters
Josie Mueller, MSW student

"I chose social work because I love the versatility of the degree, the ability to make an impact on individuals as well as large systems, and to address inequity in our world. With my MSW, I hope to work at a college or university to promote equity, access, and sense of belonging for students who hold marginalized identities."
In the news
Professor Sheryl Zimmerman’s work in aging was highlighted in the McKnight’s Senior Living article, “Providers identify 5 key areas for person-centered care of residents with dementia.” Zimmerman was also quoted in the CNBC article, “Nursing homes create ‘perfect storm,’ for COVID outbreaks as cases and deaths surge again.”

Associate professor Paul Lanier was quoted in the EdNC story, “Preschoolers are being suspended and expelled, and NC activists say racial inequity is the root problem.

Recent alumni updates
Kathy Colville, MSW/MSPH '05, was named CEO of the N.C. Institute of Medicine. Colville will lead the agency's work to advise state policymakers, publish state health policy research, and help to identify solutions to public health challenges.

Yazmin Garcia Rico, MSW '18, was named as director of Latinx/Hispanic Policy and Strategy for the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services. Rico, who has served as the healthy communities program manager for Alamance Community Medical Center, will move into her new state role in mid January.

William "Bill" Crawford, MSW '77, published his fourth book, "Crawdaddy Chases The Money Shot," a collection of photography that celebrates the quirky and sometimes unnoticed things that you might see on a road trip. Crawford has been capturing notable images since his days as a combat photojournalist in Vietnam.

Carolyn Welborn Staton, MSW '74, died on Dec. 7, 2020, after a long illness. She spent most of her career as a clinical social worker serving veterans and their families.

Want to connect with other alumni practicing in the field of addictions? Join the UNC School of Social Work Addictions Professional Alumni Facebook Group!

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