Spotlight on scholarships
School brings donors and students together to celebrate scholarship support
This year’s scholarship breakfast spotlighted the lasting impact
that donors can make on the early careers of social work students.
Ashley Alday (MSW ’17) (pictured left with Dean Eddie Uehara) emceed
the March 14 event that brought together more than 150 donors and
students. In her remarks, the Dean thanked donors for their generosity
that translated into support for 131 students during the current
As the Dean noted, "These funds do more than simply pay for
tuition and books. A scholarship opens up a world of opportunities and
gives our students options. They graduate with less debt which means
more empowement and more impact."
Student panelists (pictured, left to right) Taurmini
Fentress (MSW/MPA ’17), Eric Agyemang (MSW ’18) and Laura
Harringon (MSW/MPH ’19) shared powerful and personal stories,
illuminating how scholarships made it possible to forge their social
work identities and pursue the career of their dreams.
Awards and accolades
POC awarded $5 million to expand social service technology
Five communities in Washington, Oregon and California will benefit from an innovative technology developed by the School's Partners for Our Children to
improve service delivery in child welfare, foster care and homeless
youth systems.The social service technology solution, known as Oliver,
received $2.4 million from the Social Innovation Fund and $2.6 million
from the University of Washington. Oliver was created three years ago by
POC as a way to address the need for better data in the child welfare
system, providing software and apps that streamline internal work
processes and help generate data. Read more.
Two research projects on PTSD receive federal grants totaling $3.3 million
Denise Walker (pictured, right), co-director of the School's Innovative Programs Research Group, received more than $2.6 million from the Department of Defense
to develop and evaluate an intervention checkup tool for active-duty
military personnel at risk for post-traumatic stress disorder. PTSD, the
most common disorder for veterans, is estimated to affect 25 percent of
active-duty military personnel. If left untreated, these individuals
are at greater risk for suicide, substance abuse and other social and
occupational problems. Read more.
More than $700,000 from the National Institutes of Health was awarded to Cynthia Pearson, research associate professor and associate director of the Indigenous Wellness Research Institute,
to prevent HIV among Native Americans by treating PTSD and substance
abuse. According to the research proposal, addressing trauma as an
underlying cause of substance abuse and sexual-risk behaviors is an
often overlooked means of preventing HIV. Treatment of PTSD that also
decreases substance abuse may prevent the initiation or relapse of HIV
risk behaviors. American Indian communities are at a disproportionate
risk for untreated PTSD, HIV and substance abuse.
School research group receives nearly $152,000 to support healthy children
The School's Social Development Research Group
received $151,920 from CAI Global to implement the Raising Healthy
Children prevention system in three elementary schools. A total of 90
teachers will be reached through workshops and coaching in an effort to
promote positive youth development and the prevention of teen problem
behaviors, including underage drinking, delinquency, pregnancy and
American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare names Susan Kemp fellow
the Charles O. Cressey Endowed Professor, was inducted as a fellow into
the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare in recognition
of her outstanding research, scholarship and practice. Kemp co-leads the
University of Washington Cities Collaboratory and serves on the
executive committee of Urban@UW, a transdisciplinary hub for urban research and practice. Read more.
National award recognizes professor’s commitment to doctoral education
Professor Paula Nurius is
the first recipient of the Educational Leadership in Doctoral Education
award from the Group for the Advancement of Doctoral Education in
Social Work. She served as the School’s doctoral program director for
seven years. Read the full story here. She was most recently appointed to the board of directors for the Society for Social Work and Research.
School exhibit highlights art by persons living with dementia
"The Artist Within," currently on view in the School's First
Floor Gallery, ends March 31. This pioneering exhibit of artwork was
created by individuals, aged 60 to 110, who are living with
dementia. Their work illustrates that people with the disease can still
find joy and creativity in their lives. The exhibit is presented by The
Art of Alzheimer's.
In the news
First-of-its-kind study reveals health, aging experiences of LGBT older adults
In a breakthrough study, School
researchers have released findings on the health and aging of lesbian,
gay, bisexual and transgender older adults in the U.S. The report,
“Aging with Pride: National Health, Aging, and Sexuality/Gender Study,”
funded by the National Institute on Aging, will help inform
community-based interventions focused on improving the health and
well-being of this population.The new results show that LGBT older
adults are both resilient and at-risk, with higher rates of disability,
cardiovascular disease, depression and social isolation.The findings
also document how key life events―including coming out, work and
relationships―are associated with health and quality of life. “It’s
important to understand that these communities are diverse and that
unique groups face distinct challenges to their health.” said Karen I. Fredriksen-Goldsen,
School professor and director of the University’s Healthy Generations
Hartford Center of Excellence. Some 2.7 million adults self-identify as
LGBT—a figure expected to double by 2060—yet this population is
critically understudied. Read the U.S. News & World Report story here.
Prevention scientist plays key role in Surgeon General’s report on addiction
Richard F. Catalano, co-founder of the Social Development Research Group,
edited the prevention chapter of the U.S. Surgeon General’s landmark
report “Facing Addiction in America,” released in November—the first
time the Surgeon General has published a report on substance misuse and
related disorders. Catalano highlights the role that individual
communities can play in disseminating effective prevention programs and
policies to combat substance use, misuse and addiction, affecting nearly
21 million Americans. SDRG researchers pioneered Communities that Care,
a community-guided prevention program that has shown long-term impacts
on reducing alcohol and cigarette use among teens. Read more. Watch a KING 5 interview with SDRG Director Kevin Haggerty, who contributed to the U.S. Surgeon General's report.
New research finds confidentiality critical for military personnel who abuse alcohol
There are several reasons that military members are more prone to
alcohol abuse than their civilian counterparts: They’re primarily
male, young and under a lot of stress. Denise Walker, with
the School's Innovative Programs Research Group, was interviewed by
KUOW reporter Patricia Murphy about a study at Joint Base Lewis-McChord
that guaranteed confidentiality to soldiers who agreed to be interviewed
about their drinking habits. The interview was followed up with a phone
call from a counselor who helped participants reflect on the role that
alcohol or drugs played in their lives. When researchers checked back
six months later, the soldiers who participated in the study had cut
their weekly number of drinks in half. Listen to the KUOW interview here.
Crosscut profiles School alum's effort to provide health care to the homeless
Several years ago, alum Krystal Koop (MSW ‘15) helped launch an
innovative effort to provide health care to the homeless. Known as
University District Street Medicine, the program is distinguished by its
team of some 75 clinicians, outreach managers and students who pound
the pavement looking to provide immediate care and help direct homeless
individuals to resources. The Crosscut article looks at Koop’s personal
experience as a homeless teen in Alaska and her current efforts to seek
program funding. Read the full story here.
Alumni and School Updates
School teaching associate co-chairs innovative course on homelessness
University of Washington is the first public university in the nation
to host a homeless encampment—Tent City 3, a group of about 50
individuals. Its arrival has sparked an innovative 10-week
interprofessional course called Homelessness in Seattle, co-chaired by School teaching associate Charlotte Sanders,
who provided a social work perspective to the curriculum content.
Homelessness in Seattle, which is open to all health science students,
is the first curriculum in the nation organized under a
university-sponsored physician-assistance program. Read more.
National poverty collaborative selects West Coast Poverty Center as partner
The West Coast Poverty Center,
a multidisciplinary partnership supported by the School of Social Work,
was recently named a partner in the newly formed Collaborative of U.S.
Poverty Centers. The Collaborative’s goal is to establish a sustainable,
national infrastructure that will expedite the exchange of research and
ideas among top scholars, policymakers and practitioners. Headed by the
Institute for Research on Poverty at the University of
Wisconsin-Madison, the Collaborative also includes Columbia University,
Howard University and the University of Kentucky.
Forefront’s Sue Eastgard receives award for suicide prevention leadership
Eastgard (MSW ’88) is the 2016 Moya M. Duplica Distinguished Alumni
Award recipient, selected for her groundbreaking work as a champion of
suicide prevention for both adults and youth. Eastgard, who recently
retired, has spent her career in suicide prevention. As co-founder of
Forefront, she helped develop a nationally recognized suicide prevention
education initiative and launched Forefront Cares, a program that
provides the newly bereaved with educational materials and telephone
support. Read more.
Rights advocate Nicole Vallestero Keenan receives Early Career Achievement Award
Social worker and advocate for workers’ rights Nicole Vallestero
Keenan (MSW ’11) received the 2016 Early Career Achievement Award.
Currently executive director of the Fair Work Center, Vallestero Keenan
served on Mayor Ed Murray’s Income Inequality Advisory Committee in
2014, adding a strong voice for racial equity and workers’ rights. The
Early Career Achievement Award recognizes alumni who, within 12 years of
receiving their last degree from the School, are carrying out
innovative work and making an impact in the social work field. Read more.
School alum Lynn Behar honored for work with Cancer Lifeline
March 9, social work scholar and School alum Lynn Behar (MSW ’86, PhD
’99) received the Barbara Frederick's leadership award from Cancer
Lifeline at its annual fundraising event. Behar—a tireless advocate and
innovator for those living with life-threatening illnesses—is a longtime
friend and advisory board chair of Cancer Lifeline. The group, founded
in 1973, provides support for individuals and families across the state
with critically needed services, ranging from emotional support and
nutrition classes to financial assistance and advocacy. Behar sponsors
and works with the School of Social Work Carol LaMare Program, which
trains social work students in oncology and palliative care.
Activist and researcher Valli Kalei Kanuha is new assistant dean for field education
Valli Kalei Kanuha (PhD
‘97) joins the School as assistant dean for field education. For 40
years, Kanuha has been an activist, therapist, consultant and researcher
focusing on intimate partner and sexual violence, and the intersection
of race, gender and sexuality. A community-based researcher and popular
lecturer, she joins the Seattle campus from the University of Hawaii at
Manoa, where she was professor of sociology. Read more.
Faculty member and noted researcher Nancy Grote retires
of Social Work Research Associate Nancy Grote retired on Oct. 1. Grote
is principal investigator of the MOMCare program, which studies
perinatal depression experienced by socioeconomically disadvantaged
women. An expansion of Medicaid in Washington state allowed MOMCare to
be piloted in the Seattle-King County public health system. Grote’s
research also focused on ways to reduce racial/ethnic and socioeconomic
disparities in mental health care and identify stress predictors for
couples and individuals during the transition to parenthood. “Nancy has
been a fantastic colleague and an amazing citizen of the School and she
will be dearly missed,” said Associate Dean for Research Karina Walters.
“We thank her for her service to the School and the profession, and for
her leadership and grace.” Read more.