VCU School of Social Work
2022 brings continued good (research) news for our school.
Dear SSW alumni,

The final days of 2021 and the first days of 2022 have brought a great deal of good news to our school, much of it research-related.

We had another strong presence, albeit virtually in some cases, in January at the Society of Social Work and Research Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. You can find details and a link to our presentations below.

A project led by associate professors Maurice Gattis, Ph.D., and Alex Wagaman, Ph.D., has received an $883,014 Homeless Reduction Grant Award for 2022 from the Virginia Housing Trust; it will be used to develop a shared housing program model for LGBTQ+ youth, pregnant and parenting youth, and youth at the intersection of those two populations.

Karen Chartier, Ph.D., associate professor, has been named interim director for VCU’s Institute for Research on Behavioral and Emotional Health, which manages the university’s signature student survey on well-being and substance use, Spit for Science. Chartier has also contributed materials to a newly released online library, Building Capacity in the Workforce: A Focus on Substance Use Education. The resource was an outgrowth of a grant-funded initiative to develop new social work teaching curricula focused on the opioid epidemic.

We also want to recognize Denise Burnette, Ph.D., our doctoral program director and the Samuel S. Wurtzel Professor of Social Work. She has received a Fulbright specialist grant to study abroad; more details to come in our next newsletter.

Finally, we are excited to announce an extraordinary national honor for one of our most talented B.S.W. students, Oscar Kemp (read more below). We are also pleased to announce the recent launch of our redesigned website, with improved content for and about our alumni, donors, and field agencies and partners.

To stay connected and informed on happenings in the school, subscribe to our blog, which is updated regularly. We also encourage you to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Warm regards,

Beth Angell
Beth Angell, Ph.D.
Dean and Professor
VCU School of Social Work

Alumna founds an organization to help heal her community

Alumni Spotlight Jackie Lawrence
Jackie Lawrence (B.S.W.’16/SW; M.S.W.’17/SW) has developed an organization, Healing Us, to train community leaders and healers.
 
Oscar Kemp. B.S.W. Student Representative. CSWE Board of Directors

B.S.W. student earns CSWE leadership role


B.S.W. student Oscar Kemp is helping make history as the first undergraduate student representative to serve on the board of directors of the national accrediting agency Council on Social Work Education. Kemp, from Danville, Virginia, will be the B.S.W. representative, alongside an M.S.W. student representative from California State University Monterey Bay. “To say the least, I was positively overwhelmed [at the news],” Kemp said.
 
Read more
Ph.D. student Leah Bouchard awarded prestigious rural health fellowship

Ph.D. student Leah Bouchard awarded prestigious rural health fellowship

Her commitment and expertise have been recognized with a fellowship from the National Rural Health Association. “Particularly, I’m excited to spend time in the fellowship learning how to better advocate for youth belonging to marginalized populations within rural areas,” she said.
 
Social work doctoral education organization recognizes professors Bentley, Burnette

Social work doctoral education organization recognizes professors Bentley, Burnette

Kia Bentley, Ph.D., received the Award for Educational Leadership in Doctoral Education, and Denise Burnette, Ph.D., was elected president-elect of GADE.
 
Social work faculty and student researchers presenting at SSWR 2022

Social work faculty and student researchers presenting at SSWR 2022

Check out the 25-plus presentations from SSW faculty and students.
 
Introducing VCU School of Social Work’s annual report

Introducing VCU School of Social Work’s annual report

In case you missed it: The school had a banner year, and it’s all documented in our inaugural annual report.
 

To connect


For more than 100 years, the VCU School of Social Work has educated future generations of social work professionals in theory and practice. Sixty-nine percent of our alumni choose to stay in Virginia to live, work and practice. Connect with us and 10,000 alumni making a difference every day.

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