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Ashley E. Cureton

Assistant Professor of Social Work, School of Social Work, and Assistant Professor of Educational Studies, Marsal Family School of Education

Ashley E. Cureton

Dr. Ashley E. Cureton is an assistant professor in the School of Social Work and School of Education at the University of Michigan. She also serves as a faculty affiliate in the Center for Equitable Family & Community Well-Being. Prior to her current role, Cureton was a Provost’s Postdoctoral Fellow and lecturer in the School of Education and the Department of Sociology at Johns Hopkins University. Cureton explores the educational and mental health needs and outcomes of refugee and migrant children and youth and their families. She seeks to understand how displacement and exploitation impact their overall academic and social development, sense of belonging and cultural identity. Her research builds on over a decade of research and practice focusing on child and adolescent development among migrant and refugee populations and other marginalized groups in global contexts like South Africa, Morocco, Peru and Ecuador, to name a few. Prior to attending graduate school Cureton worked as a research associate at Northwestern University’s Institute for Policy Research. She also served as a research fellow for the U.S. Department of State in Istanbul, Turkey, working with Iraqi and Syrian refugee youth in school and community settings. Cureton received a PhD and master’s degree from the Crown School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice at the University of Chicago. She also received graduate certificates in forced migration and refugee mental health from Harvard University, the University of Oxford, and Northwestern University.

Research Interests/Focus

Arts-based programs; Children & adolescents; Community-engaged research; Global social work & health; Immigration; Intervention research; Out-of-school time programs; Refugee policy & resettlement; Qualitative research methods; School-based Interventions; Urban education


Year Degree   School
2019 PhD Global Social Work University of Chicago, Chicago, IL
2010 MSW Internatl Social Work & Community Schools University of Chicago, Chicago, IL
2008 BA Anthropology DePaul University, Chicago, IL
Year Description
2024 2024 Lester Monts Award
2024 LEAD Global Training Program Fellow
2024 Provost's Teaching Innovation Prize (Finalist), Office of the Provost, University of Michigan
2023 Commencement Speaker, Wolverine Pathways, School of Education
2023 Innovation in Research and Teaching Award, School of Social Work, University of Michigan
2022 Small Grant Program, Detroit Urban Research Center
2022 2022 Teacher of the Year, School of Social Work, Student Union
2022 Black Excellence Award, School of Social Work
2022 2022 Student Union Teacher of the Year
2022 U-M Center for Academic Innovation Engagement Faculty Fellow
2022 CSWE Scholars in Global & Intercultural Competence
2021 Diversity Recognition Award, Diversity Leadership Council - Johns Hopkins University
2021 CSWE Global Scholar, Council on Social Work Education
2021 Health Equity Scholars for Action, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (FINALIST)
2021 Anti-Racism and Precedents for Action Grant, National Center for Institutional Diversity
2021 Career Impact Award (NOMINATED), Office of the Provost.
2021 Johns Hopkins Diversity Leadership Council Diversity Recognition Award
2019 GADE Student Award for Leadership and Service
2019 Excellence in Course Design Award, Chicago Center for Teaching, The University of Chicago.
2019 Community and Leadership Award, University of Chicago.
2019 Student Leadership and Recognition Award, Graduate Council, The University of Chicago.
2019 The RISE Up Award, Center for Leadership and Involvement, The University of Chicago

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