Assistant Professor Sunggeun (Ethan) Park’s research is cited in the Stanford Social Innovation Review. Park and his co-author’s research shows that when local social service organizations take the lead in making policy decisions, the rates of homlessness decrease. “Collaborative governance can best improve client outcomes when it is truly collaborative and providers are given meaningful ways to engage with and influence the process,” they write.
Assistant Dean for Enrollment Management Tim Colenback has received the National Deans and Directors of Social Work Admissions (NDDSWA) 2021 Years of Service Award. NDDSWA — a national organization affiliated with the Council on Social Work Education — established this award to recognize and honor exceptional individuals in the field of graduate recruitment and admissions.
The awards committee highlighted Colenback’s achievements in recruiting and cultivating the next generation of leaders and educators. They also recognized his creative and innovative approach to admissions, the ongoing support and mentorship that he has provided to colleagues, and his lasting impact on NDDSWA.
Colenback worked as a social worker before joining the School in 1993 as the assistant director for student services. In 1999, he took on the role of assistant dean for student services, and has successfully led the School’s Office of Student Services and Enrollment Management for 22 years.
Colenback is an incredible leader and mentor. Several of the staff members he has mentored have gone on to become directors in career services, student services, and diversity, equity and inclusion offices.
Colenback is a strong and vocal advocate for students. He is deeply skilled in educating prospective students about the profession, brainstorming with students to tailor their program to their specific interests, creating unique plans for students experiencing personal and financial crises, and at assisting alumni with professional decisions. Through his service on numerous committees, task forces and workgroups, Colenback always ensures that the student voices are represented.
Colenback is a true example of how the social work skill set can be applied in a higher education setting.
“NDDSWA has provided invaluable support to admissions directors and deans, including me, for over 25 years,” said Colenback. “The organization has played a critical role in the recruitment of new people into the professions of social work. It has been my pleasure to be a part of the organization since 1999 and I am incredibly honored to be the recipient of the Years of Service Award.”
The U-M Working Group to Advance Social Science Scholarship and Teaching on Latinx Youth and Families — which includes Associate Professor David Córdova, Professor Lorraine Gutiérrez, Associate Professor Robert Ortega and Assistant Professor Fernanda Cross — is featured in Diverse Issues in Higher Education. The group unites faculty and graduate students from across disciplines both in and outside of U-M to discuss research, share advice and form a strong community of Latinx scholars.
Professor William Elliott is quoted in a New York Times article about the effects of Child Savings Accounts. New York City has announced a pilot program in which a savings account with $100 will be opened for every public school kindergartener. Elliott describes how even these small amounts can significantly increase a child’s likelihood of going to college, in part by offering students and parents a sense of both possibility and control. “They feel like they can change their destiny and their future,” he said.
Professor Luke Shaefer discusses the child tax credits with The New York Times, “Of 4 Family Policies in Democrats’ Bill, Which Deserves Priority?” Shaefer argued: “The child tax credit is elegant in that it does something for all low- and middle-income families.” “It does the most to empower families to do what they think is best for their families.”
Professor William Elliott’s opinion article in the Gotham Gazette argues that poor children and families need both poverty alleviation and child savings programs. Elliott writes, “I am arguing that the drive Americans have demonstrated throughout history comes from more than having enough money to pay the bills each week, it comes from the promise of a better future.”
Associate Professor Terri Friedline’s study is cited in an NBC News article about a U.S. Postal Service pilot program offering financial services, which could lead to a return in postal banking. Friedline’s study showed that 69% of U.S. census tracts with local post offices do not have community bank branches, making it difficult for residents to access financial services. The postal service offered banking services in local branches from 1911-1967.
Professor Brad Zebrack, PhD student Nina Jackson Levin and Assistant Professor Anao Zhang are researchers and leaders of the new Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA) Oncology program, which was recently established at C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital and the Rogel Cancer Center. They discuss the program, and why it’s important to have a program that addresses the unique needs of cancer patients of this age, with the U-M Lab Blog.
Professor William Elliott’s essay is included in the new book “Future of Building Wealth: Brief Essays on the Best Ideas to Build Wealth - for Everyone” which was published by The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program in partnership with the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. The book provides policymakers and financial leaders with the tools, resources and innovative ideas to pave the way for economic growth and prosperity for all American families.
The Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes School of Social Work alumni whose achievements exemplify the values of the School of Social Work and who have made an exceptional impact on the profession, the community and/or Social Work education.
University of Michigan
School of Social Work
1080 South University Avenue
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1106