Lecturer Jen Towns wrote a new book titled “Our Deepest Roots: Navigating Past Trauma to Build Healthier Queer Relationships.” Towns shares stories from her own personal and professional experiences as a trauma therapist, trauma survivor and queer woman to explore how trauma in childhood or adulthood — combined with being part of the queer community — can impact intimacy, attachment and our everyday interactions with those closest to us. The book, she says, “is neither exclusively memoir nor academic, but a gentle blending of the two.”
Professor William Elliott III spoke with St. Louis public radio about the transformational power of Child Development Accounts and the effect they can have on multi-generational poverty. One of the key things he’s learned, Elliott says, is that the way out of poverty lies along the path of asset accumulation. “Building assets allows people to build their full potential,” he says, “because it augments their ability to tackle the system.”
Associate Professor Katie Maguire-Jack has received 2023 Doctoral Student Organization Faculty Award .The Doctoral Student Organization bestows this award to a faculty mentor who has demonstrated exceptional commitment to mentoring, developing and supporting doctoral students.
Assistant Clinical Professor Justin Hodge was named the 2023 Student Union Teacher of the Year. This award is given by the School of Social Work students and recognizes faculty who have demonstrated commitment to improving DEI, made an outstanding and positive contribution to the School’s climate, and whose skills, dedication, understanding and caring have made a positive impact on students.
Professor Trina Shanks has received the 2023 Distinguished Faculty Award. This highly esteemed peer award recognizes governing faculty members who demonstrate excellence in domains including longevity of service to the School; national recognition in scholarship and service; excellence in teaching and mentoring; outstanding service to the School and the University; and contribution to the professional community.
Field Faculty and Lecturer Yatesha Robinson has received the 2023 Distinguished Lecturer Award. This highly esteemed peer award recognizes excellence in teaching and mentoring of students and the very highest ideal of a School of Social Work lecturer.
Professor Rich Tolman and the Michigan Father Practitioner Network have received a grant from the W. K. Kellogg Foundation aimed to increase the capacity of Michigan programs that engage and deliver services to fathers, improve the well-being of their children and support father involvement.
Professor Joe Ryan was quoted in the Michigan Chronicle about new protocols set by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services as part of their Keep Kids Safe Action Agenda.
“MDHHS demonstrates a strong commitment to data-driven decisions to help keep children safe and guide the development of services for families,” he said. “Department actions such as increasing the number of family resource centers that provide critical services to vulnerable families and expanding home visiting programs are examples of efforts that are evidence-based and designed to strengthen families and help protect children in Michigan.”
Assistant Professor Lindsay Bornheimer and Research Project Coordinator Juliann Li Verdugo received a 2023 Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) Outstanding Research Mentor Award.
Each year, UROP recognizes outstanding mentors who have exceeded expectations in providing opportunities and guidance to their UROP students. These exceptional mentors demonstrate an interest in the college experiences, academic goals and career plans of their students.
Bornheimer and Li Verdugo were nominated by their undergraduate student, Natasha Matta, and were honored during the UROP Spring Research Symposium.
Professor Luke Shaefer spoke with Michigan Advance about Rx Kids, a new program in Flint, Michigan, which will work to improve residents’ health by alleviating poverty in the state’s poorest city. The program, which is likely to begin in 2024, specifically focuses on maternal and infant health outcomes at a community level; every Flint resident who is pregnant will be eligible to receive direct cash payments during their pregnancy and throughout the first year of their child’s life. RxKids is a collaboration between Michigan State University and University of Michigan. Shaefer, who is the director of U-M’s Poverty Solutions, is working on the program’s launch.
“This is something where Flint becomes a leader for the nation; that’s a really powerful thing,” Shaefer said. “We’ve already spent time at the White House, at the U.S. Capitol, in Lansing, and I’ve never had a project like this where people get this happy,” Shaefer said. “I’ve been working in poverty for a long time, and I think the design of this and values imbued in it are fundamentally different than other efforts.”
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