PhD student Olivia Chang received an honorable mention from the 2023 Ford Foundation Fellowship Program. The programs seek to increase the diversity of the nation's college and university faculties by increasing their ethnic and racial diversity, maximize the educational benefits of diversity, and increase the number of professors who can and will use diversity as a resource for enriching the education of all students.
Professor Luke Shaefer spoke to Minnesota Public Radio about that state’s new child tax credit. “It's not a silver bullet. It's not going to solve all of the challenges that we face, but no policy is. And this one is one that works. It is one that we should be able to see positive impacts in a year's time,” Shaefer said.
Briana Starks, Joint PhD in Social Work and Sociology, successfully defended her dissertation, "Diapers, Debt, and Degrees: The Practical and Theoretical Implications of Maternal Postnatal Educational Attainment." Her committee included Kristin Seefeldt (co-chair) and Karen Staller.
Starks has accepted a position as a Human Services Researcher at Mathematica.
Associate Professor Kristin Seefeldt and Lecturer Trevor Bechtel spoke to the Ann Arbor City Council earlier this month about a new program which would provide a universal basic income to 100 Ann Arbor residents engaged in some form of entrepreneurship. The program is a partnership between the city and U-M’s Poverty Solutions, who will administer the program and analyze the findings.
“We want to see how this guaranteed income allows this community to improve their personal economic security and wellbeing, whether that’s through expanding their business efforts or by scaling back,” said Seefeldt, who will lead the research efforts. Assistant Professor Rebeccah Sokol is a co-principal investigator. Associate Professor Terri Friedline and Professors Joe Ryan and Trina Shanks are also on the research team.
“We know some community members were disproportionately impacted by the pandemic,” said Councilmember Linh Song, MSW ’04, who advocated for the initiative. “This program recognizes and addresses this inequity so that program participants can have a fighting chance to continue to live and work in Ann Arbor.”
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.”
Nina Jackson Levin, Joint PhD in Social Work and Anthropology, successfully defended her dissertation, "Meta/Static Ethnography of Adolescent and Young Adult Oncofertility Research and Practice at a United States Hospital: Implications for Sexual and Gender Minorities.” Her committee included Bradley J. Zebrack (co-chair) and Shanna Katz Kattari.
Jackson Levin plans to complete a Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Michigan Department of Endocrinology.
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.
University of Michigan
School of Social Work
1080 South University Avenue
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1106