PhD student Charles Williams II is featured in a video from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services addressing vaccine hesitancy and encouraging the COVID-19 vaccination. Williams, who is pastor of the Historic King Solomon Baptist Church, says “There is no invincibility to COVID-19. If it hits you, and it hits you wrong, you’re gone.”
Associate Professor Shawna Lee and Joyce Lee, PhD ‘21, are coauthors of “Longitudinal relations between coparenting and father engagement in low-income residential and nonresidential father families”, published in the Journal of Family Psychology. Their paper was awarded the Diversity and Inclusion in Men in Families Research Article Award from the National Council on Family Relations and was recognized for its contribution to advancing the science on the role of men in families.
MSW Student Stacey Stevens has received a summer research grant from U-M’s Anti-Racism Collaborative for her community-based research project, 48208 Lives. Stevens created the project in partnership with Yusef Bunchy Shakur, MSW ‘19, who is the director of the Mama Akua Community House in Detroit, Zone 8, and Pedro Coracides, an MSW student at Wayne State University.
The project focuses on Zone 8, a predominantly Black neighborhood in Detroit, which takes its name from its zip code. Zone 8 experiences many of the inequalities that ravaged all of Detroit in the past decades — unemployment, addiction, persistent poverty, lack of affordable housing — in hyper-focused ways. The high percentage of both empty apartments and rental properties make it difficult to foster a sense of community. Despite these many challenges, residents have fostered a sense of community out of survival. Many critical institutions, including local schools and grocery stores, have closed, which has made this community more vulnerable socially, politically and economically.
“This is a neighborhood that is under constant attack from gentrification from outsiders,” said Stevens. “It is only now with its proximity to Midtown and Downtown Detroit, that this neighborhood is being ‘valued’ and recolonized.”
According to project documentation, 48208 Lives seeks to “connect, develop and nurture emergent leadership from Zone 8 to create a racially and socially just vision for a revitalized Detroit without displacement or continued disinvestment.” To do this, the project will develop an asset map, marking all the human resources available to residents. “We are hopeful that this project will lay a foundation for neighborhood residents to support their visions for a vibrant community,” said Stevens.
“One of the things I have learned thus far in our planning is how there is no one-size-fits-all approach to doing this work. I live about two miles away from the neighborhood we are working in. There is such a drastic difference in how my community looks and the resources most folks in my community have compared to Zone 8,” said Coracides. “I think that is the one thing I hope to learn through this work: what does it look like to replicate this work in different communities around Metro Detroit in light of the unique needs and resources available to each community?”
“The support will allow us to navigate some of the challenges on the ground and to meet our goal by connecting us with residents and positioning us to amplify their voices,” said Shakur. “As a graduate of the School of Social Work, this opportunity to work with like-valued people is inspiring. Developing a research framework that is resident-driven and working professionally in a team capacity doesn’t necessarily happen post graduation.”
TIPPS — The School of Social Work’s Trauma-Informed Program and Practices for Schools — has launched a new website. Learn more about how TIPPS translates research into strategies to help students develop their potential and create safe, nurturing and inclusive learning environments. Professor Todd Herrenkohl, TIPP’s director and principal investigator, leads an interdisciplinary team of faculty, students and community partners.
Professor Luke Shaefer spoke with the New York Times about how the new monthly child tax credit could increase economic stability for families. "When we load up so much of our aid in an annual big refund, it means so many of our families are going into the red by the end of the year," Professor Shaefer said. "We used to think about poverty in the United States as static - your income is below the poverty line - but people's lives are very volatile."
Professor Rogério Meireles Pinto spoke with Marie Claire Brazil about the importance of the Stonewall riots in terms of current LGBTQIA2+ rights and aspirations. "The relationships between the different groups that comprise LGBTQIA2+ have always been a little uneasy," said Pinto." To the extent that there was a ‘gay movement' in early 1969, that movement wasn't centered in bars like Stonewall. For the most part it was middle class and socially conservative - nicely dressed young men and women marching peacefully, if at all. There were always exceptions, but Stonewall was the first time that any of those represented in what we today call LGBTQIA2+ pushed back against the police and government visibly and forcefully."
Look for new U-M signage celebrating our Centennial! Next time you drive by the Big House on Stadium Blvd, be on the lookout for a sign on the digital marquee commemorating 100 years of social work at Michigan. The sign is one of many in rotation, so keep your eyes open.
Lamppost banners have also been installed on campus. Look for the banners on South and East University Avenues. They feature "The Right View," a sculpture created by Sam Gilliam and commissioned by the School in 1989.
Over the last hundred years, our alumni, students and faculty have made an impact on the field of social work — how exciting to mark our return to campus with these visible symbols of celebration!
Professor William Elliott III spoke with MarketWatch about the role children's savings accounts can play in countering racial wealth inequality. "Education in itself will never reduce wealth inequality in America, it can be a part of it and it's really important, but if we're talking about inequality, you've got to have wealth and start off with assets," he said. "But unless the government, philanthropists and others provide a significant amount of money, the accounts won't narrow the gulf in wealth between Black and white and rich and poor households."
In celebration of our centennial, lamp post banners have been installed on campus. Look for the banners featuring "The Right View," a sculpture created by Washington Color School painter Sam Gilliam on commission by the School of Social Work in 1998, on South and East University Avenues.
Assistant Professor Jaclynn Hawkins received an R21 research grant from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases entitled "Diabetes Self-Management Intervention for African American Men." The goal of this project is to develop and preliminarily validate the effectiveness of an adapted Peer Leader Diabetes Self-Management Support intervention designed to improve diabetes-related self-management behaviors in Black men with Type 2 Diabetes.
University of Michigan
School of Social Work
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