From the Director 

Dear Fellows and Alumni,
How are you? Since 2020 started, this simple question has taken on additional heft. Dr. Duy Nguyen 

First the COVID-19 pandemic changed everything about our daily lives while also spotlighting the terrible effects of health disparities. There was almost no break between then and being called, as social workers and educators, to act and advocate for social justice as the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and now Rayshard Brooks have spurred demonstrations and debate on institutional racism in our country.
We feel these heavy emotional, cognitive, and physical tolls as we look for ways to speak out and make sense of the world around us.
We need each other. The MFP was first funded in 1974, and its work is just as important today. After six centuries of genocide, slavery, and oppression that continues today, we need more than two generations to heal. As fellows and alumni, you affect behavioral health practice and research that is grounded in advocacy. You advocate for your communities, the people you work with, and yourselves. Daily, your words and actions amplify the experiences of Black and Brown individuals, groups, and communities.
We see you. We hear you. We stand with you.
You know firsthand the importance and value of the connections within the MFP family and how being connected to other like-minded social work students and professionals has helped you to where you are today. To help foster that connection, we will hold a Town Hall for MFP fellows and alumni on June 16 from 7-8:30 p.m., Eastern. Please join us on Zoom if you are interested.
We see clearly that the civil and equal rights movements are pervasive struggles. We wonder if the demonstrations in response to race-based killings will spur a sea change in the same way that the riots at New York City’s Stonewall Inn catalyzed the fight for Gay rights that continues today. With all that is going on, it is important not to lose sight that we celebrate Pride Month in June, and the MFP is highlighting the experiences of LGBTQ+ people of color through interviews with master’s alums. Look for Marcus Leaks and K. Tahji Claybren’s perspectives on social work practice with LGBTQ+ POC in the full newsletter and throughout June on our social media.
How are you? May we be earnest in the question and honest in our answers.

In Fellowship, 
Duy Nguyen, PhD 

MFP Spotlight

Shawna Murray-BrowneShawna Murray-Browne

Shawna Murray-Browne is a student in the doctoral program in social work at the University of Maryland, Baltimore. Mrs. Murray-Browne’s clinical and community-based practice focuses on mind–body modalities to reduce symptoms from race-based traumatic stress in African-American women, children, and activists. She consults with organizations on nourishing a culture of mindfulness, antiracism, and impact. After completing her doctoral degree, Mrs. Murray-Browne would like to develop curricula supported by data on anti-oppressive work in community and practice.


Daniel McCraryDaniel McCrary

Master’s fellow Daniel McCrary graduated with his MSW from the University of Georgia on May 8. Mr. McCrary works with racial/ethnic minorities experiencing trauma using psychotherapeutic modalities in a clinical setting. He provided marriage and family therapy at his internship at ASPIRE Clinic, a collaborative unit of the College of Family and Consumer Sciences at the University of Georgia. Mr. McCrary plans to enroll in a university based post-MSW clinical fellowship and work with individuals from all racial and ethnic backgrounds.


Yajaira Hernandez TrejoYajaira Hernandez Trejo

Yajaira Hernandez Trejo graduated with her MSSW from Columbia University on May 20. Ms. Hernandez Trejo's research interest is the impact of violent crimes and incarceration on racial/ethnic minorities. At her internship at Crime Victims Treatment Center she provides survivors individual therapy and a emotion regulation skills group. Ms. Hernandez Trejo's career goal is to work in the Latinx community with survivors of violent crimes and interactions with the criminal legal system. Connect with Yajaira on LinkedIn.


K. Tajhi Claybren, Minority Fellowship Program alum, speaks with Duy Nguyen about working with LGBTQ populations, queer clinics, and more.

Marcus Leaks, Minority Fellowship Program (MFP) alum, chats with CSWE's Duy Nguyen about the importance of queer clinics. He also offers advice for social workers who need to maintain a socially competent practice pertaining to minority LGBTQ individuals.

MFP Fellowship 

Join MFP’s Fellows and Alumni Town Hall!
Next week the MFP will be hosting a virtual town hall for our fellow and alumni community. We want to hear how you and your community are coping with and addressing the immense uncertainty and physical isolation resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Join us on Tuesday, June 16, 2020, 7:00 pm–8:30 pm EDT.
Zoom meeting link:
Meeting ID: 912 0282 6509
Password: MFP62020

Vote for Doctoral Alumnae to CSWE’s Board of Directors
MFP is proud to announce that Dr. Joan Blakey (MFP Doctoral 2008), Dr. Makeba Green (MFP Doctoral 2003), and Dr. Kesslyn Brade Stennis (MFP Doctoral 2008) are candidates for the CSWE Board of Directors and National Nominating Committee. CSWE members can cast their votes before Monday, June 29, 2020. Click here to view their candidate statements. 


Matters of Justice: Educator|Resource of the Month
Visit CSWE’s Center for Diversity and Social & Economic Justice to view the semiannual recap of the Educator|Resource. Social work educators offer ways that social work can create more affirming classrooms, more equitable education, more culturally responsive practice, and more humane social institutions. Areas of focus include marginalization of sexual orientations and gender identities (with a focus on microaggressions and homelessness), racial and ethnic inequities in educational success, poor intervention outcomes among multicultural communities due to interventions that have not been culturally adapted, and solitary confinement of U.S. prisoners.

Explore teaching resources that inform social justice practice across the micro, mezzo, and macro levels

  • Interpersonal level: guidance for addressing behaviors that undermine a person’s value based on their marginalized social identities
  • Organizational and community level: needs assessment tools, equity-minded competence, and research-based culturally adapted interventions
  • Systems level: strategies for advocacy, legislative practice, and policy reform

Call for Papers: Journal of Poverty Special Issue
The Fall 2021 special double issue of the Journal of Poverty will focus on documenting the 21st century consequences of the coloniality of power as it relates to the environmental destruction of afrodescendente and indigenous communities in the Americas. Journal submissions that discuss the forms of resistance by these communities will also be welcomed. Click here to learn more about submission guidelines.