March 2021

From the Director
National Social Work Month and the MFP
2021–2022 Masters Fellowship Application Period Opening Soon
CSWE Elections
Job Announcements
Professional Development
CSWE Diversity Center’s March Educator|Resource
CSWE Spark!

From the Director

Dear Fellows and Alumni: 

You are essential: 

To our classrooms. As teachers and learners, you bring rich experiences and perspectives that help stretch social work education to new areas. 

To research. Research questions from Minority Fellowship Program (MFP) fellows and alumni are unique and innovative. Questions that need to be asked to generate knowledge that helps communities.  

To social work practice. MFP fellows and alumni affect change in organizations and in practice encounters—across the spectrum of practice settings. 

As advocates. Advocacy occurs at many levels, from federal policy to state-level representation to engaging with third-party payers. Continue to use your voice to affect change.  

To your communities. You give voice to experiences that need to be heard. 

To your families. We are individuals who come from families with ties that influence how we see the world and conduct social work within it.  

To the MFP. The MFP is as strong as the people who are a part of it. Thank you for your contributions to the MFP and the social work profession over the past 45 years, and for years to come. 

In Fellowship, 

Duy Nguyen, PhD 
Director, Minority Fellowship Program

National Social Work Month and the MFP 

The Council on Social Work Education’s (CSWE’s) MFP is celebrating Social Work Month in March with the theme “Social Workers Are Essential” by highlighting how the fellowship has supported the invaluable contributions our most recent alumni are making in society. As our nation recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, economic uncertainty, political unrest, and racial revolution, social workers are needed now more than ever. The MFP plays an essential role in meeting this need by supporting present and future social workers, who go on to support the mental health and well-being of minoritized individuals, groups, and communities. No need to take our word for it! Hear from 2019–2020 MFP Masters alumni about how essential the MFP has been to their social work journeys and to the profession more broadly. 

Jazmine Thompson, 2019-2020 MFP Alumnus 

MFP was an absolute pillar in my success as a MSW student. They offered so many webinars and sessions that varied across many different topics of interests to help supplement the education I was receiving in school. Through this program I was able to connect with some great peers that had similar goals as I did. The experience I had with MFP has helped me fine tune my social work skills and has immensely helped prepare me for the work force. Jazmine Thompson 

Kean Flowers, 2019-2020 MFP Alumni

The MFP program has exceeded my expectations in giving me the tools, support, and resources to develop as an effective behavioral health clinician. Through networking opportunities, monetary support, an abundance of professional development trainings, and teachings from professionals with extensive experience, I have been able to self-reflect, expand my knowledge base, and develop approaches to clinical treatment that will shape my clinical practice as I enter the field.” – Kean Flowers 

Julia Childs, 2019-2020 MFP Alumnus

The Masters MFP provided me a space to connect with both fellows and professionals in the field. I gained invaluable knowledge regarding mental health and the unique needs of racial and ethnic minorities in the mental health field. The monetary stipends allowed me to pursue professional development opportunities that have helped me grow as a scholar and clinician. Furthermore, it was incredible to have a network of support and additional monetary support during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. I, like many of my peers, was without my typical support system as my practicum and courses abruptly transitioned to an online format. Having the MFP was a lifeline when I really needed it. It was a breath of fresh air and an extra layer of support during an unprecedented, global crisis.”  – Julia Childs 

Kyliah Thompson, 2019-2020 MFP Alumnus 

The MFP has been instrumental to my career. With COVID-19 and not holding a full-time job, it was sometimes difficult for me to make ends meet. The MFP provided me opportunities to attend trainings and become a member of NASW so I could attend others I was interested in. It was great hearing from people with different experiences in the field who could help guide my direction and inform me of other pathways. I appreciated the MFP's emphasis on advocacy and support for communities that have been oppressed and marginalized historically and culturally. Going into my position as a School Social Worker, I can express to my clients and students some of the barriers that may be impacting them or part of their journey that they may not even be aware of. I will also ALWAYS have the connections and the network of fellows from this cohort to check in with too via LinkedIn or other platforms across the country. Kyliah Thompson 

Ramona Bullock-Johnson, 2019-2020 MFP Alumnus 

The MFP was one of the most valuable and important aspects of my MSW education and training. The network will forever have a positive influence on my professional growth and capacity to support other professionals in mental health and behavioral health practices working with and for culturally diverse populations and communities. Additionally, the financial support enabled me to engage in Yoga for 12-Steps trainings that were outside of my home state and to earn the necessary credentials, above and beyond my social work field placements. I'm glad I had the funds to travel for the training, prior to the COVID pandemic. I also attend the NASW-NC Ethics Conference. Such MSW enrichment and professional engagement would not have been possible without the support of the MFP.– Ramona Bullock-Johnson 

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The MFP monetary support was invaluable and helped me complete graduate school; without it I would not have been able to eat and pay the bills. The prestigious nature of the CSWE MFP legitimized my voice and input to my university faculty. It made people recognize and listen to me, which in turn gave me more confidence to speak up as a minority voice in various circles and fields. That experience taught me university politics and the ways that institutional/structural power dynamics unfairly demoralize and exploit minority students. I greatly appreciated the NASW membership as it helped me get access to things I wouldn't have had otherwise.”  – Rosanna Prieto  

Yajaira Hernandez Trejo, 2019-2020 MFP Alumnus 

“MFP was extremely beneficial to have during my social work education as it provided an additional avenue and support in navigating the social work field and everything it encompasses as a brown female. It was extremely comforting to have webinars and small groups in which everyone else understood that there was so much more than the content at hand on our minds in those moments. Being able to have groups and meet other future social workers throughout the fellowship year brought me motivation and a sense of excitement that we are entering this field, and that we will support one another and that we can make a difference. Seeing everyone's passion was magnificent. Yajaira Hernandez Trejo 

2021–2022 Masters Fellowship Application Period Opening Soon

CSWE’s MFP is pleased to announce the upcoming opening of our 2021–2022 Masters MFP application period! The application will open on April 5, 2021. Information on how to apply can be found here. The deadline for submissions is May 4, 2021, at 5:00 pm (ET). To receive an e-mail notification of the application opening, please share your information here by March 26, 2021.  

CSWE Elections

CSWE’s National Nominating Committee (NNC) is pleased to present the candidates for the open positions on the CSWE Board of Directors and NNC. Our governing bodies are essential in advancing our mission to ensure and enhance the quality of social work education. View the election slate here. All petitions regarding the current election can be e-mailed or mailed to the CSWE office. E-mailed and mailed petitions must be received by March 12, 2021, 12:00 pm (ET). Visit the CSWE website to view the procedures for petitioning.  

The MFP is proud to announce that Halaevalu Vakalahi (MFP 1998) and Vanessa Robinson-Dooley (MFP 2003), are running for election as the vice chair/secretary and graduate faculty representative, respectively. Make sure you are a full member of CSWE and that your membership is current through March 31, 2021, to vote in this election!