From the Director 

Dear Fellows and Alumni,
 Dr. Duy Nguyen
Commencement brings new beginnings, new roles, new identities, and new careers. Although this year’s commencement activities look different because of the COVID-19 pandemic, their importance as life markers remains. To our fellows graduating from master’s and doctoral programs this month: Listen to that voice inside of you that’s telling you to change the world. Our communities, states, and global society need to change—and you are positioned to make that change.
May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month and Children’s Mental Health Awareness Month. In this month’s Connect, Ronnie San Nicolas (Doctoral ’97) shares his thoughts on how social work can strengthen Pacific Islander families. 
Be well,
Dr. Duy Nguyen


MFP Spotlight 

Dr. Ronnie San Nicolas on the Social Work Community and Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Dr. Ronnie San Nicolas"I'm so grateful for what social work has given to me as a profession, but it's demanding and it's fulfilling. It's fulfilling when one considers that it is a helping profession that is noble and the value so central to my culture. It is also demanding because over time society and its challenges continue to be complex. However, as a Chamorro, my elders taught me nothing is ever difficult when you have a family and community of people that supports and values one another and from where they come from.
I believe the one thing that CSWE MFP alumni and fellows can take to help address some of the behavioral health challenges in Pacific Islander communities is the awareness of the strengths that one's own culture and identity offer in strengthening resiliency and creating healthy families and communities.
Our children and our elderly are such great resources, particularly in the Chamorro culture among Pacific Islanders. Having the opportunity where we honor both the voices of our young and our elderly and help them to be able to communicate to one another, would be a way to strengthen one's own mental health and well-being.”

Robert A. MaysRobert A. Mays, LICSW 

Robert A. Mays is a student in the doctoral program at Morgan State University. Mr. Mays’ behavioral health services focus on the mental health of young Black adults and culture as a protective and enabling factor. Mr. Mays works as a clinical social work therapist for District of Columbia Public Schools. After completing his doctoral degree, Mr. Mays would like to continue treating and advocating for Black adolescents and young adults and educating future social work students. He also wants to contribute to the literature on Black culture and mental health. Connect with Robert on LinkedIn.


Joya JosephJoya Joseph 

Master’s fellow Joya Joseph is an MSW student at Columbia University. Ms. Joseph is committed to working with individuals affected by systemic oppression and substance abuse disorder. Ms. Joseph provides needs and psychosocial assessments in her field placement at The Bridge. After graduation she will continue working with formerly incarcerated individuals who have mental illness or substance use disorder.


Jonathan SemJonathan Sem 

Jonathan Sem is a master's fellow at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Mr. Sem's interest is in educating younger populations regarding the severity of substance issues among their peers. At his internship with Eastern Suffolk BOCES, he provides therapeutic group and individual counseling. Mr. Sem’s professional goals include pursuing a career as a school social worker and substance abuse rehabilitation advocate. Connect with Jonathan on LinkedIn.



MFP Fellowship 

2020–2021 MFP Master’s Fellowship: Apply Today
CSWE’s 2020–2021 master’s Minority Fellowship Program application cycle is now open and closes on Tuesday, June 2, 2020, at 5:00 pm (EDT). The 1-year MFP master’s fellowship enhances the training of full-time, direct-practice focused, social work master’s students in the final year of study with specialized behavioral health training, a monetary stipend, and access to mentoring and professional development support. Click here to find program eligibility requirements and application instructions.

COVID-19 Surveys

How is COVID-19 Affecting Women’s Wellbeing? 
Dr. Victoria M. Venable, LISW (MFP Doctoral 2012) is conducting a study focused on understanding the impact of COVID-19 on the wellbeing of women. Your participation will help social workers and helping professionals understand and respond to this rapidly evolving situation with a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card. Click here to share and participate in this survey.
Resilience Through Your Eyes 
Researchers at the University of North Carolina Wilmington are conducting a study about individual and community resilience during COVID-19. The purpose of this study is to look at themes related to resilience and how people cope during these times. Participants in the survey will be entered into a random drawing to win one of two $50 e-gift cards. Click here to participate in this survey.
University Transitions to Online Course Delivery 
CSWE has partnered with a research team from the California State University, Sacramento, Division of Social Work seeking feedback on how the COVID-19 pandemic and shift to online course delivery has affected the educational experience and goal setting for students. Click here to participate in this survey.
MFP Resiliency in Pandemic Times 
The Minority Fellowship Program Coordinating Center is seeking input for an article dedicated to how MFP fellows and alumni are facing the challenge of adapting their research, event planning, and meeting required program activities considering the COVID-19 outbreak. Click here to highlight how you have overcome these challenges by Monday, May 25.


JSWE Special Issue: Pandemic/Disaster Manuscripts 
The Journal of Social Work Education (JSWE) invites submissions for a special issue titled "Teaching, Field Instruction, and Administration in the Time of Pandemic or Natural Disaster" to be published in spring 2021. The issue will be co-edited by Dr. Danielle Parrish (Baylor University; JSWE editor-in-chief) and Dr. Cristina Mogro-Wilson (University of Connecticut). Accepted articles will illustrate best practices and lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic and prior natural disasters to help inform social work education when faced with similar educational disruptions. For more information, read the call for submissions or contact Dr. Danielle Parrish, JSWE editor-in-chief. Manuscripts are due via online submission by August 3, 2020.
Social Work in Health Care Special Issue: Call for Pandemic Papers 
Social Work in Health Care invites submissions for a special issue titled “Social Work Practice in the Era of the COVID-19 Pandemic: Challenges and Innovations.” This is an opportunity to highlight new practice models and leadership roles that have been implemented as a result of challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Research-focused and practice-innovation articles are due by October 15, 2020. Click here for submission guidelines.

Postdoctoral Fellowship 

LEAD Global Training Program Postdoctoral Fellowship
The LEAD Global Training Program provides fellows from underrepresented groups with the skills and hands-on experiences needed to lead multidisciplinary collaborative research teams focused on mental health disparities research in low-resource communities. Applications for the postdoctoral position will be accepted on a rolling basis. Click here for more information.


Shedding Light on Solitary Confinement 
Tucked away and out of public sight, an estimated 80,000 to 100,000 people are being held in solitary confinement cells in our nation’s jails, prisons, and immigration detention centers, many for years on end. Social Workers Against Solitary Confinement combats the use of solitary confinement and seeks the support of social workers in its fight against this social injustice. CSWE's Center for Diversity and Social & Economic Justice’s May Educator|Resource offers a comprehensive overview of solitary confinement that includes voices of those who have been affected by it, the ethical dilemma of health and social service providers who work in criminal justice facilities, and humane alternatives. Click here to access a resource database that provides an extensive set of more than 300 teaching resources for use in social work courses.
Intimate Partner Violence and Child Abuse Considerations During COVID-19 
As the COVID-19 pandemic has required shelter-in-place orders, for many families who experience domestic violence the home may not be such a safe space. This may include intimate partners and children. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration has created Intimate Partner Violence and Child Abuse Considerations During COVID-19 to help families and communities address intimate partner violence and child abuse health concerns.