Stephen F. Austin State University


Hogg Foundation for Mental Health Awards Scholarships

Dharti Patel, MSW Student was awarded the 2015 Ima Hogg Scholarship award, an annual scholarship of $5,000 to support graduate social work students in Texas. The scholarships are awarded to second year graduate students who demonstrate a strong commitment to providing mental health services after graduation in Texas.

The Ima Hogg Scholarships were established in 1956 to address the need for more trained social workers to deliver quality mental health services for Texans. Scholarship recipients must attend one of the 14 Texas graduate schools of social work that are accredited or pending accreditation by the national Council on Social Work Education. Scholarship recipients are nominated by the heads of their social work programs.

"Since 1956, there has been a recognized need to strengthen this crucial sector of the mental health workforce," said Dr. Octavio N. Martinez, Jr., executive director of the Hogg Foundation and associate vice president for diversity and community engagement at The University of Texas at Austin. "With the help of these schools of social work, we have found a pool of individuals who are committed to dedicating their talents to mental health care in the state."

The Hogg Foundation advances recovery and wellness in Texas by funding mental health services, policy analysis, research and public education. The foundation was created in 1940 by the children of former Texas Gov. James S. Hogg and is part of the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin.

Undergraduate Research Conference

Kristina Brooks, BSW undergraduate student presented poster at the Undergraduate Research Conference. While Kristina Brooks was working on her bachelor's degree in Social Work (BSW), she submitted a research paper to the Undergraduate Research Conference at Stephen F. Austin State University. Kristina's faculty sponsor Kristin Bailey-Wallace was very proud when this student received recognition for her paper over the Asian Indian culture. Ms. Brooks was a finalist under the College of Liberal and Applied Arts. Ms. Bailey-Wallace has known Kristina Brooks since 2013 when she entered the BSW program and expressed an interest in social work. Ms. Brooks is a model student who puts forth her best effort in all situations from a paper or presentation to a professional internship. Kristina wrote many papers worthy of recognition and the School of Social Work was pleased to sponsor her research. Kristina Brooks had an opportunity to present a poster session at the 2015 Undergraduate Research Conference. Kristina submitted a wonderful poster, and the URC event was well attended by students, faculty, friends, and family members.

2014 Study Abroad - Ireland


Faculty Accomplishments

Dr. Freddie Avant
Avant, a professor in and director of the School of Social Work, has been elected to serve a three-year term as treasurer of the Texas Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers. NASW/Texas is part of the nation's largest organization of professional social workers. The national organization represents more than 150,000 members throughout the United States and its territories, and the chapter represents nearly 6,000 members.

Avant also has been elected to serve a 3-year term as chair of the Nomination and Leadership Identification Committee for the Deep East area of NASW/Texas.

Avant has recently published two book chapters. One is titled "African Americans Living in Rural Community: Building Assets from an Afrocentric Perspective," and the second chapter, written with Dr. Michael R. Daley, University of South Alabama, is titled "Down-Home Social Work: A Strengths-Based Model for Rural Practice." Both appear in an edited book titled "Rural Social Work: Building and Sustaining Community Capacity" by Scales, Streeter and Cooper.

Dr. Kathleen Belanger
Belanger's chapter, "Capacity for Conservation: Rural Communities Address Sustainability for Global Impact," in an edited book titled "Rural Social Work: Building and Sustaining Community Capacity" by Scales, Streeter and Cooper.

Dr. Steve Cooper
Cooper, an associate professor in the School of Social Work and associate dean in the College of Liberal and Applied Arts, has been elected to serve a three-year term as the Region 5 representative for the Board of Directors for the Texas Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers.

Cooper, along with T. Laine Scales of Baylor University and Calvin L. Streeter of the University of Texas at Austin, edited "Rural Social Work: Building and Sustaining Community Capacity."

The book considers methods for social workers to participate in the work of sustaining rural communities. Each chapter features a reading that integrates the themes of capacity-building and rural social work; discussion questions that facilitate critical thinking around the chapter; and suggested activities and assignments

Dr. Sam Copeland
Copeland has co-authored and published a chapter with Dr. Charles Holzer titled "Race, Ethnicity and the Epidemiology of Mental Disorders in Adults" in the "Handbook of Multicultural Mental Health, Assessment and Treatment of Diverse Populations" edited by Freddy A. Paniagua and Ann-Marie Yamada.

Linda Harris
Harris presented her paper titled "Cultural Competence and You: A Continuous Process" at the National Association of Social Workers Texas Conference in Houston.

School of Social Work Collaborations
Peter Simbi, Emmerenti Oliphant and Freddie Avant presented their paper titled "Approaches and Opportunities in Delivering Services to People Living with HIV and AIDS in a Rural Community in the USA" at the 18th Biennial International Consortium for Social Development in Uganda, Africa, July 15-19.

Steve Cooper, Wilma Cordova and Avant had a chapter titled "Working Together to Improve Services for People Living With HIV/AIDS: An Example of Service Delivery Network Development From Rural Northeast Texas" published in an edited book titled "Rural Social Work: Building and Sustaining Community Capacity" by Scales, Streeter and Cooper.

School of Social Work participates in national conference
Drs. Emmerentie Oliphant, professor, and Michael Doughty, assistant professor, presented their paper titled "Helping Clients Grow: Using Permaculture in Rural Social Work" at the 38th annual National Institute for Social Work and Human Services in Rural Areas Conference July 17-20, in Lancaster, Penn.

Oliphant; Dr. Kathleen Belanger, professor; Kathleen Spencer, University of North Dakota; and Nancy Young, Special Health Resources of Texas presented their paper titled "The Rural Assistance Center and Special Health Resources for Texas: A Demonstration of Support in Rural Service Delivery."

Oliphant; Wilma Cordova, associate professor; and Dr. Kim Rich-Rice, assistant professor; Nancy Young, Special Health Resources of Texas; and Sister Josephina Mwoleka, graduate student, presented their paper titled "HIV/AIDS and Women of Color in Rural East Texas: Building a Partnership Network to Enhance Commitment to Change."