Category Archives: News & Events

Congratulations to Dr. Dawn Anderson-Butcher and Dr. Alicia Bunger—both have been named 2017 Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR) Fellows.

SSWR Fellows are members who have served with distinction to advance the mission of the Society—to advance, disseminate, and translate research that addresses issues of social work practice and policy and promotes a diverse, equitable and just society.

The SSWR Fellowship has been established by the Society to honor and to recognize current SSWR members for their individual accomplishments, leadership and contribution to SSWR as a scientific society. SSWR Fellows serve as role models and mentors for those pursuing careers in social work research and will continue to actively advance the mission of the Society.

For more information about Anderson-Butcher, click here.

For more information about Bunger, click here.

To learn more about the SSWR Fellowship Program, click here.

Warren Keith  CSWCongratulations to Dr. Keith Warren and Dr. Nathan Doogan (PhD ’14)–their unique research recently caught the attention of New York Magazine and is posted on its Science of Us website in the story “When Ex-cons Change Their Vocabulary, They Stay Out of Jail.”
The Ohio State University also featured their research in the article “Use your words: Written prisoner interactions predict whether they’ll clean up their acts. Residents in peer-driven rehab less likely to reoffend when word choices change.”

For more information on Warren, click here.
For more information on Doogan, click here.

maggieCongratulations to College of Social Work BSSW student Maggie Griffin who has been selected as a winner of the first-ever President’s Prize. This is the highest university recognition bestowed on exceptional students committed to social change. Special recognition also goes to the college’s Dr. Michelle Kaiser, Griffin’s mentor.

The President’s Prize is given to two graduating seniors whose proposal has the most potential for bold impact on a significant societal challenge. Griffin’s winning project addressed the reality that 20 percent of children in Franklin Country live in a food desert. Her intervention, The UNITY Fridge project, will establish community gardens and place outdoor refrigerators at public schools in food desert regions across Columbus. This will allow students to bring home a bag of fresh produce for 40 weeks.

As an inaugural recipient of this award, Griffin will become a full-time employee of The Ohio State University for 12 months and receive a salary as well as an additional $50,000 for operational expenses for her yearlong project.

Griffin won a rigorous, multi-round competition that saw applications from 57 students across campus. The College of Social Work had three semi-finalists and two finalists.

For more information, check out the following:
Video and Press Release
OSU Website Announcement

CLAPP JOHNCongratulations to Dr. John Clapp who was recently featured in the article “Here’s how young people decide when they’re drunk ‘enough,’ according to math” for his research and unique collaboration with engineering.

College of Social Work doctoral student Danielle Ruderman collaborated with Clapp on the research. Other collaborators include Ohio State engineer Kevin Passino, Universidad de los Andes engineer Luis Felipe Giraldo, a San Diego State University research team and Ohio State doctoral student Hugo Gonzalez.

Click here to read the full story.







CSW 2016 HOF Luncheon StillsThe College of Social Work honored its 2016 Alumni Hall of Fame recipients at its annual Induction Ceremony, held on Friday, September 30, at Ohio State’s Fawcett Center. Each year, the college honors alumni who have gone above and beyond to make a difference in the world. These leaders are nominated by our alumni—nearly 14,000 social workers living in the United States and abroad.

This year, five alumni received the Distinguished Career Award and one alumnus received the Distinguished Recent Alumus/a Award. The 2016 Hall of Fame Award recipients are:

Distinguished Career Award

  • David R. Grove
  • Dr. Annette Jefferson
  • Ami Peacock
  • Jim Stahler
  • Kay Werk

Distinguished Recent Alumus/a Award

  • Jimmy Portner


Congratulations to these inspiring ambassadors! For more detailed information on each recipient, click here.



DSCF2445Nearly 300 College of Social Work students kicked off the 2016-17 school year during orientation at Stillman Hall on August 22. Staff and faculty were on hand to provide plenty of information and resources to undergraduate, MSW and PhD students throughout the day and answer students’ questions one-on-one. In between sessions, students were also invited to enjoy a cookout in the back lot. A group of staff, faculty and students even had time for a quick picture in front of the building. A good time was had by all! Have a great year, students!


MichelleKaiserlowresWhy should where you live determine how long you live? That’s one of the food security issues Dr. Michelle Kaiser addresses in the Ohio State Alumni Magazine’s July/August issue featuring a special report on food security.

Click here to check out her story. Also read the entire special report.

Kaiser was recently honored with The Ohio State University’s highest teaching award, the 2016 Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching. She was chosen out of more than 3,000 Ohio State faculty.


Pictured left to right: Drs. Dabelko-Schoeny, Kaiser and Jarrott

Congratulations to Dr. Shannon Jarrott, Dr. Holly Dabelko-Schoeny (co-principal investigators) and Dr. Michelle Kaiser (consultant) for receiving a $1.2 million five-year grant from the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture through the Children, Youth and Families at Risk (CYFAR) program. The grant is for the project “Food for a Long Life: A Community-Based Intergenerational Project In Ohio and Virginia.” Jarrott, Dabelko-Schoeny and Kaiser will be using a community-based participatory action research (CBPAR) approach with intergenerational strategies to increase healthy food access, consumption and education for at-risk young children and their families living in high poverty areas in the Near East Side of Columbus, Ohio, and Lynchburg, Virginia.

“The Food for a Long Life project allows our college to harness the abilities of community partners and families to creatively address food insecurity issues through intergenerational strategies,” said Dabelko-Schoeny. “ Lasting change can only come from community-based participation and action where the expertise of those served, community leaders and the university is shared to create new ways to address pressing needs.”

Community partners include experts in early childhood development, nutrition and food security, community engagement, and intergenerational programming. Columbus partners include Franklin County Extension, Columbus Early Learning Centers, PACT, the Mid-Ohio Foodbank, and the Champion Intergenerational Enrichment and Education Center.

“We are excited to take what was learned in my current CYFAR grant (Transforming Relationships through Intergenerational Programs) to support the success and sustainability of Food for a Long Life,” added Jarrott. “That project lends invaluable practical and technical experience, training materials, and evaluation tools to Food for a Long Life. We look forward to continuing to build the knowledge base for utilizing intergenerational strategies to engage the community in responding to diverse needs and opportunities.”

No one wants to miss a loved one’s graduation, but what if you’re on the other side of the country or across the ocean?


The Ohio State University College of Social Work solved that problem for those faraway guests wishing to attend its annual pre-commencement ceremony known as the Evening of Recognition. More than 60 guests from all over the United States—17 states to be exact and as far away as Hawaii—streamed live to watch their graduating family and friends recognized, receive honors and walk the stage. In all, about 412 students receiving BSSW, MSW and PhD degrees were recognized at Mershon Auditorium. Onlookers, both in person and via the live feed, were also invited to tweet shout outs and well wishes to the graduates on a 12 x 16-foot screen displayed above the stage.

The college, known for being technology-forward, added live streaming and tweeting during the ceremony several years ago. The ceremony, unofficially themed “Look out world, here comes help!,” was a perfect blend of celebration, technology and social media at their best.

To watch the ceremony, click here.

For the first time in its history, The Ohio State University College of Social Work’s graduate program is ranked in the top 10 among public universities and in the top 20 among public and private colleges and universities in the United States.

According to the U.S. News & World Report’s 2017 edition of “America’s Best Graduate Schools,” the college ranks 9th and 17th, respectively. The ranking of 17th is out of 220 social work programs nationally. The score is based on a survey, conducted every four years, of academics at peer institutions. Some of the factors academics consider are the rigor of the curriculum, quality of doctoral students, innovation in programming, quality of faculty research and impact in the community. In 2012, the college ranked 26th and 15th, and 31st and 19th in 2008.

“This is really a meaningful movement in a ranking system where it is notoriously hard to move at all, let alone achieve a jump such as this,” said College of Social Work Dean Tom Gregoire. “Our college, as a community, has achieved its highest rankings ever. Our hard work is reflected in this national recognition.”

The huge jump in rankings comes nearly a year after Gregoire was reappointed dean through June 30, 2020. Since becoming dean in 2010, he has made it a priority to develop innovations in teaching, research and funding that will advance the College of Social Work through the 21st century. In 2012, the college introduced a new, extremely dynamic curriculum redesigned at the BSSW, MSW and PhD levels, empowering social work graduates to be better prepared to provide leadership and scholarship and understand society’s most vexing social problems.

The redesigned curriculum was soon followed by a push toward technology which resulted in iPads being provided to all of the college’s honors students, faculty and staff for research, teaching and field work. The college was the first unit on Ohio State’s campus to make such a leap, aimed at developing the technology as a teaching and learning skill. The move resulted in the nation’s first three social work courses on the Apple content management system, iTunes U, as well as a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on human trafficking, taught by the college’s Dr. Jacquelyn Meshelemiah. The MOOC attracted more than 30,000 students from 187 nations, with between 5,000 and 14,000 active students in any given week.

Another faculty member, Dr. Holly Dabelko-Schoeny, incorporated technology to meet educational objectives in her courses. She used FaceTime to bring in practitioners to help classes see real-world applications, the college’s iPad-equipped classroom space to let students record each other and practice interpersonal skills and the app Poll Everywhere to survey students in real class time.

“I want technology to find its way into the classroom, not because it’s novel or cute, but because it engages people in a broader way around their learning,” said Gregoire. “Integrating technology into the classroom so our students can put it into practice is critical to our program, and to social work as a whole. The most effective social-work practitioners will be those who adapt as the technology evolves.”

Gregoire also recognized the imperative to establish an online presence for the college. In 2013-14, the College of Social Work offered 58 sections of 20 different courses online, enrolling 1,106 students. Just three years before, the college had no online courses. The college will be offering its first fully online graduate-level ASAP (Advanced Standing Alternate Program) in autumn 2016.

The improved rankings are indicative of other milestones.

As an extension of its online mission, the college expanded its undergraduate program to regional campuses in Lima, Newark, Mansfield and Marion. The move not only increased enrollment, it helped social service providers in all four communities, where the need for social work graduates has largely gone unmet. Also in his first term as dean, Gregoire worked aggressively to raise the national profile of the college by recruiting noted researchers and helping bring the Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Drug Misuse Prevention and Recovery to Ohio State.

Other achievements since the last rankings include:

  • Becoming the first of three programs at OSU to offer an international undergraduate track that allows students to prepare for practice abroad.
  • Developing the first social work doctoral program designed to prepare students for careers as scholars in translational research.
  • Creating or expanding research, teaching, and service collaboratives with campus partners in Nursing, Law, Pharmacy, Student Life, Engineering, Public Health, Food Agriculture and Environmental Health, Internal Medicine, Psychiatry, Emergency Medicine, Integrative Medicine, Education and Human Ecology, and Athletics.
  • Exceeding its fundraising goals and expanded alumni activities in central Ohio and outside the state.

“Ohio State’s College of Social Work is a great place to teach, engage in the community, and conduct research,” added Gregoire. “And we won’t stand still as the world changes around us.”