Degrees & Programs

Bates, Samantha

PhD Candidate

Areas of Interest
Access and retention in higher education
Emerging adult mental health
College and career readiness
School social work practice
Positive youth development
School and community partnerships


Samantha Bates is a Licensed Master of Social Work (LMSW) and Graduate Research Associate in her third year of the doctoral program. Bates obtained her MSW from Louisiana State University in 2012.  Her research interests focus on access and retention to higher education settings with a focus on college and career readiness, as well as emerging adult mental health. More specifically, her research aims to identify nonacademic barriers which prevent low-income and first-generation youth from obtaining a postsecondary education degree. Bates works with several different research initiatives and projects, including the Community and Youth Collaborative Institute (CAYCI;, which strives to inform research, practice, workforce preparation, and policy related to school social work, family support, positive youth development, and school-family-community partnerships. In addition, Bates serves as a Graduate Program Coordinator for OSU LiFEsports (, a university-wide Initiative focused on enhancing the quality of youth development opportunities for youth, especially those who are most vulnerable. Bates has published several articles in well-respected social work and social science journals, and co-authored three book chapters during her time as a graduate student. Bates was recently awarded the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship for the 2016-2017 academic year, and currently serves on the Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR) Doctoral Student Taskforce.