College of Social Work Scholarship Celebration

2021–2022 Academic Year

Scholarship Recipients

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Jeanette Accorinti

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Cincinnati, OH
  • The Pamela M. Cusick Endowed Scholarship Fund in Geriatric Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Receiving this scholarship is an acknowledgement of the effort I have put towards getting into OSU’s MSW program and of the work that I have the potential to do in the future. It gives me a responsibility to pursue my academic studies with the sincerity and diligence they are do, but also to make sure my education finds its meaning in practice with the elderly. I am grateful for this chance I have been given to not only improve myself but the lives of those I will encounter.

How do you hope to change the world?

I want to shift the narrative of end-of-life care in the lives of people around me towards a place of understanding and acceptance so that one of our most vulnerable populations are lifted up, cared for, and celebrated for the lives they have lived. I want to work towards diversity and equity in end-of-life care in all of its dimensions: physical, emotional, and spiritual. These are long-term and abstract goals, so more than anything I hope to be a comfort and a listener for those who need it most.

Field Placement

Bella Care Hospice

Interest Area

Aging and End-of-Life Care

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Francisco Adame

  • He / Him / His
  • MSW II
  • Chicago, Il
  • James Edward Hagerty Fellowship and Scholarship in Community Organization
  • James Edward Hagerty Fellowships or Scholarship in Corrections
  • Mary C. Manning Scholarship

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I am honored to be a scholarship recipient. I feel a sense of humility and accomplishment knowing that honorable organizations are willing to support me in my educational journey. A journey that will lead to positive changes in youth across the country and beyond.

How do you hope to change the world?

I plan to become a therapist in my hometown of Chicago for a group home where I will work with adolescents. Later in my career, I plan to open a private practice where I will provide mental health services for underserved communities in the city. Destigmatizing mental health and advocating for my client’s rights are at the forefront of my mission.

Field Placement

UIC College Prep

Interest Area

Mental health support for adolescents that have experienced traumatic stress

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Phoebe Allebach

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Souderton, Pa
  • The Worthen/Dowler/Price Endowment Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

This scholarship has enabled me to take my first steps towards becoming a social worker. These steps are now being taken on a solid foundation, held firm by the knowledge that there are people who already believe in me, who in their gift of financial support, have relieved me of some of the stress tied up in living independently, working, and studying. Being a scholarship recipient has made it possible to tread in the direction of my dreams.

How do you hope to change the world?

I want to be an advocate for older adults in Columbus, working alongside them to ensure their community is an accessible, safe, inclusive, and joyful place to age. I hope to change the world by encouraging others to look through an age-friendly and age-positive lens, as too often, ageist beliefs impact our ability to see older adults as anything other than vulnerable. I am excited to help shape the way we see the older adults in our communities, by shifting our language and mindsets, to better serve them where, and as, they are.

Interest Area

Aging

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Fatoumata Bah

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Junior
  • Canal Winchester, OH
  • Mason Scholars Program Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

The financial help I receive to go to school reminds me that there are many people invested in my education and knowing this motivates me to work as hard as I can.

How do you hope to change the world?

One day, I will open a clinic that focuses on the mental and physical health of women. I want it to be a place where women can learn about their bodies and destigmatize their sexual health. My goal is to mix physical and mental healthcare in order to create the ultimate holistic experience.

Field Placement

Community Refugee and Immigrant Services (CRIS)

Interest Area

Immigrants/Refugees/International Social Work and Mental Health

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Olivia Ball

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Senior
  • Powell, OH
  • The Sara (Sally) E. and Robert (Bob) C. Delaney Endowed Scholarship Fund in Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means that I have the ability to continue my education without fear or hesitancy because of finances.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by making reproductive healthcare more accessible to all through community programming.

Field Placement

A Kid Again-Central Ohio Chapter

Interest Area

I am interested in research and reproductive healthcare policy writing.

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Blake Canowitz

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Columbus, OH
  • The Sarah Ellen Ely Endowment Fund
  • Dr. Joseph John Parnicky Scholarship for MRDD or Mental Health

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient has allowed me to fully immerse myself in the social work program at Ohio State. It has given me the opportunity to work towards my Master’s degree without the financial stress. It has been a tremendous help for me and my family and I am very grateful for the donors and the college for giving me this experience!

How do you hope to change the world?

I strive to educate others on the importance of mental health and self care. My education and experience within the College of Social Work has helped me gain a better understanding of how to engage with children and their families and meet them where they are in the change process. I hope to make a lasting impact on the families and children that I work with in order to make their lives a little bit easier.

Field Placement

Nationwide Children’s Hospital Behavioral Health

Interest Area

I am interested in working with children and families in the area of mental health.

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Qiuchang Cao

  • She / Her / Hers
  • PhD
  • China
  • The Professor Merriss Cornell Memorial Fund - College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

The Professor Merriss Cornell Memorial Fund - College of Social Work encourages me to continue learning about and conducting research with diverse older adults. Your generosity has also inspired me to help others and give back to the community.

How do you hope to change the world?

I am a doctoral candidate whose scholarship centers around the social participation and psychological well-being of diverse older adults, particularly older immigrants and refugees. After earning my Ph.D., I hope to dedicate my career to teaching and research in social work. Thanks to your support, I am one step closer to my goal.

Interest Area

Age-Friendly communities Social isolation and loneliness Social network analysis Mental health and psychological well-being Immigrants and refugee older adults

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Kelly Capitini

  • She / They
  • MSW I
  • Newark, OH
  • The Erika, Andra, and Inara Brubaker Endowed Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Domestic Violence and Child Welfare in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I am so grateful for the opportunity to receive this scholarship. It has allowed me to focus on my education and passion for community mental wellness while maintaining a balance at home with my own two children.

How do you hope to change the world?

I believe that the outcomes of our children are directly affected by the well-being of their parents. I hope to increase and improve services for birthing parents in Central Ohio to reduce both the stigma around perinatal mood disorders and maternal morbidity due to pregnancy-related factors. All birthing parents deserve their village, and I look forward to being a part of building that community.

Field Placement

Mid-Ohio Psychological Services

Interest Area

Maternal Mental Health

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Catherine Coolidge

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Columbus, OH
  • Hutchins Endowment Fund in Social Work Benefiting Veterinary Medicine

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

To me, this makes me feel valued as a master’s student, and as an individual who is working full time and pursuing my MSW. This scholarship helps to pay for my tuition so I can focus on being the best LSW I can be, and give my education the attention it deserves so I can continue to better and challenge myself.

How do you hope to change the world?

I have a vision of getting my DSW and doing research about how animal assisted social work in low-income communities can help with moral, mental health, and AOD struggles. With my DSW, I want to continue to teach and inspire BSSW students, as I was, to change the world. I hope to continue to advocate for change in the Social Work field, so that we can continue to change with the times.

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Cariah Cox

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Cincinnati, OH
  • The Robert Mason Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means someone else believed in my potential to not only succeed academically uplifting such a stressful financial burden, but also in my ability to make an impact in the feild of Social Work.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by being a Champion; an adult who will never give up on the opportunity youth I encounter understanding the power of connections. Although our time together may sometimes come to an end, I hope the knowledge they gain never do. I hope that they adhere to being their own self-agent for the rest of their lives taking pride in the power of becoming the best they can possible be.

Field Placement

L.E.A.D With Purpose

Interest Area

Transitional Housing for Opportunity Youth Education System Wrap Around Services

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Anna Crouser

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Concord Township, OH
  • The Master’s Endowed Scholarship Fund in Social Policy and Program Development

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient has affirmed that the work I am doing is valuable to the field and aligns with who I am and what I can offer. I am grateful to Dr. Wayne R. Moore and Mrs. Laura B. Kaufman for their continued support and encouragement of future social workers.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to continually advocate for social workers being in non-conventional spaces and explore how policy-related research and geographic sciences can contribute to social justice, environmental justice, and overall community health.

Field Placement

American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio

Interest Area

Policy Research

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James Davis Sr.

  • He / Him / His
  • ASAP
  • Mansfield, OH
  • Richard R. Medhurst and Genevieve H. Medhurst Scholarship in Social Welfare

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means I have tried my best to succeed. I appreciate the help and support of those who have helped me in my education in social work. I am grateful and humbled that I have people to thank for my accomplishments and for receiving financial help.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by showing people that they can move forward in any situation that feels difficult. I will continue to show others how self care and support will help change and impact the world.

Field Placement

Family Life Counseling and Psychiatric Services

Interest Area

Child Welfare and Mental Health

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Lauren DiLullo

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Sidney, OH
  • Judith Meezan Bayha Scholarship Fund
  • The Mayer & Dotty Rosenfeld Scholarship in the College Of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means being able to better my education without worrying about financial burdens. It means being able to follow my dreams of being a child welfare social worker without being held back by other barriers.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by making positive changes in my clients lives. Also to be a leader to be able to build a future for the clientele I serve.

Field Placement

Allen County Children Services

Interest Area

Child welfare

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Jennifer Doan

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Sophomore
  • Columbus, OH
  • Thelma Goodman Scholarship in Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means that I can continue my education without the stress of paying my tuition. It allows my parents to continue working and supporting my younger siblings. It has made my mother proud of me, and trust that I am capable myself which takes off the weight she carries for my family.

How do you hope to change the world?

I have been asked about how I would change the world in my last semester class, and I don’t think I can change the world. It is not like I don’t want to change the world for the better, but realistically I just hope to do my best in the field and be there for someone that may be struggling or needs help. Maybe I can make someone’s life a bit simpler by helping them with an application or help someone with little knowledge in English and fix this barrier for them. In all, I hope to provide support and be someone that people can reach, which is how I will change the world in little steps.

Interest Area

Immigration and Child Welfare

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Fiona Doherty

  • She / Her / Hers
  • PhD
  • Cherry Valley, NY
  • College of Social Work Alumni Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

The scholarship program demonstrates the immense support and generosity of the CSW community. Your unwavering commitment nourishes the next generation of change agents. I am overwhelmed with gratitude and hope to one day pay the favor forward to future scholars.

How do you hope to change the world?

Through applied research in the nexus of climate change and human well-being, I hope to use community-driven, interdisciplinary approaches to mitigate climate change impacts and enhance climate resilience among socially oppressed groups.

Interest Area

Eco social work; climate justice

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Ray Eads

  • He / Him / His
  • PhD
  • Austin, TX
  • Anna Marie Malia Robinson Endowed Scholarship Fund for Mental Health Research

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I am honored to have received this scholarship to support my research on mental health and trauma among children, adolescents, and families. Receiving this scholarship has enabled me to complete the data collection for my dissertation research on the role of parental empowerment and holistic body-mind-spirit well-being in intergenerational trauma transmission, which will help inform the development of solution-focused and holistic interventions to support youth and families impacted by trauma. The scholarship has also helped me to work toward my career goals of completing my PhD, becoming a professor of social work and contributing to the profession through research, teaching, and service.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by helping to prepare the next generation of social work professionals to empower families and communities and become agents of change for social, economic, and racial justice in our society. I also hope that my contributions through research and development of strengths-based and holistic interventions will help provide healing and support for vulnerable children, adolescents, and families.

Interest Area

Strengths-based and holistic interventions for healing youth and family trauma

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Raychel Edelsberg

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Parkland, Fl
  • The Erika, Andra, and Inara Brubaker Endowed Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Domestic Violence and Child Welfare in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient is a great honor. The College of Social Work is a place at Ohio State where all are welcome and having this scholarship gives me the opportunity to be a part of that community that welcomes everyone. Being a scholarship recipient is an honor because it is allowing me to pursue my passions, surrounded by the most supportive community in the world, making a difference day by day.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by working with children, the future of our world. I want to address the problems they face, the many inequalities they experience head on and assist them in succeeding to the best of their ability. I want to be the microphone that gives others the platform to be heard and listened to. My hope is to find meaningful work with children across the country in order to change the world on a large scale.

Field Placement

Franklin County Children Services

Interest Area

Child Welfare

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Maria Edmondson

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Senior
  • Cleveland, OH
  • College of Social Work Alumni Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

It means I am able to work towards my goals and focus on my education without having to worry so much about my financial situation.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to help children because they are not our future but our present.

Field Placement

Franklin County Children Services

Interest Area

Children

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Jadyn Ehrenberg

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Sophomore
  • Warren, NJ
  • The Erika, Andra, and Inara Brubaker Endowed Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Domestic Violence and Child Welfare in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

A scholarship recipient has meant so much to me. From a support aspect, it has showed that the social work community is here to support me throughout my education. Even though times may be difficult finically the community is here to assist me and watch me thrive in my education. Which means a lot especially since my family is far away.

How do you hope to change the world?

While taking social work classes I have been exposed to many injustices that exist in America. Which has caused me to want to get involved and make a differences. I hope to give people the opportunity to succeed. There are so many different minority populations that do not even have the access to success because of the barriers America puts on them. For example, those released from prison have no chance at success because they do not have homes, families or ability to get a job. That is not right since they served the time that the judge thought was appropriate. Overall, I hope to advocate for the inequality and change the access.

Interest Area

I am interested in Child Welfare and the incarcerated population.

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Alison Evans

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Senior
  • Columbus, OH
  • The Jeanette Zupancic Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

It means that I have been given the support needed to be able to work where I feel called and to be the best social worker I can be. I feel honored to be a recipient of the Jeanette Zupancic scholarship.

How do you hope to change the world?

I want to play a role in combatting human trafficking, locally and around the world.

Field Placement

Amethyst

Interest Area

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Megan Fisher

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Cridersville, OH
  • Matthew Carl Behling Memorial Scholarship Fund
  • David Moots Memorial Scholarship

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I am first generation college graduate and I couldn’t stop at undergrad. Having this scholarship made it possible for me to attend grad school... with advanced placement! My participation shows my children anything is possible and to not let finances be what stands in the way of pursuing your dreams.

How do you hope to change the world?

I don’t hope to change the world, I know that I already do. It is my goal to make sure others are seen and heard. This simple act has an exponential ripple effect of positivity and care. That, is how I will continue to change the world.

Field Placement

Coleman Health Services and Voices of Propserity (split internship)

Interest Area

Integrated body, mind and spirit social work; Substance use

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Emily Flores

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Yoakum, Tx
  • The Erika, Andra, and Inara Brubaker Endowed Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Domestic Violence and Child Welfare in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

This scholarship award gave me the opportunity to accomplish my dream goal of obtaining my Master’s in Social Work! All the hard work has finally paid off and I am truly blessed to have received this prestigous award in pursuit of my passion. Thank you for believing in me and I look forward to making a difference in other’s lives as you have made an impact in mine.

How do you hope to change the world?

Being in the service of others provides me with a sense of fulfillment and purpose in life that I wish for everyone to find. As a social worker, I can work in many different fields, with different populations, performing many different job functions. I can work with individuals, or I can work on a larger scale with communities as a whole. I can work with politicians to create programs and laws to better society. I can run a nonprofit organization. I can work as a clinical social worker. I can work in a hospital setting. I can work in a school setting. I can work in the justice system. The possibilities are endless. I hope to make a change in every setting and with every individual that I come across. Be the Change you wish to see in the world - Mahatma Gandhi

Field Placement

The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center

Interest Area

My areas of interest are working with Children and Families and/or Mental Health and Addictions in Medical Social Work.

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Megan Francis

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Centerville, OH
  • The Butch O’Neill Scholarship Fund in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means being given the opportunity to utilize my formal education to continue to advocate, educate, serve, support, empower, and collaborate with others in the journey towards social justice.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by addressing the impact of intergenerational trauma on families and, in particular, how it can influence substance use in youth/adolescence.

Field Placement

Syntero

Interest Area

Substance Use; Children and Adolescents

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Braydan Gaffin

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • West Union, OH
  • The Erika, Andra, and Inara Brubaker Endowed Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Domestic Violence and Child Welfare in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I am extremely grateful to have been selected as a scholarship recipient. This opportunity allows me to continue my educational career and continue to gaining knowledge to assist others!

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to use my knowledge gained to help anyone that I can. In my opinion, if I am able to help even one person, I feel that I have been successful!

Field Placement

Family Recovery Services

Interest Area

I have a passion for working with youth

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Anna Gardner

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Junior
  • Powell, OH
  • The Jeanette Zupancic Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

It is an honor to be distinguished as a scholarship recipient alongside many of my fellow Social Work classmates. To me, being a scholarship recipient has motivated me to continue my advocacy work in the healthcare world, despite the challenges provided by the ongoing pandemic.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to provide my future patients with the holistic healthcare they deserve in their times of need while serving as the liaison between medical personnel, patients, and their families. I plan on changing the world through advocating for equal access to adequate healthcare for all on both a micro and macro level.

Interest Area

Medical Social Work

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Emily Gemar

  • They / Them and She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Mesa, AZ
  • College of Social Work Alumni Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I am grateful for the support from the College of Social Work. Receiving this scholarship is a meaningful investment in my future, and an endorsement in my work as a working graduate student.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to continue to develop and advocate for policy interventions to advance community and social justice in local communities throughout Ohio, and beyond. My education in social work will inform and advance the work that I do.

Field Placement

Ohio Alliance to End Sexual Violence

Interest Area

Violence Prevention & Policy; Community & Social Justice

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Brittany Gillis

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Coldwater, OH
  • The Anne Hayes Memorial Scholarship for Academic Excellence Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

For several years after my undergraduate degree, I continued to put off pursuing my MSW for no other reason than I wasn’t sure how I was going to pay for it and I wasn’t ready to accrue even more student loan debt. I finally decided to just go for it and I spent a lot of time praying that I would figure out the finances along the way. When I received the notice that I was the recipient of the Anne Hayes scholarship, I was overwhelmed with hope and joy that I, in fact, was going to find a way to get through school. Without this scholarship assistance, I would have been in a troubling place to pay for school (along with the cost of living) and that would have no doubt impacted my success in the program. Because of this financial award, I was able to stress less on my financial situation and put more focus and attention into being a student; learning and growing in my social work skills. I am happy to share that my first semester ended with straight A’s and I truly believe that was a result of having the financial privilege to navigate grad school, in which this scholarship was a huge part of. I am honored and incredibly grateful to be the recipient of this scholarship.

How do you hope to change the world?

Social work makes the world go round. As social workers we dedicate our careers to embracing differences, seeking justice, and being the change. I hope to change the world through advocacy, collaboration, and using my tools and resources to improve the lives of those around me; specifically those who are vulnerable. I hope to change the world by teaching young minds the necessary skills to navigate and manage feelings. I want to instill in children at a young age the verbiage to communicate our wants and needs. What a beautiful world we would live in if children were given the proper tools and space to effectively communicate. I can only wonder what incredible, world changing adults they would then grow to become.

Field Placement

Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Power and Potential

Interest Area

Child and Youth Services

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Ja’net Graham

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Dayton, OH
  • Evelyn Moreida Krislov Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means the world to me! It means that someone sees something special enough in me to invest in my future and the work that I’ll do for others throughout my career.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by influencing each and every person, at each and every point of contact. I think that small changes make the world a better place to live in. We are the result of each and every decision we make each and everyday.

Field Placement

Oncology and Hematology Department- Chalmers P. Wylie Ambulatory Care Center

Interest Area

Medical Social Work and Human Resources

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Tyler Guminski

  • He / Him / His
  • ASAP
  • Zanesville, OH
  • The Anna Marie Mills Memorial Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means a lot to me. It relieves a lot of stresses related to how I were to fund my education. Instead of focusing so much on working outside of school to make money, I could turn more of my attention in school on my grades and coursework, and doing them to the best of my ability. I no longer feel as overwhelmed as I did before, and a huge weight was lifted off my shoulders after receiving this scholarship because of personal and family reasons of what I am going through at the time. Along with this, It makes me feel good that people heard my story and believe in me as a social worker, and that they wanted to help fund my education so that I can be in the field to help make some meaningful change. It means a lot that people have this faith in me, and makes me want to work harder to be the best social worker that I can be.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to help change the world one person at a time. I believe that a small change in someone’s own individual life can have a huge impact down the road. If I could help one person out who was in need, then it was all worth it, and hopefully then that person would then help someone else, and so on. I, especially, want to change the world by working with youth. The youth are the future of this world, and if I can help make a positive impact on the young populations that I work with, they would then grow to have happier more stable lives, and they then will be the ones leading the way for future generations, making positive impacts and decisions that will benefit society. I believe change starts with just one person. One small deed can make an impact. I want to be a social worker that will advocate for justice, changes, and for good, and if it can just help one person, than I believe I’ve already changed the world, because I’ve made that difference that may seem small to many, but it’ll mean the world to that individual. I want to strive for that difference every day while I am in the field, with no matter who I am working with.

Field Placement

Columbus Metropolitan Library

Interest Area

School Social Work Mental Health

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Stephen Hale

  • He / Him / His
  • ASAP
  • Columbus, OH
  • Jim Lantz Memorial Scholarship Fund for Social Work Students

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Receiving the Jim Lantz Memorial Scholarship Fund for Social Work has impacted my higher education at OSU. I hear the stories of those that have benefited from the CSW program prior to me and am encouraged to excel by generous donors such as the Jim Lantz Fund.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to bring awareness to the opioid epidemic happening in the homeless community

Field Placement

Urban Encounter Ministries

Interest Area

Mental Health

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William Harper

  • He / Him / His
  • MSW I
  • Cincinnati, OH
  • The Anne Hayes Memorial Scholarship for Academic Excellence Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient is truly an honor because the Anne Hayes Memorial scholarship requires academic excellence and I am grateful that OSU and the Department of Social Work considered me to be a quality candidate. The Ohio State University is a prestigious institution and the fact that I was able to receive such an award inspires me to continue to strive for academic excellence. It is admirable that the institution and donors are willing to financially support individuals who may not be able to pay for their education otherwise. I thought I was at an impasse when considering pursuing a second master’s because of the financial burden, but this award was a sign that I should move forward in pursuing my dream of becoming a change agent.

How do you hope to change the world?

As a child, there were many institutions that supported my parents and contributed to my basic needs being met. So I, of course, want to pay it forward. In my role as the Student Support Coordinator of a public charter school, I have the privilege of providing gifts and bill pay for families in need. A parent cried tears of joy while in my office because she had not been able to buy gifts for her children this Christmas. At that moment, I felt that things had come full circle because I was often in that same situation as a child. More importantly, I believe that many problems that exist in the world stem from the home environment. While counseling in a high school, I realized that most of the time children who are referred for mental health services are actually reacting to an unhealthy environment in which they have no control. Diagnosing, medicating, and giving a child 50 minutes of nurturing is pointless if they’re going to return to their abusive environment each day. I hope to move away from addressing the symptoms and move towards intervening at the root of the issues.

Interest Area

Child Welfare; Non-profit Management

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Tessa Harvey

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Loudonville, OH
  • The Anne Hayes Memorial Scholarship for Academic Excellence Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I feel supported in my efforts of becoming a clinical social worker, so that I am able to use my knowledge and skills to offer services to my clients and give back to my community.

How do you hope to change the world?

I may not be able to change the world, but each step a client makes towards attaining their goals and making process in their life is enough for me.

Field Placement

OneEighty, Justice Center Counselor

Interest Area

Child and youth services Criminal Justice

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Iman Hassan

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Mogadishu
  • Social Work Scholarship for Underrepresented New American Communities

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

It means that I have the opportunity to complete my education.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world through social justice advocacy.

Field Placement

Refugees Northwest/Lutheran Community Services Northwest

Interest Area

Clinical Social Work

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Sumer Idries

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Dayton, OH
  • Emerson and Miriam Wollam Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I am incredibly grateful to be a scholarship recipient, especially during these trying and uncertain times. This scholarship has allowed me to focus on my studies and my field placement by alleviating some of the financial pressure that comes with obtaining a graduate degree. It has not only provided relief to me, but also to my family who has worked hard to help me achieve my educational goals throughout my undergraduate and graduate careers. I truly feel blessed and I hope to one day be able to provide the same type of relief to social work students in the future.

How do you hope to change the world?

The resilience of the children and families that I have worked with in this field inspires me to keep serving my community and this population as a social worker/therapist. I hope to empower young people and help guide them through their journeys to healing, while providing a safe space for them to develop their identities. In the long term, I plan to get involved in policy work relating to improving the access and quality of mental health services, specifically for vulnerable pediatric populations.

Field Placement

Nationwide Children’s Hospital Behavioral Health

Interest Area

Mental Health Children/Youth and Families

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Amadea Jennings

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Senior
  • Columbus, OH
  • Rick Delaney Endowed Scholarship in Child Welfare

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

To me it gives me a sense of accomplishment. Being that my background is that of a foster child it just shows how hard work pays off and that I can do anything I put my mind to. It also allows me to feel so much gratitude for the one who has taken a chance on me and helped me on this journey.

How do you hope to change the world?

I know that in child welfare and working with youth in the foster care system it can be difficult and things may not always go as planned. However If I can make an impact on even just one child or person it to me means I have made a change in this world. When we have good productive people in society I think this allows for a world that can be changed.

Field Placement

Ohio Guide Stone

Interest Area

Child Welfare

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Jamahl Jones

  • He / Him / His
  • MSW I
  • Toledo, OH
  • The Erika, Andra, and Inara Brubaker Endowed Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Domestic Violence and Child Welfare in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

It means everything to me as I have never been awarded any type of scholarship in my undergraduate studies. So not only does it affirm everything I’ve done up to now academically and civically, but it also validates everything that I will do once I graduate with my MSW. I am forever indebted to our donors.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by providing exceptional mental health services to a community — African Americans — that often does not have the privilege of receiving them. After graduating with my MSW I hope to provide clinical services to underserved youth who are often under diagnosed and under treated for the mental health implications they may have which hinders their development as a result person. I hope to destigmatize mental health in the African American community in hopes that they will be more open to seeking services to help their quality of life especially in childhood.

Field Placement

Kipp Columbus

Interest Area

Education and Mental Health

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Sharmin Kabir

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Powell, OH
  • Social Work Scholarship for Underrepresented New American Communities

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

It makes me feel represented and valued as someone who is a minority. I also feel like I am part of the community and I can also use this scholarship for the betterment of myself and my future generations.

How do you hope to change the world?

If I was ever given a power to eliminate one thing in the world, it would be to eliminate mental illnesses. I want to help people who suffer from mental illnesses and help them live a normal life. That is also why I chose this field, because even if I am not able to wipe out mental illnesses completely, if I am able to help a few people maintain a normal lifestyle and live their lives, I would still feel accomplished. I would still feel like I have contributed to make a change towards making the world a better place.

Field Placement

Ohio Guidestone

Interest Area

Mental health and substance abuse

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Peyton Kidder

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Hillsboro, OH
  • The Anne Hayes Memorial Scholarship for Academic Excellence Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means I get to pursue the career that I want & provide meaningful help to people who are struggling.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to provide mental health services to people who have the most difficulty finding and receiving services, especially Spanish-speaking people who struggle to find help in their native language.

Field Placement

PrimaryOne Health

Interest Area

Mental Health

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Elizabeth Kleinhenz

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Wooster, OH
  • The Nancy A. and Warriet Savage III Endowed Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I am pursuing a three-year dual degree to help me reach my goals. My scholarship has meant less financial stress for the duration of my program. It has also meant deepening my connection to the College of Social Work and my commitment to the work we share.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change our state by increasing capacity to prevent and mitigate adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) through medical social work and public health programming. Ohio has the opportunity to reduce the burden of many mental health, physical health, and social needs by addressing this issue and I am eager to help make it happen.

Field Placement

Nationwide Children’s Hospital Medical Center

Interest Area

Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs)

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Madeline Lent

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Columbus, OH
  • The C. C. Stillman Fellowship in Community Organization

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I feel immense gratitude being a scholarship recipient. This scholarship allows me to focus more on my studies as I pursue my MSW. Instead of having to worry about the financial burden that comes along with grad school. I am one step closer to reaching my dreams and helping my community, thank you!

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by being a social justice advocate for those in my community. I aim to achieve this by focusing my efforts through community organization, public policy, and program development. I have a particular interest working with survivors of human trafficking rehabilitate back into society.

Field Placement

Coalition on Homelessness and Housing in Ohio (COHHIO)

Interest Area

Community Organization and Public Policy

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Abigail Leslein

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Logan, OH
  • The Joseph Palmer Scholarship in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Receiving this scholarship made it possible for me to pursue my MSW. I am currently working with an anti-trafficking organization and wanted to be better equipped to help the women that our organization serves. It is because I received this generous scholarship that I can continue my education and make an even larger impact.

How do you hope to change the world?

I am passionate about working with women who have been trafficked as well as those experiencing mental health issues. I believe that pursuing my MSW will allow me to make a difference in individual lives as well as systemic change. Human trafficking is a major issue in our world and there is a need for more people to step up and fight to end in the injustice.

Field Placement

Out of Darkness

Interest Area

Substance Abuse and Mental Health

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Naomi Lindsay

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Senior
  • Dayton, OH
  • The Ohio State Fund for the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

As a first generation college graduate student it means the world to me to be able to receive a scholarship. It means that someone else sees how hard I am trying to make my mark in this field and believes in me.

How do you hope to change the world?

In my own efforts I hope to change the world by implementing programs to help those who are incarcerated and transitioning out of being incarcerated. I hope that the programs I create help and change the way people see those with a record and most importantly help how they see theirselves. Even if it is one person I can help to me that is still changing the world in my eyes.

Field Placement

Montgomery County Law Office of the Public Defender

Interest Area

Criminal Justice Reform

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Brittany Lipper

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Toledo, OH
  • Nancy E. Fitzgivens Endowed Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I am so honored to be a scholarship recipient. As a first generation college student, I was very concerned when I started college that I wouldn’t be able to afford it. I have worked so hard to get where I am today, and am so incredibly grateful to have received scholarships along the way that allow me to stress less about money so I am able to focus more on my education.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by helping to make trauma-informed care more well known across all professions and providing children with a safe place to heal and grow.

Field Placement

Nisonger Center at OSU Wexner

Interest Area

Child Welfare and Trauma-Informed Care

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Raven Lynch

  • She / Her / Hers
  • PhD
  • Chillicothe, OH
  • The Selma and Alexander W. Erlen Endowment Fund for Doctoral Support

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient for me means (1) people see value in the work that I do, so much so that they want to support my education to ensure I can keep doing it - which is an amazing feeling; and (2) my financial burden is a little lighter, so I can spend more time focusing on my research and teaching, which is what I really want to be doing with my time!

How do you hope to change the world?

I doubt that I’ll ever be able to change the world, but I know my research is new and innovative in the field of multiracial identity development because it focuses on adolescents in schools and the practice of social-emotional learning. The goal of social-emotional learning is holistic development, and without research like mine and my colleagues, there’s a huge hole in understanding for the fastest-growing demographic in the US. So, while my research may not change the whole world, it is impactful in my corner of the world, and knowing it may help multiracial youth attend schools that have a better understanding of their needs excites me and keeps me motivated.

Interest Area

Multiracial adolescents and racial identity development

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Madalyn Lyons

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Amherst, OH
  • The Marlena Kay Richards-Cox Endowed Scholarship

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient has meant very much to me. The recognition of my past academic successes and support for my future goals has been such a reward. Having the support to continue my education through receiving monetary means and knowing someone else believes in my future goals within the field enough to offer me a scholarship has helped to further develop my passion for this profession.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by making any impact possible in the lives of the clients I come in contact with. By simply showing kindness and lending a listening ear to others is how I wish to change the world one interaction at a time.

Field Placement

Columbus Springs Dublin

Interest Area

Mental Health or Substance Use Clinical Social Work

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Mackenzie Moore

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Perrysburg, OH
  • Robert G. Paterson Scholarship
  • John H. Smith Scholarship

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient is an honor. Receiving the Jean Wills Memorial Scholarship means that my goals, dreams, and aspirations as a social worker are supported by my OSU community. It also has made my dreams of change more attainable as it has alleviated financial burden and has allowed me to focus on my education. This investment in my academic career has motivated me to be a great student and agent of change. I plan to repay it by dedicating my career to social justice and service.

How do you hope to change the world?

My goal is to work in a school setting to create a safe and welcoming space for children to reach their maximum potential. I think that I can create a lot of change at the school level by focusing on anti-racism, anti-oppression, and strengths based approaches. Throughout my school social work career, I hope to advocate and amplify the voices of students, parents, and those within the community to create change they would like to see in their school.

Field Placement

Perrysburg Junior High and Perrysburg High School

Interest Area

Children & families

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Gracia Nibigira

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Senior
  • Columbus, OH
  • The Erika, Andra, and Inara Brubaker Endowed Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Domestic Violence and Child Welfare in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

It was a great honor for me to receive this scholarship. I was able to focus more on my learning without worrying about the financial burden. It helped improve my grades and made my learning experience smoother and better. I will forever be grateful.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to work assiduously and serve people at the best of my abilities with the help of the knowledge i gained from these 4 years formation.

Field Placement

Vineyard Community Center

Interest Area

Child Welfare; Immigration and Refugees Services

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Olivia Osborn

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Eldridge, Ia
  • Dr. Carol J. Greco-Delaney Endowed Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means that I am able to pursue my goal of being a social worker. With the time demands of the social work program, I am fortunate for the financial assistance the scholarship provides, so I am able to devote the majority of my time to my studies. It also shows me that I have chosen a school that wants to see me succeed and accomplish my goals.

How do you hope to change the world?

I think changing the world starts at an individual and community level. Therefore, I plan to use social work to help individuals in my community from marginalized populations in a nonprofit mental health setting. I have recently accepted a job offer as an outpatient psychotherapist at the agency where I completed my practicum, so I am excited to continue my work with these clients and help them overcome the barriers they face.

Field Placement

Vera French Community Mental Health Center in Davenport, Iowa

Interest Area

Community mental health

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Kennedy Parrish

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Senior
  • Powell, OH
  • The Jeanette Zupancic Fund
  • The Dodie Thomas Memorial Scholarship

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I am so grateful to be a scholarship recipient because it communicates that people are rooting for me and invested in my success. Because of scholarships, I can pursue my goals and passions with my whole self without financial burdens or reservations. Receiving a scholarship is a validating experience because it affirms that all of my hard work and sacrifices are not for nothing.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to make a difference in the world by making a difference in the individual lives of children and families in my community. As a school social worker, I hope to change the world by creating safe learning environments that meet the needs of all students, fighting for equity in education-related policy, and supporting students and their families in all aspects of human wellbeing.

Field Placement

After-School All-Stars

Interest Area

School social work

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Fei Pei

  • She / Her / Hers
  • PhD
  • New York
  • The Professor Merriss Cornell Memorial Fund - College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

It is such an honor to be a recipient of the award. It encouraged me to continue working on my research that can really help those children in need.

How do you hope to change the world?

I want to promote children’s development by changing their disadvantaged living environment.

Interest Area

Child development, Neighborhood environment

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Felix Poteate

  • He / Him / His
  • MSW II
  • Dayton, OH
  • The Sean and Anna Delaney Endowed Scholarship in Veteran Services for the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Receiving this Scholarship has been truly a blessing. It has allowed me to impact my community in such a positive way. Helping others see educational opportunities are available at any age. Dreams can be made into reality.

How do you hope to change the world?

Help more people live and thrive. Despite circumstances.

Field Placement

NYAP National Youth Advocate Program

Interest Area

Mental Health and Substance Abuse

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Michael Pritchard

  • He / Him / His
  • ASAP
  • Plymouth, OH
  • The Anne Hayes Memorial Scholarship for Academic Excellence Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

It is a great honor to have been chosen for such a prestigious award. It has served as a source of inspiration through this grueling process of balancing an intensified MSW program while still functioning as a husband and father. This award has been a consistent motivator to continue to earn my place as a recipient and to be the best social worker I can be.

How do you hope to change the world?

After I returned from my deployment to Iraq in 2011, I wanted to use that experience as a source of inspiration to do some good in the world. This eventually pushed me in the direction of pursuing a career in social work, specifically helping veterans with their unique experiences. Long term, I would like to focus on improving the transition from military to civilian life. The current protocols leave a significant gap in service for those reentering the civilian sector, as a great deal of veterans are largely unaware how to access benefits afforded to them.

Field Placement

Complex Pain Management and Whole Health at the Chalmers P. Wylie VA Ambulatory Care Center.

Interest Area

Clinical social work with veterans. Community and advocacy work for veterans transitioning from military to civilian life.

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Rebecca Ready

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Church Point, La
  • The Erika, Andra, and Inara Brubaker Endowed Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Domestic Violence and Child Welfare in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

This scholarship is not only an affirmation of all the hard work I have put into my school work, but also a resource to help me accomplish my dreams. I’ve wanted to be a social worker and get my MSW for quite sometime and scholarships like this help make that not only possible, but helps alleviate financial stress of graduate school as well.

How do you hope to change the world?

To help disadvantaged children to maximize their potential, but being a constant support to help them to be their best physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. I want to be that person who is in their corner working alongside of them as they work towards success.

Field Placement

Saint Landry Parish Pupil Appraisal Center

Interest Area

Child and Youth Services School Social Work

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Mackenzie Reinhart

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • New Riegel
  • The Jeanette Zupancic Memorial Scholarship Fund in Child Welfare

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient has had such a positive impact in my life. This scholarship has given me the ability to focus more time and energy on my academics, internship, and full-time job. This scholarship has allowed me to continue to be a positive light and advocate for the children that I serve.

How do you hope to change the world?

Every day I come to work as an School Social Worker, I have the ability to strengthen the minds of elementary age students. At this age, I am able to work to to prevent the effects that toxic stress and trauma can have on children by giving the students and their families the resources and tools to overcome adversity.

Field Placement

Marion City Schools

Interest Area

School Social Work

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Tara Rodriquez

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Baltimore, Md
  • Victor Edward Bloomfield Memorial Scholarship Fund
  • Edwin Sharp Burdell Memorial Fund
  • The Margaret P. and Peter F. Cavanaugh Scholarship Fund in Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means a number of things to me—that I might be able to pay off my student loans before retirement; that my hard work and passion have been appreciated and recognized; and that I’m truly on the right path if these generous donors have been willing to believe in my potential to improve things. Being a scholarship recipient has been a ray of joy in a difficult year too!

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world on an individual-by-individual level by helping folks heal from their trauma and overcome substance use disorders through compassion, kindness, and meeting them where they are on their journey. I hope to change the world on a societal level by advocating for drug policy reform and fighting the stigmatization and marginalization of people who use drugs.

Field Placement

NEST Harm Reduction

Interest Area

Substance Use Psychedelic Medicine

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Olivia Rozsits

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Dublin, OH
  • H. Stanley and Shelomith D. Eichenauer Annual Scholarship

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient allowed me the opportunity to return to my favorite university to pursue my master’s degree in social work. After spending time in the professional world, I was exploring opportunities to further my education and be more involved in creating a positive impact. Receiving this scholarship re-energized and motivated me to explore this passion and invest in my professional purpose. It is an honor to feel supported in pursuing my interests and having the backing to make a difference in the lives of others.

How do you hope to change the world?

I entered the MSW program with an open mind and a passion to serve others. As an experienced community leader in the nonprofit world, I was yearning to do more and serve with direct impact. I hope to work with youth and adolescents in their development to pursue their greatest potential. My goal is to motivate others to invest in future generations to create a better world together.

Field Placement

Community and Youth Collaborative Institute (CAYCI)

Interest Area

Adolescent and Youth Development

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Hannah Saenz

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Denver, Co
  • The Erika, Andra, and Inara Brubaker Endowed Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Domestic Violence and Child Welfare in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient has meant so much to me. It has provided me with the opportunity to devote all my time and resources into my education and practice. It has alleviated so much stress, and given me the stability I needed to excel.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by making a difference in peoples lives on their journey to health. I believe even changing one person’s life, makes a difference. It will be an honor to walk alongside people as they overcome their hardships and watch them succeed in not only their mental health, but also their relational, physical, and spiritual health.

Field Placement

The Buckeye Ranch

Interest Area

Trauma and Crisis Intervention; Family & Couples Counseling

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Destiny Saffell

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Columbus, OH
  • Joan L. Crawford Endowment Scholarship Fund in Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient mean everything to me because this provided me with an opporunitty to furthur my education. I am the first person in my family to pursue a Masters Degree therefore, this opportunity allowed for me to be a role model for my younger family members. Anything is possible with motivation,dedication and hard work.

How do you hope to change the world?

I would hope to change the world by making an impact on the at-ris youth in low-income communities. I woould love to see a world where families living in urban and surburban have access to the same resources and educational opportunities. I hope to change the world by working in a macro level of social work in my future.

Field Placement

Sun Behavorial Hospital

Interest Area

I am interested in Clinical Social Work and working with at-risk communities.

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Victoria Sanders

  • She / They
  • Junior
  • Reynoldsburg, OH
  • The Erika, Andra, and Inara Brubaker Endowed Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Domestic Violence and Child Welfare in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

It means that there are people who believe in me and the need to fund the social work profession. It gives me further drive to complete my education and do my best in my future placements.

How do you hope to change the world?

I want to make as much positive change in people’s lives as possible, even in small ways.

Field Placement

Ethiopian Tewahedo Social Services

Interest Area

Domestic Abuse Shelter Mental Health Crisis Center

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Meagan Shirlen

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Hillsborough, NC
  • Donna Theresa and Preston McMurry Jr. Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being the recipient of this scholarship has helped to make studying for my Master’s in Social Work possible. I had been told in the past that I was missing my calling to become a therapist, and I’m grateful to have the opportunity to follow that call now. Thank you to the donors for your generous support. You have helped to change my own life, and I will use this gift to pay it forward in my work.

How do you hope to change the world?

It has been my honor to work hard in my program with OSU, so that I may be best able to serve my future clients struggling with trauma, including those who have been affected by domestic and sexual violence. I’m dedicated to alleviating suffering and providing therapeutic support to others in having the kind of experience of life they would most like to have. I hope to help my clients to feel accepted and accept themselves in a way that allows for growth and nurtures resilience in the face of life’s many challenges.

Field Placement

I am working with The Farm at Penny Lane, a facility providing group therapy programs to adults living with severe and persistent mental illness. It is located near Chapel Hill, North Carolina and is affiliated with the UNC School of Medicine, UNC School of Social Work, and the UNC Center for Excellence in Community Mental Health.

Interest Area

I am most interested in becoming a Licensed Clinical Social Worker practicing therapy with several populations including those who have been impacted by trauma and sexual violence.

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Caroline Sippin

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Coram, NY
  • Franklin H. Patterson Memorial Fund
  • Social Work Faculty and Staff Endowment Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means making my future a reality. The privilege of receiving scholarships through the College of Social Work has afforded me with once in a lifetime experiences, such as working with The House of Representatives and the upcoming advocacy trip to Washington D.C. I was able to quit my full-time job in Boston and move to Columbus for the in person experience I so desperately craved in a master’s program.

How do you hope to change the world?

Throughout the remainder of this program, I hope to decide between my passion of being a therapist and servicing underrepresented communities or doing systemic policy work to create longterm change for populations who are often disregarded in legislation. Whichever route I decide to embark on, I know my time here at The Ohio State University College of Social Work will have prepared me in ways other programs wouldn’t have through direct experience and supervision in and out of the classroom.

Field Placement

Ohio General Assembly-Assistant Minority Leader Thomas West

Interest Area

Mental Health Advocacy/Policy Work

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Loretta Thomas Brunson

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW I
  • Oak Vale, Ms
  • The Erika, Andra, and Inara Brubaker Endowed Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Domestic Violence and Child Welfare in the College of Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

This scholarship allows me to attend the College of Social Work, The Ohio State University, a highly ranked university. This scholarship gives me an opportunity to participate in a highly ranked online program an Online Master program that provides flexibility for me to earn a Social Work Master’s Degree and to advance my career. It assists me with a financial burden, relief me from wondering how to pay for tuition, and it helps me focus energy on my studies. It is a chance for me to learn from great minds to learn from instructors who are supportive, that care and encourage me to reach for new heights. This scholarship gives me the opportunity to meet and study with a diverse body of peers around the world. This scholarship gives me hope for a bright future and it encourages to live my dream.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by helping the most vulnerable; I want to help the youth. My goal is to own and operate a licensed 24- hour safe haven care facility for those with no families. A facility with a multi-disciplinary team that will serve and provide essential needs for adolescents that include love, food, clothing. shelter, medical care, counseling, treatment for substance misuse and mental health, life skills, education, and employment. My vision is to partnership with various entities on both micro and macro levels to make a positive difference in the world.

Field Placement

Southern Mississippi Planning and Development District, Picayune, MS

Interest Area

My interest areas are Substance Misuse and Mental Health.

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Matthew Tippit

  • He / Him / His
  • ASAP
  • Columbus, OH
  • Folds Family Endowment Fund for the Benefit of the College of Social Work
  • Social Work Minority Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

The first time I received a scholarship from The College of Social Work and its amazing donors, it meant the world to me, but being a recipient in two different years has left me speechless. Receiving these scholarships lets me know that I am doing something right and I should continue walking down this path, and for that, I am forever grateful. I can say without out doubt these excellent scholarships have shown me that I am a part of something bigger than myself, and I look forward to paying the opportunity forward one day.

How do you hope to change the world?

In the past year, changing the world has been something that I have thought about often. My answer to this question would depend on what day you asked me, but today, my answer is political action. With so many systematic issues in today’s society, I see no other way to create a better future. However, with that said, I’m not sure that I am the person to get the job done, but that thinking leads to one of my favorite quotes: “I’m not saying I’m gonna change the world, but I guarantee that I will spark the brain that will change the world.” ~ Tupac Shakur. I can’t say for sure what my answer means for my future, but I hope it’s positive and I leave the world a better place than I found it.

Field Placement

The Ohio House of Representatives

Interest Area

Black Mental Health and Politics

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Caley Utter

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Junior
  • Lexington,OH
  • The Thelma Zisenwine Rogovin Endowed Scholarship Fund in Social Work
  • Mary Goldia Spafford Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

It means the world to me that I was chosen not only for one but two scholarships. This showed me that hard work does really pay off and it just pushes me to continue to stay focused and strive to pursue a career in what I love.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the lives of each child I make contact with in one way or another. I know that I cannot help them all, but I hope to leave an impact on each child I work with.

Field Placement

See Kids Dream

Interest Area

Child abuse

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Ryan Van Curen

  • He / Him and They / Them
  • MSW II
  • Vermilion, OH
  • The Dr. Milton S. Rosner Scholarship Fund for Academic Excellence in Social Work

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

To me, being a scholarship recipient makes me proud of the hard work I have done to get here. It also means a lot of my stress being relieved which gives me more time and energy to focus on my education and give the best care to my clients now and in the future. I am very grateful for the opportunity.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by making every person I interact with’s life a little better while also working to make systemic changes that make the world more equitable for everyone. I want to do what I can to ensure every person has what they need to live a happy, fulfilling life.

Field Placement

Arts Impact Middle School, Columbus City Schools

Interest Area

School social work

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Leah Walkowski

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Senior
  • Columbus, OH
  • Mark E. Ain Memorial Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Receiving a scholarship has helped me believe, with humility, that I will actually graduate from college, and that I have the potential to truly make a difference. It has helped what seemed abstract, impossible, and out of reach become a reality. The scholarship has validated the work I have done to get me to where I am today and has held me accountable this year, keeping me focused on my goals and education. The Mark E. Ain Scholarship is an honor to receive, especially as a student with a disability. I feel blessed to have the support of the College of Social Work, and to witness and experience their commitment to disability justice, and work towards collective access for all bodies and minds.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to continue to look to and work with my peers to build a world where we are all free. I hope to use my lived experience to help others with lived experience. I will also fight until the very end for sex workers rights.

Field Placement

Columbus Metropolitan Library

Interest Area

Community Mental Health and Peer Support Sex Workers Rights, Health, and Safety

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Jayeesha Williams

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Senior
  • Cleveland, OH
  • Mason Scholars Program Fund
  • The Undergraduate Honors Award

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Receiving this scholarship was a great honor to me and my family. It affirms that hard work is surely being paid off! It has greatly assisted me financially in the last year of my undergraduate career. This scholarship signifies that truly I am on the road to success, and my future career goals and aspirations. I plan to finish my last semester strong, and walk into the next season of my life ready for what social work has for me!

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by implementing education policies that will acquire resources and opportunities for underfunded and under-resourced schools. I would also like to advocate for an authentic and true history curriculum to be taught throughout America, as it pertains to marginalized people groups.

Field Placement

OhioGuidestone

Interest Area

School Social Work

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Leia Withee

  • She / Her / Hers
  • MSW II
  • Worthington, OH
  • The Professor Milton Ain Fund for Practicum Support

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient has been incredibly important in helping me be able to complete my degree and be set up for success when I graduate in May.

How do you hope to change the world?

I’m hoping to work on the year-round team of a summer camp and make the mental health support and training that campers and staff receive more effective. I want to make camp more accessible for any individual who wants to participate and be able to have a meaningful and successful summer.

Field Placement

Buckeye Ranch Bonner Academy Day Treatment Program

Interest Area

Mental Health

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Jasmine Wooten

  • She / Her / Hers
  • ASAP
  • Columbus, OH
  • The Jean Wills Memorial Scholarship Fund

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means a portion of the burden of financial stress has been alleviated allowing me to focus more on my academics, and achieve successful outcomes.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by using my life experience, education, and developed skills to empower individuals and families; amplifying the voices and experiences of the underrepresented, and working to establish a lasting change within my community.

Field Placement

Franklin County Municipal Court Self-Help resource center

Interest Area

My areas of interest include working with single mothers by encouraging and supporting them through their journey to achieve higher education, financial stability, and personal growth. As well as developing programming to support positive Co-parenting.

Public Impact Scholars

The newly established Public Impact Scholarship is a current-use, need-based fund that provides graduating students a one-time scholarship to fund costs associated with entering the profession, including, but not limited to, the cost of up to two licensure exams, licensing and professional clothing. The graduate — or Public Impact Fellow — will be provided with continuing education credits (CEUs) through the College for a period of two years to maintain license post-graduation. Additionally, to support students who seek employment in traditionally underserved areas, should the student be employed by an agency that pays a salary equal to 85 percent or less of the average starting salary for a new social worker, the College will also provide awards to the graduate in the first and second year of employment to supplement the graduate’s salary as available funds allow.

This scholarship is part of the larger Public Impact Initiative, which responds to the continuing challenges of the post-graduate costs of entry into the social work profession and the low salaries that often exist in the highest need areas. This initiative is an innovative, mutually beneficial partnership between the College of Social Work and community agencies, increasing the ability of the agency to hire and retain newly graduated social work students.

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Tiara Brookshire

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Graduated
  • Dayton, OH
  • Public Impact Scholarship

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means so much to me. There are many times when I’ve felt like I was looked over. Now having the opportunity to help further my career with the help of donors who believes in what I want to do means a lot.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by giving resources to people in need. There are so many things that I want to do in the future, I’m not sure where I should start. The main thing I want to do is help children grow up in a safe environment where they can thrive and grow into successful adults and help young mothers.

Field Placement

Safy of Dayton

Interest Area

Children Services and School Social Work

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Jade Davis

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Public Impact Scholarship

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

I would like to first off day thank you again to the sponsors who decided to give us this scholarship money. This is a huge deal, and once again I thank you. When I started going to OSU Newark, I had thoughts and dreams of graduating. I knew it was something I wanted and needed to do, but sometimes I would truly doubt myself if I could actually receive this degree. I was exposed to social workers due to my sister needing them to come into our home. I would sneak near the balcony, and listen to every word. After their sessions, I would then express my interest in the social work with her. This truly sparked a fire in me and allowed me to know and see that this was something I wanted to do. When I applied for this scholarship, I was hesitate if I would actually get the scholarship, but something told me to apply. I met the criteria, I put my heart into my essay, and I submitted it. When I received this scholarship, I was able to not only apply for my licensure exam, but I was also able to buy groceries, professional work clothing and study materials. I am so grateful for the people who are still generous, and save lives like mine. Thank you for giving to the social work community, and pouring into my future.

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Hunter Merchant

  • She / Her / Hers
  • Graduated
  • Marion, OH
  • Public Impact Scholarship

What does being a scholarship recipient mean to you?

Being a scholarship recipient means that I am able to pursue my passions without having to focus too much on the financial side of it. College is expensive and social workers new to the career field post graduation often don’t get paid what they’re worth. The Public Impact Scholarship has allowed me to focus more on finding something I enjoy doing and am passionate about instead of worrying about how I was going to afford my expenses. Without scholarships and support from the Ohio State community, I would not have been able to graduate Magna Cum Laude with my Bachelors of Science in Social Work. To me, they mean everything.

How do you hope to change the world?

I hope to change the world by not working solely to change the world. Instead, I hope to change the people and the communities I work along side thus creating ripple effects throughout other people and other communities. There is an old saying that goes if you give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. If you teach a man how to fish, you feed him for a lifetime. Struggling communities often don’t need or want a special knight in shinning armor to save them, instead they need strong advocacy and support to discover the skills they already possess to save themselves. I may not change the lives of every single person on the planet, but I have the ability and knowledge to be able to help the communities around me, and for me, that is enough. Heal the people, heal the communities, and then you can begin to see healing in the world.

Field Placement

I completed my field placement with Mid Ohio Food Bank in Grove City and Marion City School’s Nutrition Services in Marion during the 2020-2021 academic year.

Interest Area

Food insecurity and community advocacy

Not pictured: Scarles Ulerio, Public Impact Scholarship recipient.

Scholarship Donors

Thank you to our

Scholarship Donors

  • Hannah and Philip Adelman
  • Shirley Ain
  • Patricia MacWood Alvarez
  • Dianna K. Barrett
  • Samira Beckwith
  • John and Nancy Behling
  • Joseph and Mary Borgo
  • Robin Rosenfeld Brenneman
  • W. Michael Brittenback
  • Inara Brubaker
  • Suzanne and Lawrence Capitini
  • The Annie E. Casey Foundation
  • John W. Cox
  • Richard Crawford
  • Pamela Cusick
  • CSW Alumni Board
  • Carol Greco-Delaney and Rick Delaney
  • Judith Eggers
  • H. Stanley Eichenauer
  • John, Joyce, and Sarah Ely
  • Jonathon and Judith Erlen
  • Wilbert S. Folds
  • Denise Goodman
  • Kristin W. Goodwillie
  • Steven B. Hayes
  • Norbert and Nancy Hertl
  • Lynette Hoehn
  • Wayne Moore & Laura Kaufman
  • Marvin Krislov
  • Jan E. Lantz
  • David and Cathy Levy
  • Robert Mason
  • Preston V. McMurry, Jr.
  • Jacquelyn Meshelemiah
  • Gretchen O’Connor
  • Michael O’Sullivan
  • Butch O’Neill, Jr.
  • Mark Palmer
  • Matthew Palmer
  • Anna Marie Robinson
  • Victoria Rogovin-Dobkin
  • Karen B. Russell
  • Warriet Savage III
  • Lynn Gutches Snowden and Herbert Snowden
  • James and Katherine Stahler
  • Bev Toomey
  • Carlton Triolo-Sapp
  • Robert Cross Wollam
  • Carolyn Wrage

Thank you to all of those who support our students. You have impacted not only the lives of our students but the many whom they serve. If you are interested in making a donation to any of our scholarships, please visit osu.edu/giving or contact Melanie Wehmeyer, Director of Development at wehmeyer.8@osu.edu.

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