1 SCHOOL OF EDUCATION & HUMAN SERVICES Fall 2014 Alumni Newsletter Volume 3 SEHS Impacting Local Communities Dean Robert Barnett s remarks on SEHS changes In this Issue: Early Childhood Educators in Italy 2 ECDC Offers Evening Care 3 The New Social Work Department 4-5 New Faculty 4 Soup Per Bowl Event 5 MCC & UM-Flint Agreement 6 Center for Educator Preparation 7 Greetings from the School of Education and Human Services! Our fall issue of the alumni newsletter showcases the continuing transformation of the School and updates you on some important changes, events, and new initiatives in Social Work, Education, the Early Childhood Development Center, and our new Center for Educator Preparation. Faculty and staff have been hard at work implementing new programs that are changing the ways in which we educate our future social workers and educators. The biggest change, perhaps, has been a change in leadership. The Education Department has elected Dr. Mary Jo Finney as department chair for a three year term. Dr. Finney, Associate Professor of Education, was instrumental in helping us achieve national accreditation of our educator program. The Social Work Department also welcomes a new Chair, Dr. Otrude Moyo, Associate Professor of Social Work. Dr. Moyo comes to us from the University of Wisconsin-Au Claire and brings a depth and breadth of teaching and leadership experience to bear on her new position. Continued on Page 2
2 Page 2 The Transformation of SEHS from Page 1 With two strong leaders in place, the departments are taking their success in stride; both departments are expanding existing academic programs and creating new student-based curriculum and experiences to best prepare our future leaders for the ever-changing, global professions they will serve. The Early Childhood Development Center (ECDC) continues to serve a diverse population of students and parents, with increased attention on low-income and high-need families. By securing local, state, and federal grants, the Center has expanded its reach into the community and has enrolled more low-income families than ever before. Grant funding has also made it possible to extend reduced rates for evening care to children whose parents attend UM-Flint. Our rapidly growing Social Work Department launched the fall term with the addition of three new tenure track faculty. The department has renewed energy around its current projects and undertakings. Establishment of an all online minor in substance abuse treatment is off to a terrific start, and the all online major in substance abuse treatment is going through the approval process ahead of a Fall 2016 start date. Faculty and staff also are working to redefine social work field experiences and internships in ways that give students more hands-on training before entering the profession. A stronger, more student focused program has already begun to emerge, and students could not be happier about the positive changes. With a strong commitment to service and engaged learning, the Social Work Department is poised for tremendous growth in the years to come. As you enjoy catching up with all of the events and initiatives under way in SEHS, feel free to contact us to learn more and share your updates. We also invite you to join us for the upcoming Graduation Celebration on Thursday, December 11th. Your presence and support is important to us because as alumni, you are valuable members of the SEHS family. Enjoy the rest of this beautiful fall weather! Early Childhood Educators in Italy The Early Childhood Development Center (ECDC) is a lab school strongly inspired by the work of educators in Reggio Emilia, Italy. These Italian educators have a powerful view of children as active citizens and contributing members who have an interest in constructing their own learning. The approach has a strong image of a child and sees them as competent, resourceful, curious, imaginative, inventive, and possess a desire to interact and communicate with others. Many of the ECDC teachers feel a connection with these educators as they value and respect children and their learning in much the same way. For years it has been a goal and dream to visit Reggio Emilia, Italy and learn from these educators first hand. This opportunity was provided through the School of Education and Human Services during the summer semester of Three ECDC head teachers, two directors and one SEHS faculty received funding for a two week study tour in Florence, Reggio Emilia, and Venice, Italy with other educators and students from around Michigan. While in Italy, they were immersed in the culture of the community and experienced a life very different from the United States. The ECDC teachers found the Loris Malaguzzi International Centre of Reggio Emilia, Italy to be an enlightening experience. While there, they visited Ray of Light Atelier and explored using light and shadow. They learned how to use every day recycled materials, digital technology, and lighting to enhance children s learning. They also attended sessions led by experienced Reggio educators and were provided with a question and answer time as well. This experience was reaffirming to know that the ECDC is on the right path with their Reggio-inspired approach in Flint, MI. The entire study trip was incredibly meaningful to the work of the ECDC and would not have been possible without SEHS resources and donor support. It truly was a dream come true made possible by the kindness and generosity of others devoted to supporting higher education. Best wishes, Bob Barnett, Dean
3 Page 3 Education s Early Childhood Studies Minor This Fall, 2014, UM-Flint s Education Department rolled out a new minor in Early Childhood Studies. This program is open to any student regardless of their major, and is an extension of the early childhood education programs already offered. It is the first of its kind for the university and highlights the importance and value of early childhood education. Young children provide a window into understanding how humans function and learn, said Associate Professor Aviva Dorfman. She added that, Understanding and knowledge of young children is essential to many professions and areas of life. Anyone planning to work in family law, social work, criminal justice, nursing, physical therapy, psychology, medical studies, urban planning, architecture, or performing arts, or anyone who is or may wish to become a parent can benefit from fundamental knowledge of the field of early childhood. The new Early Childhood Studies Minor provides interested individuals a basic introduction to child development, early childhood education, and new understanding of young children, their families and community, as well as broader societal issues. The program is hoping to attract students from across all disciplines in the university in part to encourage interdisciplinary cooperation among faculty who may teach elective courses in the minor program. Having students from different backgrounds studying together will enhance and enrich classroom discussions and facilitate the development of relationships in the student body. It is also a professional development opportunity for the faculty. Opening our teaching to a new audience means learning how to speak in new, more inclusive ways about our field and about its relevance to all walks of life, said Assistant Professor Christine Kenney. The Early Childhood faculty is very excited about the new program. The development of a minor that is intended for people who are not seeking teacher certification broadens the population of students who will be developing awareness and experience in the field. Ultimately the aim of the program is to create a society that is more knowledgeable about children, families, and their needs. Early Childhood Development Center Provides Evening Care The ECDC is a living laboratory where adults come to learn alongside children. The program is designed to promote the development of the total individual by helping each child develop skills in the areas of physical, social-emotional, language, cognition, and creativity utilizing the Reggio Emilia inspired approach. With the growing waitlist at the ECDC, evening care started in January 2014 where the University of Michigan-Flint s Early Childhood Development Center hours went from closing at 6:00pm to closing at 10:00pm, Monday through Thursday. College students take advantage of our later Continued on Page 7
4 Page 4 The New Social W New Social Work Faculty a W d b C a st b g Dr. Otrude Moyo Dr. Jessica Camp Dr. Kathleen Levinstein Otrude N. Moyo, PhD is an associate professor and new chair of Social Work Department. She holds a doctoral degree in social policy from Brandeis University. Her MSW degree is from the University of Southern Illinois Carbondale, with an emphasis in children, youth and families. She has experience in international project monitoring and evaluation in natural resources management and has worked as a policy analyst for US federal policies impacting children birth to three. Dr. Moyo has taught and conducted research internationally, in southern Africa and the United Kingdom. She has published several articles and book chapters addressing social development issues in southern Africa, social welfare, diversity and multicultural living, understanding quality of life and inequality issues. Dr. Moyo s scholarship interest is in indigenous practices and decolonizing methodologies and is currently working on a book about understanding expressions of Ubuntu as a philosophy of life. Jessica Camp, PhD is a new assistant professor in Social Work Department. She graduated with her PhD in Social Work from Wayne State University in She teaches research methodology, statistics, and social welfare policy courses for the BSW students. Her goal as a professor is to help students become comfortable and proficient using research as a tool to be effective and efficient practitioners and policy advocates. Dr. Camp s research focuses on extreme poverty and inequality in the United States. Recent work has explored the following: the interaction of race, gender, and disability on economic and labor market disparities, changes in social welfare policy and the well-being of working women, and the role of medical social workers in providing care for clients with heart failure. Her future goals are to examine the role that serious mental illnesses and substance abuse disorders are met with social exclusion, homelessness, and incarceration. Kathleen Levinstein, PhD is a new assistant professor in Social Work. She graduated with her PhD in Social Work from NYU School of Social Work. Levinstein is a political activist who has dedicated her life to ceasing the abuse of human beings with autism and similar conditions. Having three children with autism, Levinstein is personally invested in studying autism and how it is perceived in culture. Before coming to UM-Flint, Levinstein worked for Magellan Health Services as a Senior Clinical Manager for members with autism. She also was CEO of the Dr. Levinstein Therapy Group for over 28 years and was an adjunct associate professor at NYU School of Social Work. She is currently working on two anthologies, one entited At the Expense of Joy: An Anthology of ABA Survivors. She s also working on an anthology attempting to ensure that human beings with autism are given the chance to speak about their autism. p d a ti th p D d st in
5 Page 5 Work Department r Major Program Expansion Planned With an all online minor in substance abuse treatment the Department of Social Work has set its sights on developing and delivering an all online major in SAT to begin as early as Fall The program, according to Department Chair Otrude Moyo, will hopefully offer a Substance Abuse Treatment major where students will become certified and licensed by the state after completion of the program. The development of new programs is part of a five-year growth plan that was developed based on evolving student need, as well as ever-changing needs for additional training by professionals already in the field. The Department also plans to pursue a minor program of study in Crisis Disaster Management, a third phase in the department s ongoing efforts to attract new students and to train existing professionals in critical needs areas. Soup Per Bowl Event Helps Homeless Each year the Social Work Department teams up with Metro Community Development to unite the community by building a bridge between diverse groups of individuals at the Soup Per Bowl event. The event raises money for the Homeless Prevention Endowment Fund through the sale of handmade ceramic bowls by UMFlint students and facutly and food donated by local restaurants. Soup Per Bowl is an initiative to break down societal barriers and unite diverse members of the Flint community. Metro Community Development is a non-profit organization with the charge to serve as a leader and catalyst to expand and enhance quality housing and community development initiatives and partnerships in Flint and Genesee County, leading to the creation of stable and vibrant neighborhoods and communities. The overall charge of the COC is to eliminate homelessness in Genesee County. Modeled after the Empty Bowls initiative, the community will have the opportunity to purchase ceramic bowls for $15, which will include soup, sandwich, dessert, beverage, spoken word and live music. In addition, there will be a best soup contest that will include celebrity judges from the community. The entire Greater Flint community is invited to attend the Soup Per Bowl event on January 30 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Center For Hope in Flint to support this partnership and good cause.
6 Page 6 Early Childhood Articulation Agreement with Mott Community College The University of Michigan-Flint and Mott Community College (MCC) have created an Early Childhood Articulation Agreement between the two schools. It was recently signed at an October 1 ceremony. The agreement aims to ease the transfer from MCC s early childhood program to UM-Flint for students seeking an elementary teacher certification and a specialization endorsement in early childhood. The articulation agreement will provide a transfer guide for students and create a system for automatic transfer of specific course credit from MCC to UM-Flint. The agreement clarifies transfer equivalents, enters the equivalents automatically into students records, and aims to eliminate past problems of students unnecessarily repeating courses. This agreement will greatly benefit our students, added MCC Early Childhood Education Program Coordinator Becky Garske. It enables students to build on their success in Mott College s accredited Early Childhood Education program. UM-Flint faculty see the agreement leading to a stronger Early Childhood Education program at both institutions. We re very excited about the completion of this agreement, said UM-Flint Associate Professor Aviva Dorfman. It is the culmination of a collaborative process and the result of cooperation between our two programs. Even more importantly, the agreement contributes to a stronger and more unified field of early childhood programs in our region. The partnership between UM-Flint and MCC showcases how the two schools are working together to improve the experiences of early childhood education students by putting their needs first and looking for viable solutions to issues affecting both schools. Social Work and Education Departments Welcome New Chairs The School of Education and Human Services is pleased to welcome new Chairpersons in the Department of Social Work and the Department of Education. Dr. Otrude Moyo, Chair of the Social Work Department and Associate Professor of Social Work, began her tenure with SEHS on July 1, and has brought with her an abundance of experience, expertise, and new energy. Her arrival has been met with high praise from the department by faculty, staff, and students. Dr. Otrude comes to us most recently from the University of Wisconsin-Au Claire, where she served as associate professor in the Social Work Department. Dr. Moyo s expertise and research interests extend into areas of critical multicultural education, women studies, global awareness, and learning that engages stu- dents in the community. She is primarily concerned with understanding approaches to human service delivery in the climate of increased corporate culture, while her major research involves critical issues of diversity and cultural competencies. Dr. Moyo already is fully engaged with her department, the wider university, and the local and global communities. The Department of Education is proud to announce the appointment of Dr. Mary Jo Finney as Chair as of July 1. Dr. Finney served as interim department chair last year and played a major role in redefining the organization and culture of the Education Department. She is the former Director of the Thompson Center for Learning and Teaching, as well as the founder of the University of Michigan-Flint Reading Center, a facility that works with young children to improve their literacy skills. Dr. Finney s research involves work that is connected to another program she directs the Master of Arts in Education (with certification) in small, urban high schools. This work has transformed the training of teachers for the inner city, urban context and has gained the attention of the Michigan Department of Education. Dr. Finney currently is partnering with members of the MDE to create a working model of this program for other institutions of higher education in Michigan. The faculty and staff of SEHS are pleased to welcome two strong leaders into the school and stand ready to support them as they lead the departments through what is sure to be an exciting era of quality program growth. Welcome!
7 Page 7 Evening Care from Page 3 hours to attend evening classes and keep their children in a safe and secure environment. Others taking advantage of evening care are students in the community attending Baker College and Mott Community College as well as second shift working families. Evening childcare hours begin at 4:30pm with three classrooms open for infants and toddlers, preschool-age, and school age. Children enjoy playing outside, exploring the classroom while experiencing engaging activities, and eating a family style dinner and evening snack. Depending on the individual child s needs some children may rest while others enjoy a variety of materials. The ECDC is the only Nationally Accredited childcare center through The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) in Genesee County servicing families with children 8 weeks through 12 years of age. For more information on evening childcare contact us at www. umflint.edu/ecdc. Center for Educator Preparation Opens for Students Student teachers were surprised at their August orientation to find a new Center committed to their success. The Center for Educator Preparation opened mid-august in 410 French Hall. It is dedicated to providing a one-stop place for anyone interested in becoming early childhood, elementary, or secondary educators. The Center, in an effort to provide service to students as they near the end of their undergraduate career, is where student teachers receive professional development seminars in special education and parent communication skills. The Center provides additional help and guidance with preparing for the Professional Readiness Examination (PRE) or Michigan Teacher Test for Certification (MTTC). The Center also works closely with the Student Success Center to provide workshops in resume writing, interview skills, and public speaking. After providing the financial support for student teachers and their mentors to attend the Hero Round Table at The Whiting on September 19th and 20th, Center Director Sherryl McLaughlin said that sponsoring professional development opportunities like the Hero Round Table will provide yet another value-added component for why employers should choose UM-Flint trained teachers.
8 Page 8 SAVE THE DATE Upcoming Events Univeristy of Michigan-Flint School of Education and Human Services 444 David M. French Hall 303 E. Kearsley Street Flint, MI SEHS Graduation Celebration Thursday, December 11, :00-7:30p.m. Michigan Rooms RSVP to Soup Per Bowl Event Friday, January 30, :00-7:00p.m. Center for Hope 517 East 5th Avenue SUPPORTING YOUR ALMA MATER The School of Education and Human Services is thankful for the personal investment of donors. By making a gift, you will help to strengthen the learning experiences for students aspiring to careers as educators and social work professionals. Donations can be made at flint-sehs. TELL US YOUR STORY We want to hear what you ve been up to since graduation. Where are you working, what community projects are you involved in? You may be featured in the next alumni newsletter. Marketing Coordinator Kayla Cornell umflint.edu with your story. With the Completely Online Substance Abuse Treatment Minor, it s personal. Why a Substance Abuse Treatment Minor? Online courses Can be completed in 3 semesters Classes run Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer Semesters Prepares you for the Certified Addictions Counselor process Courses Needed: SAT 202: Problems with Substance Abuse SAT 320: Substance Abuse Theory and Treatment SAT 330: Substance Abuse Among Special Populations SAT 340: Intervention Strategies SAT 345: Social Prevention of Substance Abuse With a completely online minor you can finish in as little as three semesters, UM-Flint understands that your desire to help others is personal. The Social Work Department s Substance Abuse Treatment Minor provides you with a cuttingedge, engaging education while preparing you for the workforce in just a few semesters. Find the School of Education and Human Services For More Information: To learn more about the Substance Abuse Treatment Minor, contact the Social Work Department at (810)
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