Dr. Jason Matejkowski awarded 2022 Suzanne and Harry Statland Award for Excellence in Research and Scholarship

To acknowledge outstanding contributions to the KU School of Social Welfare’s mission through the advancement of science and knowledge through scholarship and research, we are proud to announce that this year’s Suzanne and Harry Statland Award recipient is Dr. Jason Matejkowski.

Jason’s extraordinary contributions shape knowledge, 
address gaps, and inform practice and policy related to integrated services for adults living with serious mental illness (SMI) who experience challenges with legal and criminal justice systems. Jason’s work has led to him gaining a national and international reputation as a key scholar in this field of inquiry.

Jason has been identified as one of the “top empirically driven researchers and clinicians across multiple fields” contributing to significant social work and criminal justice collections including The SAGE Encyclopedia of Criminal Psychology and The Encyclopedia of Social Work. Jason’s work has been cited nearly 1,100 times by researchers across the globe and every continent. Further demonstrating his importance to the field, he has been sought out and invited to serve as a Consulting Expert for the US Department of Justice as part of a two-year investigation of a state’s parole release decision-making process and outcomes involving individuals with mental illness. The results of this investigation informed the parole release process of another state. Abroad, Jason has been sought as an expert grant reviewer for the Swiss National Science Foundation and the Agency for Health Quality and Assessment of Catalonia.

Jason’s research has included to securement of over $3.7 million in federal funding and has supported expanding the number of social work professionals who are prepared to serve populations across the lifespan in integrated health and behavioral health care, specifically in rural and medically underserved areas. This federally-funded program has increased access to care and reduced health disparities in high need communities in the State of Kansas and has supported access to education for more than 220 clinical specialization MSW students at the University of Kansas through provision of $10,000 student scholarships. In addition to providing training and over $2 million to directly support School of Social Welfare students, this work is producing empirical research that informs social work education and practice within these integrated care settings.

Moving forward, Jason’s research trajectory includes deeper and broader assessment of contextual factors that influence implementation and outcomes with this population including racial discrimination, mental health, and criminal stigma. Jason’s work will advance the integration of mental health treatment models with program components that address criminogenic needs, methods to increase engagement in these services, and the effectiveness of these combined approaches at reducing criminal legal system involvement and increasing the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities.