Research Highlights


Researcher Studying Care and Safety Practices in Home-based Care During COVID-19 Pandemic

Researcher Studying Care and Safety Practices in Home-based Care During COVID-19 Pandemic

In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, when the world was reeling from the growing threat to our health and wellbeing, Carrie Wendel-Hummell’s thoughts went immediately to a group of people she knows well and is passionate about serving: older adults, people with disabilities, and the workers and caregivers who make it possible for these folks to remain in their own homes.

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KU Social Welfare Leader Has Focused Career on Ending Poverty

KU Social Welfare Leader Has Focused Career on Ending Poverty

Deborah Adams has spent years working with colleagues at KU and beyond to end poverty. She is passionate about helping develop policies and practices that will address income and asset poverty.

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Initiative Supports Well-being of Native American Families in Kansas

Initiative Supports Well-being of Native American Families in Kansas

KSNAF team leading the implementation of a five-year initiative funded by a Regional Partnership Grant from the Children’s Bureau, a federal agency focused on improving the live of children and families

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ROM Equips Child Welfare Groups with Data to Better Serve Children and Families

ROM Equips Child Welfare Groups with Data to Better Serve Children and Families

The average person’s eyes would probably glaze over when asked to sift through stacks of government reports. But for Jared Barton, this is exciting stuff. That’s because Barton knows that each data point is powerful: It represents a real child. When examined closely, these data reveal where children are thriving, or barely surviving, in the child welfare system.

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Integrated Health Scholars Program Improves Access to Care in Underserved Communities

Integrated Health Scholars Program Improves Access to Care in Underserved Communities

For many people living in Kansas’ vast rural areas getting the medical and behavioral health care services they need is a challenge. One barrier to accessing services is the shortage of health care professionals, including social workers, serving in their communities. The University of Kansas Integrated Health Scholars Program (IHSP) at the School of Social Welfare was funded to address this problem.

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Center for LGBTQ+ Research & Advocacy to Promote Social Change and Improve Lives

Center for LGBTQ+ Research & Advocacy to Promote Social Change and Improve Lives

Researchers are doing leading-edge work in LGBTQ+ issues in Kansas, but not a lot of people know it – yet. That’s about to change, when the Center for LGBTQ+ Research & Advocacy opens its virtual doors this summer. The Center, housed in the University of Kansas School of Social Welfare, will put Kansas on the map as a hub for research, advocacy, community engagement, education, and scholarship focused on the experiences of sexually and gender diverse populations.

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Research Aims to Improve the Health of Migrant and Seasonal Farmworkers

Research Aims to Improve the Health of Migrant and Seasonal Farmworkers

When Cheryl Holmes shops for produce at the grocery store, she doesn’t just see apples or watermelons or lettuce. She sees the faces of the migratory and seasonal agricultural workers she knows who have worked long days – often 6:00 am to 8:00 pm in all weather, six days a week – to harvest each piece.

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Supporting Survivors of Partner Violence

Supporting Survivors of Partner Violence

Meredith Bagwell-Gray has seen the magic happen. When women who have experienced sexual abuse and intimate partner violence have a safe place to address their sexual trauma, they often begin to feel more empowered and in control of their sexuality. As a result, they are more likely to embrace positive sexual behaviors that have a profound impact on their health, like getting Pap tests and HPV vaccines, and seeing sexual health providers.

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New Associate Dean Leads the School in DEIB

New Associate Dean Leads the School in DEIB

To achieve a more just and equitable future for all, Kim Warren knows we not only need to look forward, to the world we want to see, but also backwards, at the forces that have shaped the present. As a historian, she sees the rich lessons that can be lear

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Douglas County Jail - Mentally Ill and Behind Bars

Mentally Ill and Behind Bars

The way people who have serious mental illness are treated by the criminal justice system can be criminal at times. Jason Matejkowski wants that to end.

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Student studying in residence hall room - Is Campus Sexual Assault Prevention Programming Working?

Is Campus Sexual Assault Prevention Programming Working?

But is this mandatory bystander intervention program successfully changing the attitudes and actions of students? Now, a School of Social Welfare researcher is about to find out.

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two children with arms around each other - KU researcher working to transform the Kansas foster care system

KU Researcher Working to Transform the Kansas Foster Care System

The five-year initiative kicked off in 2018, fueled by an $8 million grant from the Administration for Children and Families Children’s Bureau, which is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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Dr. Riquino presentation for continuing ed in Garden City - Researcher wants to address youth self-harm in Kansas

Researcher Wants to Address Youth Self-harm in Kansas

As an assistant professor with the University of Kansas School of Social Welfare, Riquino, Ph.D, MSW, focuses on youth with marginalized identities and their experiences with self-harm.

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alcoholic drink and pill case with pills spilled on table - Researcher studies effectiveness of 12-step programs for LGBTQ+ people

Researcher Studies Effectiveness of 12-step Programs for LGBTQ+ People

Briana McGeough, Ph.D., MSW, assistant professor at the University of Kansas School of Social Welfare, is engaged in a national study designed to answer these questions and gage the effectiveness of 12-step programs for the LGBTQ+ community.

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children of different races and ethnicities sitting together with arms around each other

Faculty Researchers Helping Families Affected by Substance Abuse

This highlight features two faculty researchers who are helping families affected by substance abuse. Nancy Kepple's, Ph.D., MSW and assistant professor, and Jody Brook, Ph.D., MSW/LCSW and associate professor.

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two women - social worker and patient - pilot aims to empower women to regain their sexual health

Pilot Aims to Empower Women to Regain Their Sexual Health

While talking about sex is difficult for many people, it can be especially uncomfortable or painful for women who have experienced intimate partner violence. Meredith Bagwell-Gray has specifically designed the Trauma Informed Sexual Safety Planning program to put the participants at ease and to help them feel empowered to improve their sexual health.

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ally sign with Jayhawk in the middle of the a in ally

Research Focused on LGBTQ+ Lives

Highlighting four faculty with research focused on LGBTQIA+ Lives. Featuring Dr. Megan Paceley, Dr. Sarah Jen, Dr. Michael Riquino and Dr. Briana McGeough.

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parent and children on dock

Strengths Plus Gives Case Managers New Tools for Care

“The case managers feel like their skill levels are improving. They also reported feeling a greater amount of comfort in having discussions with people around substance use” says Mabry.

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Lotus flower

Spirituality Helps People Thrive in Difficult Times, Researcher Finds

The lotus flower is a perfect metaphor for the human condition, Ed Canda believes. The lotus grows out of water that is murky and dirty. Its roots rise through the water and its leaves grow as pads resting on the surface, open to the sky.

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social worker working with child - strengths-based case management helps youth with mental illness thrive

Strengths-Based Case Management Helps Youth with Mental Illness Thrive

The success stories are astounding. Children and adolescents with mental illness are finding new pathways to thrive, are excited about their future, setting big goals, and taking courageous steps to achieve them.

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