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School briefs

Assistant professor Paul Lanier presented at the Joint World Conference on Social Work, Education and Social Development 2018 in Dublin, Ireland, in July. The  presentation was titled, “Investigating racial differences in clusters of adverse childhood experiences.”

Thirty-one participants recently completed the 2018 Satir Summer Intensive Training program. The annual training has been presented in Chapel Hill for the past four summers and provides participants with the opportunity to learn more about the Satir Growth Model. UNC Satir is the first permanent, university-based home for training in the United States. Jack Richman is lead principal investigator for the Satir team, which also includes Jean McLendon, Tricia McGovern, and Regina Ragan Taggart.

The Summer Intensive main facilitators Jean McLendon and Hugh Gratz guided participants through Virginia Satir’s foundational theory and engaging experiential activities, which are designed to improve communication skills and increase positive outcomes with personal interactions. McLendon and Gratz were assisted by fellow members of the UNC Satir Team: Suzanne Brown, Trish Brown, and Reiss Powell. This year’s participants included graduate students and fellows, as well as business, information technology, school and social work professionals. The six-day program involved mindfulness meditations, large and small group discussions, and engaging and applicable exercises.

Members of the UNC Rural Interprofessional Initiative (RIPHI) received an honorable mention for the 2018 George E. Thibault, MD Nexus Award presented by the National Center for Interprofessional and Practice Education. The award celebrates exemplary interprofessional practice in the United States and those who are thinking and acting differently where education and practice connect in health and health care. Lisa Zerden, senior associate dean for MSW education, and Meryl Kanfer, program coordinator for UNC-PrimeCare, serve on the RIPHI team. RIPHI is a three-year pilot program supported by the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charable Trust and designed to provide faculty and programmatic support to enable UNC health professions students to serve and learn in underserved rural clinic settings in North Carolina. The program is a joint effort of the health professions schools at UNC, including the School of Social Work, and each of which has a similar mission – to improve and promote the health and well-being of North Carolinians, improve public health and eliminate health inequities, and advance and advocate for health care through education, practice, research, innovation and collaboration.

Nearly 200 social workers, direct service providers, law enforcement officials, public school personnel, attorneys, and members of the faith community participated in the Project NO REST annual conference in New Bern in early August. The conference, which was co-sponsored by the Eastern Area Health Education Center, brought together experts to address how organizations, agencies and individuals across North Carolina can confront human trafficking in their communities. Project NO REST is a statewide effort based at UNC-Chapel Hill to strengthen the state’s infrastructure to address human trafficking and document how it affects children and young people. Human trafficking is defined as forcing, fooling, or frightening others into performing sex or labor acts for profit.