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Francis, Guan to receive Royster Dissertation Completion Fellowships

Annie Francis and Ting Guan, doctoral students at UNC School of Social Work, have been selected to receive Royster Dissertation Completion Fellowships at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Annie Francis, Ph.D. studentAnnie Francis has already earned three degrees from UNC-Chapel Hill — a bachelor’s degree in sociology, a Master of Social Work degree and a Master of Public Administration degree. She has worked in child protective services for the Orange County (N.C.) Department of Social Services and as coordinator of student affairs for the School. In 2017, Francis was selected for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Health Policy Research Scholars program. A member of the Haliwa-Saponi tribe of North Carolina, Francis has conducted research on preserving cultural connections for American Indian children placed in out-of-home care. Her dissertation chair is Will Hall.


Ting Guan, Ph.D. studentTing Guan is an international student, coming to Chapel Hill from China, where she worked as a pediatric oncology social worker for eight years. She earned her bachelor’s degree in social work from China Youth University of Political Studies and her master’s degree from Peking University. She has an extensive record of publications and presentations as a doctoral student, most recently coauthoring a report on COVID-19 and its impact on oncology social work practice. Her research focuses on the psychosocial well-being of vulnerable children and their family caregivers. Her dissertation chair is Mimi Chapman.

Awarded through the Royster Society of Fellows, founded by Dr. and Mrs. Thomas S. Royster in 1996, the Royster Dissertation Completion Fellowship is awarded during a doctoral student’s final year of study and provides a stipend, tuition and fees, health insurance, and travel funding. Selection is based on superior achievement in graduate study, significance of dissertation research, potential as future leaders, and interdisciplinarity.

The fellowships are administered through UNC Graduate School.