In the Media
April 27, 2014
The Oregonian ran an op-ed by a USC School of Social Work student about selling bonds to help the homeless. “A neutral evaluator would measure program outcomes, and if the program achieves its stated objectives then investors and ultimately taxpayers are repaid based on government cost savings as a result of the program’s success,” Jane O’Brien wrote.
The Washington Post
April 27, 2014
The Washington Post, in an Associated Press story, quoted Omar Lopez of the USC School of Social Work about a teen who broke into San Jose Airport and stowed away in the wheel well of a Hawaii-bound jetliner. Lopez said typically in runaway cases, social workers assess the child and the family to rule out violence or abuse at home. “It can take longer to do those assessments in cases of immigrants with limited English skills, and in this situation, there are several different state bureaucracies involved that could delay a reunion,” he said. The story also ran in the Washington Times.
April 25, 2014
The Star-News (Wilmington, N.C.) ran an op-ed by a USC School of Social Work student about the need for better mental health services for the incarcerated. “It is estimated that most individuals with mental health disorders are incarcerated or detained in county jails after committing only minor infractions, which are often the manifestation of their symptoms more so than the intent to commit the crime,” Ruth Juarez wrote.
Chisago County Press
April 24, 2014
The Chisago County Press (Lindstrom, Minn.) ran an op-ed by a USC School of Social Work student about the need for federal funding to continue training programs that help the mentally ill involved in the criminal justice system. “Senators Tom Coburn and Mike Lee have blocked the Mentally Ill Offender Treatment and Crime Reduction Act (MIOTCRA) because they don’t believe the federal government should govern the mentally ill,” Nicole Groschen wrote. “This bill supports training for state and county officers at all levels. They are taught to recognize and evaluate the mentally ill so that proper interventions can be utilized.”
Minnesota Public Radio
April 24, 2014
Minnesota Public Radio interviewed Vern Bengtson of the USC School of Social Work about the increase in interfaith marriages. “First of all, there is greater religious tolerance in the United States,” he said. “But the second reason people give is Americans are becoming less religious over time. The reason that is often cited is because of the Pew poll that suggests that 30 percent of young Americans have no religious affiliation. They aren’t members of a church. That is to say young Americans aren’t religious. That’s absolutely not the case. They just don’t affiliate with an organized religious body. They are spiritual but not religious. Joining a particular faith is not as important to young marrieds as it was to young marrieds a generation ago.”
April 23, 2014
Arirang-TV (South Korea) featured the Network of Korean-American Leaders (NetKAL), a leadership incubator founded by the USC School of Social Work's Center for Asian-Pacific Leadership, in a documentary called “The Living Bridges.” The piece highlighted the rising status of Korean-Americans in mainstream American society and noted how NetKAL has helped grow Korean-Americans’ leadership skills through networking, training and collaboration. “We provide a network for learning together to be better civic leaders to the South Korean-American community,” said Jehoon Lee, NetKAL’s director.
April 22, 2014
KPCC-FM (NPR News Los Angeles affiliate) interviewed USC School of Social Work Dean Marilyn Flynn about the blue-ribbon commission report resulting from an analysis of Los Angeles County's child safety and protective services. “I think there’s going to be action on the report. Most of the supervisors agree with the commission that we have a crisis for the 36,000 children under supervision,” she said. “I don’t believe all of the recommendations will be adopted because they do need another layer of review. But it is a time when we could be decisive. I think we might have the moment to move ahead as a county, so I feel encouraged.”
April 17, 2014
The McDowell News (Marion, N.C.) ran an op-ed by a USC School of Social Work student about the need for licensed mental health clinicians in all schools. “Children are resilient little people. If they can be assisted in navigating the hard times, the results are astounding.” Deanne Ackley wrote. “Mental health attention is not only for socioeconomically deprived children.”
San Diego County News Center
April 15, 2014
San Diego County News Center mentioned the USC San Diego Academic Center is a sponsor of the annual Mental Health Social Workers Day at Petco Park.
April 15, 2014
KCRW-FM (NPR News Los Angeles affiliate) interviewed USC School of Social Work Dean Marilyn Flynn about the blue-ribbon commission report resulting from an analysis of Los Angeles County's child safety and protective services. “There has to be much better coordination—in training, allocation of resources and authority among county departments that have responsibility for child safety,” she said. “We need a budget that looks across all of the services for kids that are provided by the county, we need a discussion about how those resources should be prioritized, which groups among endangered kids should have highest degree of attention. That kind of discussion needs to start with the board of supervisors, and then clear direction needs to be given to the responsible departments.”
April 11, 2014
BBC World Service’s “The Why Factor” featured Ruth White as a panelist in a podcast exploring the experience of racism around the world and in different societies. “If you live in a society that teaches you that who you are is not pretty, not good, not valued, then the normal psychological process of viewing yourself with great characteristics and being wonderful and having a great self-esteem is no longer there,” she said.
The Congressional Research Institute for Social Work and Social Justice Solutions
April 11, 2014
The Congressional Research Institute for Social Work and Social Justice Solutions mentioned students from the University of Connecticut’s School of Social Work gathered to pay tribute to Nancy Humphreys who is retiring from her tenure as founder and director of the Nancy A. Humphreys Institute for Political Social Work. The story mentioned she earned her MSW from the University of Southern California’s School of Social Work in 1963.
Christian Science Monitor
April 10, 2014
Christian Science Monitor quoted Ron Avi Astor of the USC School of Social Work about how the media can play a better role in helping people understand troubling signs among their peers. “The media tend to tell a similar narrative each time, with witnesses in the immediate aftermath saying the attacker was a quiet kid and no one could have seen it coming, only to later have more details emerge about the attacker’s past. Or they seize on one component such as bullying or mental health,” he said.
April 9, 2014
Addiction Professional quoted Betsy Phillips of the USC School of Social Work about the Virtual Field Practicum (VFP) that allows MSW students to pursue some of their initial field work hours outside of an actual service agency setting. “Supervisors who in the past had so much time to spend with students are now being asked to do so much more in their own jobs,” she said.
The Chronicle of Social Change
April 9, 2014
The Chronicle of Social Change featured USC School of Social Work Dean Marilyn Flynn, a member of the Los Angeles County Blue Ribbon Commission on Child Protection, and how the commission intends to use performance-based metrics. "Every contract that really works has an evidence base for its program and it has some partnership at the provider level," Flynn said.
April 7, 2014
Deseret News reviewed Families and Faith: How Religion is Passed Down Across Generations by Vern Bengston of the USC School of Social Work and colleagues.
Los Angeles Times
April 4, 2014
Los Angeles Times quoted Ron Astor of the USC School of Social Work about red flags exhibited by veterans who eventually commit mass shootings. Those accused of mass shootings invariably are found afterward to have exhibited certain common "variables," including expressions of intent, access to a firearm and friends and family members who heard the suspect mention the possibility of violence or suicide, he said.
April 4, 2014
KPCC-FM’s “Take Two” (NPR News Los Angeles affiliate) featured Kimberly Finney of the USC School of Social Work to discuss the Fort Hood shooting involving Ivan Lopez, who was being treated for depression and anxiety. “It’s important to highlight most people with post-traumatic stress disorder do not commit violent acts. Enlisted soldiers and veterans are considered a vulnerable population. There are difficulties in getting mental health services just because of resources,” she said. “Quite often because of the demand of services, there just aren’t enough providers or enough availability in terms of frequency.” Clinical social worker Joseph Costello, a graduate of the USC School of Social Work, was also a featured expert.
April 2, 2014
Daily Trojan highlighted the USC Schools of Social Work and Pharmacy will host their first interdisciplinary conference, Medication Use & Society, which focuses on how pharmacists and social workers can provide patients with the best medical care. The story mentioned MSW student Tenie Khachikian created the concept, and Professor Bruce Jansson will be a speaker.
March 31, 2014
Daily Trojan quoted Emily Putnam-Hornstein about a two-day conference the USC School of Social Work hosted to kick off the Children’s Data Network. “The Children’s Data Network is not just about researchers in an academic setting crunching numbers,” she said. “We want it to be a collaborative project where the work that emerges is actionable and relevant. We viewed the convening as an opportunity to get people excited about the potential of the network.”
March 31, 2014
People reported on USC School of Social Work graduate student Adam Renteria, a veteran whose relationship with his dog has helped him cope with anxiety and depression. "That first night, Rakkasan (the dog) slept in my bed," says Renteria. "I put my hand on him and fell asleep for eight hours straight – for the first time in years." The story mentioned Renteria is studying for a master's in military social work.
March 25, 2014
Daily Trojan mentioned the School of Social Work and its Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans and Military Families as part of a story about USC’s relationship with the military and initiative to provide scholarships to students of military parents. Ron Astor was also quoted. “What USC is doing is great since the friendly military environment it fosters will make these high school students feel welcomed,” he said.
Annenberg TV News
March 25, 2014
Annenberg TV News quoted Ruth White of the USC School of Social Work about the constitutionality of requiring corporations to provide health insurance that covers birth control. “A corporation can have their opinion, they can have their religious beliefs. Nobody is telling them they have to do it. It’s just that they are paying for the healthcare. A woman should have the right to decide how that healthcare is used for her, in the best way possible,” she said.
March 25, 2014
TakePart covered research by Ron Avi Astor of the USC School of Social Work finding that the children of veterans face higher levels of depression and suicidal thoughts than other children. Astor said there are over a million kids enrolled in public schools whose parents are active-duty military, reserve or veterans. "The civilian principal and teachers don't know that they're even there," he said. "It could be their parent's seventh deployment, and it could be their [family's] 10th move, and the teacher or principal will just see academic or behavioral problems." Yahoo! News also carried the story.
San Antonio Express
March 24, 2014
San Antonio Express ran an op-ed by USC School of Social Work student Erika Merrill about the need to support unemployed veterans. “Our veterans are still in need of ways to translate their military occupational specialties to the civilian sector and ease their transition back into the workforce. But how likely is it that Congress will extend the VOW to Hire Heroes Act? When the legislation was passed in 2011, former Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., voted against the bill saying nobody deserved preferential treatment,” she wrote.
The Huffington Post
March 24, 2014
The Huffington Post ran an op-ed by Annalisa Enrile of the USC School of Social Work about the school's humanitarian efforts in the Philippines in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan. “What we learned is that to ensure a lasting change in the recovery process, aid can come in the form of knowledge and education, not only parachuting in with money or goods. The best way to help, then, is not by trying to be a hero, but a genuine partner,” she wrote. “The best thing we can provide is access to resources, sharing of expertise, and collaboration on innovative, strength-based solutions.”
March 24, 2014
USA Today quoted Lawrence Palinkas of the USC School of Social Work about the announcement to family members of passengers on Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 that all lives on the plane were lost. “Relatives will go through a second stage of uncertainty when they will second-guess what they could have done to keep their loved one from boarding the flight,” he said. "They will do a lot of 'if only,' and some will never reach a point when they are convinced that there was nothing they could have done to prevent the family member's death.” Poughkeepsie Journal (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.), Clarion Ledger (Jackson, Miss.), Citizen-Times (Asheville, N.C.), Des Moines Register (Des Moines, Iowa), KSDK NewsChannel 5 (St. Louis), Pensacola News Journal (Pensacola, Fla.), Cincinnati Enquirer (Cincinnati, Ohio) and the Springfield News-Leader (Springfield, Mo.) also carried the story.
The Wall Street Journal
March 22, 2014
The Wall Street Journal quoted Larry Palinkas of the USC School of Social Work about the emotional impact of the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 on the families of its passengers. “When family members on the plane who are absent or unable to assist in that coping process, it exacerbates the anxiety,” Palinkas said. “That can manifest itself in a variety of ways, he said. “It can occur in the form of avoidance. In others, it can be intense anger.”
KPCC Southern California Public Radio
March 17, 2014
KPCC Southern California Public Radio featured Susan Lindau of the USC School of Social Work as a panelist on Air Talk with Larry Mantle to discuss Congress tracking suicides and mental illness in military families and new recruits. “Perhaps, it might be appropriate in looking for statistics to look at who isn’t cured,” she said. “Military families are covered—even reservist families are covered—at least for their first year after deployment. We might be able to start with statistics in terms of who is enrolled and then find out what their usage of these benefits is to get a sense of where the vulnerabilities lie.”
March 16, 2014
CBS News' "Sunday Morning" highlighted research by Ron Avi Astor of the USC School of Social Work finding that the children of veterans face higher levels of depression and suicidal thoughts than other children. "The vast majority of the kids and families, even with a lot of deployments and a lot of moves, about 70 percent or more depending on the issue you're looking at, are doing fine." But Astor says the other thirty percent -- up to a million and a half kids -- are not doing fine.
March 13, 2014
Worldwide KFUO interviewed Vern Bengtson about his book, Families and Faith: How Religion is Passed Down Across Generations, which is based on studies with 350 families over 35 years. “The highest in terms of transmission—the most effective religious group—were the Mormons. They had a success rate of about 80-86 percent of keeping their children in the Mormon faith,” he said. “All religious activities are family-centered. Every Monday night everywhere in the world every Mormon family gets together, the children get together with the adults. They spend an hour or more on Bible study, prayer and religious teachings. It’s about family togetherness.”
March 12, 2014
CNN cited a study by Julie Cederbaum, Tamika Gilreath and Ron Avi Astor of the USC School of Social Work finding that adolescents in military families suffer higher rates of depression and suicidal thoughts.
Los Angeles Times
March 11, 2014
Los Angeles Times quoted USC School of Social Work Dean Marilyn Flynn about how at-risk families can be identified and assisted in foster care and social work systems in L.A., referencing the case of Sidnicka Wilson. “All our data tells us, this is the exactly the type of person where there is a high probability that she will abuse or neglect her child," Flynn said. "Ideally, we would have identified this mother when she was in the hospital and we would have offered her support and training with her first child."
March 8, 2014
News Tribune quoted Anthony Hassan of the USC School of Social Work, who delivered the keynote address at a University of Washington conference on veterans and military families. “You may have deployed three times. You may not have left the wire. You were still away from your family for three years. That’s not good,” he said. “We went to war for 12 years, and we’re going to have problems. That’s the truth.” The story mentioned Hassan leads the Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans and Military Families.
March 7, 2014
ISTOÉ Independente (Brazil) quoted Vern Bengtson of the USC School of Social Work about turning 50 and that reaching the half century mark isn’t what it used to be. "We are going through a revolution in relation to aging as never seen before. It’s not only a question of living longer, but also having better health and more energy," he said.
March 7, 2014
Forbes highlighted USC and its Center for Work and Family Life for receiving the American Psychological Association Award, recognizing it as one of the most psychologically healthy places to work in North America. The story noted the 35-year-old center offers free counseling, behavioral and nutritional services to employees, as well as support and learning groups, a new program for professional coaching and generous in-network reimbursements for mental health benefits.
March 6, 2014
The Doctors featured adjunct professor Gabriel Crenshaw as a guest clinical psychologist on the TV show’s segment about a young woman who cut off a tattoo of her boyfriend’s name and mailed it to him when she discovered he was cheating. “Self-mutilation is done in shame. It’s secrecy. You don’t want people to know what you’re doing,” he said. “This is a woman who’s angry. She posted it up on Facebook. It’s an attention-seeking behavior.”
March 3, 2014
KPCC-FM (NPR News Los Angeles affiliate) featured research on racial disparities in infant mortality by Tyan Parker Dominguez of the USC School of Social Work. The interview noted Parker Dominguez' theory that African-American mothers suffer greater psychosocial stress as one explanation for why they lose significantly more babies than mothers of other ethnicities; it is a question that has remained unanswered among public health officials and researchers for decades. "It's really been a public health puzzle," Parker Dominguez said.
March 2, 2014
KUBE-FM (Clear Channel Seattle affiliate) interviewed MSW candidate Ryan McAfee, who is also a YWCA case manager for military veterans and their families, about working at the YWCA, which works to eliminate disparities among women and families of color. “YWCA empowers all groups that need help,” he said. “One of the biggest obstacles working with veterans is they don’t want to ask for handouts. It’s nice being a veteran because I can be a little tough and let them know I’m here to help them take the next step.” KISS-FM, KJR-FM, NOW-FM and The Brew 104.9 FM also carried the interview.
Foster Focus Magazine
March 1, 2014
Foster Focus Magazine published an op-ed by MSW candidate Elizabeth Eowyn Steffel about the shortcomings of the Adoption and Safe Families Act. She proposes an amendment that would require states to create transitional living programs that teach foster youth life and job skills. “I emancipated out of the system during my junior year of high school and believe the only reason I was able to finish high school was because of the help I received from Green Bay, Wisconsin’s Family Services Transitional Living Program,” she wrote.
Books and Culture
March 1, 2014
Books and Culture (Christianity Today) published a review of Vern Bengtson’s book "Families and Faith: How Religion is Passed Down Across Generations, noting the research revealed that despite the influence of peers, schools and media, parents are still the strongest influence on their children's religious identities. “The magnitude of this opus fills me with awe,” writes the reviewer. “Emotional solidarity, consistent role modeling, and openness to adolescent and young adult experimentation are ingredients in successful intergenerational religious transmission.”
Inland Valley News
February 26, 2014
Inland Valley News quoted Karen Lincoln of the USC School of Social Work about California’s plan to educate African-Americans about affordable health care coverage available through the state exchange. “We definitely need to increase the outreach to African-Americans,” she said. “I think the fact that the primary method of enrollment is via the Internet, there is a large segment of our population who cannot enroll. Now, among the general population of African-Americans, there is certainly more use of social media — but access can be a problem, particularly when you are in a multi-generational household, and there are many people, who are maybe using one computer. Access can be a bit of a challenge.”
February 14, 2014
USA Today quoted Vern Bengtson of the USC School of Social Work about how attitudes toward sex have changed over the years. “There’s always been sex and experimentation. Our era is no more promiscuous than any other era. The amount of collegiate sex may not have changed…people are just more willing to admit to it,” says Bengtson, who points to flapper women of the 20s as an example of promiscuous behavior in previous generations.
February 13, 2014
NPR’s “Interfaith Voices” featured Vern Bengtson and his book "Families and Faith: How Religion is Passed Down Across Generations,” which explores the role of parents, grandparents and great-grandparents in transmitting religious values. “Parental piety does not make up for a distant dad. Regardless, if you put your investment in being a good role model, as a dad, you’ve got to be approachable, affirming and warm if you want that religious tradition to be passed on from generation to generation. That was one of the surprising results of our study,” he said.
February 8, 2014
Asian Journal featured Annalisa Enrile of the USC School of Social Work, who along with Marleen Wong organized and led a team to the Philippines to provide aid to Typhoon Haiyan survivors. The story noted the USC team conducted a two-day training for local community workers, which covered several critical areas, such as delivering psychological first aid and trauma relief, exploring the feasibility of creating wellness centers in schools and churches, caring for children and orphans, and preventing child trafficking. “In terms of our first phase, where we offered our training to diverse participants, I would say that we were very successful,” Enrile said.
February 4, 2014
Slate cited "Families and Faith: How Religion is Passed Down Across Generations" by Vern Bengtson of the USC School of Social Work, which found that interfaith couples have more trouble passing their beliefs to their children.
February 1, 2014
Tallahassee Democrat’s "Your Health" magazine quoted Alla Branzburg, an adjunct professor at the USC School of Social Work, about perfectionism. “A lot of times, perfectionism puts a lid on a person’s creativity,” she said. “Trying to do everything 120 percent is just unrealistic, and it sets one up for failure.”
- Master of Social Work