In the Media

The Wall Street Journal
July 29, 2015
The Wall Street Journal cited research by Vern Bengtson of the USC School of Social Work about the influence of grandparents on the moral and religious lives of their grandchildren. “Grandparents are playing a bigger role in transmitting religious traditions across generations, especially when their own children are absent, unable or uninterested in religion,” he said.

Beverly Press
July 23, 2015
Beverly Press mentioned the USC Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans & Military Families as a partner in the development of Vet2Text, a text messaging application that allows veterans to text directly with a veteran peer support specialist.

Task & Purpose
July 15, 2015
Task& Purpose cited the Los Angeles Veteran Survey conducted by the USC Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans & Military Families as part of the research informing Mayor Eric Garcetti’s 10,000 Strong veteran hiring initiative.

The Press-Enterprise
July 8, 2015
The Press-Enterprise highlighted research by Tyan Parker Dominguez of the USC School of Social Work on racism-related stress and infant mortality. Dominguez noted that disproportionate risks face African-American infants related to the stress their mothers face on a daily basis. A 2013 report Dominguez co-authored looked at how this stress can affect the blood pressure of mothers and in turn affect birth weight. “It’s something about being a black woman in the United States that seems to be problematic,” Dominguez said. It’s about “everyday living experiences and how they can contribute to our health and well-being.”

Forbes and Next Avenue
July 7, 2015
Forbes and Next Avenue quoted USC School of Social Work student Montgomery Ostrander about new options in senior housing and the assisted living facility he started. “I’m moving from curative to palliative in a holistic way,” he said. “The proudest achievement that I have is that every single person came in on antidepressants and every one of them was off after six months. I think it’s because of the engagement.”

Los Angeles Times
July 7, 2015
Los Angeles Times highlighted research by Emily Putnam-Hornstein of the USC School of Social Work in a story about the need to track child abuse reports. The story said that, as "one of the state's leading researchers of child welfare data," her analysis disputed conventional attitudes of law enforcement and social workers, which is that the anonymous calls tend to come from people who are angry at the parents for other reasons. “People calling to report abuse,” she said, “are often in a position to see behavior that a social worker might not, which is why authorities should pay closer attention to what witnesses and other agencies report seeing, even if no one has verified the threat.”

July 5, 2015
Salon highlighted research by Vern Bengtson of the USC School of Social Work on the factors that influence people’s religious beliefs. The article mentioned his book “Families and Faith: How Religion Is Passed Down Across Generations,” noting that parents who are able to successfully pass on their religion to their children had warm, affirming relationships with their children.

The New York Times
July 5, 2015
The New York Times quoted Carl Castro of the USC School of Social Work about research on hyberbaric oxygen chambers and concussions.

Somerset County Gazette
June 30, 2015
Somerset County Gazette profiled USC School of Social Work student Rechele Ramirez, who is pursuing an MSW Post-Graduate Certificate in International Social Work Practice and completing a placement in Great Britain. “Somerset itself is just absolutely beautiful, and I have formed a little family in England. I have a huge support system at home but I have met such amazing people here who I can’t imagine not knowing now. Maybe I’ll stay a little longer than the two years,” she said.

Huffington Post
June 15, 2015
Huffington Post published a piece by Mary Walker Baron of the USC School of Social Work about lessons learned from winter.

Task & Purpose
June 10, 2015
Task & Purpose mentioned the Los Angeles Veterans Survey conducted by the USC Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans and Military Families, noting that it found more than two-thirds of post-9/11 veterans reported difficulty in adjusting to civilian life.

Seattle Post-Intelligencer
June 9, 2015
Seattle Post-Intelligencer published a press release quoting Dorian Traube about a partnership between the USC School of Social Work and Parents as Teachers announced at the Clinton Global Initiative America to provide virtual parent education through USC Telehealth. “We are utilizing the latest in secure, user-friendly technology to provide more families with critical early intervention services at a fraction of the typical cost for home visitation,” she said. Benzinga, BioPortfolio, Journey Parenting, KAIT-TV (ABC/NBC News Jonesboro, Ark. Affiliate), KATV-TV (ABC News Little Rock, Ark. affiliate) KBMT-TV (ABC/NBC News Beaumont, Texas affiliate), KCBD-TV (NBC News Lubbock, Texas affiliate), KFJX-TV (Fox News Joplin, Mo. affiliate), KFMB-AM/FM (San Diego), KHQ-TV (NBC News Spokane, Wash. affiliate), KLKN-TV (ABC News Lincoln, Neb. affiliate), KLTV-TV (ABC News Tyler, Texas affiliate), KWTV-TV (CBS News Oklahoma City, Okla. Affiliate), One News Page,, University Chronicle, Virtual Strategy Magazine, WAFB-TV (CBS News Baton Rouge affiliate), WBMA-TV (ABC News Birmingham, Ala. Affiliate), WBTW-TV (CBS News Myrtle Beach, S.C. affiliate), WCIV-TV (ABC News Mount Pleasant, S.C.), WECT-TV (NBC News Wilmington, N.C. affiliate), World Now, WRBL-TV (CBS News Columbus, Ga. Affiliate), WSFA-TV (NBC News Montgomery, Ala. Affiliate), WSFX-TV (Fox News Wilmington, N.C. affiliate) and WTOL-TV (Fox News Toledo, Ohio affiliate) also carried the story.

Rhode Island Public Radio
June 4, 2015
Rhode Island Public Radio cited a study by Eric Rice of the USC School of Social Work about the use of social apps among young men to find sexual partners.

Stars & Stripes
June 3, 2015
Stars & Stripes mentioned the Los Angeles Veterans Survey conducted by the USC Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans and Military Families, noting that it found more than two-thirds had difficulties adjusting to civilian life, but did not know who to call for help. Nathan Graeser of CIR and the USC School of Social Work was quoted about a new texting program created in response. “Veterans tend to underreport problems, and they traditionally don’t reach out for help until they have exhausted all of their resources,” he said. “When they do seek help, they don’t want to have to go to a website. They want to be able to interact with a person, particularly if that person is a peer.”

Huffington Post
May 29, 2015
The Huffington Post quoted Marleen Wong of the USC School of Social Work about a class-action lawsuit against the Compton Unified School District alleging the district does not address its students’ mental health needs. "If you read the lawsuit and read the plaintiffs’ stories, this is chronic and repeated exposure to violence in the community, and sometimes at home, that is life-threatening danger," she said. "That has not just a psychological, not just an emotional effect. This is not about character and not about weakness; it’s about how the body functions and releases these hormones that interfere with their day-to-day life that we all expect and want for ourselves and our children."

May 28, 2015
KPFK-FM's "Uprising with Sonali" interviewed Terence Fitzgerald of the USC School of Social Work about how prescription drugs impact black communities, especially men, as well as his book on black males and racism.

Chronicle of Social Change
May 26, 2015
The Chronicle of Social Change published an opinion piece by Wendy Smith of the USC School of Social Work about her visit to Pelican Bay State Prison to meet youth offenders in long-term solitary confinement about SB260, which would enable eligible inmates to have their cases reviewed for possible early release. “Hope and desire can propel human beings to make efforts they themselves might have thought impossible. Many of these people have years to serve in front of them; those years can be spent strengthening their capacities to live successfully in the community, or nursing frustration and anger. How much better for us all if their arc is toward hope,” she wrote.

Orange County Register
May 25, 2015
The Orange County Register mentioned the Orange County Veterans’ Survey conducted by the USC Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans and Military Families.

Korea Herald
May 25, 2015
The Korea Herald published an op-ed by USC visiting scholar Sohn Jie-ae about the efforts of the Network of Korean-American Leaders (NetKAL) at the USC School of Social Work to help the Korean-American community in Baltimore following recent riots over racial tensions. “It is activities like these that give me much more optimism about the future of Korean-Americans in mainstream America. Unlike the past, where individual Korean-Americans were lone successes, the current trend seems to signal that the community is ready to back these individuals as a group and to take on issues together,” she wrote.

May 21, 2015
WalletHub featured Sherrie Wilcox of the USC School of Social Work and Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans and Military Families in a Q&A about a study examining best and worst states for military retirees. “I think the best opportunities may be where the veteran can use some of the key skills that they learned/used while serving in the military. Retiring military personnel have 16+ years of job experience and have been able to become experts in their job. At the very least, retiring military personnel will most certainly have strong leadership experience,” she said.

Atlanta Black Star
May 21, 2015
Atlanta Black Star quoted Gabe Crenshaw of the USC School of Social Work about the inaccuracy of media portrayals of black fathers. “America tries to paint the picture of us (Black men) like we are these loose cannons who are incapable of a serious relationship, but that’s not true,” he said. “I believe it’s by design to always project a negative connotation, particularly when it comes to the family unit and structure in the Black community, to keep it fractured. Unity brings power.”

Los Angeles Times
May 18, 2015
Los Angeles Times cited research by Marleen Wong of the USC School of Social Work on the long-term educational impacts of children suffering from childhood trauma. “Decades of research have found that children who have suffered serious trauma are far more likely to repeat a grade, be suspended from school and have severe attendance and behavioral problems,” the article attributed to Wong, citing her 2003 study of thousands of sixth-graders in South and East Los Angeles.

Los Angeles Times
May 18, 2015
Los Angeles Times quoted Tamika Gilreath of the USC School of Social Work about risk-taking in adolescents. “Risk-taking behavior is normal in humans — inscribed in our genes and brain chemistry,” she said. “There’s a psychological and physiological reward to meeting your goal.”

May 18, 2015
KPCC-FM (Southern California Public Radio) quoted Ron Avi Astor of the USC School of Social Work about the use of lawsuits to change trauma-inducing educational environments. “A growing body of scientific research suggests kids’ brains are affected when they witness or suffer trauma, which hurts their ability to learn,” he said. Astor added that his research from schools in California and Israel suggests that training teachers and administrators to create a warm, welcoming environment in classrooms can act as a sort of vaccine against problems that hurt students educationally.

May 13, 2015
KCRW-FM's “Which Way, L.A.?" (Southern California Public Radio) featured Suzanne Wenzel of the USC School of Social Work as a panelist in a discussion about an increase in Los Angeles' homeless population and the economic costs of homelessness. “It actually does cost us far more as a society to do nothing about homelessness than it does to, for example, provide permanent supportive housing for individuals who are chronically homeless, that is, who have extended bouts of homelessness or who have simply spent a long single period of time on the street,” she said. “We stand to save an enormous amount of money by doing everything we can to get people off the street. The lifespan of a chronically homeless individual on average is 25 years less than any of ours.”

Stars and Stripes
May 12, 2015
Stars and Stripes highlighted a study the USC Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans and Military Families conducted with the Volunteers of America on the employment challenges facing veterans. Anthony Hassan was quoted. “I would never disparage our veterans, but I don’t want the civilian community to think we’re all doing fine,” he said. “I don’t say veterans are all broken, but I don’t say all veterans are employment ready, either.” Military Times and Defense One also carried the story.

Bloomberg News
May 9, 2015
Bloomberg News quoted Emily Putnam-Hornstein of the USC School of Social Work about a program pioneered in New Zealand that enables social workers to use data to figure out which children are most at risk so resources can be applied accordingly. “The goal,” she says, “is to more effectively triage clients so the children and families who are most vulnerable and may need additional supports receive them, and others, who certainly don’t need someone knocking on their door and stopping by, don’t.”

May 8, 2015
TakePart quoted Benjamin Henwood of the USC School of Social Work about Housing First as a means to addressing housing issues for the homeless. “The more vulnerable the person, the more expensive they are to take care of,” he said. “People with complex problems who require intensive services cost a lot of taxpayer dollars.”

La Prensa San Diego
May 8, 2015
La Prensa San Diego published an op-ed by USC School of Social Work student Renee Rios about police officers using excessive force. “Police officers need the kind of training that incorporates cultural awareness of the communities they serve. As a social worker, I see an opportunity for the social work profession to serve within law enforcement agencies as administrators, educators, and community liaisons. There is a need for those with the training, unique skills and ethics necessary to help develop law enforcement agencies that can be responsive and accountable to the public served,” she wrote.

Santa Monica Next
May 7, 2015
Santa Monica Next published an op-ed by USC School of Social Work student Marissa Laham about early childhood education. “With new research linking quality preschool programs and early childcare with huge social and economic benefits, there is more reason than ever to provide early tools for success to every child, starting first with those who need it most,” she wrote.

May 6, 2015
KPCC-FM (Southern California Public Radio) featured a report by Hortensia Amaro of the USC School of Social Work on the university's impact on the surrounding community. The story noted that affordable housing is becoming harder to locate and that USC Village could help alleviate rental market pressure by housing 2,700 USC students. It also noted USC is partnering with community organizations on affordable housing, providing greater access to jobs and developing new businesses for the community. "Increased economic development activities coming from downtown and ... through many sources — that area is becoming a priority area for development," she said. "People are very concerned about what that is going to mean for them because rent usually under those conditions tends to go up."

Huffington Post
May 4, 2015
The Huffington Post published an op-ed by Jacquelyn McCroskey of the USC School of Social Work about the effectiveness of the juvenile justice system in Los Angeles County based on a study done in collaboration with the School of Criminal Justice and Criminalistics at California State University, Los Angeles. “The study found almost a third of these youths cycled right back into the system,” she wrote. “Youth are resilient and can learn if the adults around them show the way. This will require some re-engineering of county systems to support data sharing and cross-departmental collaboration, and more incentives for public-private partnerships.”

Huffington Post
May 4, 2015
The Huffington Post published an op-ed by Eric Rice about creating higher education opportunities for homeless youth. “For young adults 18 to 24, attending college must be viewed as a successful outcome for our housing programs. For youth, we should de-emphasize low wage employment and prioritize schooling as a route to long term stability. Second, young adults who are attending school full time must be allowed access to all housing opportunities funded by our government,” he wrote.

U.S. News & World Report
May 4, 2015
U.S. News & World Report quoted Betsy Phillips of the USC School of Social Work about its virtual field practicum in a story about online programs creating new formats of learning. “The model gives students from diverse backgrounds much-needed preparation for interacting with a variety of clients. By delaying their face-to-face field experience into a following term, it also allows students in rural communities more time to find a suitable field placement following their enrollment,” she said. Yahoo! News also carried the story.

Hill blog
May 1, 2015
The Hill blog posted an opinion piece from MSW students Omar Avila, Nirali Brahmbhatt and Nataly Salas about the End Racial Profiling Act of 2015. “ERPA 2015 will hold law enforcement agencies accountable and allow for injunctive relief for those who are victims of racial profiling practices by the police. The act will not fix the tensions between communities of color and law enforcement in the U.S., but it is a step in the right direction,” they wrote.