Alumni Spotlight

Alumna Monique Ellsworth Named as Second Harvest of the Big Bend Chief Executive Office

 Second Harvest of the Big Bend’s Board of Directors announced October 2, 2019, that Monique Ellsworth (MSW, 2013) will become Chief Executive Officer of the organization. The appointment concludes an exhaustive search that began late this summer.

Ellsworth has served the last four years as CEO of CESC, Inc. in Tallahassee. She has developed a reputation as a community leader and dedicated professional in the areas of homelessness, poverty, and food insecurity.  

College of Social Work Acknowledges Notable Graduates and Scholarship Recipients

The Florida State University College of Social Work celebrated its 2019 Distinguished Graduate Award recipients and social work scholarship recipients at a dinner at the FSU Alumni Association Thursday, Sept. 26.

Each year, the event celebrates the contributions of students, alumni, and donors to the College of Social Work, social work education and the profession.

Alumna establishes local non-profit to assist people in need

LaShundra Williams knows first-hand what it is to experience hardship. Her own story included experiences with family struggling with mental health and substance use issues, the foster care system, and overcoming her struggles with trauma, abuse, and neglect. She saw both sides of the child welfare system, the good and the bad, and knew what it was like to be dismissed as just another child to fall through the cracks.

Interdisciplinary Faculty Team Awarded Grant to Examine Outcomes in Pediatric Organ Transplants

Two Florida State University faculty members have been awarded a grant to study health outcomes after pediatric organ transplants.

Michael Killian, an assistant professor with the FSU College of Social Work, and Zhe He, an assistant professor with the FSU College of Communication and Information, were awarded the grant by the University of Florida Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI) Precision Health Initiative Pilot Project.

Directed Individual Study: Student Libby Burgess Establishes Community Outreach for Local School Children

Social work student Libby Burgess was wrapping up her Bachelor of Social Work degree this year when she realized she was three credits short to graduate. BSW Program Advisor Zoey Zeitlin suggested a Directed Individual Study (DIS), individual or group work outside the classroom as Libby was already deeply involved in the local community.

Florida Institute for Child Welfare Launched New Podcast

The Florida Institute for Child Welfare, housed in the Florida State University College of Social Work, is launching a new resource to inform and support the child welfare workers of Florida. 

The podcast series, “Child Protection Caseworker Support,” starts Monday, Aug. 26. The eight-episode series will feature the institute’s director Jessica Pryce, who will discuss issues facing frontline child welfare professionals and offer guidance on a variety of issues pertinent to the field.

Alumni Highlight: Josie Fliger, An Advocate for Seniors and Community Engagement

In 2013, Alumna Jocelyne (Josie) Fliger (MSW, 2015) did her first internship during her MSW program at FSU College of Social Work with the Tallahassee Senior Center, which offers activities and opportunities for senior citizens living in Tallahassee, Florida. Here she has introduced the idea of active living for seniors, a concept contrasting a societal focus on abnormal aging.

Social Work Doctoral Graduate Joins University of West Florida Faculty

Doctoral Candidate Erin King graduated this summer with her doctoral degree in social work from the FSU College of Social Work. She successfully defended her dissertation titled “An exploration of the effects of primary and secondary trauma on child welfare workers’ mental health and commitment to the field” on June 25, 2019. In the fall, Dr.