Social Work Faculty News

Prof. White Presented at the NASW Ohio Chapter Conference

Naomi White

Prof. Naomi White, Professor of Instruction, gave an oral presentation at the NASW Ohio Chapter Conference on November 14, 2019. The presentation was titled, The damaging, hidden power of groupthink: Elevate critical thinking toward excellence in advocacy. The presentation introduced social workers to the concept and influence of groupthink and the intersectionality of critical thinking and advocacy.

Groupthink, a term initially introduced by William H. Whyte Jr., an American urbanist, organizational analyst, and journalist who wrote the book “the Organization Man” about corporate culture and who borrowed the term from George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four. Dr. Irving Janis, a social psychologist pioneered the initial research on groupthink and was instrumental in popularizing the significance of groupthink across a wide range of disciplines.

Dr. Sang Presented at the NASW Ohio Chapter Conference


Dr. Jina Sang, Associate Professor, gave an oral presentation at the NASW Ohio Chapter Conference on November 14, 2019. The presentation was titled, Stigma hurts: How stigma of mental illness affects families and what social workers can do.

Stigma is a severe social problem that affects many individuals with mental illness and their families. Persons with mental illness often avoid seeking professional help due to the misconceptions about mental disorders that prevail in the society. This is an issue not only among the general public but also well-trained mental health professionals subscribe to biased prejudice and stereotypes about mental illness and show stigmatizing attitudes about persons with mental illness. Dr. Sang's presentation introduced social workers to stigma of mental illness and explored the social workers' roles in reducing stigma of mental illness. 

Dr. Glotzer Presented at MAAAS & Selected to Receive the 2019 CFLE Special Recognition Award

Richard Glotzer

Dr. Richard Glotzer, professor of social work and interim director of the School of Nutrition and Dietetics, presented a paper titled, Lost in history: Abe J.B. Desmore & Emil Blume: How history informs the contemporary struggle of Southern Africa’s ‘coloured’ community’s political, cultural, and economic voice and power at the annual conference of the Mid-America Alliance for African Studies (MAAAS). The conference was held at the University of Kansas in Lawrence on Sept. 13-14, 2019. Dr. Glotzer is president-elect of MAAAS for 2020-2021.

Dr. Glotzer has also been selected to receive the 2019 Certified Family Life Educator (CFLE) Special Recognition award at the CFLE reception at the National Council on Family Relations’ conference in Fort Worth, Texas on November, 2019. This is to recognize his work promoting and supporting the CFLE credential at the University of Akron. In addition, his extensive work as a member of the original CFLE exam committee and ongoing contribution to the creation of subsequent test forms was considered. Dr. Glotzer has been a Certified Family Life Educator since 1997.

School of Social Work Represented at National Conference

Mark McManus at AAIDD Mark McManus at AAIDD

Dr. Mark McManus, Visiting Assistant Professor, was selected to chair the Social Work Interest Network Division of the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AAIDD) at the 143rd Annual Conference in Minneapolis. He hosted a luncheon at the conference in which attendees developed an annual plan focused on working with families to develop webinars and educational materials for social workers. Dr. McManus also moderated a discussion during the platform presentation of Data Projects of National Significance: Informing Policy and Practice through Research. The discussion on national statistics centered on residential and support services trends of individuals with intellectual disabilities. Additionally, he had a poster presentation titled: Vaccine Hesitancy in Parents of Children with Down syndrome (DS): Implications for Social Work. Children with DS are known to have immunodeficiency and are at increased risk of hospitalization or death due to vaccine-preventable infections. In the present study, structured qualitative interviews of 54 parents of children with DS explored the decision-making process and sources of information about vaccines. Social work implications to reduce vaccine hesitancy among parents of children with (DS) through research, policy, and practice were presented.