School of Social Work

No. 25 M.S.W. Program in the U.S.

Legacy Leadership Awards; background image of colorful geometric shapes

Twenty-six VCU School of Social Work students were honored for the 2019-20 academic year with the school’s top annual awards.

Students normally are honored at a Legacy Leadership Awards Mixer event in mid-April, but the event had to be canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Six students – Heather Ashbeck, Angela Couch, and Trista Monroe of the B.S.W. program; John Gyourko and Briana Harris of the M.S.W. program; and Britney Pitts of the Ph.D. program – won two awards.

Elaine Rothenberg Social Work Award

  • Heather Ashbeck (B.S.W.)
  • Kimberly Compton (Ph.D.)
  • John Gyourko (M.S.W.)

David N. Saunders Legislative Award
Sophie Fontaine (M.S.W.)

Student Field Impact Award

  • Lindsey Brown (M.S.W.)
  • Ciara Carr (B.S.W.)
  • Caroline Lavoie (M.S.W.)
  • Kiara Mickins (B.S.W.)
  • Morgan Wood (M.S.W.)

Service & Leadership Award

  • Heather Ashbeck (B.S.W.)
  • Sophia Booker (M.S.W.)
  • David Conley (Ph.D.)
  • Angela Couch (B.S.W.)
  • John Gyourko (M.S.W.)
  • Hanan Kourtu (M.S.W.)
  • Meghana Mallampati (B.S.W.)
  • Caitlin Mayton (Ph.D.)
  • Sarah Meehan (B.S.W.)
  • Trista Monroe (B.S.W.)
  • Alisha Robinson (B.S.W.)
  • Austin Swift (B.S.W.)
  • Keith Watts (Ph.D.)

Social Justice Award
2019-2020 ABSW members and executive board

  • Briana Harris, President (M.S.W.)
  • Kailyn Hampton-Studivant, Vice-President (M.S.W.)
  • Angela Couch, Treasurer (B.S.W.)
  • Trista Monroe, Secretary (B.S.W.)
  • Britney Pitts, Ph.D. Student Advisor to the ABSW  

Black History in the Making Award

  • Tene’ Dixon (B.S.W.)
  • Malik Ellis (B.S.W.)
  • Nicole George (M.S.W)
  • Briana Harris (M.S.W.)
  • Britney Pitts (Ph.D.)
Black History in the Making Awards; graduation cap; background of geometric shapes in light gray, purple, black and gold

Also honored were SSW Associate professor in Teaching Daryl Fraser, Ph.D.; and Devin Nelson-Hence, a double major in psychology and African and African American studies, who works as a research assistant in social work with Associate Professor Sunny Shin, Ph.D.

See details on all the Black History in the Making winners’ nominations.

Speaking on the significance of the awards, Dr. Chioke I’Anson, assistant professor in the Department of African American Studies, says, “Sometimes, what keeps a person going in life is a bit of recognition from their peers. I think that Black History in the Making is the perfect way to say to students, and now to junior faculty and staff, ‘I see you’ – to let them know that, though they may still be developing themselves and expanding their potential, we know that their greatest works are coming and we can’t wait to see who they become.”

B-S-W student Malik Ellis, holding his Black History in the Making certificate
Malik Ellis
Dr. Shelby McDonald with M-S-W student Nicole George, holding her Black History in the Making certificate
Dr. Shelby McDonald with Nicole George
Dr. Jamie Cage with M-S-W student Briana Harris, holding her Black History in the Making certificate
Dr. Jamie Cage with Briana Harris
Britney Pitts, P-H-D student, holding her Black History in the Making certificate
Britney Pitts
Portrait of Daryl Fraser, V-C-U social work associate professor in teaching
Daryl Fraser

Devin Nelson-Hence, an undergraduate researcher in social work, holding her Black History in the Making certificate
Devin Nelson-Hence
Categories Awards and honors, Faculty and staff, Students
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