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Social Welfare at Berkeley THE MAGAZINE FOR ALUMNI & FRIENDS

winter 2015

Social Work through an International Lens Berkeley Social Welfare expands its worldwide reach through hosted and sponsored field learning experiences and internships throughout the globe


a letter from the dean The first text on international social welfare was authored by Walter Friedlander, an early member of the UC Berkeley School of Social Welfare faculty. The pioneering text, International Social Welfare (Prentice-Hall, 1975), traced the history and practice of international social welfare. Berkeley Social Welfare has its own long history of engagement — not only with local communities, but globally. Social Welfare at Berkeley’s cover story describes a number of our students’ recent international experiences. At home and abroad we are preparing our students to become leaders for social change and innovation in our communities and around the world. We are very proud of our alumnus Dr. Fernando Cheung (PhD ’91) for his leadership in the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong and the key role he played in helping ensure peaceful protests in the face of police actions. At home, our students live true to the Berkeley tradition of taking constructive social action, as can be seen in the profile story on our current MSW students, Emily Higgs and Marta Galan, and their work on California’s End of Life Option Act. The Walter Friedlander Endowed Lecture on International Social Welfare this year will be offered by University of Johannesburg Professor Leila Patel. Her lecture on April 4, 2016 will be part of an all-day symposium bringing together a number of prominent international and domestic social welfare scholars as well as former doctoral students of Professor James Midgley to celebrate his career. Professor Midgley will retire at the end of this academic year. This continues to be a time of change in public higher education and at our School. As we experience multiple retirements we are also renewing our faculty and staff. Several pages of this magazine introduce you to many of the new faces at our School. You will also see the four new strategic goals we have developed in ensuring Berkeley Social Welfare’s bright future. Enjoy the following pages. We hope you learn more about the diversity of Berkeley Social Welfare’s work and see how what we do here ripples beyond the walls of Haviland Hall to create change for a better world. Sincerely,

Jeffrey Edleson, PhD Dean and Professor

winter 2015

table of contents






Achieving Excellence: Berkeley Social Welfare identifies four key strategic goals for the future — leading discoveries, educating for impact, allying with communities and sustainability

Creating Aging-Friendly Communities Center for Prevention Research in Social Welfare Examining Refugees’ Economic Conditions to Improve US Resettlement Programs


International Social Work Experiences: From Mexico to Hong Kong to South Africa to Russia, Berkeley Social Welfare students immerse themselves in global social welfare practices to better understand the needs of diverse populations







Leading a Movement: From immigrants’ rights in Oakland, Calif., to pro-democratic protests in his native Hong Kong, Dr. Fernando Cheung (PhD ’91) champions justice

Fighting for Death with Dignity: Emily Higgs (MSW ’16) and Marta Galan (MSW/MPP ’17) advocate for California’s End of Life Option Act


Haviland Hall’s Upcoming Events: Tripodi Lecture on Research Methodologies — Stanford University Professor of Health Research and Policy and Statistics John P.A. Ioannidis Friedlander Lecture on International Social Work — University of Johannesburg Professor of Social Development Studies Leila Patel Recent Events: Alumni Dinner and Dean’s Circle Dinner


Design and Photography Alli Yates

Meet Berkeley Social Welfare’s newest field consultant and Dean’s Office and CalSWEC staff


Editor Francesca Dinglasan

© 2015 by the Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.


Faculty, Researcher and Student Notes; In Memoriam



cover photo: Victoria Pickering, metal sculpture “The Steel Globe” by Kim Brandell. Columbus Circle, New York City CC BY-NC-ND 2.0., 2013.


Envisioning the next 3-5 years

Three years ago, Berkeley Social Welfare embarked on a transformative strategic planning process to focus our attention on identifying the elements of a more robust and sustainable future, not only for the School, but also for and with our community partners. Over the course of 18 months, we held 36 meetings and events and consulted with 138 people, including faculty, staff, students, community stakeholders and leaders as well as deans from other professional schools on campus to get diverse perspectives on the needs, challenges and opportunities that may arise in our field in the next decade.



18 19 faculty and staff



community stakeholders

Campus From Achieving Excellence: Fall 2014 undergraduate and graduate diversity and inclusion breakdown for Berkeley Social Welfare and campus at-large











& Inclusion

11.6% SW


3.4% african american



undergraduate and graduate


4.3% asian/ pacific islander





11.4% SW




Campus .8%

native american/ alaska native




decline to state


From Achieving Excellence: Key statistics for the 2014-15 academic year.


86% 100,000 more than

students received grants, scholarships, and fellowships

PhD graduates secured employment in higher education


field sites

field service hours contributed to community and agency partners annually

12 professional development events

in 12 cities

Our discussions guided the development of our plan Achieving Excellence, which contains four goals embodying our mission, vision and values as well as helps us maintain a leading role in the future of our society. These four goals create the foundation for a more vibrant and dynamic Berkeley Social Welfare in the coming years. Achieving Excellence details how Berkeley Social Welfare will achieve these goals and build a sustainable future in which we continue to lead, collaborate and impact change for the common good.


Lead discoveries that solve grand challenges facing our society in the coming decades.


Educate for impact by developing practitioners and scholars with the skills to become leaders in our communities, the courage to challenge conventional wisdom, and the creativity to find innovative solutions to our most pressing problems.

2 3. 4.

Ally with communities to organize social change at neighborhood, community, national and global levels. Develop a sustainable community to maintain our leadership in discovery and transformative change for the common good.

To read the full version of Achieving Excellence, visit, or email to request a print copy.

developments in RESEARCH Creating Aging-Friendly Communities Professor Andrew Scharlach and Dr. Amanda Lehning (PhD ’10) Berkeley Social Welfare Professor Andrew Scharlach and alumna Amanda Lehning (PhD ’10), assistant professor at the University of Maryland School of Social Work, have published their latest examination of the needs of senior populations in the US in Creating Aging-Friendly Communities (Oxford University Press). Drawing from numerous disciplines, including psychology, sociology, urban planning, demography, environmental gerontology and assistive technologies, Dr. Scharlach and Dr. Lehning’s new book focuses on the “interface between individuals and their environments and the ways in which communities can enhance individual and community well-being.” Among some of the concepts covered in the book are social as well as physical infrastructure characteristics and models of community change for fostering aging-friendliness. The publication also identifies practical implications for policies, programs and knowledge development designed to help communities become more aging-friendly. Creating Aging-Friendly Communities is just the latest in Dr. Scharlach’s body of publications focused on promoting the well-being of older adults and their communities. In addition to holding the Berkeley Social Welfare Eugene and Rose Kleiner Chair in Aging, he is director of the School’s Center for the Advanced Study of Aging Services. Following the completion of her doctoral degree at Berkeley, Dr. Lehning participated in a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Michigan School of Social Work. Her research examines the effects of policies, program and neighborhood infrastructure on older adults’ health, well-being and ability to age in place.

Center for Prevention Research in Social Welfare

Assistant Professors Valerie Shapiro and Paul Sterzing, Co-Directors The Center for Prevention Research in Social Welfare (CPRSW) at UC Berkeley was established in 2013 to “serve as the intellectual home for researchers intending to intersect the aims of prevention science with the mission and opportunities of the social work profession.” Co-directed by Assistant Professors Valerie Shapiro and Paul Sterzing, CPRSW’s primary focus areas reflect the faculty’s expertise, including emotional, behavioral and mental-health problems in children; violence and bullying among vulnerable adolescent populations; and children’s exposure to family violence. CPRSW has been excited to contribute to the knowledge base of prevention science in social welfare. Since 2014, the center directors have published 15 peer review articles, two chapters and two position papers and made 18 scientific presentations to research and practice audiences. Among CPRSW’s active research projects is Dr. Shapiro’s examination of the implementation of social-emotional learning strategies in Bay Area schools. Supported by a grant from the Stuart Foundation, the study entails the collection of information from various sites to understand the naturally occurring variation that exists in implementation activities and outputs. It is being conducted with Dovetail Learning, Berkeley Unified School District, San Lorenzo Unified School District and the Devereux Center for Resilient Children. Additionally, Dr. Sterzing is co-PI with Berkeley Social Welfare Dean Jeffrey Edleson on the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) study SpeakOut. The project is examining the familial pathways to polyvictimization for LGBTQ youth and has completed data collection of more than 1,000 sexual and gender minority youth.



CPRSW also hosted two students this past summer through UC Berkeley’s Undergraduate Summer Research Opportunity Program (SROP). Each presented a scientific paper at the SROP Symposium in July. University of Washington sociology major Ferdose Idris presented her paper — co-authored with Kelly Whitaker (PhD ’15), current doctoral student Joe Roscoe and Dr. Shapiro — “Cultural Adaptations to Social Emotional Learning Interventions: A Study of the TOOLBOX Program,” and New York University psychology major Jordan Johnson presented her paper — co-authored with Brenda Carrillo and Dr. Shapiro — “Student Success Teams: How Race and Gender Impact Reports of Students Strengths in Pre-Referral Documentation.” Several papers also have been accepted for publication. Dr. Whitaker’s “School-Based Protective Factors Related to Suicide for Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Adolescents,” co-authored with Shapiro and Shields, will be published in the Journal of Adolescent Health. Christina Cackler’s (MSW/MPH ’13) “Female Sterilization and Poor Mental Health: Rates and Relatedness among American Indian and Alaska Native Women,” co-authored with Shapiro and Lahiff, will appear in Women’s Health Issues, and “The Choices, Challenges, and Lessons Learned from a Multi-Method Social-Emotional/Character Assessment in an Out of School Time Setting,” authored by Dr. Shapiro, Sarah Accomazzo (PhD ’14), Claassen and Fleming, was recently accepted by Journal of Youth Development. photo, from left to right, front row: Brittany Schmitt, Shelby Lawson, Kristyn Lue, Elizabeth Kim, Assistant Professor Valerie Shapiro back row: Sarah Accomazzo, Joe Roscoe, Julia Hernandez, Sophie Shang, Mary Mykhaylova, Rachel Gartner

Examining Refugees’ Economic Conditions to Improve Resettlement Programs Rami Arafah, PhD Candidate After spending several years working with refugee communities in Columbus, Ohio, following the completion of his MSW degree, current Berkeley Social Welfare doctoral candidate Rami Arafah decided to pursue a PhD due to a growing frustration at the lack of evidence-informed data behind the services provided. “There’s very little research directed at what works and why, and there are very few guidelines for the nonprofit contractors who actually deliver the services,” he says. “We were making things up on the fly and not asking the big questions about if what we were doing is in our clients’ or the public’s best interest. I wanted to be part of changing that.” Arafah is progressing notably toward that goal. As a result of nearly 18 months of persistence that eventually involved a Freedom of Information Act request and direct assistance from the office of Congresswoman Barbara Lee (MSW ’75), he has garnered access to a secondary dataset from the Office of Refugee Resettlement, a division of the Administration for Children and Families. He plans to use the “treasure trove” of data to examine predictors of economic and adaptation success, such as job status and income, for refugees who have resettled in the country within the last five years. Housed within the US Department of Health and Human Services, the data is based on an annual survey of refugee households that includes a follow-up after five years. Each year, anywhere between 1,000 - 2,000 randomly sampled participants are queried in their native language about a wide array of topics, ranging from household characteristics — such as size, language(s) spoken and ages of family members — to hourly wages, home ownership and self-sufficiency levels. Arafah is primarily interested in examining the refugee populations’ economic conditions. “I want to identify what factors most strongly predict economic adaptation,” he explains. “For example, there’s information in the data about people who receive job or English-language training, and we can try to figure out the relative predictive strengths of going through those programs. There are just a bunch of questions that have never been asked because the data has never been used that way.” Ultimately, Arafah hopes that his findings will be impactful at both national and local levels, informing how federal funding for refugee resettlement — money that trickles down to states, counties, cities and individual nonprofit agencies — is best allocated. “The vast majority of the world’s refugees are never permanently resettled, but the ones who do are split up among some 28 countries, with the US historically receiving the greatest portion each year,” he says. “The resettlement program in the US carries a budget of over $300 million. I really do hope my research has policy implications.”

an international LENS ON SOCIAL WORK

Berkeley Social Welfare students immerse themselves in global social work practices to better understand the needs of diverse populations

photo by Jenny McKenzie (MSW ’16)

This past summer, Berkeley Social Welfare significantly expanded access to international social work internships and learning experiences by sending 28 MSW students to engage in work, study and language immersion opportunities throughout the globe.


From Mexico to Hong Kong to South Africa to Russia, the diversity of experiences matched the rich variety of the students’ goals and ambitions in furthering their social work and cultural competency training. What did an international field experience mean for those who participated?

For Allyson Fritz, an MSW student in the management and planning concentration, it meant the opportunity to gain direct work experience in Uganda as part of her larger objective to pursue a career in West Africa after graduation. For Dennis Ho, an MSW student in the health concentration, an internship in Hong Kong provided the chance to polish his Cantonese language skills to help him better serve San Francisco’s large Chinese American population.

“These are students who have deep commitments to immigrant and refugee populations and want to serve those communities here in the US.” programming. “That’s an example of students doing a small thing that had an extremely high impact,” says Merrill. “The response was, ‘We can’t let that happen.’”

For Field Consultant Luna Calderon, who advises Berkeley Social Welfare MSW students focusing on community mental health, it meant re-establishing and continuing to grow the School’s decades-old Intercambio. Relaunched this year as Sin Fronteras, the program, which was on hiatus, is again sending students to a region in Mexico for cultural and linguistic immersion.

“These are students who have deep commitments to immigrant and refugee populations and want to serve those communities here in the US,” he adds. “But they want to serve effectively by developing knowledge about the home culture.” In 2011, the School of Social Welfare took one of its first steps in establishing a more robust international portfolio when Interim Dean Sam Davis appointed a task force, co-chaired by Midgley and Merrill, to explore programmatic options. The task force approved a small number of student proposals for overseas summer learning experiences, and the following summer the selected students received funding to help finance traveland tuition-related expenses for their activities. Feedback from this pilot phase in turn helped inform the School’s development of international student programs, including how academic or field credit could be applied.

Dana Rosenberg in the aging concentration notes that it meant enhancing her cultural acumen and ability to work with Russian and Russian-speaking older adult communities through time spent in St. Petersburg, while for Zimbabwe native Thabani Nyoni, it meant both coming to Berkeley to increase his knowledge about social work theory by earning an MSW in the management and planning program as well as spending more than two months in South Africa working in gender justice and public health rights as part of his fellowship program.

CIA IN ACTION By several accounts, Berkeley Social Welfare students have been the driving force in bringing international service opportunities to the School and making them an accessible part of the academic experience. Professor James Midgley recalls that nearly a decade ago, a group of MSW students first approached him with the request for international programs. The students dubbed themselves the Caucus for International Awareness, resulting in the tongue-incheek acronym of CIA. Since the group’s formation, Professor Midgley has served as the faculty advisor, and the student organization has remained passionate about making overseas learning opportunities for graduate students a reality. Director of Field Education Greg Merrill explains that a turning point occurred a few years ago, when the CIA demonstrated to School administration that among the top 10 ranked schools of social work in the country, Berkeley lagged behind in international

Director of Student Services Bob Teague sees the programmatic format as developing from “a desire to increase the overall portfolio of international experiences.” “Several students do independent study, and we would like to be able to do more of that,” he says. Other priorities for successful overseas projects include “primary active support from a faculty member who will be involved in the outcome” as well as experiences that “do not become overly financially burdensome for the students.” Teague notes that departmental funding from a variety of sources, including Graduate Division block grants, return-to-aid, endowment sources and donor gifts, all go toward support for students’ international summer experiences.


Though the expansion of overseas service learning was implemented this past summer, an international program that has a long history at the School of Social Welfare is Intercambio. Established by beloved former Field Consultant Joe Solis to provide students the opportunity to travel to Mexico to learn firsthand about the factors impacting migrant communities, the program’s first cohort went abroad in the summer of 1983. The program



continued for several years, benefitting from the leadership of former Field Consultant Rafael Herrera, who took over for Solis after his retirement in 1995. Funding challenges, however, eventually interrupted the program, which was dormant for years despite student interest remaining high.


Renewed last year due to the dedicated efforts of current program leader Luna Calderon, the reinvigorated program is now known as Sin Fronteras. As part of the ongoing tradition of traveling to a region in Mexico to help develop a better understanding of the cultural, social and linguistic contexts of the populations that MSW students plan to serve, Calderon and 14 Berkeley Social Welfare students spent several weeks in Oaxaca this past summer. Sin Fronteras students follow two activity tracks. More fluent Spanish-speakers spent two hours per week in a “technical” Spanish language class and another 16-20 hours performing service learning at a local organization. Those still developing their Spanish skills spent four hours a day attending language classes and engaged in service learning once a week. This year, the service learning project involved the entire group, who helped build stoves for families in the community of San Miguel del Valle.

Through Professor Midgley’s close relationship with faculty in Hong Kong Polytechnic University’s Department of Applied Social Sciences, an exchange involving one student from Hong Kong coming to Berkeley and two Berkeley students going to Hong Kong was arranged, with all three participating in full field placements and earning formal field units that count toward their respective degrees. Also a notable presence in Haviland Hall and helping to represent the School’s growing international reach is second-year MSW student Thabani Nyoni, a Zimbabwe native currently attending Berkeley Social Welfare through the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program. Nyoni, who has spent eight years working in advocacy, outreach and political organizing in Zimbabwe, explains that he decided to further pursue his formal education when it “became clear what kind of degree program would be of best use” to his country. “I’ve been asked by quite a number of people if my MSW program is really relevant to my situation,” he explains. “I’d say 60 to 80 percent of what I did in my first year in terms of issues, topics, skills and processes are very much transferable.”

In the program’s online blog, Social Work sin Fronteras: Intercambio Oaxaca, a student writes of the service project, “This experience, and other experiences in Oaxaca, showed me that sharing meals is an important way of showing gratitude, welcoming strangers and creating friendships…. This relationship between food, gratitude and friendship is something I hope to bring to my work in the US. Can we encourage different boundaries between practitioners and clients? Can we give and receive food as a way to show gratitude and establish friendships in community mental health settings?” “Millions of Oaxacans leave their homes because of their dire economic circumstances,” Calderon has observed. “Oaxaca is so rich in terms of food, culture, art, history and spirituality. Oaxacans are also incredibly hospitable. Students get to experience this wealth of resources and to understand firsthand how much people lose when they migrate to the US for economic reasons.”


In addition to sending a number of Berkeley Social Welfare students around the world, the School continues to find opportunities for foreign students to come to the School and the Bay Area for social work education and field training.

His interest in Berkeley Social Welfare’s master’s program developed through a relationship with School Dean Jeffrey Edleson, whom he met in 2009 while participating in an 11-month program supervised by Sudha Shetty at the University of Minnesota, where Dean Edleson was at the time serving as a professor of social work. “Over the years we have remained in contact, and the dean sent me information about the MasterCard Foundation program,” explains Nyoni. “There are schools that are part of the program, and you select the one you think is the best fit. For me it was Berkeley.” Nyoni was also one of the 28 students to participate in a summer overseas learning experience, as he, along with fellow MSW student Miguel Becerra, received USAID’s inaugural Research and Innovation Fellowship, which


“Berkeley has an institutional influence that makes you unique when you go out in the world.” — Thabani Nyoni (MSW ’16)

supports research in developing nations. Nyoni spent twoand-a-half months in South Africa interning with Sonke Gender Justice, where he conducted program evaluation, needs assessment and research for the agency’s Refugee Health and Rights project. “I wanted to expand my lens to think about the social justice intent of economic and social justice rights,” he says. “Sonke does a lot of work around public health and rights and works with underserved groups. I thought it would be a great addition to my experience and allow me to explore how my research and work connects to these issues.” Nyoni plans to enroll directly in a doctoral program following the completion of his MSW degree in the spring. His experience at Berkeley has been rewarding in many ways, and he is especially mindful of the campus’ reputation and global reach, which he hopes the School will continue to leverage as it expands its international programming. “Berkeley has an institutional influence that makes you unique when you go out in the world,” he says. “I experienced that in Sonke in how I was treated as a highlevel intern. You could clearly see there is a lot of respect for the institution and therefore the people affiliated with it. I feel the School of Social Welfare could do a lot by

intentionally seeking out international students from many different countries,” he adds. “Because of the societal issues addressed at Berkeley, it may be a better host for people who are struggling — not just to deal with issues in the countries they are coming from, but also to learn about struggles in the US setting and within American society.” Professor Midgley, who has witnessed the growth of international programs at Berkeley Social Welfare from the very first request for their implementation, also expresses hope that the School’s efforts to increase international field placements will be impactul. “In the 1950s, the School’s faculty included Walter Friedlander, who wrote the first-ever book on international social welfare,” he says. “We have a long history in international social work, and supporting international field placements reaffirms our leadership.”

photos Sin Fronteras students in Oaxaca, Mexico; Jennifer Ng (MSW ’16) and Dennis Ho (MSW ’16) in the Hong Kong-based agency Baptist Oi Kwan Social Service; Miguel Becerra (MSW ’16) in Bogota, Colombia with Familia Ayara; Allyson Fritz (MSW ’16) in Uganda with Uganda Youth Development Link (UYDEL); Thabani Nyoni (MSW ’16) in Haviland Hall’s Social Research Library

alumni profile

LEADING A MOVEMENT From Immigrants’ Rights in Oakland to Pro-Democratic Protests in Hong Kong’s Umbrella Revolution, Dr. Fernando Cheung (PhD ’91) Champions Justice

Fernando Cheung earned his doctoral degree at Berkeley Social Welfare in 1991 while serving as the executive director of the Oakland Chinese Community Council. His advocacy work on behalf of immigrant communities was so widely respected that the City of Oakland declared September 13 “Dr. Fernando Cheung Day” to mark the date that he left the Bay Area to return to his native Hong Kong, where he launched his political career. Politics were not part of his original plan, as Dr. Cheung’s intent was to focus on teaching welfare policy and management courses. But after witnessing Hong Kong’s enormous income gap, high poverty rate and what he describes as “the most unaffordable housing city in the world,” he decided to run for Hong Kong’s Legislative Council. Backed by the region’s social workers, he was elected to office in 2004 and has served continuously for the past 11 years. Among the many causes he fiercely champions are disability rights and reforming the region’s subventure system — the mechanism through which nongovernmental agencies (NGOs), which deliver the lion’s share of Hong Kong’s social and human services, receive financial support from the government. Dr. Cheung is 12


concerned that as NGOs grow increasingly dependent on this funding stream, the more unstable and unreliable the subventure scheme has become. “NGOs are losing their capacity for advocacy,” he says. “They have become an executive arm of the government. Many have become contractors rather than vibrant, mission-led organizations. New resources are allocated mostly through competitive bidding, and NGOs are competitors. Social-work knowledge becomes proprietary, and social workers don’t want to discuss delivery systems with one another.” True to his Berkeley education, Dr. Cheung has earned the nickname, “Longhair of the Social Service Sector.” “I called for a more rebellious attitude among social workers,” he says. “I was elected in the name of overhauling the subventure system.” “But that’s the problem with our society. the government is not accountable to the people,” he adds. “It’s not even accountable to the leaders of the community.” Dr. Cheung’s advocacy and rebellious spirit became the focus of international attention in the fall of 2014, when



from Occupy Central The Hong Kong-based movement was initially dubbed “Occupy Central with Love and Peace.” Following the protesters’ use of umbrellas to protect themselves from tear gas, the occupation became interchangeably known as the “Umbrella Revolution” and the “Umbrella Movement.”

he emerged as one of the pro-democratic leaders of Hong Kong’s Umbrella Movement. The student-led act of civil disobedience — initially organized by prominent activists known collectively as Occupy Central — grew to involve an estimated 1.2 million people during the 79-day campaign. The largest public protest ever against the dictates of Beijing was directed at the Chinese government’s decision to prescreen candidates for Hong Kong’s leadership election, with protesters demanding an open, free and fair election. By the end of September, violent clashes between the regional police force and protesters resulted in international observers nicknaming the movement the “Umbrella Revolution” because of the students’ use of umbrellas to protect themselves from tear gas and batons. Dr. Cheung assumed a pivotal role as a negotiator between the two sides and is credited for helping restore the peace for the remainder of the protest. The physical occupation and campsites along Hong Kong’s Admiralty waterfront district eventually disbanded in early 2015, but Dr. Cheung notes that the movement continues to have ramifications. “The awakening and rebellious attitudes have been planted in everybody’s mind,” he says. “Our government will surely continue to make these mistakes given that they are not accountable to the people. Something will happen, and there will be future acts representing the anger and uproar.” As the only child of an elementary-school teacher and a nurse, Dr. Cheung says that the helping professions were the only career path he has ever known or would have ever considered. “My parents encouraged me as a child to volunteer, and by engaging in these activities, I fell in love with the profession,” he explains. “I thought, ‘If I can devote myself to helping the needy and turn that into a vocation, I could have a fulfilled life.’” Dr. Cheung earned his undergraduate degree in social work from Hong Kong Baptist University and his MSW from California State University, Fresno. He decided to pursue a PhD in social welfare because it was an option not available

Occupy Central started in the Admiralty District, which houses the Legislative Council Complex (LegCo). The protests expanded into the Causeway Bay and Mong Kok Districts following police attacks on protesters. In September 2014, 100 people attempted to “reclaim” the privatized, fenced-off Civic Square near LegCo. By December, the number of active protesters reached upwards of 100,000.

The UN Human Rights Committee and leaders in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Taiwan, Vatican City, the UK and US have urged China to meet protesters’ demands for free elections in Hong Kong. Protesters’ mobilization efforts effectively shut down traffic in key areas for 79 days.

“Social work is an applied profession. Practice is everything.” to him at the time in Hong Kong. He retained his role as head of the Oakland Chinese Community Council during his doctoral studies because of the importance he places on practice. “I knew I shouldn’t go into a teaching position until I collected sufficient experience,” he says. “One of the problems of academia is that a lot of people who have gone through higher education immediately jump into teaching.” “Social work is an applied profession,” he continues. “Practice is everything. We want to build our knowledge through research and development, and we want to refine our delivery models and our skills. But in the end, practice is the main goal and where we want to make changes.” It is through this lens that Dr. Cheung also approaches his political work. “I see my role here as a legislator as a way of macro-practice,” he says. “ I am at all times a social worker.” First and foremost, however, Dr. Chung continues to be a pro-democracy leader. “I think that Hong Kong stands tall in our will and courage to be able to say no to Beijing,” he says. “We refuse any false or misleading type of democracy to be imposed upon us.” “Younger generations of Hong Kong have become so discontent with the current regime,” he adds. “They’re impatient, and they no longer trust existing structures and avenues to represent them anymore.”

student profile

left to right Marta Galan & Emily Higgs

fighting for death

with dignity Berkeley Social Welfare Students Emily Higgs (MSW ’16) and Marta Galan (MSW/MPP ’17) Advocate for the End of Life Option Act in California In Professor Jill Duerr Berrick’s Social Welfare Policy: Children and Families course, MSW students learn about local- and state-level policymaking processes, the importance of coalition-building and targeted advocacy as well as how to create policy messages and media campaigns to influence politicians and the public. To develop these skills, students are asked to select a bill under consideration and work on projects in support of the proposed legislation. Emily Higgs and Marta Galan, two current Berkeley Social Welfare students who enrolled in Dr. Berrick’s class last spring, knew immediately where they wanted to focus their attention — California’s Senate Bill 128: The End of Life Option Act, which sought to allow terminally ill patients the right “to obtain self-administered life-ending medication.” Higgs and Galan’s advocacy efforts on behalf of the bill 14


have gone far beyond the classroom assignment, with a real-world reach helping raise awareness and affect public perception about the controversial legislation. In addition to creating a Facebook presence through the group Californians for the End of Life Option Act, Higgs and Galan worked with Compassion and Choices, an advocacy group dedicated to legalizing end-of-life options. The nonprofit gained widespread media attention last year in its close support of Brittany Maynard, a 29-year-old UC Berkeley alumna who moved from her native California to Oregon to avail herself of the northwest state’s landmark Death with Dignity Act (DWDA). Maynard’s decision to take a physician-prescribed lethal dose of medication to end the pain caused by terminal brain cancer has both galvanized the country and spurred the debate of enacting death with dignity laws in states where they currently do not exist.

The California bill was introduced in February 2015, just months after Maynard passed away. It was also at that time that Higgs and Galan were considering legislation for their policy course. “I decided to work on this bill because it has a lot of personal resonance,” explains Higgs. “Death with Dignity laws and the Right-to-Die Movement have been meaningful to me in the past few years. My mother passed away from terminal brain cancer and absolutely would have benefitted from more choice at the end of her life.” “When Emily asked me if I would be interested in working with her, I was 100 percent in,” adds Galan. “We saw that the bill was being supported by a lot of different legislators and that it wasn’t going away anytime soon.” Their Facebook group page has been featuring news about the bill as it progressed through the state senate and assembly as well as photos of individuals holding up “I support Death with Dignity” posters showcasing the variety of individuals in favor of the legislation. The posters also include the reasons why each individual favored the legislation, such as “True power is about having power over your decisions about your life and your death.” Higgs says that the idea behind the posters is “to humanize and destigmatize the issue” and to demonstrate the diversity of its supporters. “Because we’re young and in school, our network is primarily younger people, which is not the demographic most associated with the issue,” she says. “It seemed really powerful to get those voices and faces out to show a different side.” Beyond their advocacy efforts on social media, Galan and Higgs received invitations to provide testimony in Sacramento as the bill moved throughout the legislature as well as to participate in action teams in the Bay Area. Higgs also continued to meet with representatives from Compassion and Choices, including chief external affairs officer Nick Simmonds and Jacie Rowe, the Northern California campaign organizer.

determination, and the disease took her life on its own terms. No one should be forced to suffer through their last days, and the End of Life Option Act is an opportunity, not a risk.” Higgs and Galan also assembled an information packet featuring a snapshot of the bill that includes the guidelines of medical participation and pertinent data points from Oregon, where the state’s DWDA was passed in 1997 (e.g., nearly 98 percent of the patients who took the prescribed medication were able to pass away in their own homes). Both Galan and Higgs’ dedication to shedding light on the End of Life Option Act and raising public awareness about the need and desire for medical aid-in-dying options in California are indicative of the students’ advocacy-focused educational and professional goals. Galan is currently enrolled in a concurrent master’s program in public policy and social welfare, with an emphasis on management and planning. Her aim is to work in humanservice policy, while keeping close to the communities most directly affected by those policy decisions. “If one day I’m going to be a policymaker or an informant to policymakers, I want to understand the populations, and the people who work with those populations, that human-service policy will be impacting,” she says. Higgs, who notes she has “always gravitated to macrolevel practice,” decided to pursue an MSW degree in management and planning because she felt limited by what she saw in other graduate programs. “Social work felt like the most expansive degree program that could allow me to explore my different interests without having to narrowly focus on any one issue or methodology.” Higgs also cites the profession’s commitment to social justice, as she plans to work within the “advocacy side of systems change.” As for SB-128, the bill ended up sailing through the senate in early summer before stalling in the Assembly Health Committee in July. On the day the bill was shelved, Higgs was in Sacramento to provide testimony at the Health Committee hearing with other Compassion and Choices advocates.

Higgs’ words and voice were also featured on a moving KQED Perspective titled, “Life and Death With Dignity.” In the public-radio commentary she vocalizes her support for the End of Life Option Act, describing the bill’s safeguards designed to protect the most vulnerable and marginalized from potential abuses as well as sharing her family’s personal connection to the legislation.

The End of Life Option Act, however, was reintroduced as AB X2-15 via a special session in the California legislature, which officially approved the bill in September. Passed in the state senate by a 23-to-14 vote, the amended bill was signed by Governor Jerry Brown on October 5, officially making California the fifth state in the nation to approve Death with Dignity legislation.

In the Perspective, which was heard and supported by Maynard’s Bay Area-based widower, Dan Diaz, and brotherin-law, Adrian Diaz, Higgs notes, “My mother passed away in 2013. As brain cancer robbed her of mobility, intellect and personality, she asked to be released from her suffering. But the law did not support my mother’s right to self-

“California was one of 28 states considering Death with Dignity legislation this year alone,” says Higgs. “The tide is clearly turning in favor of this important issue.” For more information, visit

upcoming events

Research Reproducibility: Crises and Solutions John P.A. Ioannidis Tripodi Lecture on Research Methodologies January 20, 2016 • 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm • Haviland Hall Stanford University C.F. Rehnborg Chair in Disease Prevention, Professor of Health Research and Policy and Statistics and Director of the Stanford Prevention Research Center John P.A. Ioannidis will present “Research Reproducibility: Crises and Solutions.” There has been an increasing interest in the ability to reproduce research findings across different scientific disciplines. Reproducibility entails different types of re-analysis, replication and validation. Empirical evidence suggests low reproducibility in many scientific fields, including the social sciences. Many solutions for fixing the problem have been proposed, but few have been rigorously tested across different scientific disciplines. The pros and cons of some key proposed solutions will be discussed.

Gender and Social Welfare in South Africa: Lessons from the South Leila Patel Friedlander Lecture on International Social Welfare April 4, 2016 • 5:15 pm - 6:15 pm • Social Research Library, Haviland Hall University of Johannesburg (UJ) Professor of Social Development Studies Leila Patel will serve as the 2016 Friedlander Lecturer on International Social Welfare. Professor Patel was previously head of the UJ Department of Social Work, director-general of the national Department of Social Welfare and deputy vice-chancellor and vice-principal of the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg. She played a leading role in the development of South Africa’s welfare policy after apartheid. Her research interests are social welfare, social work, social policy, gender, social protection and social development, and her publications include Social Welfare and Social Development in South Africa (Oxford UP Southern Africa, 2005) book chapters, journal articles and research reports.

Contact for more information on upcoming Berkeley Social Welfare events. 16



our Field Instructors for 2014-15 Maria Abaci Laurie Ackerman Edina Alder Faymeeza Ali Amy Alvarez Beth Alvarez Michelle Alvarez-Campos Kate Aragon Chandra Bailey Holly Barton Sara Bisikirski Amy Blair Melanie Born Mark Brand Lea Brown Roxanne Carrillo-Garza Jennifer Chavez Cory Chechile Vince Cheng Tom Clancy Corey Cohen Jim Cunniff Roger Daniels Jill Dawson Ymke Dioquino Felipe Donaire

Sara Dull Jeanette Eisen Jessie Eschman Manuel Fernandez Elena Foshay Janet Frost Gillian Fynn Makda Gebrezghi Jason Gee Gina Giarrusso Nalani Griffin Dunn Cecilia Guillermo Cindy Gyori Allison Hagey Ryan Horvath Jacke Humphrey-Straub Anne Job Jennifer Kaley Patrik Karlsson Michelle Kaye Brigitte Knight Cathy Kodama Jenna LaPlante Alison Larkin Laura Leisem Margo Levi

Margaret Libby Hanon Ling Beth MacLeod Jake Martin Atheena Matcham Katie Mckenna Cathy Miller Kerrie Mills Ricardo Montenagro Tom Nolan Blanca Ordaz Greg Parulski Tanya Pearlman Emily Perez Klealy Pineda-Mena Judy Quittman Monique Recoder Mary Beth Reticker Allyson Rupp Muang Saephan Emma Savo Megan Schenck Jane Schisgal Tracy Schrider Gisela Schue Judy Schwartz

Julia Sebastian Dyana Shaver Susan Shensa Eleanor Soto Katrina Southard Annika Sridharan Maria St. John Cris Stahl Shawneece Stevenson Danielle Storer Joyce Synnott Tech Tran Jodi Tsapis Jennifer Uldricks Ellie Vargas Sandy Vaughn Stephanie Vikati Laine Villensky Haynes Melissa Virostko Ruth Vosmek Derek Wang Rachel Wilson Rebecca Wixon Deborah Wyman-Dixson

Funded by Berkeley Social Welfare’s Field Instructor Recognition Fund, established by Shaaron L. Gilson.

Social Welfare

Alumni Dinner

On May 8, 2015, the School of Social Welfare hosted the Berkeley Social Welfare Alumni Dinner at UC Berkeley’s historic Hearst Memorial Mining Building. Current students and program graduates across all Social Welfare concentrations had the opportunity to meet, mingle and take photobooth-style pictures during the evening event. Program highlights include Dean Jeffrey Edleson’s welcome remarks and School updates as well as a talk led by special guest of honor Professor Emerita Jewelle Taylor Gibbs (MSW ’70, PhD ’80), who discussed her latest book, Destiny’s Child: Memoirs of a Preacher’s Daughter.



center photo, from left to right: name Allyson Fritz (MSW ’16), Ariana Allensworth (MSW ’16), Andrea DuBrow (MSW ’98), Elizabeth Taing (MSW/MPH ’14), Lance Dwyer (MSW ’12), Katherine D’Amato (MSW ’13), Kimi Barnes (MSW ’12) bottom photo: Jewelle Taylor Gibbs (MSW ’70, PhD ’80) signs her book for Luna Calderon

Alumni Snapshot 2o15 Employment Profile Each year, Berkeley Social Welfare’s Career + Leadership Program conducts an annual survey with MSW program graduates. Here are some of the results from the most recent response.

Education 5% Management 7%

Administration, Poilicy or Research 12%

Direct Service 74%

Type of Position

Not Seeking ASW 13% Registered ASW 51%

Seeking ASW 36%

MSW Licensure

Dean’s Circle

In March, Berkeley Social Welfare once again honored its most generous and committed donors at the Dean’s Circle Dinner.

top photo: Dean’s Circle members chat before dinner service bottom photos: Assistant Professor Tina Sacks; fellowship recipient Jenny Nakata (MSW/MPH ’15)



The annual spring tradition brings together School of Social Welfare supporters, including alumni, current and retired faculty as well as people who have established memorial fellowships for student support. Guests heard from Dean Jeffrey Edleson, who provided School updates and future plans; Assistant Professor Tina Sacks, who spoke about her research interests and work; and MSW student and fellowship recipient Jenny Nakata (MSW/MPH ’15). Additionally, special award presentations were made to Professor James and Khadija Midgley, who received the Champion Supporters Award, and Cynthia and Peter Hecker, who were bestowed the Loyal Supporters Award. For the second year in a row, the Dean’s Circle Dinner took place in a space known as Haviland Commons, located in the heart of Haviland Hall, the School of Social Welfare’s home. This year’s dinner immediately followed the 2015 Seabury Lecture, “Chasing the American Dream,” featuring Washington University George Warren Brown School of Social Work Professor Mark Rank.

Dinner 2015 pictured below: Washington University Professor of Social Welfare Mark Rank presenting the 2015 Seabury Memorial Lecture in Haviland Hall’s Social Research Library

Dr. Rank’s talk, based on his latest book, Chasing the American Dream: Understanding What Shapes Our Fortunes, examined the idea of the “American Dream” and the true cost in pursuing it. His scholarly analysis focused on the curious dynamic of the tension between the promise of economic opportunities and rewards and the amount of turmoil that Americans encounter in their quest to achieve the “Dream.”

For more information on becoming a member of the Dean’s Circle, please contact Dean Jeffrey Edleson at or 510.642.4408.

Donor Spotlight:

Cynthia and Peter Hecker At this year’s Dean’s Circle Dinner, longtime donors Peter and Cynthia Hecker (MSW ’05) were presented the Berkeley Social Welfare 2015 Loyal Supporters Award. On receiving the honor, Mrs. Hecker modestly noted her hesitancy about being celebrated “for the pleasurable act of making annual donations to the School of Social Welfare.” She added, “We are glad to be able to put a few drops in the bucket each year.” left to right: Dean Jeffrey Edleson, Cynthia Hecker (MSW ’05) and Peter Hecker

NEW FACES Susana Fong

Field Consultant and Lecturer Joining Berkeley Social Welfare as the newest member of the field education team is Susana Fong (MSW ’88), who brings 26 years of experience in frontline casework, program management as well as administrative and clinical oversight to the School. An alumna of both Berkeley’s undergraduate and master’s programs in social welfare, she will work closely with MSW students in the health and aging services concentrations. Fong shared details about her career trajectory, first-year goals as well as the joys of good friends and the challenges of teenagers. What interested you in the Berkeley Social Welfare field consultant position? Throughout my career, I’ve had the opportunity to supervise and mentor student interns. It’s been fun! Remembering my days as a student, I learned so much about what it means to be a social worker. At various points of my career, I’ve had great role models and mentors. They helped me learn not only about clinical practice, but the greater world of social work and cultural/societal impact on the individual. Most importantly, they helped me gain a better sense of my own identity and role as a social worker. I hope to have a similar impact on students as they prepare to go into the field. What do you look most forward to in your new role? I look forward to interacting with the students. I want to paint a realistic picture of what being in the field is like, but at the same time fuel their zeal and purpose as a social work professional. I want to walk alongside them on their journey. What are some of your immediate goals in working with the MSW health and aging services students? I have so many things to learn! One of my immediate goals is to get to know the students under my care. I need to familiarize myself with the supervisors and placements to be able to support the students and field instructors. I need to learn about the School of Social Welfare — now from a faculty’s point of view. Tell us about your educational and professional background. I completed my undergrad education at Cal, double majoring in social welfare and linguistics. I also obtained my MSW with a concentration in direct practice in gerontology. After graduation, I worked at On Lok Senior Health for the next 19 years. For 13 years I did frontline casework, and the next six years I was a program manager, overseeing the clinical and administrative operations of one of the day health centers. I moved on to Adult Protective Services, first as a frontline protective services worker and eventually a supervisor. After five years, I was recruited to help develop and manage the integrated behavioral health program at Asian Health Services, where I’ve been for the past three years. Outside of your professional interests, what are your hobbies and favorite activities? I generally chill with my family when I don’t have to nag my teenager! We have a family “must-see-TV night.” I am also blessed with a group of great girlfriends. We don’t see each other much these days, but we have roll-on-the-floor fun when we get together.



Jennifer Cannell

Training and Curriculum Specialist, CalSWEC In February, Jennifer Cannell joined CalSWEC as a training and curriculum specialist for the Child Welfare In-Service Training Project. In this role, she oversees the development and implementation of Common Core 3.0, the California Child Welfare Core Practice Model as well as other child welfare training projects. Cannell’s prior experience includes eight years with Bay Area Academy and in direct practice.

E. Maxwell Davis, PhD

Director, Mental Health Program, CalSWEC On September 1st, E. Maxwell Davis, PhD was appointed director of CalSWEC’s Mental Health Program. Dr. Davis holds an MSSA from Case Western Reserve University and a PhD in social work from USC. Prior to assuming this position, she was an assistant professor in the Department of Human Development and Women’s Studies at CSU, East Bay. Informed by her experiences as a medical social worker, her work has focused on how disparities in health and wellness are shaped by race, culture, gender, sexuality, SES, language and documentation status. She is interested in social work’s role in improving the use of integrated care models to address these disparities and is focused on forging community-university partnerships targeting the needs and experiences of health, mental health and substance abuse service consumers. Dr. Davis is excited to use her skills and experience to forward these goals through CalSWEC’s Mental Health Program. Dr. Davis succeeds Gwen Foster, who retired in February.

Tara Lain

Project Director, Efforts to Outcomes, CalSWEC Under the guidance of Project Director Tara Lain, the Efforts to Outcome SelfEvaluation program has joined CalSWEC’s Regional Training Academy project. Lain, whose professional background includes seven years in protective services social work, is experienced in case management, program evaluation, outcomes development, research design and data analysis. Efforts to Outcome enables outcome measurement and self-evaluation and can be modified to meet the specific needs of the California counties utilizing the program.

NEW FACES Britta Kolb-Coughlin

Events Manager + Annual Gifts Coordinator Britta Kolb-Coughlin, Berkeley Social Welfare’s new events manager and annual gifts coordinator, oversees the coordination and creation of the many research, alumni and donor events sponsored and hosted by the School. Her priorities include maximizing alumni and students’ participation in the events, which serve as excellent networking and community-building opportunities. Kolb-Coughlin has a background in museum studies and previously worked in UC Berkeley’s Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life.

Andy Peterson

Instructional Technologist Andy Peterson joined Berkeley Social Welfare as the School’s first-ever instructional technologist. In this newly created role, he will work with faculty in exploring technology uses in the classroom; manage hybrid and online course development; and oversee the implementation, support and ongoing evaluation of the School’s educational online presence, including certificates and continuing education. Peterson’s previous professional experiences include serving as dean of education at Expression College for Digital Arts; SAE Institute’s national manager of learning technologies; film and production work at Jim Henson Productions and Skywalker Sound; and media outreach for the nonprofits Sierra Club and Human Rights Campaign.

Esmi Ramirez

Training and Evaluation Analyst, CalSWEC Earlier this year, CalSWEC welcomed Esmirna (Esmi) Ramirez as a training and evaluation analyst for the Child Welfare In-Service Training Project, where she works on Common Core 3.0, the Quality Parenting Initiative Just-in-Time Training Project and other research projects supporting curriculum development. Ramirez’s previous experience includes the longitudinal evaluation of the Detroit Initiative, a partnership between community agencies and the University of Michigan.



Elizabeth Taing Project Policy Analyst + Administrative Director for Field Education As Berkeley Social Welfare’s new project policy analyst and administrative director for field education, Elizabeth Taing plays a pivotal role in the School’s strategic planning, data analysis and evaluation as well as in streamlining forms and processes, contributing to data-informed decisionmaking and updating the database system for the field education program. A recent graduate of the MSW/ MPH program, Taing cites her time as a graduate student researcher for giving her “valuable insight into how to help drive productive change in the School of Social Welfare.”

Samantha Wong

Faculty Administrative Support Visitors coming to Haviland Hall will likely be greeted by Samantha Wong, who, as faculty administrative support, provides assistance to students and staff along with faculty members. “The best part of my job has been working with everyone,” she says. “In this position, I hope to make other people’s work a little easier by assisting them with any projects or tasks as well as providing a positive experience for anyone visiting the School of Social Welfare.”

Mauricio Wright Distance Education Specialist, CalSWEC Mauricio Wright joined CalSWEC’s Child Welfare In-Service Training Project as its new distance education specialist. In this position, Wright is involved in e-learning accessibility and e-learning modules for Common Core 3.0 as well as building the Just-in-Time training resources library as part of the Quality Parenting Initiative. Prior to his current role, he served as a production specialist and online learning course builder for the Berkeley Resource Center for Online Education.

Alli Yates

Communications Assistant Alli Yates has served as a student assistant in the communications department for the past four years and now works as part-time communications staff, specializing in graphic design. She graduated in 2014 from UC Berkeley with an undergraduate degree in interdisciplinary studies, specializing in queer/ feminist theory and medical anthropology. Committed to supporting grassroots movements for racial, disability and economic justice, she also works as an intern with Sins Invalid, a disability justice organization in the Bay Area.

HAVILAND BRIEFS FACULTY NOTES Assistant Professor Adrian Aguilera received a three-year grant from the University of California, San Francisco Department of Psychiatry to support his work in integrating digital health technologies into mental health services for low-income adults at San Francisco General Hospital. Professor Jill Duerr Berrick co-presented “Assessing the Quality of Decision Making in Child Protection: A CrossCountry Study” to the British Association for the Study and Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect in Edinburgh, Scotland and “Legitimacy of Decision Making in Child Welfare Services” with Berkeley Social Welfare PhD student Julia Hernandez in Bergen, Norway. Professor Berrick also delivered a special guest lecture on the subject of competing child welfare narratives at Harvard Law School’s Art of Social Change class. Additionally, Professors Berrick and Eileen Gambrill have been ranked among the highest producing women of “citation impact scholarship” in the top schools of social work in the US, according to the article, “Citation Impact of Women in Social Work: Exploring Gender and Research Culture,” recently published in Research on Social Work Practice. Professor Julian Chow gave the Lu Xue Yi Lectureship on “The Challenges of Social Services Development in China: Experiences from the US” at the Beijing University of Technology. He also made presentations at UC Berkeley’s International Conference on Transnational Labor, Health and Social Welfare, including “Needs of Migrant Workers for Social Service Interventions: A Case Study of Tianjin, China,” co-presented with Fan Wu. He gave the keynote address, “Mobile Apps for Social Services: Promises and Challenges,” at the International Conference on Social Organization Innovation in the Mobile Internet Era at China’s Beijing Institute of Technology. Additionally, Professor Chow and Christine Wei-Mien Lou’s (PhD ’15) paper, “Community-Based Approaches to Social Exclusion Among Rural-to-Urban Migrants in China,” was published in China Journal of Social Work. Dean and Professor Jeffrey Edleson delivered the keynote address, “Collaborating for Change: Three Decades of Practitioner-Researcher Partnerships,” at NASW-CA’s annual conference. He co-authored two articles published in Violence Against Women — “Strategies to Engage Men and Boys in Violence Prevention: A Global Organizational Perspective” and “Primary Prevention Is? A Global Perspective on How Organizations Engaging Men in Preventing Gender-Based



Violence Conceptualize and Operationalize Their Work.” Dean Edleson also co-authored, “Ending Gender-Based Violence: A Grand Challenge for Social Work,” to be published by the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare. Additionally, Dean Edleson met with officials from Gujarat State in India and UNICEF to establish a partnership in support of a new National Institute for the Protection of Children that will train child welfare workers throughout India. Professor of the Graduate School Eileen Gambrill’s recent publications include “Integrating Research and Practice: Distractions, Controversies, and Options for Moving Forward” in Research on Social Work Practice (2015); the Foreward in B.A. Thyer and M.G. Pignotti’s Science and Pseudoscience in Social Work (Springer, 2015); and “Developing Well-Structured Questions for Evidence-Informed Practice” in Social Worker’s Desk Reference (3rd ed., Oxford, 2015). She also co-authored “Making Assessment Decisions: Macro, Mezzo, and Micro Perspectives,” in Critical Thinking in Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis (Springer, 2015). Additionally, Professor Gambrill was awarded a 2016 International Research Visiting Fellowship at the University of Newcastle, Australia for June 1 - July 1. Professor Neil Gilbert has published several articles, including the co-authored “Public Attitudes Toward Government Responsibility for Child Care: The Impact of Individual Characteristics and Welfare Regimes,” in Children and Youth Services Review; “Restructuring the Mixed Economy of Welfare: Three Modes of Privatization” in European Policy Analysis; “Social Welfare Trends in Western Societies: Privatisation and the Challenge to Social Work” in Arbor; the co-authored, “What Contributions Can Social Work Make in the 21st Century? Perspectives from the USA and Spain,” in Arbor; and the coauthored, “Discouraging Marriage: The Hidden Cost of MeansTested Government Benefits,” in The Weekly Standard. Professor Gilbert also co-organized Oxford University’s International Network for Social Policy (INSP) Teaching and Research meeting, co-hosted by Oxford University Press and the Department of Social Policy and Intervention. He presented on “Modern Family Policies” at the INSP Research Workshop. He also co-organized the First Annual Meeting of the International Network for Social Policy Research and Teaching in Madrid, Spain and participated in the panel presentation, “Decline of the Middle Class Around the World,” at the Association for Public Policy and Management (APPAM) International Conference in Segovia, Spain. He delivered the keynote address, “The Welfare State Debate from the Perspective of the United States,” at a conference at the Universidad Internacional de Andalucía in Seville, Spain and presented his paper, “Toward Public Support for Private Responsibility: The Enabling State,” at the International Conference

of the Centre for Globalisation and Governance: Responses to Crises, which took place at the University of Hamburg. Assistant Professor Anu Manchikanti Gomez received a grant from the Society of Family Planning Research Fund to examine access to family planning and abortion in California’s Central Valley. Co-led by colleague at California Latinas for Reproductive Justice, the project is using a community-based participatory research approach. Professor Gomez’s recent presentations include, “What is the Role of Health Equity in Family Planning?” at UCSF’s Division of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences; “Promoting Reproductive Autonomy in Family Planning Care and Programs” at San Francisco General Hospital’s Women’s Options Center; and “‘It Would Have Control Over Me Instead of Me Having Control:’ Young Black and Latina Women’s Perspectives on IUDs,” at the American Public Health Association Conference in Chicago. Additionally, Professor Gomez’s paper, “Do Knowledge and Attitudes Regarding Intrauterine Devices Predict Interest in Their Use?” was published in Women’s Health Issues. Professor Jim Midgley published the entry “International Social Welfare” in the Oxford Bibliographies Online series published by Oxford University Press. He also spoke at the international symposium, Social Welfare in the Global South, at Germany’s University of Bielefeld and traveled to Spain’s Polytechnic University of Madrid for the launch of the Spanish translation of his book, Social Development: Theory and Practice. Professor Midgley organized the special session, “Tribute to the Pioneers,” at the 19th Symposium of the International Consortium of Social Development in Singapore, where Berkeley Social Welfare faculty and alumni were well represented. Dr. Midgley co-presented on social enterprises and social development. Dean and Professor Jeffrey Edleson also delivered a virtual talk at the conference. left to right: Charity Samantha Vo (PhD ’13), Ngiam Tee Liang (PhD ’90), Mary Caplan (PhD ’13), Professor Midgley, David Androff (PhD ’08), Professor Chow and Amy Conley Wright (’08) Professor Kurt Organista has been appointed to the UC Mexico Initiative Working Group on Health, which brings together faculty from all 10 UC campuses, National Labs and partners from Mexican universities and government agencies. The UC Mexico

Initiative was launched by President Napolitano last year with the goal of “creating a sustained, strategic and equal partnership between UC campuses and Mexico institutions to identify common areas of interest, address critical issues and educate the next generation of leaders.” Assistant Professor Tina Sacks published the co-authored article, “Empowering Immigrant Youth in Chicago: Utilizing CBPR to Document the Impact of a Youth Health Service Corps Program,” in Family & Community Health, and the book chapter, “Examining the Relationship Between Interpersonal and Institutional Trust in the Political and Health Care Contexts,” in Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Trust: Towards Theoretical and Methodological Integration (Springer). Among Professor Andy Scharlach’s recent presentations are “Innovations in Aging Services” to Young African Leaders Initiative participants at the UC Berkeley Goldman School of Public Policy; the keynote address, “Collaborative Approaches for Creating Elder Friendly Communities,” at the University of Washington Elder Friendly Futures Conference in Seattle; and “Findings and Implications from the California Villages Project” at the Archstone Foundation’s board of directors’ meeting. Professor Scharlach also traveled to Copenhagen to represent Berkeley Social Welfare at a health and aging meeting of the International Alliance of Research Universities and to deliver the presentation, “Aging in Place: The Village Concept.” Assistant Professor Valerie Shapiro has several recent publications, including “Building Local Infrastructure for Community Adoption of Science-Based Prevention: The Role of Coalition Functioning,” in Prevention Science; the co-authored book chapter, “Taking SEL to Scale in Schools: The Role of Community Coalitions,” in the Handbook of Social and Emotional Learning; “Relating Coalition Capacity to the Adoption of ScienceBased Prevention in Communities: Evidence from a Randomized Trial of Communities That Care” in the American Journal of Community Psychology; “Changing Organizational Routines in Doctoral Education: An Intervention to Infuse Social Justice into a Social Welfare Curriculum,” in Arbor: Science, Thought, & Culture; the co-authored paper, “Reciprocal Relations Between Coalition Functioning and Program Implementation Support,” in Prevention Science; and the Social Work Research guest editorial, “Resilience: Have We Not Gone Far Enough? A Response to Larry E. Davis,” which has become the journal’s most highly read article. Professor Jennifer Skeem’s recently published articles include “Psychosis Uncommonly and Inconsistently Precedes Violence Among High-Risk Individuals” in Clinical Psychological Science and “Applicability of the Risk-Need-Responsivity Model to JusticeInvolved People with Mental Illness” in Psychiatric Services. Additionally, she served on an expert panel for the United States Sentencing Commission’s meeting on the use of risk assessment in sentencing and presented a keynote on justice-involved people

with mental illness at the 2015 District of Columbia Judicial and Bar Conference. Professor Skeem also served on the advisory board for the 2015 Annual Conference of the Robina Institute of Criminal Law and Criminal Justice.

FIELD CONSULTANT NOTES Field Consultant Robert Ayasse and Associate Professor Susan Stone’s paper, “The Evolution of School Social Work Services in an Urban School District,” was published in Children & Schools. Ayasse and Field Consultant Christina Feliciana were key organizers of the California Association of School Social Workers (CASSW) 2015 State Conference, which brought together practitioners to share strategies for closing the achievement or “equity” gap among children and families in schools. Field Consultant Andrea DuBrow received the prestigious 2015 Faculty Mentor Award, which is bestowed annually by UC Berkeley’s Graduate Assembly to teaching staff who demonstrate an “outstanding commitment to mentoring, advising and generally supporting graduate students.” DuBrow’s nomination was submitted by students and graduates of the School’s management and planning program, including Ruvani Fonseka (MSW ’15), Emily Higgs (MSW ’16), Liz Taing (MSW ’14), Susan Thomaes (MSW ’14) and Lisa Ginn Steel (MSW ’14). As part of Berkeley Social Welfare’s annual Field Instructors Training Day — organized by Field Education Director Greg Merrill — the School recognized Lifelong Medical Care’s Gillian Fynn as the 2015 Field Instructor of the Year. left to right: Field Consultant Susana Fong, Lifelong Medical Care’s Gillian Fynn and Director of Field Education Greg Merrill

ACADEMIC RESEARCHER NOTES Post-doctoral scholar Elizabeth Kim’s article, “Assessing Sustained Effects of Communities That Care on Youth Protective Factors,” co-authored with Assistant Professor Valerie Shapiro, was recently published in the Journal of the Society of Social Work & Research. California Child Welfare Indicators Project’s (CCWIP) Daniel Webster and Emily Putnam-Hornstein were invited by the Office of Child Protection to make presentations on “Critical Trends in Child Welfare System Outcomes” to community forums in each of five supervisorial districts in Los Angeles County. Dr. Webster also delivered the keynote address at the All Hands Meeting of the National Capacity Building Center for States in Washington, DC.



STUDENT NOTES Ariana Allensworth (MSW ’16) was named a recipient of the 2015-16 NASW Verne LaMarr Lyons Memorial Scholarship, which is presented each year to students who “demonstrate an interest or have experience with health/mental health practice” and have “a commitment to working in African American communities.” Allensworth was also named a 2015-16 Emerging Arts Professionals Fellow. This nine-month fellowship is designed to enrich and expand the professional skillsets of emerging and mid-level leaders working in the Bay Area’s arts and culture field. Tõ Nh Đào (MSW ’15) and Lyndsay Hughes (MSW ’16) were selected as 2015 Human Rights Fellows by the UC Berkeley School of Law’s Human Rights Center. The fellowship program supports Đào’s work with the San Francisco Department of Public Health’s Transgender Health Services and Hughes’ work with Casa Alianza Honduras. Berkeley Social Welfare undergraduate Josey Garcia was invited to join the spring 2016 class at the UC Washington Center (UCDC), a “multi-campus residential, instructional and research center that provides students and faculty from the University of California with opportunities to study, research, work and live within Washington’s rich cultural, political and international heritage.” Doctoral candidate Leah Jacobs (PhD ’16) has received the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) Graduate Research Fellowship in the Social and Behavioral Sciences. She is just one of five doctoral students nationwide to be granted the extremely competitive and prestigious award, which will support her research project, “More than Mental Disorder: The Effects of Neighborhoods and Treatment on Recidivism for Probationers with Psychiatric Diagnoses.” Jacobs also was awarded a National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) Pre-Doctoral Fellowship with Alcohol Research Group for 2015-2016. Phyllis Jeroslow (PhD ’15) presented her paper, “From Subsistence to Well-Being: Calibrating Welfare State Investments in Early Childhood,” at the International Society of Child Indicators Conference in Cape Town, South Africa, and her paper, “Public Investments in Young Children: Trends in Expenditures and Policy Design Across 10 OECD Countries Between 20012011,” at the European Social Policy Association Network-Italy conference in Salerno, Italy. Her chapter, “Creating a Sustainable Society: Human Rights in the US Welfare State,” was published in Routledge Handbook on Poverty in the United States. Jenny Lam (MSW ’16), far left, and Trish Shang-Tzu Yeh (MSW ’16), far right, are recipients of the Diana Ming Chan Bilingual Social Work Scholarship from the Asian Pacific Islander Social Work Council of the NASW-California Chapter. The award recognizes current MSW students who “dedicate their passion and skills to the API community.” They are two of just three students statewide to receive the award.

photo: Deb Derecktor

Jenny McKenzie (MSW ’16), second from left, and Emily Myer (MSW ’16), third from left, received the Jim Fahey Award, presented annually to UC Berkeley graduate students who demonstrate a deep commitment to combating domestic violence against women. McKenzie and Myer, along with three current Berkeley Law students, were honored at a ceremony last April in Boalt Hall. Alejandra Meza (BA ’15) was honored last spring at the UC Berkeley Chancellor’s Awards for Public Service. Meza received the 2015 Mather Good Citizen Award in recognition of her years of dedication to promoting issues of youth development, justice and civic engagement.

Zach Morris (PhD ’16) presented his research on disability benefit reforms in the UK at a conference for congressional staffers and policymakers at the United States senate. Morris also won the Kirk Underhill Graduate Prize, an annual award bestowed by UC Berkeley’s Center for British Studies, for his paper, “Constructing the Need for Retrenchment: Disability Benefits in the United States and Great Britain.” The article was published in Policy & Politics. PhD student Joseph Roscoe was named one of 16 students to receive UC Berkeley’s 2015 Hellman Graduate Award, which will support his research on social-emotional development in youth and prevention intervention in vulnerable youth populations. He is the first social welfare student ever to receive the award.

in memoriam B a r b a r a We i s s Former Berkeley Social Welfare Field Consultant Barbara Weiss, who served generations of students in the community organizing and administration program, passed away on June 16, 2015. She was 84. Weiss, a Brooklyn native, attended Cornell University and earned her MSW from Adelphi University. She launched her social work career as a youth leader for the World Assembly of Youth. She would go on to work at the League of Women Voters in New York City and as a social worker in Oklahoma City, Okla.; at the California Health Department in San Francisco; and at Alameda County’s Anti-Poverty Program. Weiss first joined the UC Berkeley School of Social Welfare in 1966 and significantly expanded the fieldwork program. She met her husband of 30 years, Irving Kermish, while working on campus, where she had a 25-year career until her retirement in 1990. Described by friends and colleagues as a “feminist, humanist and advocate of human rights,” she was especially focused on equal rights and employment opportunities for women. She co-authored the book, Wise Choices Beyond Midlife: Women Mapping the Journey Ahead. Weiss was preceded in death by her husband. She was a loving mother to Christie Kay and Daniel Kohlman, and Laurie and Lisa Kermish; a devoted grandmother to Autumn and Scott Gerlach, Joe and Jacob Kermish-Wells, and Matthew and Lauren Kohlman; a devoted great-grandmother to Christopher Gerlach; and a dedicated sister to Arlene Reiff. Memorial contributions can be made to YEAH!, 1744 University Ave., Berkeley, CA 94703 and The Transition Network/Home, P.O. Box 318154, San Francisco, CA 94131. photo Barbara Weiss (far right) with current and retired Field Consultants Andrea DuBrow (far left) and Bari Cornet (center) at the Management and Planning 50th Anniversary celebration in January 2014.

Frede rick M. Cox Frederick M. Cox (DSW ’68) passed away peacefully at his home in Ellensburg, Wash., on June 5, 2015. He was 86. Dr. Cox was born in Hollywood, Calif., in 1928. He first met his wife of 40 years, Margaret Gay (Campbell) Cox, while attending UCLA, and the couple had three children. He moved his young family to Berkeley to pursue his doctoral degree at the School of Social Welfare and then to Ann Arbor, Mich., in 1964, when he accepted an assistant professor position at the University of Michigan. His daughter, Liz Whitaker, recalls that her father was ABD for the first four years in Michigan, and the family “made a very memorable crosscountry trip back to Berkeley in the spring of 1968 to watch him walk in the graduation ceremony.” “During that trip, at age 12, I got an ear infection at the Grand Canyon, we went to a concert at the Fillmore West, Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated while we camped in Yosemite, and we were caught in a tornado in South Dakota on the way home,” she writes. Dr. Cox’s distinguished academic career spanned 25 years and included his roles as professor of social work at the University of Michigan, director of the Michigan State University School of Social Work and dean of the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee School of Social Welfare. Dr. Cox was preceded in death by his wife, who passed away in 1991. He is survived by brothers Robert E. Cox, Portland, Ore., and Harvey A. Cox, Dawson, Ga.; sons Larry, Pullman, Wash., and Sherman (Jane Flood), Allentown, Penn.; daughter Liz (Harry) Whitaker, of Ellensburg, Wash.; grandchildren Andy, Sam, Scott and Emily; and numerous nieces and nephews. Berkeley Social Welfare is grateful for Dr. Cox’s lifelong support to the School.



The Honor Roll lists donors who contributed in July 2014 to June 2015, with the following representing gifts made to Berkeley Social Welfare during the 12-month period. We apologize for any inadvertent omissions or other errors and ask that you contact the School’s communications office at with any questions. Berkeley Social Welfare thanks you for your generous support.

dean’s leadership circle The Dean’s Leadership Circle is comprised of distinguished alumni and friends who have made an annual leadership gift of $500 or more in support of the dean’s vision of access and excellence in social work education. Anonymous Anne-Therese Ageson and John James Hadreas Sandra Auerback Michael and Susan Austin Jae-Sung Choi Barbara Cornet Christopher and Lynn Crook Peter and Diana Crook Raymond Dempsey and Brooke Gilbert

Michael and Linda Drevno Jeffrey Edleson and Sudha Shetty Leslee and Wayne Feinstein Norma Fong Shaaron Gilson Cynthia and Peter Hecker Corrienne and Mark Heinemann Ernest and Sylvia Hirose Randolph Hudson Daniel and Kristen Ikenberg

Paul Sugarman Marguerite and S. Allan Johnson Ralph and Hadassah Kramer Carrie Graham Lee and John Lee Peter Manoleas Mary Ann Mason Gregory Merrill and Roger Daniels James and Khadija Midgley Leona Miu Abigail Nichols

Phyllis O’Shea Catherine and Norbert Ralph Paul and Stephanie Reisz Robert W. Roberts Bruce and Susan Stangeland Susan and Paul Sugarman Susan and Oscar Sung Tony Tripodi Judith Wilhite

Anonymous (3) Shawyon Amini-Rad Regina Aragon and Lawrence Levitt Michael Armijo Elizabeth Hook Bange Maria-Veronica Banks Amy Sewel Barron Anne and George Benker Shannon Benner-Boxer Marilyn Kludjian Benson Madeleine Kertesz Berke Kimberly Bird Melissa Lim Brodowski John Brown Jr. Sarah Brown Madeline Santiago Burnell and John Burnell Satapana Buthken Robyn Bykofsky Mary Ager Caplan Jenna Carlsson Mariela Castro Castillo Tess Chandler Nancy and Ben Chin Kay Young Choi and Bong Young Choi Nancy Lee Chong and Wallace Chong Jr. Julian Chow and Kitty Ho David Harmon Cober Carolyn Conley Sarah Conning Stephanie Cuccaro-Alamin Margit David William Campbell Dawson Kathleen Day-Seiter and Thomas Seiter Diane De Anda and Donald Fast Angela Dempsey Imam and Shah Din Francesca Dinglasan Jana and Nii Dodoo Andrea DuBrow and Paul Buddenhagen Diane Fitzgibbon Dugard and Thomas Dugard Kelly McCann Earls

Jacqueline London Ensign Barry Epstein Alejandra Escoto Ana Maria Espinoza Nancy Farwell David Feldstein Lillian Guern Fong and Stewart Fong Matthew and Yee-Ling Fong Wilmer Fong Stephen Forkins and Suzanne MacDonald Risa Brody Foster and John Dewitt Foster Gwendolyn Foster Martha Frank Karie Frasch Sandi Murakami Fuerte and Robet Fuerte Lia Germain Shaaron Gilson Steve Glodowski Rachelle Goldenberg Maria Gonzales Karen Degroot Gordon and Harold Gordon Zandra Zena Gordon Carrie Graham Janice Glesser Green and Robert Green Michael Griffith Bart Grossman Neil Hamilton III and Janet Jun Gusukuma-Hamilton Meekyung Han Marc Herstand Lucille Hesse and James Gebhardt Marjorie Heumann Rebecca Hively Asher Hodes Elizabeth Holt Art Bun Hom and Edna Hom Susan Jacquet Carmen Jankowski Michelle Johnson-Motoyama Linda Jue Matt Kania

Cheryl Yael Kiken Stuart Kirk and Carol Koz Ellen and Frank Kushin Louis Labat Yuet Lan Lam Seymour Lapporte Peter Langhoff and Gay Searcy Michael Yueh-Tai Lee and Caroline Cangelosi Rufina Lee and David Reiss Selina Toy Lee and Wayne Lee Katherine Knecht Lerner and David Lerner Mary Liechty Cynthia Lim and Perry Landsberg James and Maureen Lubben John Magruder Frances Masamba Jeffrey Mashburn Joshua May Margie Mendez Joseph Merighi Susanne Miller Richard Montantes Jean Moy Alice Nicholls Gerald and Joyce O’Connor Christina Lee O’Halloran Susan and Paul Opsvig Kurt and Pamela Organista Kate Oxsen Kimberly Panelo Ruth Paris Irene Peoples Judith Ann and Gerald Potter Janet and William Reger-Nash Clifton and Mary Jo Rhodes Carol Davis Rhodes Maricela Rodriguez Stephanie Romero Jessica Romm Burt Romotsky Christine Rothe

Raquel Haber Ruiz and Stephen Haber Lisa Brach Safaeinili Andrew and Ilene Scharlach Lou Ann Schlichter Tessa Schussler Valerie Shapiro Margaret Butz Shelleda Alan and Kimberly Sherman Cassandra Simmel Martha Skinner Annette Raymon Smith Irene Solis Mary Ellen Solis Jacquelyn Stanley and Kudret Oztap James Stark Margie Eymann Stark and Louis Stark Brian Stewart Susan Stone Shirley Summers Robert Teague Grace Telcs and Scott Siera Anil Kumar Thayamballi and Nita Mehta Patricia Thomas and John Kulstad Richard Tjoa Rowena Tong Lenda Townsend-Williams and David Legail Mullens Maxine and Kenneth Tucker Aileen Uchida Paula Kreisberg Ulrich and Carl Ulrich Andrew Ulvang Grant Ute Larry Walton Phyllis Ward Daniel Webster II Bonnie Lou Weisel Susan Werner Elliot Williams Valerie Yerger Phillip Yim Nilo Zaratan



If you would like more information or to donate, please contact Dean Jeffrey Edleson at or 510.642.4408.



$500 Dean’s Circle Invitation to annual luncheon with the dean $2,500 Investor Invitation to annual luncheon with the dean. Private tour with the dean of a local partner organization $5,000 Fellow Invitation to annual luncheon with the dean. Private tour with the dean of a local partner organization. Recognition on the Haviland Commons’ screen during donor events

$10,000 Partner Invitation to annual luncheon with the dean. Private tour with the dean of a local partner organization. Recognition on the Haviland Commons’ screen during donor events $25,000 Visionary Invitation to annual luncheon with the dean. Private tour with the dean of a local partner organization. Recognition on the Haviland Commons’ screen during donor events. Recognition as a funder of an event/lunch/dinner

Donor Spotlights Lillian Wurzel (1912-2013) The estate of Lillian Wurzel, who graduated from UC Berkeley’s social welfare credential program in 1934 before the School was even formally established, has bestowed $685,000 to Berkeley Social Welfare, adding to her family’s existing fellowship fund and further ensuring that generations of students pursuing careers in public health and healthcare receive financial support. After completing her credential, Wurzel went on to earn an MSW at the University of Chicago. Her career as a medical social worker at Contra Costa County Hospital and the Santa Clara County Social Services Department spanned 65 years. Wurzel’s very first gift to the Berkeley campus was for $100 in 1942 to create a loan fund for social welfare students. Her ongoing generosity over seven decades has resulted in an endowment of nearly $1 million for her fellowship program.

Silda “Sid” Covington (1919-2014) A generous bequest of $400,000 from the estate of Silda “Sid” Covington (MSW ’57) to Berkeley Social Welfare will assist current and future generations of MSW students planning to pursue careers serving children and families. Covington was born the third of seven children in Idaho. She joined the Navy (WAVES) after high school, serving from 1943-1945 during World War II as a telegrapher for the US War Department. She attended the University of San Francisco on the GI Bill, earning an undergraduate degree in social welfare before eventually going on to the MSW program at UC Berkeley. She received a fellowship to support her work in rural areas and began her social work career in Redding, Calif. She eventually moved to Chico, Calif., where she spent 23 years with the Children Homes Society, helping place more than 300 children in adoptive homes throughout the state.


Berkeley Social Welfare 120 Haviland Hall, #7400 University of California, Berkeley Berkeley, CA 94720-7400

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Social Welfare at Berkeley is going paperless! As part of our ongoing commitment to sustainability, future editions of the annual magazine will be delivered electronically to our alumni and friends.

left to right: Stephanie Franco (BA ’17), Nirvana Felix (BA ’16), Jena Woodfork (BA ’16) and Natasha Johnson (BA ’17).

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Social Welfare at Berkeley - Winter 2015  

Berkeley Social Welfare's magazine for alumni and friends.

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