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Honoring Dr. Sandra Chipungu for Women's History Month

  • 1.  Honoring Dr. Sandra Chipungu for Women's History Month

    Posted Mar 31, 2021 18:42

    Dr. Sandra Stukes Chipungu embodies the attributes of a social work scholar and mentor. We initially met in the Fall of 2001 when she joined the faculty at Howard University School of Social Work. I was assigned to her a graduate student assistant. The connection was immediate! Despite having a national reputation given her contributions to research and scholarship in the area of child welfare; specifically on kinship care and African American children and families, she clearly is a devoted wife and mother, which as a doctoral student I was balancing family life. While extremely dedicated, encouraging, and supportive of her students, she was also a direct and forthcoming advocate, empowering her students to strive for excellence. 

    As a doctoral candidate, I had my first teaching experience with her, beginning as a guest lecture, to co-teaching, and eventually independently teaching my first child welfare course. Dr. Chipungu is a natural mentor who nurtures and recognizes strengths in others. After earning my doctorate in 2006, I continued to work with her on research projects where I further advanced my skills in program evaluation. We also became colleagues a few years later at Morgan State University when she was joined the faculty and served as the PI of the Title IV-E Public Child Welfare Program and recruited me to serve as the initial co-program director. Even though its been nearly 7 years since we were on faculty together, she has remained my mentor.

    Although, I have the distinctive honor of being the first doctoral student that she served as the Chairperson, she has guided many students, particularly at Morgan State University through the dissertation progress. Dr. Chipungu is an outstanding role model, especially for women. She mentors students whether young or more seasoned professionals returning to school, to mentoring her colleagues in the academy. And for these reasons and so many others, I am so delighted to introduce to some and present to others my amazing mentor, colleague, and friend.

    #FeministScholarship #WomensHistoryMonth #SocialWorkMonth

    Below is her brief bio:

    Dr. Sandra Stukes Chipungu is a retired Professor and former Interim Dean and Chair of the PhD program in the School of Social Work at Morgan State University. She also served as the Associate Dean in the School of Social Work at Howard University and spent many years on faculty at Catholic University. She received her doctoral degree in Social Work and Sociology in 1979 at the University of Michigan, where she also received her MSW IN 1971 and her MA Sociology in 1973.  She is a proud member of the first BSW class at Morgan in 1971.  She is the recipient of Dr. Iva G. Jones Medallion Mantle Awardee 2014-2015.  She was also the PI of the Title IVE Public Child Welfare Program for ten years which has contributed to the graduation of over 100 MSW students. Thirty-seven doctoral students graduated under her leadership of the doctoral program.  Dr. Chipungu is an expert in child welfare and published extensively in this area.​​​

    Belinda Davis Smith