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Posters & Presentations

Alvarez, T., Behrens, E., Bettmann, J. E., Daley, D. J., Gass, M., Norton, C., & Tucker, A. (2019, August). Research and social justice: How do we create more ethical and socially just interventions through research? Preconference keynote presented at the Wilderness Therapy Symposium, Park City, UT.

  • The purpose of this workshop was to focus on research that addresses how researchers and practitioners can create more ethical and socially just interventions through research. With the rise in accessibility of outdoor behavioral health (OBH) through insurance reimbursement, as well as an increase in community based OBH programs, the symposium focused on how research itself can be a change agent for social justice both for individual programs, as well as for the clients served. Dr. Bettmann Schaefer’s contribution to the preconference focused on preliminary findings of the outcomes of the Sierra Club Military Outdoors program.

Broadbent,M., West, K., Lundeberg, L. (2019, August). Using Bayesian methods to evaluate child welfare system outcomes: Case examples for understanding child pathways in and out of care. Paper presented at the National Child Welfare Evaluation Summit for the National Children’s Bureau, Washington, D.C.

  • State agencies must understand systemic factors that lead to longer stays in care and non-permanent child outcomes. Bayesian methods provide new tools that help better understand and model outcomes in the child welfare system. In this presentation the presenters described and demonstrated what Bayesian statistics are, provided an example of how they can inform policy, and showed how profiles of cases move through a single state child welfare system. Presenters also discussed how this methodology can be replicated to learn which youth have the highest risk of entering foster care, stay in the longest, and have the lowest rates of permanent placements.

Canham, S. L., Bosma, H., Danielsen, C., Custodio, K., & Small, S. (2019, November). Understanding the preferences for medical respite for Vancouver, BC. Paper presented at the meeting of the Canadian Alliance on Ending Homelessness, Edmonton, Canada.

  • The housing crisis in Vancouver has been well-documented and is affecting rates of homelessness in older adults. One in five Vancouver-based seniors live in unaffordable housing and between 2008 and 2017 the BC government has reported a 284% increase in older adult homelessness. The health of older people experiencing homelessness (OPEH) is challenged by their lack of access to health services, especially primary care. In addition, OPEH frequently receive care in hospital emergency departments, are hospitalized more than the general population, and have lengthy inpatient stays. These challenges are exacerbated for OPEH because safe and supported options for post-hospital recovery are rare, which increase the risk for re-hospitalization. One response to fill the care gap between hospital discharge and recovery for OPEH is medical respite care. Medical respite is the provision of post-acute medical care for individuals who are not ill enough to justify staying in a hospital bed yet are too sick or frail to recover from a physical illness or injury in a traditional shelter or on the streets. However, despite the unique healthcare needs of OPEH, scant research has focused on the design and implementation of medical respite for this population. To initiate planning for the design of a medical respite program in Vancouver, BC, 15 patients and 11 providers participated in interviews or focus groups. Participants provided their opinions on what should be included in a medical respite program, including program design, culture, and type of delivery and services. Thematic analyses identified that a medical respite program should be trauma-informed and patient-centered, be offered in a variety of formats in various locations and have a mix of staffing. This presentation outlined these program features, the subsequent stages of program implementation, and opportunities and challenges for scaling up in different contexts.

Bosma, H., Canham, S. L., Danielsen, C., Custodio, K., & Small, S. (2019, November). Health and psychosocial needs of older persons experiencing homelessness upon hospital discharge. Paper presented at the meeting of the Canadian Alliance on Ending Homelessness, Edmonton, Canada.

  • Though hospitals are a common location where older adults experiencing homelessness receive healthcare, an understanding of the types of supports needed upon hospital discharge is limited. The presenters examined the unique characteristics of older homeless adults and the health and psychosocial supports required upon hospital discharge. Guided by principles of community-based participatory research (CBPR), they conducted 20 in-depth, semi-structured interviews with shelter/housing and healthcare providers in Metro Vancouver. Thematic analyses revealed six themes: 1) older people experiencing homelessness have unique vulnerabilities upon hospital discharge; 2) following hospital discharge, general population shelters are inappropriate for older adults; 3) shelter/housing options for older adults who have complex health and social needs are limited; 4) shelter/housing for older adults who require medical stabilization and convalescence after hospital discharge is needed; 5) a range of senior-specific shelter/housing options are needed; and 6) unique community supports are needed for older adults upon hospital discharge. As the population of older adults continues to increase across North America, there is a parallel trend in the increased numbers of older adults who are experiencing homelessness. Not only is there often a need for ongoing medical care and respite, but there is a need for both shelter and housing options that can appropriately support individual needs.

Small, S., Canham, S. L., Bosma, H., Danielsen, C., & Custodio, K. (2019, November). Medical respite as an intervention for older adults’ post-discharge recovery. Paper presented at the meeting of the Canadian Alliance on Ending Homelessness, Edmonton, Canada.

  • With the goal of providing safe locations for individuals to continue medical recovery, medical respite (alternately called intermediate or convalescent care) has been found to improve health and reduce healthcare utilization and costs for general populations of people experiencing homelessness. Medical respite provides medical stabilization following hospital stays so that individuals can rest and recover before moving to regular shelter settings or to more permanent and appropriate housing. A two-part needs assessment involved: 1) conducting a scoping review of the literature on the health supports needed for persons with lived experience of homelessness (PWLEs) transitioning from the hospital to shelter/housing; and 2) in-depth interviews with shelter/housing and healthcare providers and PWLEs to assess the needs and gaps in supporting the health of PWLEs as they transition from the hospital to shelter/housing. Interviewees regarded adequate respite to be integral to optimizing recovery, minimizing post-discharge stress, and promoting healing for both acute and chronic healthcare issues. Moreover, participants reported that having a dedicated shelter (a single location) or multiple shelter beds across many sites (“scatter site”) for PWLEs following hospital discharge would offer an invaluable solution to the current practice of discharging to shelters. The scoping review confirmed medical respite to be an intervention that has been shown to improve patients’ quality of life, medication stabilization, and access to health and community care, insurance, income, and housing. In addition, medical respite programs have demonstrated reduced future hospital admissions, inpatient days, and hospital readmissions among homeless patients, resulting in significant healthcare system cost savings. Recommendations for developing a dedicated, purpose-built medical respite facility or expanding dedicated beds at multiple shelter/housing sites were made.

Walsh, C., Humphries, J., Canham, S. L., Burns, V., Dharshi, N., Sussman, T. & Hanger, J. (2019, November). Exploring promising practice models for housing older persons experiencing homelessness. Poster presented at the meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Austin, TX.

  • The numbers of older persons experiencing homelessness (OPEH) is on the rise globally, yet housing and shelter options that support the varied and complex needs of this population are scarce. In order to understand effective solutions for housing OPEH, it is critical to explore promising practices that support aging in the right place for OPEH. In an effort to inform this critical gap, 100 OPEH and service providers were purposefully selected and invited to attend one of three World Café workshops held in three major urban cities in Canada: Vancouver, Calgary, and Montréal. Participants engaged in facilitated discussions aimed at supporting knowledge exchange and generating dialogue about gaps, opportunities and promising local housing options. Thematic analyses of audiotaped deliberations revealed three themes: 1) the limited nature of current housing options and programs in each locality; 2) the importance of supporting integrative housing models that increase access to formal health and social support staff, transportation, and income supports; and 3) the significance of supporting sustainability, by conducting regular program evaluations, increasing public awareness of homelessness issues, and involving multi-sector stakeholders. Findings highlight how meeting the unique health and psychosocial needs of OPEH requires a nuanced understanding of the development, design, and sustainability of effective housing options. World Café dialogues revealed that identifying and sustaining existing promising practice models provides an avenue to supporting aging in the right place for OPEH.

Marshall, G., Bryson, W., Rostant, O., & Canham, S. (2019, November). Gender differences in the association modifiable risk factors and financial hardship. Poster presented at the meeting of the Gerontological Society of America, Austin, TX.

  • The researchers’ objective was to identify associations between modifiable risk factors (cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, and obesity) and financial hardship (difficulty paying bills, food insecurity, and medication need) among middle-aged and older Americans in a nationally representative sample. The findings contribute to the literature on health behaviors and financial hardship by highlighting the cyclical nature between different indicators of socioeconomic status, modifiable risk factors, and poor health outcomes among middle-aged and older adults. Furthermore, findings highlight how modifiable risk factors may culminate in financial hardship in later life.

Canham, S. L., Humphries, J., Kupferschmidt, A. L., & Lonsdale, E. (2019, October). Engaging in community dialogues on alcohol use and low-risk drinking in later life. Poster presented at the Addiction and Health Services Research Conference for the University of Utah School of Medicine, Park City, UT.

  • Despite widespread use and acceptance of alcohol, discussions of age-related changes that impact alcohol consumption behaviors are rare. Nevertheless, older adults have unique physiological and psychosocial risk factors associated with alcohol use that require low-risk drinking guidelines distinct from the general population. The researchers’ objective was to gain insight into how to promote knowledge dissemination regarding the Canadian Coalition of Seniors’ Mental Health’s newly developed Low-Risk Drinking Guidelines for Older Adults. Community dialogues enabled participants to gain new knowledge while participating in rich discussions about a rarely discussed topic. Findings suggest that many older adults regularly consume alcohol, though to varying degrees, and have a wide range of opinions about the risks and benefits of alcohol. Moreover, participants offered insight into how to best promote low-risk drinking advice to older adults living in the community. Because of the significant age-related physiological and psychosocial factors unique to older adults that impact their alcohol use, it is critical to inform older adults, community members, and health and social service providers of the risks associated with alcohol use in later life and provide tools that support healthy drinking behaviors. Translating evidence-based clinical advice to community stakeholders through dialogue events offers an innovative opportunity for health promotion efforts.

Fang, M. L., Canham, S. L., Wada, M., Battersby, L., & Sixsmith, J. (2019, October). Deconstructing the ‘culture’ of service provision for older people experiencing homelessness. Paper presented at the Scientific and Educational Meeting of the Canadian Association of Gerontology, Edmonton, Canada.

  • Older adults hold unique social categories and identities, and this translates into distinctive experiences of homelessness requiring more tailored solutions to securing appropriate housing options. Informed by the tenets of "cultural safety" and "cultural humility" – established conceptual models used to guide health and social care delivery for diverse groups – the researchers explore the cultural appropriateness of Housing First as a service model for supporting older homeless people. Their analysis confirms that supports for older homeless people are often subsumed into supports for the general population with little consideration for the uniqueness of homelessness in later life. Implications of these findings suggest that principles of cultural safety and humility are integral to providing culturally-safe and responsive care to older homeless people.

Fang, M. L., Sixsmith, J., Wada, M., Canham, S. L., Battersby, L., Woolrych, R., & Sixsmith, A. (2019, October). Institutional dynamics and agentic experiences within long-term care: Implications for research and practice. Paper presented at the Scientific and Educational Meeting of the Canadian Association of Gerontology, Edmonton, Canada.

  • Gidden's theory of structuration suggests that power exercised on human agents is determined by social, cultural, and infrastructural forces that predict an individual's agentic ability to exercise autonomy and wield control in situations and/or places. Informed by notions of the duality of structure, this research aimed to understand the physical, social, and cultural structures of a purpose-built long-term care (LTC) expansion designed with the intent of providing more “home-like” care. Within the institutional context of LTC, staff members' agency is determined by the: physical structure of the building, policies defined by decision-makers of the institution, and established organizational work culture, as well as socially accepted workplace behaviors and practices. Applying principles that stem from the theory of structuration can challenge researchers, planners, and developers to consider the impact of structures on individual agency when designing and developing LTC facilities.

Humphries, J., Canham, S. L., Kupferschmidt, A. L., & Lonsdale, E. (2019, June). Opinions about and reasons for alcohol use in later life. Poster presented at the John K. Friesen Conference of the Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre, Vancouver, Canada.

  • Older adults are the fastest-growing age group in Canada and the number of older adults who drink alcohol is on the rise. Older adults have unique age-related physiological and psychosocial risk factors associated with alcohol use, such as reduced alcohol metabolism, decreased body water, and increased medication use. While low-risk drinking guidelines for the general population do exist, guidelines specific to older adults do not. In response to this, Low-Risk Drinking Guidelines for Older Adults were recently developed by a group of working professionals under the leadership of the Canadian Coalition of Seniors’ Mental Health (CCSMH) to highlight the unique risks of alcohol use for older adults. Through thematic analysis of the workshop data, three major categories were identified: 1) personal experiences of alcohol use: participants reported that alcohol use declines with age as a result of factors including increased awareness of the impact of alcohol on health, lack of affordability of alcohol, no longer enjoying the effects of alcohol, changes to health and medication use with age, and changes in socialization patterns; 2) opinions about alcohol: participants described both positive and negative consequences of drinking, yet the majority agreed that moderate alcohol consumption is acceptable, and that alcohol use is ultimately a personal decision; and 3) reasons older adults use alcohol: such reasons included habit, familial and cultural experiences, social events and pressures, and the use of alcohol to cope with stress, boredom, depression, loneliness and social isolation, mental and physical pain, and sleep problems. These findings have implications on health promotion efforts related to alcohol use among older adults and reveal that older adults’ use of and reasons for use of alcohol are different than the general population.

Wada, M., Canham, S. L., Battersby, L., Woolrych, R., Sixsmith, J., Fang, M. L., & Sixsmith, A. (2019, May). The impact of long-term care home relocations on residents’ health and well-being. Paper presented at the European Region Congress for the International Association of Geriatrics and Gerontology, Gothenberg, Sweden.

  • Home-like residential care settings have been shown to have positive impacts on older adults’ health and well-being in long-term care (LTC) homes, while relocation from one home to another has been found to affect older adults’ health and well-being in varying ways. In this qualitative study, researchers explored how residents, family members, and staff experienced a relocation from an institutional setting to a purpose-built home-like LTC setting in Western Canada, with a particular focus on the impact of the relocation on residents’ health and well-being. Four areas of residents’ health and well-being were perceived as being affected by the relocation: 1) many participants reported observing or directly experiencing physical health issues, such as frailty, new sickness, falling, and even death, particularly in residents who had difficulty adapting to the relocation; 2) some participants cited the relocation as improving residents’ emotional health and well-being, while others reported that residents had negative emotional reactions shortly after the move, such as aggression, anger, depression, and anxiety; 3) aggravated cognitive symptoms, including confusion, disorientation, and memory loss, were also reported as being prevalent among some residents immediately after the transition; and 4) loneliness and social isolation were experienced by and observed in residents after the relocation. Using Wahl and Oswald’s conceptual framework on person-environment relationships in later life, we discussed how the built environment and care provided can affect residents’ transition to a new LTC home.

Fang, M. L., Sixsmith, J., Wada, M., Canham, S. L., Battersby, L., Woolrych, R., & Sixsmith, A. (2019, May). Agentic experiences within structures of long-term care: Implications for research and practice. Poster presented at the European Region Congress for the International Association of Geriatrics and Gerontology, Gothenberg, Sweden.

  • Gidden’s theory of structuration suggests that power exercised on human agents is determined by social, cultural, and infrastructural forces that predict an individual’s agentic ability to exercise autonomy and wield control in situations and/or places. Within the institutional context of long-term care (LTC) facilities, staff members’ agency is determined by the: structuration of the facility in its built form; policies defined by decision-makers of the institution; established organizational work culture as well as socially accepted workplace behaviors and practices. Informed by notions of the duality of structure, this research aimed to deconstruct the physical, social and cultural structures of a purpose-built LTC expansion designed with the intent of providing more “home-like” care. Presenters discussed how findings using this theory can provoke critical thought in both gerontological and urban studies by challenging planners, developers, and researchers to consider the impact of structures and on individual agency when designing, developing, and researching LTC facilities.

Castillo, J., Sarver, C., & Mueller, D. (2019, November). Father’s involvement with their children, social support networks, and attitudes toward risky behaviors, crime and the law. Paper presented at the meeting of the Annual American Sociology of Criminology, San Francisco, CA.

  • Dramatic increases in the American imprisonment rate since the mid-1970s have had important implications for fathers of lower socioeconomic status, notably around their involvement with their children, social support networks, and legal system. Although a body of literature that examines the impact fathers’ incarceration has on their involvement with their children and social support network exists, there is scarcity of literature examining the impact men and fathers’ involvement with their children and social support network has on their attitude toward risky behaviors, crime, and the law/legal system. Using ecological systems and social capital theory, this study using pilot-study data from 180 individuals on parole and probation in one Intermountain Western state, examined two questions: 1) what is the relationship between fathers’ involvement with their children and their attitude toward risky behaviors, crime, and the law/legal system?; and 2) what is the relationship between fathers’ involvement with their social support system and their attitude toward risky behaviors, crime, and the law/legal system? The findings from this study will have implications for policy-makers and practitioners working with fathers, children, families, and communities.

Castillo, J., Priddy, S., & Hendrix, E. (2019, October). Substance use and help-seeking among disadvantaged fathers. Paper presented at 65th Annual Program Meeting of the Council on Social Work Education, Denver, CO.

  • The examination of disadvantaged fathers’ help-seeking for substance use is an understudied area. Using participants (N= 3,362) from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study, this study examined disadvantaged fathers’ need for substance use treatment and help-seeking for substance use treatment. The results of this study found that disadvantaged fathers who were non-married and employed at fewer hours were in need of substance use treatment at higher rates than other groups of fathers. This study also found that disadvantaged fathers who were Black, Hispanic, non-married, and employed at fewer hours sought help for substance use treatment at higher rates than other groups of fathers. Implications for health care policies, programs and practices are provided and recommendations for future research were discussed.

Castillo, J., Hendrix, E. W., Nguyen, V. L., & Riquino, M. R. (2019, October). Macro practice supervision by social work field instructors. Paper presented at 65th Annual Program Meeting of the Council on Social Work Education, Denver, CO.

  • Although the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) has identified field education and macro practice as core domains in social work education, there has been limited research examining the implementation of macro practice elements into field education settings. This exploratory study collected information from a sample of field instructors examining: 1) field instructors’ integration of macro practice elements in the field practicum setting, and 2) the amount of time field instructors allotted to discussing macro practice elements in their weekly supervision with students. This study found that: field instructors integrate few or limited macro practice elements into the field practicum placement, field instructors spend minimal time discussing macro practice elements with students during weekly supervision, and which macro practice elements were discussed varied across field instructors and differed among primary areas of practice focus of practicum setting. Implications for social work education and field practicum education were provided and recommendations for future research were discussed.

Castillo, J.,Sarver, C., & Mueller, D. (2019, September). Father’s involvement with their children, social support networks, and attitudes toward risky behaviors, crime and the law. Paper presented at 4th annual Utah Criminal Justice Conference, Salt Lake City, UT.

  • Dramatic increases in the American imprisonment rate since the mid-1970s have had important implications for fathers of lower socioeconomic status, notably around their involvement with their children, social support networks, and the legal system. Although a body of literature that examines the impact fathers’ incarceration has on their involvement with their children and social support network exists, there is scarcity of literature examining the impact men and fathers’ involvement with their children and social support network has on their attitude toward risky behaviors, crime, and the law/legal system. Using ecological systems and social capital theory, this study utilized pilot-study data from 180 individuals on parole and probation in one Intermountain Western state, examined two questions: 1) what is the relationship between fathers’ involvement with their children and their attitude toward risky behaviors, crime, and the law/legal system?; and 2) what is the relationship between fathers’ involvement with their social support system and their attitude toward risky behaviors, crime, and the law/legal system? The findings from this study will have implications for policy-makers and practitioners working with fathers, children, families, and communities.

Castillo, J., Sarver, C., & Mueller, D. (2019, August). Fathers’ involvement with children, social support networks, and attitudes toward risky behaviors, crime, and the law. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology, San Francisco, CA.

  • Dramatic increases in the American imprisonment rate since the mid-1970s have had important implications for fathers of lower socioeconomic status, notably around their involvement with their children, social support networks, and the legal system. Although a body of literature that examines the impact fathers’ incarceration has on their involvement with their children and social support network exists, there is scarcity of literature examining the impact men and fathers’ involvement with their children and social support network has on their attitude toward risky behaviors, crime, and the law/legal system. Using ecological systems and social capital theory, this study utilizing pilot-study data from 180 individuals on parole and probation in one Intermountain Western state, examined two questions: 1) what is the relationship between fathers’ involvement with their children and their attitude toward risky behaviors, crime, and the law/legal system?; and 2) what is the relationship between fathers’ involvement with their social support system and their attitude toward risky behaviors, crime, and the law/legal system? The findings from this study will have implications for policy-makers and practitioners working with fathers, children, families, and communities.

Nguyen, V. L., Riquino, M. R., Reese, S. E., Molloy, J. K., & Castillo, J. (2019, January). Disproportionate minority contact: The missing perspectives of minority youth. Paper presented at the Annual  Conference of the Society for Social Work and Research, San Francisco, CA.

  • In response to the overrepresentation of minority youth in the juvenile justice system, the 1988 Juvenile Justice Delinquency Act required states to acknowledge and make efforts to reduce racial disparities. This overrepresentation was later termed “disproportionate minority contact” (DMC). Although 30 years have passed since the federal government’s mandate, DMC continues to pervade all points of contact in the juvenile justice system. In an effort to address DMC, research has become saturated with quantitative studies, with a notable lack of focus on qualitative methods. Additionally, existing qualitative studies have failed to capture the perspectives of individuals most impacted by DMC—minority youth themselves. This study aimed to build on existing studies investigating the causes of and potential solutions for addressing or eliminating DMC by examining the experiences and perceptions of youth who self-identify as racial or ethnic minorities.

Davis, M. J., McDonald, C., Whitaker, D. J., Sage, M. & Miller, J. (2019, August). Evaluation and IT in child welfare: What is on the horizon and what are the implications for agencies, children and families. Panel presentation at Child Welfare Evaluation Summit of the Children’s Bureau, Washington, D.C.

  • This was a panel discussion exploring innovative ways that technologies are leveraged to enhance child welfare interventions and evaluation related to workforce, children, families, and other partners. Panelists discussed learning and data management systems, social networking applications, virtual reality learning tools, machine learning, and the use of tablets to support home visitor program delivery, including measurement systems to provide immediate feedback on client uptake of skills. Uses, risks, and challenges regarding these technologies were described, and opportunities to build evidence in this rapidly changing environment were explored.

Davis, M. J., & Mills, C. (2019, August). Findings and lessons learned from the Utah waiver evaluation: Title IV-E waiver demonstration. Presentation at Child Welfare Evaluation Summit of the Children’s Bureau, Washington, D.C.

  • Findings from the final report of the Utah Title IV-E waiver demonstration evaluation were presented. Presentation included a focus on programmatic and methodological aspects that may be of interest to other state and federal jurisdictions.

Davis, M. J. & McDonald, C. (2019, January). Using virtual reality to gain competence in identifying threats to safety and protective factors during home visitation in child welfare: Feasibility, usability, and acceptability results. Presentation at the Annual Conference of the Society for Social Work and Research, San Francisco, CA.

  • The researchers presented on findings from a feasibility study approach consisting of focus groups with a convenience sample of BSW students who used a virtual reality learning tool, Virtual Home Simulation. This presentation included an assessment of metrics of usability and acceptability.

Riches, N. O., Johnson, E., Frost, C. J., Johnson, A., Mumford, S., Baumann, J., Johnson, B., & Rothwell, E. (October 2019).  Creating a biobanking graphic database:  A pilot and feasibility study. Poster presented at the meeting of the Greater Plains Collaborative Clinical Research Network, Kansas City, MO.

  • Consent forms can be quite lengthy and complex, which contributes to lack of participant understanding of research studies. Consent for biobanking is different from other types of research consent. This poster presentation highlighted the component of a preliminary study that asks participants to draw pictures about terms that are common in research consent forms. The data from this pilot is being used to create innovative consent forms that better explain to participants what is involved in a research study.

Frost, C. J., Dearden, S., Allkhenfr, H., Benson, L. S., & Gren, L.H. (2019, June). Determining health conditions present in refugees 0-59 years arriving in Utah. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Refugee Healthcare Providers, Toronto, Canada.

  • This poster explored screening data from the Utah Department of Health for refugees ages 0 to 59 years who were resettled in Utah from 2012-2017. Physical and mental healthcare needs were presented.

Benson, L. S., Frost, C. J., & Gren, L .H. (2019, June). Developing an acuity scale for case management and primary healthcare for refugees age 60 years and older arriving in Utah. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Refugee Healthcare Providers, Toronto, Canada.

  • This poster presentation considered how case management, as well as primary healthcare, should create a better understanding of how to screen and manage physical and mental healthcare for older refugees based on known health diagnoses.

Harris, M., Gren, L. H., Benson, L. S., & Frost, C. J. (2019, June). Providing refugee integration services—How well are U.S. States doing? Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Refugee Healthcare Providers, Toronto, Canada.

  • This poster provided a summary of the indicators of integration by Ager & Strang and how they connect to services states are funding and providing to refugees.

Gren, L. H., Najmabadi, S., Benson, L. S., & Frost, C. J. (2019, June). Two steps forward, one step back: Using Maslow’s hierarchy of needs to understand refugee integration status. Presentation at the annual meeting of the Society for Refugee Healthcare Providers, Toronto, Canada.

  • Presenters described the overlay of the indicators of integration by Ager & Strang onto Maslow’s hierarchy of needs based on a scoping review of the literature on trainings offered to refugees resettling in high income countries.

Garland, E. L., Hanley, A. W. & Hudak, J. P. (2019, October). The role of mindfulness-based interventions in addressing the opioid crisis. Plenary session at the Addiction and Health Services Research Conference for the University of Utah School of Medicine, Park City, UT.

  • This plenary shed light on the efficacy and therapeutic mechanisms of mindfulness-based interventions for individuals suffering from opioid misuse, opioid use disorder, and chronic pain.

Garland, E. L. (2019, May). The art and science of well-being: Healing the pathophysiology of stress, pain, and addiction with Mindfulness-Oriented Recovery Enhancement. Plenary at the annual conference of the Institute of Functional Medicine, San Antonio, Texas.

Garland, E. L. & Hanley, A. W. (2019, January). Mindfulness-based interventions for addiction in social work: Novel therapeutic mechanisms and measurement strategies. Presentation at the Annual Conference of the Society for Social Work and Research, San Francisco, CA.

  • Garland presented results from a National Institutes of Health-funded randomized controlled trial examining the effects of Mindfulness-Oriented Recovery Enhancement (MORE) on temporally dynamic change trajectories of opioid craving in chronic pain patients receiving opioid pharmacotherapy using high density, longitudinal ecological momentary assessments delivered via smartphone. Hanley presented data from a clinical trial of MORE concerning the effects of mindfulness on a novel addictions treatment target, awareness of pleasant bodily sensations, and its association with reduced opioid use disorder symptoms.

Garland, E.L. (2019, January). Detecting and predicting risk for prescription opioid misuse with an innovative, performance-based cognitive measure of attentional bias in a large dample of opioid-treated pain patients. Presentation at the Annual Conference of the Society for Social Work and Research, San Francisco, CA.

  • Prescription opioids, such as oxycodone, fentanyl, and morphine, are common frontline treatments for chronic pain. Yet, a substantial subset of chronic pain patients misuse prescription opioids; meta-analyses indicate that approximately 25% of opioid-treated chronic pain patients exhibit opioid misuse behaviors that place them at risk for serious adverse consequences like overdose and addiction. This figure is likely an underestimate of opioid misuse, as patients may be reluctant to report due to fears of stigmatization, legal repercussions, and prescription limitations. Indeed, the sensitive nature of opioid misuse among chronic-pain patients calls for a valid means by which to assess the addictive drive toward opioids. The motivational drive to engage in opioid misuse involves unconscious neurocognitive processes. When chronic pain patients engage in recurrent opioid misuse, visual cues like a pill bottle or prescription slip may begin to implicitly signal relief and reward, and thereby automatically capture attention through the process of conditioning. This phenomenon, known as addiction attentional bias, has been demonstrated among other drug using populations and is associated with craving and poor treatment outcomes. Small pilot studies have provided preliminary evidence for a prescription opioid attentional bias among opioid misusers. Here, the researcher presented findings from the first, large-scale study to test the hypothesis that relative to medication adherent patients, opioid-misusing chronic pain patients would exhibit a significantly greater opioid attentional bias (AB) that would in turn predict psychosocial treatment outcomes. Findings demonstrate the presence of an opioid AB among chronic pain patients at risk for opioid misuse, and opioid AB predicted clinical outcomes six months following treatment. To the knowledge of the research team, this is the largest study to employ a cognitive task to detect risk for addictive behaviors. Social work researchers should consider using similar cognitive tasks to assess risk and protective factors in individuals with substance use disorders.

Hanley, A. W. & Hudak, J. P. (2019, August). The clinical benefits of mindfully induced self-transcendent experiences—Evidence from three RCTs. Presentation at the meeting of the American Psychological Association’s Convention, Chicago, IL.

  • New data from three randomized controlled trials (RCTs) indicates self-transcendence 1) can be realized through mindfulness training, 2) may have immediate clinical impacts, and 3) may also catalyze durable decreases in clinical symptomology.

Hanley, A. W. (2019, July). Self-transcendence: Measurement, manipulation through mindfulness meditation, and therapeutic impact. Presentation at the Conference of the Neurophysiology of Silence of the Research Institute Paoletti Foundation, San Baggio Monastery, Italy.

  • Study data suggest self-transcendence can be reliably measured, that the regular cultivation of self-transcendent states may result in a trait-like propensity to experiences of self-transcendence, and that self-transcendent experiences may have considerable therapeutic value.

Hanley, A. W. & Hudak, J. P. (2019, July). Generating pleasant physical sensations to treat chronic pain—Results from two RCTs. Presentation at the meeting of the American Psychological Association’s Convention, Chicago, IL.

  • Mindfulness-based interventions may facilitate pain coping by increasing interoceptive mapping and enhancing awareness of pleasant body sensations – not merely by reducing pain. Generating pleasant physical sensations through safe, non-addictive therapies may be particularly valuable for opioid-treated chronic pain patients, given the effects of chronic pain and opioid exposure on blunting reward system function, and presumably, inducing anhedonia.

Hanley, A. W. (2019, June). Mindfulness training disrupts Pavlovian conditioning. Presentation at the Summer Research Institute of the Mind and Life Institute, Garrison, NY.

  • Classical conditioning is a quintessential learning process; however, maladaptive forms of conditioning sustain many unhealthy behaviors (e.g., addiction). Mindfulness training is theorized to de-automatize conditioned behavior by decoupling stimulus and response. This study assessed the effect of mindfulness training on conditioned behavior during a classical conditioning task. Findings indicated mindfulness training decreased classically conditioned behavior relative to an active control condition, delaying the onset of first conditioned response and decreasing conditioned response frequency. Thus, mindfulness training may be one method of increasing volitional control over maladaptive conditioned behaviors that contribute to the development and maintenance of clinical disorders.

Hanley A. W. & Garland, E. L. (2019, January). Peace of mind, peace embodied: Mindfulness-induced increases in pleasant sensations are associated with reduced opioid use disorder severity. Presentation at the Annual Conference of the Society for Social Work and Research, San Francisco, CA.

  • Findings from this study indicate that Mindfulness-Oriented Recovery Enhancement (MORE) amplifies pleasant sensations, a therapeutic process linked with reduced opioid use disorder symptom severity. Findings from this study have implications for both the measurement and treatment of chronic pain in opioid-treated individuals.

Hanley A. W., Bryan, M. A., & Garland, E. L. (2019, January). Randomized controlled trial of brief hypnotic suggestion and mindfulness training for preoperative pain and anxiety. Presentation at the Annual Conference of the Society for Social Work and Research, San Francisco, CA.

  • Findings from this study indicate that a brief mind-body intervention, conducted by a social worker, is likely to alleviate pain, decrease medication desire, and relieve anxiety in patients preparing for elective, orthopedic surgery. In this sample, hypnotic suggestion and mindfulness training encouraged more positive changes than psychoeducation. As such, mind-body interventions may be useful adjuncts to medical pain management, and the identification of effective, non-pharmacological pain management strategies is imperative in the context of the opioid crisis.

Hopkins, R. W. & Hudnall, G. (2019, September). Hope Squads: A peer-to-peer school-based program that bridges the gap in serving vulnerable youth. Paper presented at the 30th World Congress of the International Association of Suicide Prevention, Derry-Londonderry, Northern Ireland.

  • A peer-to-peer school based program called Hope Squads was developed to empower youth and bridge the gap by training students to listen to their peers and when indicated, seek help from adults. The primary intention of a Hope Squad is to increase individual member peer-helping behavior. This study indicated 4 of 5 scales were significant (p< .05) with positive effect sizes. Hope Squad knowledge (0.50) and questionnaire about the process of recovery (QPR) (0.59) scales represented a modest effect. While the taking action (0.25) and peer-helping behavior (0.18) showed small effect sizes.

Hopkins, R. W. & Hudnall, G. (2019, September). Building a bridge with the faith community: a natural partner in suicide prevention. Poster presented at the 30th World Congress of the International Association of Suicide Prevention, Derry-Londonderry, Northern Ireland.

  • Since many of the world’s religions have a common doctrinal belief in the sanctity of human life and that life fundamentally belongs to God, they traditionally condemn suicide. While the specific doctrinal differences are varied, the shared belief in the sanctity of human life and the ubiquitous nature of suicide can make the faith community a natural suicide prevention partner. Community-based suicide prevention training findings demonstrated the strongest effect sizes (pre-to-post) were among faith based groups. Faith community, regardless of denominational affiliation, is an untapped resource whose role in overall community mobilization to prevent suicide is critical.

Hoy-Ellis, C. P., Kim, H-J., & Fredriksen-Goldsen, K. I. (2019, January). Biomarkers and health of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) older adults: Mapping a path from cells to society. Life course predictors of allostatic load among LGBT older adults.  Paper presented at the Annual Conference of the Society for Social Work and Research, San Francisco, CA.

  • Compared to older heterosexuals, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) older adults are at significantly increased risk for poor mental and physical health. Such elevated risk is likely consequential to acute and chronic stressors specific to LGBT older adults’ marginalized social position. Allostatic load (AL) is the net effect of “wear and tear” on the body that results from chronic over-activation or repeated activation of the psychophysiological stress response system. Based on the health equity promotion model, the purpose of this study is to test potential life course predictors of AL among LGBT older adults, including financial constraints, interpersonal violence, legal marriage, and identity management. Although AL is linked to premature morbidity and mortality in the general population and among other health disparate groups (e.g., racial, ethnic minority populations), there has been a dearth of research examining AL within the LGBT population. This study found that adult physical abuse is associated with higher AL among LGBT older adults. The relationship between opposite-sex marriage and AL was explained by late identity disclosure for those who had been in an opposite-sex marriage. These findings provide preliminary support for increased research using a variety of biomarkers to study contextual, interpersonal, psychological, biological, and social risk and protective factors that contribute to biopsychosocial dysfunction, increased AL, and consequent premature morbidity and mortality among LGBT older adults.

Hudak, J. & Sanyer, M. (2019, September). Mindfulness-Oriented Recovery Enhancement for opioid-treated chronic pain patients. Presentation at the Annual Utah Criminal Justice Conference, Salt Lake City, UT.

  • The researchers provided an overview presentation about the Mindfulness-Oriented Recovery Enhancement (MORE) intervention studies being run at the University of Utah’s Center on Mindfulness and Integrative Health Intervention Development. They presented data on the reductions in opioid use, body map findings, self-transcendence, and psychophysiological underpinnings and findings.

Loomis, A. M. & Feely, M. (2019, October). Measuring self-reported polyvictimization in foster youth research: A systematic review. Presentation at the Annual Program Meeting of the Council on Social Work Education, Denver, CO.

  • This presentation used data collected through a systemic review to discuss the need for youth self-report data on polyvictimization among foster youth. Implications for educating social work students working in child welfare or with foster youth were discussed.

Cruden, G., Davis, A., Loomis, A. M., Padilla, C., & Drazen, Y. (2019, March). Building a framework for comprehensive preschool suspension and expulsion legislation: A qualitative analysis. Poster presented at the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD), Baltimore, MD.

  • Exclusionary discipline, encompassing suspension and expulsion, is problematic because it is ineffective, racially biased, and predicts a host of negative outcomes, including mental health difficulties, decreased school performance, and delayed developmental milestones. A growing number of states have proposed or passed legislation limiting or eliminating the use of exclusionary discipline in preschool. However, it is not yet clear what components are essential for comprehensive legislation addressing preschool exclusionary discipline. This qualitative study, conducted by a group of fellows from the Doris Duke Fellowship for the Promotion of Child Well-Being, reviewed proposed and passed preschool exclusionary discipline legislation from 13 states using a policy framework in order to inform recommendations for the development of comprehensive and developmentally appropriate pre-k expulsion legislation.

Lundahl, B., Davis, M. J., Cheng, J., Amburgey, V., & Steinacker, D. (2019, January). Promoting engagement and satisfaction among child protective service recipients: Combining motivational interviewing and deliberate practice. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Social Work and Research, San Francisco, CA.

  • Engaging families in child protective services (CPS) is critical yet challenging to accomplish. Children’s safety and the family’s integrity are at stake. Motivational interviewing (MI) is a counseling approach designed to promote client engagement and motivation for taking action while simultaneously reducing “resistance.” Learning to work with a family’s motivation in the high pressure setting of child protection is a complex, demanding skill that requires more than simple presentation of knowledge. Deliberate practice provides an empirically based learning structure for reliably acquiring complex skills. In this study, CPS workers were trained in MI using a deliberate practice (DP) informed training structure. The researchers’ hypothesis specified CPS workers who participated in the MI/DP training would have better alliances with families compared to those who did not.

Lundahl, B., Castillo, J., Nelson, K., Tukuafu, E. & Teasley, M. L. (2019, January). Social work leading in social justice? Comparing codes of ethics of ten professions. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Social Work and Research, San Francisco, CA.

  • This study examined the relative emphasis of social justice terms within the codes of ethics of social work and nine allied professions to determine the degree to which professions prioritize promoting a just society. A profession’s code of ethics provides insight into what is valued and therefore prioritized. Social work has long been considered a leader in social justice. This study examined the degree to which social work leads in promoting social justice currently and historically. Among the other nine professions, current codes of ethics show that two address inequality/oppression, five address minorities/immigration, four emphasize self-determination, eight emphasize diversity and cultural competence, seven promote community development, and five highlight the need for political engagement. In general, there is a trend across disciplines to add themes consistent with social justice.

McDonald, C. & Davis, M. J. (2019, August). Virtual reality training and defining competency – A central problem. Panel presentation at Child Welfare Evaluation Summit of the Children’s Bureau, Washington, D.C.

  • This was a presentation regarding methods considered toward being able to establish expert consensus using a virtual reality based training method. This presentation focused on how to identify the "correct answer" given the contextual nature of child welfare work to defining expertise absent objective outcomes.

McDonald, C. & Davis, M. J. (2019, January). Using virtual reality training to create a valid learning environment for learning child welfare skills: An overview and development of competency-based feedback. Presentation at the Annual Meeting of the Council on Social Work Education, Denver, CO.

  • This presentation shared preliminary findings around whether it is possible to establish expert consensus using a virtual reality based training method to assist social workers in learning to perform in the complex and volatile situations often encountered when visiting a home for child welfare reasons.

Min, M. O., Minnes, S., Lester, B., Park, H., Momotaz, H., Powers, G., Albert, J., & Singer, L. T. (2019, June). Trajectories of internalizing behavior problems from age 3 to 13 in children with prenatal substance exposure: The Maternal Lifestyle Study. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Developmental Neurotoxicology Society, San Diego, CA.

  • Using a birth-cohort data of 1,257 mother-child dyads, this study found that prenatal exposure to nicotine and opioids differentiated developmental trajectories of internalizing (i.e., depression, anxiety) behavioral problems during childhood (age 3-12), which were related to subsequent adolescent tobacco and marijuana use and early sexual behaviors.

Min, M. O., Minnes, S., Lester, B., Ridenour, T., Momotaz, H., Powers, G., Albert, J., & Singer, L. T. (2019, May). Trajectories of externalizing behavior problems from age 3 to 13 in children with prenatal substance exposure: The Maternal Lifestyle Study. Poster presented at the annual meeting of Society for Prevention Research, San Francisco, CA.

  • Little is known about how prenatal poly-drug exposure may contribute to different childhood developmental trajectories of externalizing behavioral problems. Prenatal tobacco exposure was associated with increased odds of being in an elevated risk group, even after controlling for other substance (cocaine, alcohol, marijuana) exposure and other maternal characteristics. This study indicated that behavioral problems can be identified as early as age 3 years in children with prenatal exposure to poly-drug living in high risk-environments.

Mueller, D., & Sarver, C. (2019, November). Barriers to employment for justice-involved individuals: Perceptions of community supervision agents. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology, San Francisco, CA.

  • As of 2016, approximately 69 percent of the United States adult correctional population was on community supervision. Community supervision officers play an integral role in the reentry process of ex-offenders. Recent research has identified employment as one important factor in the successful reintegration of ex-offenders. Furthermore, research has indicated that probation and parole officers believe that unemployment is one of the most important reasons why their clients fail to successfully reintegrate. Probation and parole officers are in a position that creates an opportunity for them to connect their clients to services and/or employers that are willing to assist them in obtaining employment. This study seeks to examine the factors that probation and parole officers consider to be important in the reentry process – especially employment. Officers are asked what they perceive to be the biggest barriers their clients encounter when attempting to obtain and retain employment. Web-based surveys were sent to all probation and parole agents and supervisors in one southwestern state (n=394). Implications for policy and practice are discussed. In particular, researchers assess whether agents make accommodations for their clients to remove/reduce employment barriers.

Osteen, P. J. & Jaggers, J. W. (2019, October). Suicide prevention training for providers working with youth at risk for suicide. Paper presented at the Annual Program Meeting of the Council on Social Work Education, Denver, CO.

  • There are over 400,000 children in the child welfare (CW) system across the United States. These children constitute a unique subsidiary of youth who are at an increased risk of perilous behaviors. Diagnoses of major depressive disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder are the most common disorders in child welfare youth. It is estimated that 27% of youth involved in the child welfare system in the U.S. experience suicidal thoughts and behaviors compared to 16% of youth in the general population. Significantly higher rates of suicidal ideation are reported for youth with a history of foster care placement as compared with their counterparts in kinship, residential, or in home care (26.5% versus 11.4%). This study evaluated the “Youth Depression and Suicide: Let’s Talk” gatekeeper training in a community setting with adults working with at-risk youth in the child-welfare system. Statistically significant improvements were observed for most training outcomes including declarative knowledge and perceived knowledge about suicide and suicide intervention; attitudes toward suicide prevention, and self-efficacy. No change was observed in participants’ reluctance to engage with suicide youth, but scores were very low to begin with.

Frey, J. J., Mosby, A., & Osteen, P. J. (2019, April). Healthy Men Michigan: “Reaching in” online to meet the unique needs of working-age men to prevent suicide. Presentation at the annual conference of the American Association of Suicidology, Denver, CO.

  • Over 44,000 people in the U.S. die each year by suicide; 77% are men. The largest increase in suicide over the past 20 years has been among men in their middle years (ages 45-64). While there are many types of prevention and intervention programs, and a wide variety of mental health services that effectively treat mental illness and contribute to preventing suicide, few have successfully reached and engaged working-aged men. Furthermore, existing programs and community-based outreach messages that rely solely on traditional mental health services have had much success in working to effectively increase mental health help-seeking behavior among this population. The team established HealthyMenMichigan.org social media channels on Facebook and Twitter and used promotional posts throughout the campaign to increase awareness and better attract working-age men to visit the website. The team created promotional materials that incorporated masculine messaging and infographics, including sports focused messages. Furthermore, the team optimized its reach by implementing paid advertising on Facebook, which allows users to target specific demographics including gender, age, location and occupation. Preliminary results reporting the number of men who viewed the campaign website, in addition to method in which they learned about the campaign and social media analytic information were shared during this presentation. These results will provide a foundation for which others can learn to allocate limited resources to get maximum exposure and participation through online and other innovative messaging modalities.

Hansen, M. D., Harris, R.M., & Osteen, P. J. (2019, January). Exploring protective factors of justice-involved pregnant and parenting teens. Presentation at the Annual Conference of the Society for Social Work and Research, San Francisco, CA.

  • Young women in the juvenile justice system (JJS) have unique needs for rehabilitation given their increased risk of experiencing poor behavioral health statuses, exposure to interpersonal violence, and histories of sexual trauma. While literature has begun to explore the characteristics of young women involved in the JJS, little attention has been paid to those women who may be pregnant or parenting at the time that they come into contact with the JJS. Given the unique constellation of risk factors that young mothers may experience, in combination with risks for juvenile justice involvement, these women will likely have an even more complex set of needs, requiring enhanced specialized services. Results from this study support existing knowledge surrounding descriptive characteristics of young women involved in the JJS. In addition to their needs as youth engaged in the JJS, young mothers may need additional services, targeted toward their unique life stage. Given the sample’s high ACE scores, and low resilience scores, women such as those in our sample may benefit from an empowerment-based approach to care. The young age of mothers in this study, coupled with being even younger at the age of first contact, suggests the need for developmentally appropriate interventions addressing cognitive-behavioral processes from an age-informed theoretical and empirical perspective. By implementing appropriate psychosocial care for young mothers involved in the JJS, we may help to promote the healthy development of children who may be at a particularly high risk of poor outcomes.

Panos, A. J., Panos, P. T., Croft, J., & Belnap, S. (2019, October). Suicide trends in Utah vs. USA. Poster presented at the Conference on Suicide Prevention for Utah Valley University, Orem, Utah.

  • This poster presented data examining suicide rates among different sub-populations within Utah compared to the USA in general. Hypothesized reasons for those differences were proposed.

Panos, A. J., Panos, P. T., Jackson, L., Christensen, S. & Labrum, H. (2019, April). Domestic violence in developing countries. Poster presented at the Conference on Domestic Violence for Utah Valley University, Orem, Utah.

  • This poster summarized the incident rates and laws regarding domestic violence within developing countries. Methods to assist developing countries to respond to domestic violence were proposed.

Panos, A. J., Panos, P. T., & Panos, S. (2019, March). Technology addiction and circadian rhythm disorder – delayed sleep phase type in adolescents and young adults. Poster presented at the Conference on Addiction for Utah Valley University, Orem, Utah.

  • This poster summarized current research showing how smartphone and computer usage affected sleep cycles among teenagers and young adults. Correlation between sleep disturbance and increased technology usage was demonstrated.

Panos, A.J., & Panos, P.T. (2019, March). A comparison of rural resettlement for Syrian refugee families in Iceland versus Utah. Paper presented at the annual conference of the Utah Council on Family Relations, Orem, Utah.

  • This paper presented original research that documented and compared ongoing resettlement efforts, procedures, and outcomes with Syrian refugees within Iceland and Utah.

Sarver, C. M., Mueller, D., & Prince, K. C. (2019, November). Factors that influence employer willingness to hire recently released inmates. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology, San Francisco, CA.

  • With an estimated 6.6 million persons under the supervision of United States adult correctional systems, a number of important questions have been raised about how to successfully reintegrate ex-offenders. Employment has been identified as an important factor for ex-offenders’ successful reintegration. This study examines employer demand, willingness, and policies concerning hiring individuals with a criminal history. Researchers used Bayesian analysis to examine employers’ perceptions of hiring an individual with a criminal history using vignettes. Several implications for policies on hiring ex-offenders are considered. In particular, the researchers assess whether employers’ willingness to hire ex-offenders aligns with company and/or state policies.

Sarver, C. M. (2019, September). Invest in Dads Too: An employment intervention for justice-involved fathers. Paper presented at the annual Utah Criminal Justice Conference, Salt Lake City, UT.

  • This presentation provided preliminary results from a pilot study examining the impact of an intensive employment intervention on criminal justice involved fathers. The 12-month, ongoing program targets a range of criminogenic needs, including employment skills and opportunities, family instability, and antisocial thinking. This discussion presented results from the project’s first year, including: barriers to program participation, participant characteristics, services provided, and participants’ experience in the program.

Sarver, C. M., Prince, K. C., & Mueller, D. (2019, September). Desistance in the context of parole. Paper presented at the annual Utah Criminal Justice Conference, Salt Lake City, UT.

  • Desistance scholars argue that identity transformation is a central component of the processes through which offenders terminate a criminal career. Offenders’ ability to craft a credible self-narrative that is incompatible with offending is essential to maintaining desistance in the stressed social context within which many offenders reside after release from prison. In recent decades, community correctional programs have been largely oriented around risk assessment, which may serve to reify the criminal identity and thereby interrupt the development of a nonoffending self-narrative. However, desistance research has largely focused on the impact of normative life events, rather than formal justice interventions, on desistance. This study uses a narrative criminological approach to explore identity formation in a sample of 50 recently paroled male offenders. Using data from semistructured interviews, this study explored the ways parole practice served to enhance or disrupt the development of credible desistance narratives. Results identified three types of desistance narrative typologies: committed, ambivalent, and nondesistance. Participants’ experience of parole differed across some domains according to typology, but tended to be similar when looking at the impact of parole on the maintenance of a credible desistance narrative. This study advances the knowledge of the impact of formal justice interventions on normative desistance processes, with implications for criminal justice policy and practice.

Cao, J., Tanana, M., Imel, Z., Poitras, E., Atkins, D., & Srikumar, V. (2019, July). Observing dialogue in therapy: Categorizing and forecasting behavioral codes. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics, Florence, Italy.

  • In this study, using machine learning methodology, researchers were able to predict subsequent client and therapist dialogue acts in motivational interviewing using only the previous talk turn.

Vogel-Ferguson, M. B. (2019, July). Breaking the cycle of poverty by designing programs for all family members. Presentation at the meeting of the National Association of Welfare Research and Statistics, New Orleans, LA.

  • The two generation approach to working with families in poverty has become a best practice in efforts to improve the lives and fortunes for children in poverty today. This session provided an opportunity to learn what is happening in three different states regarding two generation efforts. These efforts are leading to promising futures for people in vulnerable populations seeking a better future.

Vogel-Ferguson, M. B. (2019, July). Becoming a trauma-informed state: One step at a time! Presentation at the meeting of the National Association of Welfare Research and Statistics, New Orleans, LA.

  • A challenge was given by the Lt. Governor of the State of Utah – “make Utah a trauma informed state.” Not an easy challenge. This presentation discusses the steps taken to help move Utah in this direction through creative partnerships, research, and listening to the voices of stakeholders, agency staff, and those with lived experience. The road is long but the first steps have been taken in moving Utah toward this goal.

Gruber, T., Vogel-Ferguson, M. B., & Gibbs, B. (2019, July). Better together: Benefits of bringing academic and agency researchers together to address intergenerational poverty. Presentation at the meeting of the National Association of Welfare Research and Statistics, New Orleans, LA.

  • Knowledge comes in many different forms. Different types of knowledge provide unique perspectives on issues that enhance understanding. The same is true with research. Some would argue there is a “gold” standard which stands above other types of research. In this presentation, the team showed how the combination of academic, applied, and agency research produces the most meaningful and impactful findings for moving forward in addressing intergenerational poverty.

Vogel-Ferguson, M. B. (2019, March). Creating a trauma-informed state: Removing the BS (blame and shame) through education and community support. Presentation for the annual Legislative and Policy Conference of the National Association of County Behavioral Health & Developmental Disability Directors, Washington D.C.

  • Directors of the National Association of County Behavioral Health & Developmental Disability Directors gather annually to network, learn, and share ideas for improving service provision in agencies across the U.S. Efforts to address trauma at a statewide level vary from strong and growing to non-existent. This session provided an opportunity to share best practices from the experiences of engaging in such efforts in Utah in the hopes of encouraging others to engage in this challenging but most worthwhile effort.  

Yaffe, J., Collins-Camargo, C., Caresen, A., Gioia, D., & Goldkind, L. (2019, October). Reviewing manuscripts for professional journals: Building your skills to support your scholarship. Panel presented at the Annual Program Meeting of the Council on Social Work Education, Denver, CO.

  • Academic scholarship is a reciprocal process in any discipline, with sound scholarship requiring competent, thoughtful manuscript reviewers. This panel helped participants hone skills as reviewers and writers. A representative of a leading publisher, together with four journal editors, presented resources for reviewing and providing constructive criticism.

Yaffe, J., Brice, T.S., Nedjat-Haiem, F., Parrish, D., Pomeroy, E., & Mogro-Wilson, C. (2019, October). Writing for refereed journal: Strategies to get your paper published. Panel presented at the Annual Program Meeting of the Council on Social Work Education, Denver, CO.

  • This session provided information and tips for planning, preparing, and submitting manuscripts for publication in peer-reviewed journals. Members of the Journal of Social Work Education Editorial Advisory Board shared their expertise on article preparation and the review process

Yaffe, J., Bellamy, J., Parrish, D., & Rubin, A. (2019, October). Evidence-based practice in social work: Looking back and moving forward. Panel presented at the Annual Program Meeting of the Council on Social Work Education, Denver, CO.

  • The evidence-based practice process was first introduced in social work in the early 2000s. Over the last 19 years, several efforts to disseminate this model and improve the integration of research and practice have emerged. This panel discussed the success of these efforts, ongoing challenges, and future recommendations.

Rubin, A., Thyer, B., Yaffe, J., Parrish, D. (January 2019). Utility of benchmarking to evaluate the implementation of research supported interventions. Panel presented at the
Annual Conference of the Society for Social Work and Research, San Francisco, CA

  • This roundtable session began with a description of the rationale and methodology of the benchmarking approach by one presenter, followed by a criticism of it by a second presenter, and then a reaction from a neutral third presenter who has done work with the Campbell and Cochrane Collaborations. Next, the first two presenters responded to the third presentation. Audience participation in the discussion was encouraged and moderated by a fourth presenter. The goal was to generate awareness of the benchmarking procedure, discuss its pros and cons, and stimulate its future use by social work researchers and practitioners who agree with its value and seek a way to strengthen implementation evaluations that they conduct in settings where control groups are not feasible.
Last Updated: 1/9/20