The Social Work and Sociology Department offer several opportunities for students to participate in fun, educational activities, service trips and experiences to ensure they get the most out of their education. Below are some of the events Mercyhurst students have participated in this year.

Student Events

Migrant Worker Film & Presentation

Film-Migrant WorkersThe Social Work/Sociology and Criminal Justice departments in partnership with Campus Ministry and the Mercyhurst Institute for Arts and Culture (MIAC) hosted a video, presentation and panel discussion about migrant women on Tuesday, March 19, 2013.

The film, “After I Pick the Fruit: the Lives of Migrant Women” was viewed, along with a presentation and panel discussion that included producer Nancy Ghertner, and faculty members Bora Pajo, Ph.D., and Kris Gossett, Ph.D.

Approximately 130 students and community members attended the event held in the Taylor Little Theater. It chronicled the lives of migrant women and families, many of whom are undocumented. The panel discussion addressed issues of illegal immigration, the social costs and policy concerns for the future.

Students raise $2K for Cribs for Kids®

Cribs for KidsThe Senior Social Work class raised $2,072.50 during a spaghetti dinner, a chance auction and a bake sale on April 13, 2013. All proceeds benefited the local Children’s Miracle Network’s partnership with Cribs for Kids. 

Since 1998, through safe sleep education for parents and the donation of thousands of Graco Pack ’n Play portable cribs to familes who cannot otherwise afford a safe place for their babies to sleep, Cribs for Kids® has continued to make an impact on reducing the number of accidental infant deaths.

The successful event was advised by professors Laura Lewis, Ph.D., Bora Pajo, Ph.D., and Peggy Black, Ph.D. The Mercyhurst Student Government philanthropy fund also donated an additional $300. 

Washington, D.C. Trip

DC TripA dozen social work majors and professor Peggy Black, Ph.D., traveled to Washington, D.C., April 18-20, 2013, where they experienced and learned about various advocacy efforts related to social justice efforts.

Students visited the Program for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH) and met with Mercyhurst alumnus Hope Randall ’07, who has been a Child Health Communications Associate with PATH for four years.

Students learned about her work in maternal/child global health initiatives and potential NGO job opportunities in Washington, D.C. Students also had the opportunity to meet with Marianne Comfort, an education coordinator with the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas. Comfort shared the lobbying and advocacy efforts currently being addressed through Congressional meetings, as well as testimony provided by the Sisters of Mercy, specifically related to illegal immigration laws and gun violence issues.
Sightseeing opportunities included visiting the Holocaust Museum, as well as Arlington Cemetery and the various monuments that are hallmarks of the United States capital.

A Special Mother’s Day

Spaghetti-DinnerIn preparation for Mother’s Day, 18 Social Work Club members, along with professors Laura Lewis, Ph.D., and Bora Pajo, Ph.D., visited the Mercy Center for Women on Wednesday, May 1. The group was tasked with assisting in crafting Mother’s Day gifts and providing a meal for the 18 women and 14 children who reside there. The meal was donated by Bob Evans.

This hands-on project offered an opportunity for Mercyhurst students to reach out to the community and meet individuals who were able to improve their lives with the help of the services provided at the Mercy Center for Women. 

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Faculty Events

Presentation on effectiveness of undergraduate social work programs on addressing poverty

Professors Laura Lewis, Ph.D., and Peggy Black, Ph.D., presented their research paper, entitled: “Preparing Undergraduates to Effectively Address Poverty: How Do Programs Fare?” during the Baccalaureate Program Directors’ annual conference on March 8, 2013, in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Presentation on ADHD and children behaviors

Sociology professor Bora Pajo, Ph.D., presented her research paper, “Time spent with children and parents’ willingness to medicate ADHD-like behaviors,” at the 26th annual Children’s Mental Health Research and Policy conference in Tampa, Fla., on March 4, 2013, as well as at the Eastern Sociological Society annual Meeting in Boston, Mass. on March 22, 2013.

Social Work Program

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