University of Illinois logo The e-COLUMN
School of Social Work  |  University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
March 2014 Strengthening Vulnerable Families  
photo of hands
March Match
Make your gift today!
March Match logo


The School of Social Work Alumni Association Board has issued a challenge:


Make your gift by March 31, 2014 and we will double it!


As part of the fifth annual March Match Challenge, the School of Social Work Alumni Association Board made a 100% board participation pledge.  To date, Board Members and Senior Advisory members of the School of Social Work Alumni Association have made a matching gift of $7,000.


Join us in supporting the School of Social Work by making your gift today.  Your gift will directly impact the School's research, students, and faculty.  


Make your gift online.

Did you know that by making your gift online you have the option of breaking up your single gift into multiple payments through a recurring credit card payment? 


Click HERE to make your gift easily online.


If you have already given to the School this year, we thank you. If you choose to make an additional contribution before the end of March, we will match your additional gift.


Thank you for joining us in support of our alma mater.




Linda Weiss, MSW 1990


School of Social Work Alumni Association


For more information about the March Match Challenge, or to make your gift by phone, call 217-244-4854 or email
Student Giving Campaign
First Annual Give a Buck, Get a Duck Regatta

While alumni participate in March Match, Social Work students are participating in their own giving campaign!


Throughout the Social Work Month in March, School of Social Work students are encouraging their fellow students to participate in the campus-wide Student Giving Campaign, the 1867 Society. Social Work students can make a gift to the campaign by sponsoring a duck in GIVE A BUCK, GET A DUCK Regatta. Funds raised by this whimsical race support the School's Fund for Field which provides funding for social work students in their internships.



This regatta features little rubber ducks racing their way down the CRCE waterslide and past the finish line!  If the duck that you sponsor crosses the finish line first, you will be the grand prize winner!  Click HERE for more information about this campaign.


Prizes include:

  • 1st Place: Kindle Fire HD
  • 2nd Place: School of Social Work apparel gift package
  • 3rd Place: School of Social Work goodie basket
  • Last Place: Subway gift card

Social Work students can participate with a donation of $1 per duck, or have 20 ducks race in your honor for just $18.67! By making a gift you not only sponsor a duck, you also support student field placements.


***This race is for Social Work students only***


Ducks will be for sale during Social Work Month events and available for purchase inside the Dean's Suite.


Is Your Duck Ready?
Social Work Month
How the School of Social Work is Celebrating
In honor of Social Work Month, the School of Social Work is celebrating with a series of events and programs, such as panel discussions, workshops, and brown bag lunches. Each week focuses on a different value of the social work profession: social justice, importance of human relationships, dignity and worth of the person, and service

Check out the School's website to see how the School is celebrating Social Work Month. How are you celebrating?
23rd Annual Daniel S. Sanders Peace and Social Justice Lecture
Mark Your Calendars
Will North Korea Ever Be Free? 
Reflections from the Front Lines in the Battle for Human Rights in North Korea
Guest Lecturer: Suzanne Scholte, President of the Defense Forum Foundation and Chairman of the North Korea Freedom Coalition

Monday, April 7, 2014  
7:30 p.m.
Alice Campbell Alumni Center 
601 S Lincoln AvenueUrbana, IL 61801
When Suzanne Scholte became President of the Defense Forum Foundation in 1989, the Foundation chiefly focused on threats to American security and the need for a strong national defense. However, because all the countries that are a threat to the United States are also a threat to their own people, Scholte began an effort to promote freedom, democracy and human rights abroad in some of the most oppressed places on Earth. This effort led to her host the first North Korean defectors ever to speak out in the United States about conditions in their homeland. Since that time, she has hosted hundreds of visits of North Koreans to speak out about the horrific human rights situation facing the North Korean people ranging from survivors of the political prison camps to those who were victims of trafficking in China. In addition, Scholte has led numerous international campaigns to focus attention on the situation including North Korea Freedom Week to promote the freedom, human rights and dignity of the North Korean people. She has also been involved in aggressive outreach to the people in North Korea through radio broadcasts and balloon launches. During her presentation she will discuss the human rights situation in North Korea, the dramatic changes that have occurred in North Korea that give her hope, and what the free world must do to help the people of North Korea.

There will be a reception following the event. For more information, contact Brianna Rossbach at (217) 244-1064 or

This event is free and open to the public.
Respect for You Initiative
A Note from Dean Korr

One Monday was particularly difficult for our campus. The bad weekend snow made getting around difficult. But then we found out that some students had used racist and sexist language about our Chancellor on social media regarding her decision to keep the campus open. We met quickly as a community to discuss how we as a School of Social Work should respond. We want our University to reflect our values of respect for diversity and difference. We wanted a response that captured our values and would be visible to all. For us, the Orange and Blue means Respect for You. 


Within a day our team created badges with the slogan. Soon the Provost and deans around campus were wearing their badges. The Department of Intercollegiate Athletics agreed to distribute the badges to all attending a basketball game and to promote them with a public service announcement. Our BSW ambassadors and other student volunteers distributed the badges to the University-sponsored town hall meeting at Krannert Center that addressed concerns regarding how we can better relate to one another.


Next time you wear your orange and blue, remember our colors stand for respect for diversity and difference. I am proud of our School for giving voice to a positive vision of our University.


Dean Wynne Korr

Alumni Honored by NASW Illinois
2014 Annual Social Work Awards 
Every year the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Illinois District recognizes individuals for their contributions to the social work profession as well as to the lives of the people that social workers help to serve. This year the Illinois district is honoring several of the School's alumni at their Annual Social Work Awards

Janet Reckard, MSW 1981, is being awarded the Social Worker of the Year Award from the East Central District. Janet has primarily worked in school social work for most of her career, and has been employed with the Bloomington/District 87 public schools since 1988. She currently serves as a bilingual social worker and administrative assistant at Bent Elementary School in District 87 in addition to having her own private practice specializing in cognitive behavioral therapy with anxiety disorders.

Charles Parr
, MSW 1979, is being awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Southern District. Charles has been president of Riverbend Head Start and Family Services in Alton for sixteen years. During his social work career, Charles worked at Wabash Area Development in Enfield and The United Methodist Children's Home in Mt. Vernon. Riverbend Head Start was one of the models for the research program that led to the creation of the national Early Head Start program. The agency now serves over 1,000 children age birth to five and their families throughout Madison County with comprehensive early education, health, and parenting services

Gregory Watson
, MSW 1978, is being given the Social Worker of the Year Award from the Three Rivers District. Gregory has worked in a variety of outpatient mental health settings in his career. He has been with TriCity Family Services in Geneva, IL, since 1988. Gregory received his marriage and family therapy training at the University of Illinois' Institute for Juvenile Research in Chicago. He has done supervision and training for most of his career and has facilitated TriCity's live supervision program for graduate interns since 1994. Gregory is co-creator and has been the coordinator of TriCity's Wilderness Challenge Program, an eight-day remote wilderness adventure therapy program for at-risk youth, for over 25 years.

Karen Washington-Watson
, MSW 2004, is being given the Social Worker of the Year Award from the West Central District. Karen has been a social worker for over eleven years. Karen earned her social work degree after inspiration struck while volunteering at a domestic violence shelter. Karen has worked in a variety of settings including domestic violence, chemical dependency, child welfare, and private practice. Currently Karen works for Vitas Innovative Hospice Care as a hospice social worker.

Tonya Manselle, MSW 1984, is being honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award from the East Central District. Tonya's social work career had predominately been in healthcare, holding service and administrative positions in hospitals, rehabilitation centers, home health, among others. She has worked as a consultant and clinician in long-term care and as an inpatient psychiatric worker. Before retiring in 2008, Tonya worked as a faculty member at the University, served as an Association of Social Work Boards exam contributor, and she currently is an NASW licensing review instructor and an adjunct lecturer at the School. 

Award ceremonies will be held in the corresponding districts across Illinois. To find out more information about the award ceremonies, click HERE.
PhD Student Awarded the CAEPE
Megan Paceley

Each year the University of Illinois campus recognizes outstanding contributions in public engagement through the Campus Awards for Excellence in Public Engagement (CAEPE). The University acknowledges those faculty members, academic professionals and students who engage the public to address critical issues that face our society. Congratulations to PhD student and 2014 award winner, Megan Paceley! Megan is one of two students being given this award on campus.


Megan is being recognized for her work with the local LGBTQ community. Megan is involved with The UP Center of Champaign County, which is the local LGBTQ community center. She helped start The UP Center four years ago and has taken on many positions within the center such as board member, grants coordinator, research and evaluation coordinator, youth volunteer, among others. Megan is also involved with the LGBTQ community on campus, working with the Chancellor and the Provost's Committee for LGBT Concerns and volunteering with the LGBT Resource Center. Megan is currently collecting data for her dissertation which will continue to engage the community by examining how LGBTQ youth in non-urban areas get their support needs met.


Megan will be awarded the CAEPE at this year's reception taking place on April 9, 2014. To find out more information and to check out past CAEPE award recipients, click HERE.

The Column is Here
Winter 2014
The latest edition of the School of Social Work's quarterly newsletter, The Column, should be hitting household mailboxes very soon. This quarter's topic is military social work. 
Check out the online version on the School's website!
Class Notes
George W. Cook, MSW 1994, has accepted the position of Clinical Supervisor at Kevin Elliott Counseling in Champaign. George, a licensed clinical social worker, has been providing mental health services to individuals and families for more than 20 years and is experienced in management and supervision in the counseling field. 
March Match
Give a Buck, Get a Duck
Social Work Month
23rd Annual Sanders Lecture
Orange & Blue Means Respect for YOU
Alumni Honored by NASW
PhD Student Awarded CAEPE
The Column is Here
Class Notes

Find us on Facebook

Make your gift to the School of Social Work!


Visit the SSW Website or call 217-244-4854

so we can help you make your gift.


Thank you for your support!