Selected Bios of Current Students

Catherine ButtnerEducation:  MSW, University of Pennsylvania; BA, Sociology, Saint Joseph’s University; Research Interests:  Gender norms; sex work rights and labor rights; community based structural interventions with marginalized populations; access to contraception and the relationship to female empowerment; Research Experience:  Graduate Research Assistant:  Center on Violence Against Women and Children, Domestically Trafficked Adolescents; Research Assistant/Field Research (Dr. T.J. Ghose) Kolkata, India and partnering with a sex workers union, DMSC, to evaluate state funded community based HIV intervention programs; Clinical Research Coordinator for the Social Health Intervention Project at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania; Practice Experience:  Motivational Interview Therapist, Emergency Care Policy Research Group, Philadelphia; Partnerships coordinator, School District of Philadelphia; Stoneleigh Fellow, Philadelphia Youth Network; Honors/Awards:  Graduate Teaching Assistant, Post Colonial Social Work course, University of Pennsylvania; E-mail Address:

Kyle CalerEducation:  MSW, Temple University; BA, West Virginia Wesleyan University; Research Interests:  Intellectual and developmental disabilities, direct support professional development and training; Online gambling prevalence and online problem gambling behavior, Q Methodology; Research Experience:  Research Assistant:  A Pathways Model of Problem and Pathological Gambling; Civic Engagement among Individuals with Serious Mental Illness Living in Supportive Housing; Practice Experience:  Training Specialist, Devereux, NJ; Director of Behavioral Interventions and Training, Allies, Inc.; Honors/Awards:  Member of 2014 cohort for Professional Learning Development Institute (PLDI); Rutgers Faculty Senate: Student Senator for School of Social Work (2013-2015); Qualifying exam pass with honors; E-mail Address:

Arpita Chatterjee - Education: MSW, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey; MA (Psych), University of Delhi; BA (Hons), University of Delhi; Research Interests: Mental health disparities among immigrant communities, care seeking pathways, caregiving burden within the domain of mental illness, community mental health; Research Experience: Research Assistant, Hagedorn Evaluation Project at Rutgers School of Social Work; Member, Voluntary Research Group within South Asian Initiative/ SAMHAJ at the National Alliance on Mental Illness of New Jersey, Health Disparities Research Training Program at New York University, Tobacco Dependence Program at UMDNJ, UNICEF (India) Summer Field/Research Internship; Practice Experience: Partial care program at the Association for Advancement of Mental Health, Post-trauma counselor in communal riot affected area of Gujarat (India), Clinical Field Training with psychiatric ward of Vidyasagar Institute of Mental Health & Neuro Sciences;  Richmond Fellowship Society India (Delhi chapter); Honors/Awards: Special study award, Rutgers Graduate School; Pre Dissertation Award, Rutgers Graduate School; Rutgers South Asian Studies Program Research/Travel Award;  Applied Social Issues Internship Award, Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, Global Health Fellowship, University of Pennsylvania; Dean's Recognition to an Outstanding MSW Graduate award, Rutgers School of Social Work; Member, Phi Alpha Honor Society; Best Masters Treatise Award in University of Delhi; E-mail

Sangeeta Chatterji – Education:  MSW, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India; BA, Psychology, Fergusson College, Pune, India; Research Interests:  Impact of social inequalities on the personal, intimate lives of young adult women and their right to positive sexuality; Research Experience:  Research Assistant: Experiences of LGBT forced migrants in the U.S. and Canada; Family acceptance of LG individuals in Mumbai, India at Tata Institute of Social Sciences; Practice Experience:  Prevention of violence against women and children, SNEHA, Mumbai; E-mail Address:

Fiona Conway – Education:  MSW, Rutgers University; BA, New York University; Research Interests:  Aggressive behaviors in children and young adults, alcohol misuse, and mental health; Research Experience:  Graduate Research Assistant, School of Social Work, Rutgers University; (SAMHSA Partnership for Success Program); Research Assistant, Center of Alcohol Studies, Rutgers University; Practice Experience:   MSW Internships, Plainfield Board of Education: DeWitt D. Barlow Elementary School; Veterans Affairs New Jersey Health Care System;  E-Mail Address:

Caitlin EckertEducation:  MSW, Rutgers University, certificate in Violence Against Women and Children; BA, Family and Child Studies, Montclair State University, concentration in Family Services, emphasis in Public Health;  Research Interests: Sex education,  power-based violence perpetration, at-risk adolescents,  and mixed methods research; Research Experience: Research Assistant:  Project C.O.P.E. (Communities Organizing for Prevention and Empowerment);  Practice Experience:  led adolescent substance abuse clinician, FAMILYConnections; county-wide Sexual Violence Prevention Coordinator through YWCA Bergen County healingSPACE; Honors/Awards: Recipient, School of Social Work Fellowship Fund Scholarship of 2013; Best Paper Award at the Spring 2013 International Organization of Social Sciences and Behavioral Research Conference;   E-Mail Address:

Kathleen Pirozzolo FayEducation:  JD, Georgetown University Law Center; BA, American University; Research Interests:  Child welfare, juvenile justice, youth involved in multiple systems, social work and the law; Research Experience:  Graduate Assistant, Institute for Families, Rutgers School of Social Work;  Practice Experience:  Practiced as a litigation attorney; pro bono-public interest work in special education, juvenile justice, and housing law; Honors/Awards:  Special Study Award, Rutgers Graduate School of Social Work; E-mail Address:

Katherine Findley – Education:  MSSW, University of Tennessee; BA, University of Tennessee; Research Interests:  International social work, human trafficking, organ transplantation;  Research Experience:  Graduate Research Assistant—Institute for Families, Research Assistant—Huamin Research Center;  Practice Experience:  Research Consultant for the Coalition for Organ-Failure Solutions, Community Organizer for the New York State Defenders Justice Fund;  Honors/Awards:  NASW Delegate Assembly Member, New Jersey Representative Attendee of the Doha Donation Accord to address organ trafficking and transplant tourism, Rutgers Graduate School Pre-dissertation funding award, Rutgers South Asian Studies Program Dissertation funding award; E-mail Address:

Sarah GoldEducation: MSW, Rutgers University (in progress);  MAT-Elementary Education, Montclair State University; BS, Community, Environment, and Development, Pennsylvania State University; Research Interests:  Housing policy, racial and economic segregation, poverty, and inequality; Research Experience:  Graduate Assistant, Substance Abuse Prevention, Research, and Evaluation Workgroup; Research Assistant, Social Work Policy Network; Practice Experience: Intern, Advocates for Children of New Jersey; Honors/Awards:  Senator, Rutgers University Senate; award participant, trainings for the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing dataset and the Survey of Income and Program Participation; Co-president of the Doctoral Student Association; E-mail Address:

Kryssandra HeslopEducation:  MA, International Relations in Diplomacy, American Graduate School in Paris; BA, Psychology with minor in Italian, The University of Texas at Austin; Research Interests:  Unaccompanied asylum-seeking minors and refugee children; special education and children with disabilities; human rights; NGOs; Geopolitical areas of interest:  Latin America and the Caribbean, Italy and Western Europe; Research Experience:  Research Assistant: Human Rights Watch (NYC): Disability Rights Division –advocacy initiatives around global disability rights issues; Graduate Assistant, Rutgers University, child mental health; Practice Experience: Therapist and education assistant,  Forest International School (France) for children with wide range of disabilities; Honors/Awards:  Sigma Iota Rho (Honor Society for International Studies; E-mail Address:

Gretchen HogeEducation:  MSW, Loyola University, Chicago; BS, Journalism, Interdisciplinary Minor in Gender and Women’s Studies, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Research Interests:  Violence against women; gender-based violence; status and role of women in a global context; women’s health advocacy; social service provision in Latino communities; migration/immigration; program planning and evaluation; international social work; Research Experience:  Graduate Research Assistant, Center on Violence Against Women and Children, Rutgers University; E-Mail Address:

Christine JamesEducation:  MSW, Rutgers University; BA, Psychology, Rutgers University; Research Interests:  Diversity, Disability, Social and Economic Justice, Health Disparities, Staff Development in Social Services, Leadership; Research Experience:  Research Assistant, Psychology Department, Rutgers University, Camden (Dr. Daniel Hart); Research Assistant, Psychology Department, Rutgers University, Camden (Dr. Luis Garcia); Practice Experience:  Director, Quality Improvement & System Reform NJ Division of Developmental Disabilities; Part-Time Lecturer, Rutgers University School of Social Work; Director, Employee Development & Communication; PATH, Inc., Philadelphia; President, National Association of Social Workers – NJ Chapter (volunteer position); Honors/Awards:  Phi Alpha National Social Work Honor Society; BA Psychology Department Award for Outstanding Scholastic Achievement; Athaneum Honor Society Inductee; Psi Chi National Honor Society Inductee; E-Mail Address:;

Alexis Jemal, LSW – Education: JD, Rutgers School of Law – Newark; MSW, Rutgers School of Social Work; BA, Rutgers University; Research Interests: Multi-level intervention development and evaluation, critical consciousness theory, participatory action research, social justice, health disparities, ex-offender reentry, sentencing and criminal justice policy; Research Experience: Principal Investigator for CDUHR funded grant and NIDA-funded pre-doctoral fellow; Practice Experience: Mental health and substance abuse clinician in a private practice, co-developer and facilitator of health intervention; Honors/Awards: PhD Program Small Grants for Dissertation Research; Rutgers Graduate School Pre-Dissertation Award; CPDD Primm-Singleton Minority Travel Award; The Ralph Johnson Bunche Distinguished Graduate Award; Dean’s Recognition Award to an Outstanding Student in Clinical Social Work; Email address:

Hasan JohnsonEducation:  MSW, Rutgers University; BA, Psychology, Rutgers College; Research Interests:  computer based cognitive behavioral interventions to promote grit, motivational achievement and social problem solving skills among adolescent students;  culturally appropriate, evidenced based clinical intervention with marginalized and oppressed populations that address mental health needs; Research Experience:  Graduate Assistant, Rutgers University Institute for Families; Practice Experience: MSW Field Instructor, Plainfield Public Schools, Plainfield, NJ; Mental Health Clinician, UMDNJ and Private Practice; School of Social Worker/Guidance Counselor—Plainfield, New Brunswick and Piscataway Schools, NJ; Honors/Awards:  Recipient of Outstanding Doctoral Student Instructor Award; E-mail Address:

Hsiu-Fen LinEducation:  MA, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan; BA, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan; Research Interests:  Domestic violence, financial strain, economic empowerment; Research Experience:  Center on Violence Against Women and Children, School of Social Work, Rutgers University; Practice Experience:  Chief of General Planning Division, Taoyuan County Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Prevention Center, Taiwan; Supervisor of  Child Protective Service Division, Taoyuan County Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Prevention Center, Taiwan; Honors/Awards:  President of Taiwan Study Association at Rutgers, Scholarship for study abroad, Ministry of Education, Taiwan; Vice Chair of Taoyuan Association of Licensed Social Workers, Taiwan; Most Outstanding Social Worker in Taiwan, Ministry of the Interior, Taiwan;  Email-Address:

Laura JohnsonEducation:  MSW, Rutgers University; BA, Lehigh University, International Relations; Research Interests:  Gender-based violence, women’s human rights, and legal responses to violence against women; Research Experience:  Project Coordinator, Center on Violence Against Women and Children, Rutgers School of Social Work; Honors/Awards: Verizon Wireless HopeLine Violence Against Women and Children Scholarship Recipient;  E-mail Address:

Rebecca Logue-ConroyEducation:  MSW, Smith College School for Social Work; BA, Williams College; Research Interests: Family Leave, poverty, SNAP benefits; Research Experience: Graduate Assistant, Lynch School of Education, Boston College; Practice Experience: Social Work Intern, Franklin Baystate Medical Center Partial Hospital Program; Social Work Intern, The Brien Center Child and Adolescent Outpatient Services; E-Mail Address:

Shuang (Bella) LuEducation:  MSW, School of Social Work, Rutgers University; BA, Social Work, Anhui Normal University, China; Research Interests:  International nonprofit development and well-being of rural-to-urban migrant families in China; Research Experience:  Graduate Research Assistant, Huamin Research Center, Rutgers School of Social Work; Practice Experience:  Assistant Director, Rutgers China Study Abroad program; Licensed Social Worker in New Jersey; Rutgers MSW Field Supervisor;  Honors/Awards:  Doctoral Student Fellowship, Huamin Charity Foundation;  E-mail Address:  

Elizabeth Matthews – Education:  MSW, Columbia University, BA, Occidental College; Research Interests:  Mental health care quality, primary care and behavioral health integration, and health information technology; Research Experience: Research Assistant: Rutgers University, client engagement in mental health, depression screening in primary care, and the use of health information technology in behavioral health treatment; research evaluator Involuntary Outpatient Commitment program in New Jersey; Practice Experience:  Therapist, health educator with individuals living with HIV/AIDS; Integration Specialist, programs development and implementation to integrate primary care and behavioral health services within a large network of community health centers; Honors/Awards:  NA;  E-mail Address:

Sheila McMahonEducation:  M.Div., Harvard University; MSW, Rutgers University; BA, Boston College; Research Interests:  Primary prevention of sexual violence; bystander intervention on college campuses, sense of community and the implicit curriculum in social work education, social work and spirituality; Research Experience: Graduate Research Assistant; Practice Experience:  Graduate Research Assistant, Center on Violence Against Women and Children, Rutgers School of Social Work; Practice Experience: Sexual Assault Services and Prevention Specialist, Brandeis University; E-mail Address:  

Julia O’ConnorEducation:  MSW, University of Maryland, Baltimore School of Social Work; MPH, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of  Public Health; BA, Kenyon College; Research Interests:  Violence against women, reproductive health, international health, and evaluation and implementation research; Research Experience:  Graduate Assistant, Center on Violence Against Women and Children, Rutgers University; Research Specialist, Ruth H. Young Center for Families and Children, University of Maryland, Baltimore; Practice Experience:  HIV/AIDS Care and Support Specialist Peace Corps Response Volunteer, Comforting Hearts, Guyana, Advocacy Counselor, Project PLASE Women’s Shelter; Honors/Awards:  Abell Award for Urban Policy; Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society Member; Schweitzer Fellow; Research Assistant Scholar University of Maryland, Baltimore; Volunteer of the Year Santa Fe Rape Crisis Center; Distinction on Undergraduate Comprehensive Exam; E-Mail Address:

Evalyne Kerubo OrwenyoEducation:  MSW, Howard University, Washington D.C.; Masters in International Studies, Morgan State University, Baltimore, Maryland;  Research Interests:  Migration, refugees, international development; Research Experience:  Research Assistant, Howard University School of Social Work; Practice Experience:  Refugee Assistance Program Coordinator, Baltimore City Community College, Silver Spring , MD; Program Officer (Refugee Social Services) Lutheran Social Services of the National Capital Area, Baltimore, MD;  Honors/Awards:  Pre-dissertation Summer Research Award, Graduate School, Rutgers University;  E-mail Address:

Beth SapiroEducation:  MSW, New York University; BS, Psychology and Sociology, University of Toronto; Research Interests:  Impact of trauma, marginalization and oppression on adolescent and young adult social and emotional development; building bridges between social work practice and research; Research Experience:  Graduate Assistant: Comprehensive Needs Assessment of DCT-Involved Youth (Dr. Cassandra Simmel); Research Internship: The Influence of Minority Stress on the Transition to University for Sexual Minority Students (Dr. Edward Alessi): Practice Experience:  Clinical Social Worker, Educational Alliance, NY, NY; Social Worker, Steinway Child and Family Services, Queens, NY; E-mail Address:

Shrivridhi ShuklaEducation:  MSW, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India; BA, History (Hons.), Lady Shri Ram College for Women, Delhi University, India; Research Interests:  Formal and informal care giving in the context of HIV/AIDS in India and internationally; HIV prevention interventions for women; women’s health; international social work and ethical issues pertinent to social work research; Research Experience:  Graduate Assistant, Institute for Families, Rutgers University School of Social Work, health related research projects; Research Assistant, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, American Indian community’s attitudes, beliefs and knowledge about HIV/AIDS; Practice Experience:  Emergency Management and Research Institute, India; Consultant at Partners for Appropriate Technologies in Health, advocacy, field visits, and report writing for a project on maternal and neonatal health in the villages of Uttar Pradesh, India; Honors/Awards:  Recipient, Junior Research Fellowship, Universities Grants Commission, India; Pre-dissertation travel grant, South Asian Studies Program, Rutgers University; E-Mail Address:



Jordan J. Steiner – Education:  Masters of Arts, International Educational Development; Teachers College, Columbia University with Certificate in African Education; Bachelors of Arts, International Peace and Conflict Studies; University of California, Berkeley; Research Interests: School Related Gender Based Violence in West Africa; Research Experience: Research Assistant for Literacy in Conflict Affected Sites (Teachers College, Columbia University); Consultant, UNICEF on policy briefs related to school related gender based violence; Practice Experience: Program Manager, International Catholic Migration Commission (Amman, Jordan); Immigration Program Coordinator, International Rescue Committee; Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (Benin, West Africa); Honors/Awards: Community Service Award;

E-Mail Address:

Katherine Stepleton -  Education: MSW, University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration; BA, Barnard College; Research Interests: Child welfare systems and policies, sequelae of child maltreatment, mental health and mental health service use, psychotropic medication use, campus sexual violence; Research Experience: Graduate Assistant:  child welfare research (Dr. Michael MacKenzie); Project coordinator for the Campus Climate Study and #iSPEAK student survey regarding sexual violence at Rutgers University-New Brunswick (PI: Sarah McMahon, Center on Violence Against Women and Children);  Practice Experience: Program Specialist, Office of the Commissioner, Administration on Children, Youth and Families (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services); Center for the Study of Social Policy, Associate; Honors/ Awards: Excellence Fellowship, Institute for Health, Health Care Policy and Aging Research, 2013-2015; Departmental Honors, Barnard College, Sociology;  E-mail Address:

Amanda Mathisen StylianouEducation:  MSW, Rutgers University; BA, Sociology and Religious Studies, Westmont College; Research Interests: intersection of trauma, poverty, and health among victims of crime and abuse; mixed methodologies; Research Experience: Research Associate: Rutgers Center on Violence Against Women and Children, three year randomized control study examining the impact of a financial literacy curriculum among victims of domestic violence; Director of Research and Evaluation, Safe Horizon victim assistance program, NYC;  Practice Experience:  Clinical practice (10+ years) with victims of crime and abuse in both domestic violence/sexual assault and mental health organizations; mental health private practice with victims of trauma and abuse in addressing symptoms of anxiety, depression, and posttraumatic stress disorder; Honors/Awards:  Passed PhD Qualifying Exam (Methods) with Honors Distinction; Rutgers University Special Study Award;  The Verizon Wireless Violence against Women Scholarship Award; Westmont College, Provost Academic Scholarship; E-mail Address:

Jose Ricardo Vargas GarciaEducation:  MA in Addiction Studies, Lewis and Clark School of Education and Counseling;  BS, Portland State University, Psychology; Research Interests: Pathological Gambling Interventions, Problem Gambling Prevention, Gambling and Latino's, Relationship between Marginalized Populations and Gambling; Research Experience: Rutgers University Research Assistant, Center for Gambling Studies, Portland State University Research Assistant, Intimate Partner Violence lab; Practice Experience: Pathological Gambling Counselor at Native American Rehabilitation Association; Intensive Case Management, Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare; Honors/Awards: Americorps Grant Oregon Partnership Award of Excellence; E-Mail Address:

Yuqi Wang Education:  MSW, Graduate School of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences; BA, Sociology, Renmin University of China; Research Interests:  Community participation, social policy in China, social work education;  Research Experience:  Graduate Assistant:  Huamin Research Center, School of Social Work, Rutgers University; Practice Experience:  Task Supervisor for MSW field placement, Huamin Research Center; Honors/Awards:  Excellent Dissertation Award,  Graduate School of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences; E-mail Address:

Samantha C. Winter – Education:  MSW, Rutgers (in progress); MS, Environmental Engineering, Stanford University; BS, Civil Engineering, Colorado State University; Research Interests: women's relationship to sanitation in informal settlements in Nairobi, Kenya, women’s issues, international issues; Research Experience:  Graduate research assistant, Rutgers SSW: Women’s autonomy, health, intimate partner violence, Botswana (Dr. Francis H. Barchi); Center on Violence Against Women and Children (VAWC), As evaluation of sexual violence prevention programs on college campuses, bystander intervention, and women's experiences in engineering and agricultural programs at the University of Liberia and Cuttington University in Liberia (Dr. Judy Postmus; Dr. Sarah McMahon); Practice Experience: Fellow, Global Women's Water Initiative, Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania training and working with local women to construct technologies to help meet the water, sanitation, and hygiene needs; Associate civil engineer with MWH Global, Inc. engineering firm; GIS student technical with the United States Department of Agriculture; Honors/Awards:  Boren fellowship for research in Nairobi, Kenya; PEO International Scholar Award; Center for African Studies Graduate Enhancement Award in 2014; the Graduate School of New Brunswick Pre-dissertation and Special Study Award in 2014; E-mail Address: