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Spring Symposium Workshops


Keynote Speaker: Jackie Washington

Jacqulyn “Jackie” Washington is a community convener and strategist who earned her Bachelor's (2016) and Master's (2017) of Social Work degrees from Virginia Commonwealth University. She has been a member of the National Association of Black Social Workers since 2014. Jackie serves through values of love-based leadership, cultural resilience, humility and collaboration. She is employed by Storefront For Community Design to serve as the director of the Six Points Innovation Center -a youth-focused, restorative justice community space in Highland Park. She also serves as the Health and Wellness Committee Chair for Community Unity In Action and been named a Robert Wood Johnson Culture of Health Leader. She believes that the multi-generational community trauma experienced by communities of color are directly tied racist city planning decisions. Through a focus on civic education, place-making, relationship building and mental health she believes communities can thrive.


Hamilton in the Hood: 

This workshop will explore and discuss the power of artisitic/creative expression as a way to build identity, resiliency, and agency for inner city youth. 

Presenter: Cassandra Albert, 2019 BSW Candidate Liberty University 


Becoming Trauma Responsive: 

This interactive workshop is designed to educate participants about trauma, its effects, and how to be trauma responsive. Participants will learn what a trauma-informed approach is and how to be a change agent for a more trauma responsive environment in various settings (ie, school systems, social service agencies, therapeutic environments, etc.

Presenters: Maria Haltom, LCSW and Silka Steele, MSW


Straddling the Line Between Bravery and Burnout: How to Balance Advocacy When You are a Member of the Marginalized Community you are Advocating For:

The presenter offers practice-informed strategies to set a foundation for facilitate an exchange of ideas among participants. This interactive workshop is designed to acknowledge various professional and cultural backgrounds through the Charrette process.

Presenter: Fatima M. Smith, MSW


STD Awareness: Love, Desire, and Intimacy:

This interactive workshop will explore ways that STD awareness can be discussed without shaming or blaming. Participants will explore concepts of love, intimacy, and desire and how these may be defined and shaped by family and culture.

Presenter: Sydney Cunningham, BSW


Filling Your Vessel: Using Mindfulness as an Approach to Self-care:

Mindfulness cultivates awareness which is critical to social work practice. Research on mindfulness, the practice of paying attention, has been shown to increase psychological well-being, decrease stress, and increase job satisfaction (Collard, Avny, & Boniwell, 2008). This workshop proposes the use of mindfulness as one practical application of self-care for the Black social worker.

Presenters: Shanza Isom, MSW and Ashley Waddell, MSW


Dispelling the Myths Around Black Women and Mental Health:

This panel discussion will explore the stigmas, stressors, and various survival behaviors that are unique to the experience of black women that contributes to depression and other mental health issues that often go untreated. The panelists will provide solution-focused options for self-care and healing from past hurts, traumas, and negative coping strategies.

Presenters: Dr. Renata Hedrington-Jones; Christina Bowman-Peterson, MSW; Khadijah Washington, MSW; and Shayla Betts, MSW


What Does it Mean to Be African-Centered:

This workshop will provide participants with an understanding of the various theories and perspectives that are the fundamental to African Centered Social Work/Psychology.

Presenters: Olufemi Shepsu, MSW and Dr. Reginald Hopkins


Mass Incarceration: The Aftermath of the Crack Cocaine Epidemic's Dismantling of the Black Family:

This panel discussion will discuss the trauma associated with the crack cocaine epidemic and it's impact on the black community and policies that lead to mass incarceration. The panel will offer strategies for healing, policy development, and restoration of rights and services for citizens returning from incarceration. 

Presenters: Lashawnda Singleton, BSW; Bill McGhee retired Richmond Public Schools Educator; David Bey, B. A.; and Shawmika Wright, MSW

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