Two Brown School Master of Social Work students have been selected for the Council of Social Work Education’s (CSWE’s) prestigious Minority Fellowship Program (MFP). Jilly dos Santos and Lauren Chacón join a cohort of 34 master’s students for the 2022-2023 fellowship year.
The CSWE’s Minority Fellowship Program has served as a springboard for diverse careers in the mental health and substance use sector. MFP aims to increase the number of individuals trained to work with underrepresented and underserved racial/ethnic minority persons with or at risk for mental health and/or substance abuse disorders.
For the next year, dos Santos and Chacón will have the opportunity to learn from experts in their field, gather meaningful skills and insight and network with like-minded students.
Originally from Columbia, Missouri, Jilly dos Santos, a second-year MSW student, has significant experience providing social services and improving healthcare outcomes with Latine communities in St. Louis and rural Vermont. Her roles have included working at an adult day program during her undergraduate years, serving in AmeriCorps for a year with Middlebury College, and conducting bilingual administrative work at two free health clinics.
Currently, she’s employed as a professional medical interpreter and engaged in her concentration practicum as a bilingual therapist at Casa de Salud – a nonprofit organization serving immigrant communities in St. Louis. There, she co-facilitates a psychoeducational group in Spanish, “Aprendizaje Emocional,” – working with individuals to better connect to their emotions, process their personal traumas, and improve their relationships.
Her postgraduate plans include continuing to work as a bilingual therapist and a therapist via interpreters for immigrant communities in rural and majority-White spaces.
From El Paso, Texas, Lauren Chacón, MSW Candidate ‘23, says she’s grown a lot as an individual and as a social worker since beginning her studies at the Brown School. She’s grateful for her peers and classmates, who challenge her thinking and actions, not only as a social worker, but as a human being.
Chacón received her BS in Kinesiology with a minor in sociology from the University of Texas El Paso. She is grateful for the educational, professional, and financial support that has been awarded to her through the CSWE’s Minority Fellowship Program.
Her postgraduate goal is to work in an integrated behavioral healthcare setting, bridging the disparity between physical and mental healthcare in the Latine community as a licensed clinical social worker.
As CSWE Fellows, dos Santos and Chacón will benefit from networking and mentorship opportunities to help them achieve their career goals, as well as financial stipends.