Texas Tech Students Named Minority Fellows

Four Marriage and Family Therapy doctoral students in the Texas Tech University College of Human Sciences were named 2008 Minority Fellowship Program Fellows.

Written by: Georgia Godfrey

Four Marriage and Family Therapy doctoral students in the Texas Tech University College of Human Sciences have received national recognition as 2008 Minority Fellowship Program (MFP) Fellows. The program is sponsored by the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Sara Blakeslee of Muskogee, Okla.; Martha Morgan of Apple Valley, Calif.; Megan Oka of Las Vegas, Nev.; and Erica Wilkins of State College, Pa. each received $25,000 in support of their doctoral school work, and professional travel and training at conferences and other developmental functions. "These students have excelled in bringing rich diversity and cultural distinction to our Marriage and Family Therapy program," said Linda Hoover, dean of the College of Human Sciences. "I look forward to watching them excel to even greater heights throughout the rest of their doctoral process and then in their professional field." Blakeslee is a member of the Prairie Band Potowatomi, an ethnic group of American Indians. She currently conducts research with the Southwest Institute for Addictive Diseases and also finds as a research interest the plight of the Descendents of the Freedmen, a group of African Americans who share Native American ancestry. Morgan works with adolescents at th0e Lubbock County Juvenile Justice Center and with individuals and families in Pediatric Oncology and the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and Covenant Hospital. Morgan’s dissertation topic focuses on the experiences of black graduate students. Oka’s interests include families with young children, eating disorders, self-harm and partner violence. Oka is currently researching issues of family violence and safety, including intimate partner violence, and intergenerational transmission of violence. Wilkins’ research interests include studying the residual effects of slavery on the African American family, self-of-the-therapist issues and cultural competency. She is also currently assisting with the completion of a textbook chapter regarding culture, ethnicity and addiction. The American Association for Marriage and Family Website states that the 2008 MFP class is distinguished by their immense intellectual resources, their notable accomplishments in the face of numerous adversities, their commitment to community service, their variegated ethnicities and cultural diversity. For more information, go to www.aamft.org The Marriage and Family Therapy Program provides clinical and academic training grounded in systems theory to students who will function as marriage and family therapists. As part of the College of Human Sciences, this program contributes to the field of marriage and family therapy through research, teaching and other activities as well as helping clients. CONTACT: Georgia Godfrey, coordinator for college development and external relations, College of Human Sciences, Texas Tech University, (806) 742-3263, or georgia.godfrey@ttu.edu.