PhD Alumni

Kristie Thomas, PhD, MSW

Kristie Thomas, PhD’11, MSW’05

  • Associate Professor and MSW Director, Simmons University School of Social Work

“I exited the PhD program feeling completely prepared to succeed in the many roles of a tenure track faculty member (e.g., researcher, educator, and leader) due to the top-notch training provided by the SP2 faculty. Perhaps most important was the level of mentorship I received from the doctoral faculty, especially my dissertation chair Dr. Sorenson, which I desperately needed as a first-generation college graduate.”

Stephanie Boddie, PhD’02

  • Senior Research Fellow, Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life

“Coming to Penn, I was excited to learn that just before the doors of the Penn School of Social Work opened in 1908, W.E.B. DuBois conducted one of the first extensive neighborhood surveys and published his seminal book, The Philadelphia Negro. I arrived at just the right time to be involved in another groundbreaking project at the University of Pennsylvania, the Philadelphia Census of Congregations Project.”

Susan Kinnevy, PhD’02

  • Director, Special Projects, DHS

“Penn’s PhD program in Social Welfare showed me how to use research and data to assess social services and suggest evidence-based improvements. I was able to use those skills during and after the program to help local non-profits evaluate their work and sustain the funds needed to continue their work. I now use those same skills to develop and maintain a Division of Performance Management and Accountability for the Department of Human Services in Philadelphia.”

Micheal L. Shier, PhD

“I received a really high level of support and mentorship during my PhD. The faculty demonstrate a genuine concern for the students in the PhD program and prepare them for the next steps that follow once they’ve completed the program.”

SP2 News

Loran Grishow-Schade

Alumni Stories

SP2 Alum Honored for Ongoing Gender Identity Research, Work

For years, Loran Grishow-Schade, MSW ’20, MSSP ’21, has proven to be a prolific leader and fully-immersed pioneer in work...

MSW Student Alisa Branch

Student Life

“Always Something New to Know”: MSW Student Alisa Branch on Being a Non-Traditional Learner

Even after a three-decade career in the human services field, Alisa Branch still felt that she had more to learn,...

New SP2 faculty, clockwise from left: Tamara Cadet, PhD; Yoosun Park, PhD; Meredith Doherty, PhD; and Milan AbiNader, PhD

Faculty & Research

SP2 Welcomes Four New Faculty Members

Penn’s School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2) has announced the hiring of four new faculty members, who will begin...

Philadelphians celebrate the outcome of 2020’s presidential election, waving the Progress Pride Flag while marching through Center City.

Faculty & Research, Student Life

‘Game Pieces in the Culture Wars’

More than 250 bills aimed at reducing the rights of LGBTQ+ people are currently working their way through state legislatures in the...

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