The African American Alumni Committee of the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration Alumni Association presented a symposium on:

Navigating the Cultural Divide:
Bridging the Gap Between our Professional, Public and Private Selves

March 23, 2013

This event has passed.

Many professionals of color experience a divide that exists between the cultural backgrounds of their families of origin and the realities of their workplace leading to social isolation, racial and gender tension, professional stagnation, and financial limitations. When experienced, this dilemma may create barriers that stifle the individual's ability to form or sustain healthy relationships within the workplace and beyond; ultimately limiting them from reaching their full potential.

What are the impacts on the individual and community as professionals of color move from the socio-economic roots of their youth to higher levels of status within the workplace and society? How can we as an academic community of social work professionals support one another in concrete, tangible ways to maximize our full potential in the workplace and beyond? A panel of leading practitioners examined the interactions between African American and other professionals of color within the workplace and culture.


Jinnie English Cristerna, AM '99, CEO, International and Chicago High Achievers
Norman Kerr, AM '11, UCAN, Vice President of Chicago Institute for Transforming Youth (CITY)
Denice Murray, AM '95, Deputy Director of Licensing, Department of Children and Family Services
Mikal Rasheed, PhD, AM '68Chair and Program Director of the Department of Social Work, Chicago State University

Back to SSA Lectures

Zehua Cui

"I had no awareness of the existence of social work in schools in China, so I am thankful for my first year internship experience with children at Namaste Charter school, which totally opened up a new world for me. The experience broadened my horizon in terms of the various ways in which we can help children," says Zehua Cui.