LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 10, 2024) — Dr. Laneshia R. Conner, an assistant professor at the UK College of Social Work, was recently acknowledged for her exceptional research achievements by the Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR).
Conner was the lead author for the scholarly article “Black Experiences Matter: Reflections on Black Faculty Interactions with Black Administrators,” alongside Yarneccia Dyson from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, V. Nikki Jones from Spalding University, and Vanessa Drew Branch from Elon University. This collaborative work was featured in the Journal of Social Work Education in 2022.
The SSWR selected the article for honorable mention among papers submitted for the 2024 Excellence in Research Award. The society typically selects two articles for recognition each year and awards research that “advances knowledge with direct applications to practice, policy, and the resolution of social issues.”
Recognizing the limited research on the interactions between Black faculty and Black administrators, the research explores the experiences of Black social work faculty supervised by Black administrators using mixed methods and a phenomenological approach.
Findings from 55 participants reveal more autonomy, positive interactions, and support from administrators. Some respondents noted more affective perceptions in negative experiences. The study suggests future research should include more details on administrators and the context of respondents and seek views of Black administrators on their roles. “I hope that our work inspires the academy broadly, and social work education,” Conner shared. “I envision this work making long-term impacts on the recruitment, retention, and advancement of Black social work professionals in the academy at all levels.”
The authors indicated that future research should collect additional data, as well as information from Black administrators and how they view their roles working with Black faculty. “We will continue to reach out to social work programs to further development this line of inquiry and share the findings publicly” they shared.
The team will be recognized this week at the 2024 Society for Social Work and Research Jan. 10-14 in Washington, D.C. Click here for a full list of awards and recognitions.