YWCA honors College of Social Work professor integral to new refugee camp program

September 25, 2015

This month, the University of Utah College of Social work will see the first cohort of students living in refugee camps graduate from a new online Case Management Certificate program after nine months of intensive online classes, learning skills to better serve refugee populations. The new graduates are the first cohort who’ve lived in camp communities to receive their training –and all came into the social work program after already living in camps for years and wanting to forge a new career path to helping refugees and the many issues they face as a community, according to Rosey Hunter, an associate professor in the College of Social Work who oversees the program. Dr. Hunter joined the College of Social Work faculty in 1995, but has been a social worker for close to 30 years.  In that time, she has taught and mentored countless students, worked to help refugees and immigrants navigate new systems, supported higher-education opportunities for first-generation students, encouraged and built numerous community partnerships. For most of the last decade, Dr. Hunter served as special assistant to the president for campus-community partnerships, and director of University Neighborhood Partners (UNP). Located on Salt Lake City’s west side, UNP values community knowledge and the lived experiences of resident partners and organizations that represent and serve youth and families.  Under Dr. Hunter’s leadership, UNP fostered partnerships across four institutions of higher education and 51 community organizations and schools in 25 community locations.  Additionally, west side University enrollment dramatically increased during Dr. Hunter’s tenure as director.  In 2001, fewer than a dozen individuals residing in west side neighborhoods were enrolled at the U.  Since Spring 2012, over 475 west side residents — including 120 Spanish-speakers — have registered as U students through their involvement with UNP partnerships. Dr. Hunter’s social work teaching, research and practice areas are focused on developing mutually beneficial relationships – connecting people to resources and shared power in ways that expand opportunities and build on existing strengths.  Her community-based research with local leaders of refugee backgrounds led to the development of the College of Social Work’s Case Management Certificate program.  The nine-month certificate program began in the fall of 2013 with a cohort of 27 Salt Lake City-based community leaders (most of immigrant and refugee backgrounds) representing 14 different countries of origin.  In the spring of 2015, the second cohort of 22 students, representing 11 countries of origin, graduated with their certificates. Dr. Hunter was honored today by the YWCA for her leadership. She is available to speak to reporters about the new certificate program.

Phone: 801-608-9888 (Melinda Rogers can arrange interviews with Dr. Hunter)  |  Email:

Is it getting hot in here?

September 25, 2015

If you’re a Salt Lake City resident and have wondered if it seems a little toasty here, it might be because the city is one of the top “urban heat island” cities in the U.S., according to a new study by the University of Georgia. Urban heat island refers to the fluctuation of temperatures based on the configuration of the city along with other factors such as the materials predominant in the area (like asphalt), how much vegetation is there and the density of people. According to the study, Salt Lake City is in the top three urban heat island cities along with Miami and Louisville, Kentucky. U Civil and Environmental Engineering associate professor Christine Pomeroy is part of a research team that is looking at how green infrastructure could be used in Salt Lake City to possibly lower the urban heat island-related temperatures. She is available to speak about the team’s research and why Salt Lake City may be contributing to these higher temperatures.

Phone: 801-585-7300 | Email:

U’s National Center for Veteran Studies assists with Ride to Zero on Aug. 29

August 21, 2015

The Combat Veteran’s Motorcycle Association’s first annual Ride to Zero supports the U’s National Center for Veteran Studies and its work to prevent suicide among veterans. The center is a national leader in the development and implementation of methods for detecting and reaching out to at-risk military personnel and veterans. The event includes family activities, a ride to veteran memorials in the Salt Lake Valley and a concert (for those 21 and older) at the Royal Bar featuring the American Hitmen. Auction and raffle prizes include a guitar from the band Royal Bliss and U.S. flags flown by members of the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association over fire bases in Afghanistan. All proceeds will be donated to support the National Center for Veterans Studies. The $30 per-person donation covers lunch at the park and the evening concert.

Riverton City Centennial Park, 12880 S. 2700 West, Riverton, all day

Registration, food and family activities 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. | Kick stands up 1 p.m. | Live music at The Royal 5 p.m. (21 years and older only)

Study: Utah cities among top in nation for income equality

June 26, 2015

A recent study released by the NerdWallet financial website and based on 2013 U.S. census survey data, identifies the cities of Riverton, West Jordan and South Jordan among the top 10 cities nationally for income equality. In total, seven cities in Utah finished among the top 50 nationally. Pamela Perlich, senior research economist at the U’s Bureau of Economic and Business Research, identifies key demographic indicators as to why this is the case. Perlich notes these cities are homogeneous in terms of their home prices, housing stock, income levels and culture. Speaking to a broader picture, she also cites the trend of growing segregation in housing based on income across Salt Lake County and the state. Utah has been among the most equal distribution of household income in the nation. Perlich can offer further commentary on the recent study, including the implications for opportunities among younger generations.
Phone: 801-581-3358 | Email:

World Cup – U grad develops soccer cleats; new venue for student entrepreneurs will help foster similar innovations

June 19, 2015

After receiving support and guidance from the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute at the U, MBA graduate Cam Cameron started a company designing high-quality and performance soccer cleats at a fraction of the price of name brands. Cameron and his ambassadors travel the world donating soccer cleats and supporting the growth of soccer. They focus on supporting and developing institutions and players most in need so that anyone who wants to play soccer has the opportunity. Students like Cameron will soon have a new venue to spark creativity and entrepreneurship in 2016, when the new Lassonde Studios debuts on the U’s campus. Lassonde Studios will be a place for young visionaries to have an around-the-clock environment to bounce ideas off of others who also are working through plans that may one day become the next cutting-edge technology. The 160,000-square-foot Lassonde Studios will have a 20,000-square-foot garage on the main floor of the residence hall, complete with 3-D printers, laser cutters, prototyping tools and company launch space. Above will be four floors of housing, with students allowed to choose between pods, lofts and traditional rooms. The U is currently in the midst of recruiting the 400 best students nationwide who will comprise the first class of students to live in the unique environment. Contact Thad Kelling for more information.
Phone: 801-587-8811 | Email: