Center for Studies in Demography and Ecology

Sharon Grace Borja

Social Work
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Sharon’s scholarly work and agenda center on intergenerational adversity and resilience, and their implications toward the prevention of child maltreatment.  She specializes in the early developmental and social context of adversity accumulation, particulary among families of color who are at the intersection of racial disparities and multiple systems involvement.  Her dissertation examined longitudinal effects of adversity on the childhood socio-emotional well-being and parenting capacities of Latina and African-American mothers and their children.  She draws from cumulative inequality and life course theories, and proposes a two-generation model to better understand how parents thrive in adversity and create a safe and nurturing context for their children.  Her findings reveal distinctive contextual issues that families of color face, which have implications towards culturally responsive social work approaches and interventions.  Sharon’s scholarly interests are informed by her previous experiences as a mental health worker with ethnic minorities, and as a child protective services social worker working with parents to reunify with their children.  Her goal is to establish a practice-based research program and collaborate with families of color to produce evidence towards developing culturally responsive social work interventions.  Sharon is interested in teaching direct social work practice, child welfare practice and policy, multicultural social work practice, and social work research.