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Assistant Professor Diana Padilla Named Fulbright Scholar

Diana Padilla-Medina, Assistant Professor in the School of Social Work
Diana Padilla-Medina, Assistant Professor in the School of Social Work

School of Social Work Assistant Professor Diana Padilla has been awarded a Fulbright Scholarship. The grant will enable her to further develop her global research in the area of Latino adolescent interpersonal violence in Bogotá, Colombia.

The Fulbright Program is designed to expand and strengthen relationships between the people of the United States and citizens of other nations and to promote international understanding and cooperation.

Padilla aims to use her Fulbright grant to further her research in Colombia.

 “Being a global scholar and having conducted research and consultancy work with organizations in the U.S. like the Brookings Institution and in Latin America like the Organization of American States and Congregation Mita, Inc., I became familiarized with the program through colleagues in those organizations,” Padilla said.

Padilla will develop a research project and implement a psychosocial intervention with adolescents affected by sexual violence in the city of Bogotá, Colombia.

 “The project I am conducting in Colombia is entitled ‘Psychosocial Prevention and Intervention Approaches with Children and Adolescents Living in Violence Contexts’,” Padilla said.

This project will seek funding through a federal mechanism, and will involve partners from the School of Social Work at UTA, the Pediatrics Department at Universidad Nacional de Colombia, and other Colombian organizations participating in the project.

“Through this project I will train students and professionals in the field of social work, medicine, public health, sociology, psychology, and education on psychosocial interventions to address trauma in child and adolescents soldiers who are in the process of reintegrating into society, after the recent peace process,” Padilla said.

Padilla’s research agenda had a major impact and continues to show promise as the opportunity to execute her research grows globally.

“My research agenda has a global perspective, and the ability to study comparatively how interpersonal violence varies across different populations of Latino adolescents, not only enhances my knowledge, but it provides opportunities to develop relationships with new academic and community partners gives my work rich perspectives and dimensions,” Padilla said.

The School of Social Work has another Fulbright Scholar that has been in discussions with Padilla in conducting research together.

“We have other former Fulbright scholar recipients in our school, such as Dr. Eusebius Small,” Padilla said. “Dr. Small and I have talked about the possibility of conducting research together in the framework of our Fulbright experience.

The Fulbright Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. The program awards approximately 8,000 grants annually. Roughly 1,600 U.S. students, 4,000 foreign students, 1,200 U.S. scholars, and 900 visiting scholars receive awards, in addition to several hundred teachers and professionals. Currently, the Fulbright Program operates in over 160 countries worldwide.

News Topics: Faculty, Awards