Jennifer McCleary

Jennifer McCleary

Professional title

Assistant Professor

Bio

Jennifer received her PhD in social work from the University of Minnesota Twin Cities and her MSW from University of Washington in Seattle. She joined the UMD Social Work faculty in Fall 2017 after four years at Tulane University in New Orleans. Her research focuses on refugee resettlement and refugee community development, and understanding the ways in which refugee communities experience and engage with U.S. systems like child welfare, physical and behavioral health, and education. She seeks to understand the ways in which new refugee groups form communities and networks and utilize these communities to address health disparities. Always within this work she seeks to center and privilege refugee voices and experiences as the primary source for knowledge and understanding and to shift the dominant paradigms of Western systems to better reflect the paradigms of refugee communities. This work is informed by over 10 years of research and practice experience with new refugee communities in the United States, as well as displaced communities outside the U.S. Jennifer weaves her research and community practice experience into the courses she teaches at UMD and is passionate about engaging with new social workers.