Jabari Evans is currently an MSW student at the University of Southern California School of Social Work. He recently did his field practicum at LIFT Communities Inc. on Chicago's West Side, where he is a client advocate, providing direct services by connecting clients to community resources, job training and counseling, and case management. Jabari also works as a billing clerk with Evans & Evans Counseling Consulting Inc. Somewhere between these roles and his academic coursework he co-founded the Braniac Project, an organization that partners with a school on the South Side of Chicago to empower African American youths by teaching them life skills, self-efficacy, and entrepreneurship through the recording arts.
Jabari is described as clinically astute yet also understanding the business side of mental health care. He is known as being hardworking, talented, and an excellent student with strong critical thinking skills and willingness to engage in difficult discussions and collaborate with others. He demonstrates leadership, depth of thought, high ethical character, thoughtfulness, and empathy for diverse populations. It is clear that he is dedicated to making a difference in people’s lives. He has been recognized by his university in news pieces about his work with at-risk youths.
Jabari's primary interests are innovative intervention strategies, urban adolescent empowerment, advocacy for teen parents, and violence prevention techniques. His career goals include becoming a licensed clinical social worker in his home state of Illinois. Jabari would like to help vulnerable populations in the African American community while acting as a cutting edge professional social worker. He hopes to find a way to use his passion for hip hop music and performing arts as a way to activate resources for people in his community.
Ashlee Murphy is currently in the MSW program at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). Her recent experience includes interning with the VCU Health System Childcare at Northside Partnership for Families, where she works with diverse populations providing case management for clients with children aged 0–5 years and provides classroom assistance using the Reggio Emilia approach. Previously she served as Youth Activities Coordinator at Embrace Richmond in Hillside Court (Richmond Redevelopment Housing Authority property). In this role she participated in various community projects, including assisting high school students to plan and implement an after school program for elementary school students, with the goal of offering the young girls an opportunity to build relationships with positive role models.
Ashlee is described as deeply committed to the care of marginalized people and possessing deep compassion, with a focus on scholarship and excellence in all her work. She is noted as being responsible, engaging, determined, skilled, and highly motivated. She is considered an asset to the families and individuals she serves and the staff with whom she works.
Ashlee has a passion for children of all ages. She is interested in early childhood development and parenting skills with an emphasis on preparing children for school, especially children from impoverished communities. Her goal is to have a career that offers the opportunity to integrate her love of children and her enthusiasm for promoting effective parenting styles. She plans to fuse these goals by becoming a Registered Play Therapist and work with children with mental health disorders or who have experienced trauma. In this role she can also teach parents to work with children at home emphasizing the importance of self-determination and empowerment.