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College of Social Work

Kristen Seay appointed PhD Program Director

Professor Kristen Seay has been appointed the College of Social Work’s PhD Program Director. Seay was previously the program director prior to her sabbatical and brings extensive expertise in health and wellbeing in vulnerable children and families to the position.  

Since joining the faculty in 2014, Seay’s scholarship includes decreasing child maltreatment, enhancing parenting and improving the overall health and well-being of at-risk families. Her research has shaped policies geared toward preventing child maltreatment and supporting families in need. 

Seay's contributions to the college include leading grants funded by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences and the Duke Endowment. Her projects focus on social, emotional and behavioral health in preschool children as well as developing web-based platforms to improve child welfare case management. 

Prior to her academic career, Seay was a social services case manager, investigating child maltreatment for public child welfare agencies. Her work in this field has earned her recognition including fellowships and grants from the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the Doris Duke Foundation. 

Seay will lead the program of 20 students which is the only one in South Carolina. She will begin her oversight this summer. 

“I am very excited to have the opportunity to serve our doctoral students in the role of PhD Program Director,” says Seay. “Working with our talented doctoral students has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my academic career and I am excited to support them in this new role.” 

With her diverse background and commitment to advancing social work research and practice, Kristen Seay is poised to lead the PhD program at the College of Social Work to new milestones. 

"We are very appreciative of Maryah Fram progressing the PhD program to a world-class level," said Dean Ter Browne. "With her leadership and high-level scholarship, we are looking forward to Kristen Seay continuing those efforts." 

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