Jennifer Ray is currently a second year student in the social welfare doctoral program at the University of California, Los Angeles. Jennifer also completed her BA in Psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles and received her MSW from the University of Southern California. Prior to joining the social welfare program, Jennifer worked as a clinician at Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services providing community mental health services to high-risk children and families in Los Angeles County. Jennifer is interested in research on non-resident father involvement and interventions aimed at reducing behavior problems among young children in African American families.
Brenda A. Tully is a 3rd year Social Welfare PhD student at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs. She earned her Master of Social Work degree from Fordham University in New York City and a BA in Speech Communication from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. Her research examines the experiences of young adults aging out of the foster care system with specific interest in their transition to housing. She is currently conducting a qualitative study investigating housing security and insecurity among young adults formerly in foster care funded by the Franklin D. Gilliam, Jr. Social Justice Award. Brenda was awarded a 2018 UCLA Graduate Summer Research Mentorship to study the association between childhood poly-victimization and young adult housing outcomes among a cohort of former foster youth using secondary data analysis. Prior to matriculation in the PhD program, Brenda worked as a licensed clinical social worker and researcher in New York City for 20 years. Her research is informed in part by her experiences at Good Shepherd Services, where she helped launch the Chelsea Foyer, a transitional, supportive housing program for young people aging out of foster care and experiencing or at risk of homelessness. The Chelsea Foyer is designated an Emerging Approach to addressing homelessness among former foster youth by the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness.
Ryan Dougherty is a second year PhD student in Social Welfare. He received a BS in Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience from the University of Michigan and Master of Social Welfare from UCLA. Throughout his undergraduate career, Ryan coordinated research examining the lived-experiences of people with disabilities. Concurrently, he assisted in research in both experimental psychopathology and pharmacogenomics to examine the cognitive mechanisms of psychotic disorders and effects of prescribed psychotropic drugs. These experiences have motivated Ryan to examine how political and social systems shape the use and experiences of taking psychiatric medications, particularly among people diagnosed with severe mental illnesses in community contexts. Currently, he is pursuing his research through a field-based ethnography in Los Angeles County through the UCLA Center for Social Medicine and Humanities with Drs. Joel Braslow and Philippe Bourgois, and is under the mentorship of Dr. David Cohen in Social Welfare.