What's New From COEHS?

September 2022

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Faculty Highlights

Dr. Katy Hancock, Interim Department Chair, Community Leadership and Human Services

Dr. Katy Hancock just had an article, "Wellness and delinquency at the intersection of gender and race," published in the peer-reviewed journal Crime & Delinquency.

Dr. Hancock and Dr. Whitney Cassity-Caywood also received a COEHS faculty incentive grant to do a recruitment project for CLHS.

Dr. Hancock is also going to present her research study "Undiagnosed mental illness and behavior" at the annual conference of the Southern Criminal Justice Association in September.

Dr. Whitney Cassity-Caywood, Assistant Professor, Community Leadership and Human Services

Dr. Whitney Cassity-Caywood has been a part of a multidisciplinary team associated with the Lifeskills Center for Child Welfare Education and Research at WKU. They partnered with KASAP and CAC of Kentucky to distribute surveys to sexual violence resource centers and child advocacy centers about how they adapted their practices to continue providing services during COVID. These data have been used to present at two conferences, write a formal report of the quantitative data, and submit two qualitative articles to peer-reviewed journals (one of which has a soft acceptance). They are starting work on a second report and third article.

Dr. Cassity-Caywood and Dr. Katy Hancock received a COEHS faculty incentive grant to do a recruitment project that included a human trafficking panel with participants from the Kentucky Attorney General's Office, the Kentucky State Troopers, and victim services professionals from both Louisville and Paducah.

In addition, Dr. Cassity-Caywood represented the Kentucky Board of Social Work at the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Education Conference and has been asked to represent them again at the ASWB Delegate Assembly in Arizona.

Dr. Peg Pittman-Munke, Associate Professor, Community Leadership and Human Services

Dr. Peg Pittman-Munke is working on the final editions of two books: Preparing to Thrive in Your Internship: A Guide to Linking Field Knowledge and Classroom Learning and Human Behavior: Perspectives on Concepts, Theories, Values, and Assessments. Students are already using the preliminary editions of these texts.

Dr. Pittman-Munke also received a certificate in Advanced Forensic Social Work.

Dr. Jeff Wylie, Senior Instructor, Community Leadership and Human Services

Dr. Jeff Wylie is working on an introduction to social work book with Ms. Rebecca Perry, due to Kendall Hunt Publishing in July 2023, which will take a case management view for beginning social work students.

Alumni Highlights

Michelle Hansen, Social Work Alumna

Congratulations to Michelle Hansen on being named the inaugural Laker Champion of Kids!

Hansen works at Calloway County Schools and is the inaugural winner of the Laker Champion for Kids award. The Champion for Kids award recognizes a Laker staff member that goes above and beyond for kids, is always willing to step up and help their colleagues, and someone we are always proud to call a Laker.

Student Highlights

Trinity Edwards, Senior, Elementary Education


Trinity Edwards is the Chapter President of the local Alpha Gamma Delta sorority, is a senior Elementary Education major, and works as a student worker in the Dean's Office!


  • Name: Trinity Edwards
  • HOMETOWN: Henderson, KY
  • DEGREE: Elementary Education
  • QUIRKY/FUN FACT: I am the Chapter President of Alpha Gamma Delta here on campus! The official Dr. Pepper page commented on my viral Tik Tok!
  • DO YOU HAVE ANY PETS?: Yes, I have a 6 year old Westie named Bonnie!
  • FAVORITES: My favorite food is sushi! I am also a sucker for Dr. Pepper!
  • FAVORITE SPOT ON CAMPUS: My favorite spot on campus is outside of the clock tower!
  • FAVORITE CAMPUS EVENT: AGD's Rock-A-Thon, of course!!!


Why did you choose to attend Murray State?

I chose to go to Murray State University because the moment I stepped on campus, I could picture myself surrounded by a great support system and my future new home!

Why did you choose your major/minor?

I chose my major because I have always had a passion to serve and impact others around me. Through observing and experience, I quickly found the most suitable way to fill this passion of mine is through shaping the young minds of our youth! I am so excited to potentially have a classroom of my own in just a short year!

Tell us about a few of your favorite courses, projects, or mentors.

The COEHS is blessed with an abundance of AMAZING faculty and staff to help shape us all into the best educators we could possibly be! Tressa Ross, Chanel Schwenck, Tina Grant, Holly Bloodworth, and Miguel Gomez have all contributed to my success during my time at Murray State thus far.

Tell us about any accomplishments you've experienced while at MSU, or any clubs/organizations you've enjoyed being a part of.

During my time at Murray State, most of my time outside of school has gone towards my sorority, Alpha Gamma Delta. From being a new member to now Chapter President of this organization, this organization has helped me grow as a friend, a philanthropist, a leader, and, most importantly, a woman! My sisters ever strive to push me to be the very best version of myself. I am beyond thankful to lead alongside 90 women to make an impact in our community. This previous year, AGD raised over $30,000 through Rock-A-Thon towards Fighting Hunger. Our motto is to "Inspire the Woman, Impact the World" and Alpha Gam has left this impact on me for years to come.

What are your plans for after graduation?

My plans after graduation are to potentially head to Franklin, Tennessee in search of a first year teaching position. I would love to start in a 4th grade classroom!

What advice would you give to incoming students at MSU?

My advice to incoming students at Murray State is to listen to the guidance everyone around you is always willing to give. Through others' guidance, an endless amount of opportunities may open for you. Take that leap of faith!

Thank you, Trinity! Keep up the great work!

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Upcoming Events

    • August 12: Fall Convocation
    • August 16: Fall Welcome Back / Classes start
    • August 25: Student Picnic
    • September 5: Labor Day
    • September 10: Racer Day
    • September 22: Scholarship Banquet
    • September 26: Pet Therapy
    • October 6-7: Fall Break
    • October 28: Fall Teacher Career Fair
    • October 29: Homecoming Breakfast
    • October 31: Halloween / Pet Therapy
    • November 12: Racer Day
    • November 24: Thanksgiving
    • November 28: Pet Therapy
    • December 2: Classes End
    • December 3-9: Finals
    • December 9: Student Teacher Honors Luncheon
    • December 10: Commencement
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