Exterior of Nancy Nicholas Hall in the evening, with lamps and windows glowing.
News & Events

SoHE News: Jan 29–Feb 4

Thanks for reading our weekly roundup of news and events at the School of Human Ecology. Have something we should know about? Email Public Relations Manager Serena Larkin, or submit your SoHE event via this form. View past issues of news and events here.

In-house highlights

Whelan releases 10-lecture Audible series on “Finding Your Purpose”

Dr. Christine Whelan, Director of the Money, Relationships, and Equality (MORE) Initiative at SoHE and Clinical Professor of Consumer Science, released a series of ten audio lectures on the subject of “Finding Your Purpose,” with The Great Courses and Audible Originals and participated in a Q&A sharing her personal experience, research, and advice on improving happiness.

SoHE scholars in the news

Interview with Raison features in The Sun

The Sun, an independent magazine out of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, published a longform feature interview with Dr. Charles Raison, the Mary Sue and Mike Shannon Distinguished Chair for Healthy Minds, Children & Families and Professor of Human Development and Family Studies, on topics including the evolutionary role of depression, the validity of psychiatric diagnoses, and the potential of ancient practices to heal our modern malaise: “Clearly humans evolved the capacity to become depressed, but why? …One possibility is that it’s telling us to make a change.”

Separately, he commented for Verywell Health on a new test meant to predict depression in patients based on the presence or absence of certain proteins in the brain.

Thomas discusses Black men’s mental health initiative in Badger Herald

Dr. Alvin Thomas, Assistant Professor of Human Development and Family Studies, spoke with the Badger Herald about the anticipated impact of expanded funding, under a grant from the UW School of Medicine and Public Health’s Wisconsin Partnership Program, for a Black men’s mental health initiative he helped to found and run. “It fits perfectly with the Wisconsin Idea that whatever we’re doing in this academic space has to eventually translate to the community that we’re in—Madison first, but to wider Wisconsin and the wider world.”

Whelan guests on The Balance Dilemma podcast

Dr. Christine Whelan joined the podcast The Balance Dilemma in an episode titled “Daughter of a Superwoman” on finding work-life balance, especially for women.

Carter features on Fields of the Future podcast

Dr. Sarah Anne Carter, Visiting Executive Director of the Center for Design and Material Culture and Visiting Assistant Professor of Design Studies, spoke with the Bard Graduate Center’s podcast Fields of the Future in an episode titled “Making History with Things” discussing how objects illuminate hidden histories. Carter expressed the importance of collaboration and interdisciplinarity in curation, teaching, and writing.

CFS research covered in InvestmentNews

A paper out of the UW Center for Financial Security at SoHE on unclaimed retirement accounts, authored by the Business School’s Dr. Anita Mukherjee and the Economics department’s Dr. Corina Mommaerts, was written up in Investment News.


Poehlmann-Tynan, Shlafer, et al. on prisons’ COVID-impacted policies for communications with family

Dr. Julie Poehlmann-Tynan, the Dorothy A. O’Brien Professor in Human Ecology, and SoHE alumna Dr. Rebecca Shlafer (BS and MA, Human Development and Family Studies) are authors on a new report documenting how prisons changed their policies regarding inmates’ visits and communication options with their family members under COVID-19, as well as how well they communicated these changes via their websites. Their findings have been published online first in the American Psychological Association’s Psychology, Public Policy, and Law.


CFS webinar: “Student Loan Debt Relief: What Do We Know?”

Tuesday, Feburary 9, 12:00-1:30 p.m. CT, Virtual | The UW Center for Financial Security at SoHE will host a panel of experts next Tuesday, February 9, to discuss various approaches to the addressing the $1.7 trillion in student loan debt in the U.S. The event is free, but registration is required. Learn more and register.

“Holistic Healing Within Community: Global Mental Health Perspectives during COVID-19,” with Lori DiPrete Brown

Tuesday, March 30, 8:00-9:00 a.m. CT, Virtual | Hosted by the University of Wisconsin–Madison Global Health Institute, monthly webinars with researchers and practitioners showcase and address the complexity of global health challenges and share their experiences, provide insights into global health, encourage conversation, and connect colleagues locally and globally. Lori DiPrete Brown, Distinguished Faculty Associate of Civil Society and Community Studies, will moderate a webinar on the bio-psycho-social model of holistic healing, used to promote psychological well-being in general and particularly in the midst of a pandemic. Registration and more information can be found here.

Plus, view the full online calendar of SoHE-sponsored events.