Volume 101 | November 2021
OGA Newsletter
The Office of Global Activities (OGA) is dedicated to connecting MSW students to international social work opportunities through fundingspecial programs, academic resources, internationalized curriculum, and arranging faculty and student exchanges at partner institutions.
Diwali/Deepavali (November 4)
This Thursday, November 4, more than 1 billion people around the world will gather in celebration of the religious holiday Diwali, or Deepavali. Diwali is a major religious festival of lights celebrated by Hindus, Jains, Sikhs, and Buddhists alike. Traditions vary among regions, religions, denominations, and even families, but some of the most widespread customs include lighting diyas (clay lamps), decorating the entrance of the home with rangoli (colorful designs made with rice powder), dressing in bright-colored clothing, cleansing the home, lighting fireworks, holding or attending worship services, and feasting and exchanging gifts with friends and family. Happy Diwali!
Spotlight: Religious Holidays for Google Calendar
Religious Holidays for Google Calendar
The U-M School of Social Work has a mission “to develop a more equitable, caring, and socially just society.” In upholding this mission, our community strives to foster a better understanding of each other and the people we work alongside.

Part of this understanding includes being cognizant of religious holidays, like Diwali (above), that members of the U-M SSW community may be observing. And Google Calendar has a great tool to help with this! Adding religious holidays to your calendar only takes a few minutes, and you can adjust the visibility settings as desired. Below, you will find a brief YouTube tutorial on how to add these holidays. We encourage you to check it out!

It is our hope that you will add these holidays to your Google Calendars to be mindful and plan events and services around these days accordingly. We hope this allows you to continue creating an atmosphere that pays respect to religious observances while honoring the cultural diversity of our students, faculty, and staff at the School of Social Work.
Date: Tuesday, November 2 from 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM EDT
Brief Description: Come attend a webinar featuring two SSW professors! This webinar will include a panel presentation on the Afghan refugee crisis and will conclude with an extended question and answer period. The panelists will address many topics, including how the current crisis in Afghanistan fits into the global refugee crisis, the numerous ways these crises affect Afghan women and children in particular, and the role of the U.S. in addressing this humanitarian crisis. Panelists include Drs. Ashley Cureton, Dana Burde, Odessa Gonzalez Benson, Sara Kamali, and Ana Paula Pimentel Walker.
Date: Tuesday, November 2 from 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM EDT
Brief Description: The Research Jam will provide an opportunity for interested faculty to begin building connections with colleagues from across U-M who are interested in this space. The session will be open to all U-M faculty who want to engage in addressing challenges of global vaccine equity! Join to explore how your research interest might connect to aspects of vaccine equity. Direct vaccine-related research is not required.
Date: Thursday, November 4 at 12:00 PM EDT
Brief Description: During this webinar hosted by the Asia Institute, invited experts will discuss how their organizations engage with local communities and the environment to build a more sustainable future. Panelists Elanya Chin and Dr. Nicholas Pilcher will tie their remarks to how the UN Sustainable Development Goals provide a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future. 
Date: Thursday, November 11 from 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM EDT
Brief Description: Anti-Asian American sentiment has spread across the U.S. like an epidemic, rising approximately 360% in 2021 alone. However, is anti-Asian hate truly a new phenomena? What is the history of racism against Asian Americans in the U.S.? This virtual discussion will connect the past to the present and present the work of prominent Asian American leaders, activists, and students, including students from the School of Social Work’s API Coalition!
Date: Thursday, November 11 from 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM EDT
Brief Description: Teaching English abroad can be a cost-effective way to spend a year (or two!) immersing yourself in another culture after graduation. There are many ways to go about teaching English abroad, so the International Center and English Language Institute at U-M invite you to join a session that will cover topics including things to know about teaching English abroad, opportunities to do so, and how to prepare for the experience while still a student at U-M! 
Date: Monday, November 15 from 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM EDT
Brief Description: The particular conditions and needs in post-Soviet nations have inspired unique configurations of professional social work. What lessons can be drawn from the policy and practice experiences of human-service professionals in these contexts? Join the Center for Social Development at Washington University in St. Louis for a fascinating discussion on the emergence of professional social work policy and practice in two post-Soviet countries: Azerbaijan and Ukraine. 
Date: Friday, November 19 from 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM EDT
Brief DescriptionJoin the International Center virtually over lunch to discuss special topics and explore the resources available for international students and scholars. Discussions are informal and it's a great place to get your burning questions answered!
Día de los Muertos (November 1-2)
Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is a two-day holiday that reunites the living and dead. While the holiday originated in Mexico, it is celebrated all across Latin America and the Latin American diaspora. Families create ofrendas (offerings) to honor their departed family members that have passed. These altars are decorated with bright yellow marigold flowers, photos of the departed, and the favorite foods and drinks of the one being honored. The offerings are believed to encourage visits from the land of the dead as the departed souls hear their prayers, smell their foods and join in the celebrations! Click here to learn more about Día de los Muertos.
Native American Heritage Month
November is Native American Heritage Month! This month, we celebrate and honor the heritage, history, art, traditions, and contributions of American Indians and Alaska Natives. We at the School of Social Work acknowledge that the University of Michigan was formed and has grown through connections with the land stewarded by the Anishinaabeg—the Three Fires People who are the Ojibwe, Odawa, and Potawatomi—along with their neighbors: the Seneca, Delaware, Shawnee, and Wyandot nations.

See below events hosted by the U-M Native American Studies Department in collaboration with MESA (Multi-Ethnic Student Affairs) and NASA (Native American Student Association):

Date: Wednesday, November 3 from 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Brief DescriptionPrefacing a month of engaging speakers and presentations surrounding the conversation of intersectional Native/Indigenous identities and important conversations regarding Native representation is a conversation with Dr. Adrienne Keene, a prominent activist in the Native community. Dr. Keene (Cherokee Nation) is a Native scholar, writer, blogger, podcast host, and activist. She is passionate about reframing how the world sees contemporary Native cultures.

Date: Monday, November 8 from 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
Brief Description: Racial justice begins with anti-racism. Anti-racism is the active process of identifying and eliminating racism by changing systems, organizational structures, policies, practices, and attitudes so that power is redistributed and shared equitably (University of Calgary). This peer-led teach-in will engage analytical frameworks for examining systemic cultural, social, economic, and political forces in the community along with individual reflection.

Date: Thursday, November 18 from 7:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Brief DescriptionThere is an epidemic that no one is talking about outside of Indian Country. Within our community, we are dealing with an epidemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. Why aren’t there concrete statistics? Why do the crimes go unreported? What has the FBI done to help with this epidemic? Learn what you can do in and out of Indian Country to make sure that our sisters, mothers, daughters, wives, girlfriends, women, don’t become a statistic.

Date: Friday, November 19 from 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Brief Description: Join us as we engage with Angeline Boulley, author for the #1 NYT Bestseller novel, Firekeeper's Daughter. Angeline Boulley is an enrolled member of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians, is a storyteller who writes about her Ojibwe community in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. She is a former Director of the Office of Indian Education at the U.S. Department of Education. Firekeeper's Daughter is her debut novel, and was an instant #1 NYT Bestseller.

Date: Monday, November 29 from 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Brief DescriptionJoin us for an engaging dialogue and panel with amazing guests and speakers that have been a part of significant efforts to honor the Burt lake band and work on projects surrounding sustainability, language revitalization, and representation of Native Identities. Through this event, we hope to not only hold the university accountable to the acknowledgement of the history and land, but to raise awareness on climate justice, language revitalization, and the landback movement as a whole.

Date: Tuesday, November 30 from 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Brief DescriptionPlease join us at the closing ceremony for Native American Heritage Month where we will celebrate the amazing indigenous speakers that presented and held dialogues on conversations that are necessary to the community. There will be a Native food menu for those that are registered!
Professional Opportunities
Application Deadline: Monday, November 1
Brief DescriptionThis unique 12-month professional development opportunity is designed for individuals dedicated to a career in international relief and development. CRS is one of the largest and most trusted international relief and development organizations. In more than 100 countries worldwide, CRS promotes transformative and sustainable change by using holistic approaches, engaging people at all levels, and tailoring their work to the needs of the people they serve.
Application Deadline: Tuesday, March 1, 2022 (Rolling admission)
Brief DescriptionThe Ottawa Internship Program is designed to provide a first-hand learning experience in Canadian government through placement with a Member of Parliament or Senator in the capital of Canada. Students will work in a parliamentarian's office for a period of five weeks. This program is open to graduate and undergraduate students from all majors and all colleges of the University of Michigan.
Grant Opportunities
Application Deadline: Sunday, November 7 by 11:59 PM EDT
Brief Description: The Office of Global Activities offers event grants to students who would like to propose and plan events with a global theme. Each grant is up to $125. Student events that have been proposed and funded in the past include showing documentaries with a global focus, hosting discussions on global topics, or organizing a panel of social workers who have done work abroad. Events are not limited to these categories and we encourage students to get creative and propose something new.
Application Deadline: Tuesday, November 16 by 8:00 PM EDT
Brief DescriptionThe CLS Program is an intensive overseas language and cultural immersion program for American students enrolled at U.S. colleges and universities. Students spend eight to ten weeks abroad studying one of 15 critical languages. This opportunity would be appropriate for 20-month SSW students and possibly dual degree students. 
Application Deadline: Thursday, December 30 at 5:00 PM EDT
Brief DescriptionBlakemore Freeman Fellowships are awarded for one academic year of full-time, intensive language study of Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Khmer or Burmese at the advanced level in approved language programs in East or Southeast Asia. Applicants must be American citizens or permanent residents of the United States.
Deadline: Rolling
Brief Description: The International Center offers a grant opportunity to help student organizations and University departments recognize the diversity of the U-M international student population through special events and programming. Organizations and departments should apply at least 14 days in advance of their event (the earlier, the better). Grants amounts will vary based on the submitted budget and the availability of funds.
Deadline: Rolling
Brief Description: Subject to availability of funding, awards will be made to faculty, students, and staff presenting Africa-focused papers or serving as chairs or discussants for Africa-focused sessions at regional, national, or international conferences. Priority is given to applicants who have not received prior ASC funding and to projects focused on Sub-Saharan Africa.
Deadline: Rolling
Brief Description: The U.S. Department of Education provides a variety of grant opportunities. Eligibility, funding amounts, and deadlines vary.
To find previous OGA Newsletter volumes, click the OGA Newsletter Archive.
Email [email protected] if you have any questions.