The Hogg Foundation for Mental Health is working to expand Spanish-language mental health services in Texas by awarding $386,000 in full-tuition scholarships to 22 bilingual graduate social work students across the state.
To begin addressing the state's shortage of bilingual mental health workers, the Hogg Foundation began offering the full-tuition scholarships in fall 2008 and has awarded 51 to date. Seven recipients already have graduated.
Research shows people who speak a language other than English are under-represented in social work and other mental health professions in Texas and the United States. As a result, they are less likely to receive effective mental health services.
"Graduate schools welcome the scholarship program because it attracts quality students and promotes academic diversity," said Dr. Octavio N. Martinez Jr., executive director of the foundation. "We view the program as a success because it increases the state's mental health workforce and supports the foundation's mission to improve mental health for all Texans."
New students are eligible to apply for the scholarships, which cover tuition and required fees. Recipients must be accepted by one of 11 accredited graduate social work programs in Texas, be fluent in Spanish and English, and agree to work in Texas after graduation providing mental health services for a period equal to the timeframe of the scholarship.
Some schools accept new students in the spring and summer. To learn more about the application process and deadlines, contact eligible graduate schools: Abilene Christian University, Baylor University, Our Lady of the Lake University, Stephen F. Austin State University, Texas AandM University - Commerce, Texas State University, University of Houston, University of Texas at Arlington, The University of Texas at Austin, University of Texas - Pan American and University of Texas at San Antonio.
The Hogg Foundation was founded in 1940 by the children of former Texas Governor James Hogg to promote improved mental health for the people of Texas. The foundation's grants and programs support mental health consumer services, research, policy analysis and public education projects in Texas. The foundation is part of the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin.
Fall 2009 Bilingual Scholarship Recipients
- Abilene Christian University: Yolanda Jasso, Water Valley, Texas; Stephanie Trejo, Robert Lee, Texas
- Baylor University: Sonia Fuentes, Mary Zane Morton and Viviana Urdaneta, Waco, Texas; Emilie Ventura, Beaufort, S.C.
- Our Lady of the Lake University: Annabelle Vazquez, San Antonio
- Stephen F. Austin State University: Shambré Kelly, Nacogdoches, Texas
- Texas AandM University - Commerce: Julissa Rodriguez, Denton, Texas
- Texas State University: Blanca Herrera and Tania Motta-Allen, Austin; Diane Leal, San Antonio
- University of Houston: Flor Guebara and Jorge Ruiz, Houston
- University of Texas at Arlington: Yajaira Villeda, Monahans, Texas
- The University of Texas at Austin: Courtney Landes, Austin; Denise Baxindine, Weslaco, Texas
- University of Texas - Pan American: Jacklyn Alfaro, Edinburg, Texas; Miriam Gayden, Mission; Monica Jimenez, McAllen, Texas; Mayra Reyes, Hidalgo, Texas
- University of Texas at San Antonio: Cristela Garcia, San Antonio