Columbia University’s School of Social Work has received a $550,000 gift to establish the Fisher Cummings Washington Fellows Program. The joint gift by Marjorie S. Fisher and her daughter, Julie F. Cummings (MS’11), will fund CUSSW students for a semester-long internship in Washington, D.C.

The new Fisher Cummings Washington Fellows Program will be built on an evidence-based approach to social policy and a willingness to work across institutional and political lines.  It resonates with mother and daughter’s family tradition of fighting for social justice and their joint commitment to ensuring the well-being of women, children and families.  Cummings’ father and Fisher’s husband was the late philanthropist and businessman Max Fisher.

“The School is extremely grateful to Julie and Mrs. Fisher for their generosity.  This program will nurture and advance the potential of students who have the talent and capacity to become social work leaders and contribute significantly to the development of substantive, evidence-informed U.S. policies and programs.  Through this program, our students will have a unique opportunity to have a greater impact on communities across the United States,” said CUSSW Dean Jeanette Takamura.

Through the experiences that will be offered by the Fisher Cummings Washington Fellows Program, students will integrate, extend, and apply knowledge and skills acquired via their classroom-based and field education to reduce risk factors and improve the well-being of many vulnerable population segments.  Students will work on complex, multi-dimensional issues with multi-disciplinary colleagues within demanding policy environments.

The Fisher Cummings Washington Fellows Program will be launched in the fall of this year.

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