Master’s student Damian Cisneros is one of three recipients of the 2018 Kenneth H. Ashworth Fellowship. The value of the award is $5,000, and is intended to provide financial assistance to Texas students pursuing careers in public service.

“I have volunteered or worked for public agencies all my life with the ultimate goal of becoming a foster care social worker” Cisneros said. “I had a tough family life growing up but thanks to my involvement with church organizations and the relations that I built there, I was able to gain resilience. As a future social worker, my hope is to help children in foster care become resilient.”

Cisneros is pursuing a master of social work with a clinical concentration at the Steve Hicks School of Social Work.

“Damian Cisneros exemplifies the best of what Steve Hicks School of Social Work students bring to our community: a strong commitment to social work values and ethics, an understanding of making change on the micro, mezzo and macro level, and the passion for putting those commitments into action both professionally and personally,” said Sarah Swords, assistant dean for master’s programs. “He has worked as a counselor in a residential treatment centers and in a psychiatric hospital and is now a licensed foster parent himself. He demonstrates resilience, humility, intelligence, and kindness as a person and as a social worker in public service, living out the mission of the Kenneth Ashworth Fellowship.”

The Ashworth fellowship was established in 1997 by members of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to honor Dr. Kenneth H. Ashworth for his services as commissioner. Deans and other administrators of graduate programs in various disciplines, including criminal justice, public affairs, public health, and social work, are invited to nominate students. A maximum of two students are selected each year.