Curriculum Vitae

Areas of Interest
  • Systems and organizations
  • Child welfare and criminal justice policy
  • Ethics of technology and data use
  • Black feminist epistemology
  • Economic and racial justice
  • Abolitionist praxis
  • Macro Social work practice
  • Social policy
  • Community-driven methodologies
  • Black studies
  • Qualitative and CBPAR methods
  • Systems and organizations
  • Ph.D, Social Welfare, UCLA. May 2022, Expected.
    • Dissertation: Dismantling the Carceral Ecosystem, Investigating the Role of Child Protection & Family Policing in Los Angeles.
    • Committee: Todd Franke, Safiya Noble, Amy Ritterbusch, Dorothy Roberts
  • Master of Social Welfare, UCLA. June 2019.
    • Concentration: Child & Family Well-Being
  • B.A., Psychology, UNLV. May, 2016.
    • Minor: Neuroscience
Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles
  • Copeland, V. (2021). Centering Unacknowledged Histories: Revisiting NABSW Demands to Repeal ASFA.  Journal of Public Child Welfare.
  • Copeland, V. (in press). “It’s the Only System We’ve Got”: Exploring Emergency Response Decision-Making in Child Welfare”. Columbia Journal for Race and Law.
  • Copeland, V. (2021). Book Review: The Three Mothers: How the Mothers of Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, and James Baldwin Shaped A Nation. Affilia. 

Under Review

  • Copeland, V.  (2021). Paradoxes & Possibilities: Reflecting on Abolitionist Praxis and the “Counter-Hegemonic” Struggles in Social Work. In Tuck, E., Yang, K.W., Williams, J., Hurd, N., & Doane, L. (Eds.), Theories of Blackness, Indigeneity, and Racialization in Research to Reduce Inequality in the Lives of Young People.
  • Copeland, V. (under review). Self-Determination, ethical standard or false promise? Addressing Tensions within Child Welfare Services. 
  • Allmang, S., Plummer, J., Copeland, V., Riascos, M. (under review). Addressing Economic Inequities and Uncertainty Magnified by COVID-19: A Commentary on Directions for Social Work Research. 
Policy Research Reports
  • Koonse, T., Herrera, L., & Copeland, V. (in preparation). A Blueprint for Transforming Court-Ordered Community Service in Los Angeles County.
  • Koonse, T., Herrera, L., & Copeland, V. (in preparation). Court-Ordered Community Service and Targeted-Hiring Programs in California.
Opinion Pieces
  • Summer Fellow, UpTurn: Toward Justice in Technology, Washington DC.
  • Graduate Student Researcher, UCLA Labor Center, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment.
  • Graduate Researcher Intern, WISE & Healthy Aging, Los Angeles CA.
  • Summer Research Fellow, McNair Scholar Summer Research Institute, UNLV, Las Vegas, NV.
Funded Research
  • How Victim-Survivors of Sexual Violence Access Support: A Research Advocacy Project. Bruin Advocacy Grant & Franklin D. Gilliam Jr. Award.
  • Impact of COVID-19 on Young People’s Labor Market Participation, Political Engagement, & Well-Being. UNAM/Alianza UCMX Binational Committee Covid-19 Funding.
Community Experience
  • Co-Founding Member, University of California Survivors + Allies, California
    • Campaigns: Increased transparency in reporting, trauma-informed syllabi language shifts, improved training on reporting.
  • Member, Let’s Get Free LA Coalition, Los Angeles, CA.
    • Campaigns: Eliminating criminal justice administrative and program fees, elimination of fees for phone calls and commissary for incarcerated individuals and families, SB71 Support for Expanding Community Service Options.
Teaching Experience
  • Teaching Assistant, Social Problems and Social Change. UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs-Undergrad. Spring 2020 & 2021.
  • Teaching Assistant, People, Organizations, & Systems. UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs-Undergrad. Winter 2020.
Guest Lectures
  • Copeland, V. (2021, May). Abolitionist Praxis is for Collective Liberation. Gerontology Cluster, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs-Undergrad, Virtual.
  • Copeland, V. (2021, May). Care of Coercion? Questioning Care Ethics of Child Welfare. CHDV Family Stress and Resilience: Cultural Considerations, California State University Long Beach-Undergrad, Virtual. 
  • Copeland, V. (2021, Feb). Surveillance and Data Proliferation in Child Welfare. People, Organizations, and Systems, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs-Undergrad Virtual.
  • Copeland, V. (2021, Feb). Developing Theory. The Craft of Social Welfare Scholarship. UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs-Ph.D. Virtual.
  • Copeland, V., Jordan, S., & Mickell, D. (2021, Feb). PAR Methods. Qualitative Methods, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs-Ph.D, Virtual.
Invited Talks
Invited Training Presentations
  • Copeland, V. & Mueller-Williams, A. (2021, Jan). Preparing for and Passing your Written Comprehensive Exam. Second-Year Ph.D Students, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs-Ph.D, Virtual
  • Copeland, V., Kwan Jin Yao, Brock-Petroshius, K., Jordan, S. (2021, May). Advancing to Candidacy. Professional Development Series, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs-Ph.D, Virtual.
Peer-Reviewed Conferences
  • Copeland, V., Abdurahman, J.K., Baughman, C., Ismail, T. (2021, June). Family Surveillance. Panel presentation at the Strengthened Bonds: Abolishing the Child Welfare System and Re-Envisioning Child Well-Being Columbia Law School Volume 11 Symposium, Virtual* 
  • Harvey, B. & Copeland, V. (2021, April). Co-Conspirators: Interrogating the Role of Schools within the Foster Care Industrial Complex. Paper presentation at the American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, Virtual*
  • Allmang, S., Plummer, J., Copeland, V. (2021, Jan). Covid 19 and Youth Engagement in Politics: An Intersectional Approach. Roundtable at the Society for Social Work Research Annual Conference, Virtual*
  • Tulley, B., Copeland, V., Mickell, D. (2021, Jan). “I Wanna Give Her Her Space”: An exploration of how young adults exiting foster care navigate living with family after foster care. Paper presentation at the Society for Social Work Research Annual Conference, Virtual*
  • Zink, D., Barchard, K., San Miguel, L., Copeland, V., Allen, D. (2016, Nov). Factor Structure of the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-Fourth Edition Spanish in a Clinical Sample of Puerto Rican Children. Poster presentation at the National Academy of Neuropsychology Conference, Seattle WA
  • Lee, B., Copeland, V., Allen, D. (2015, Nov). Meta-Analytic Investigation of Neuropsychological Performance in persons with Schizophrenia and Co-Occurring Substance Use Disorders. Poster presentation at the National Academy of Neuropsychology Conference, Austin TX

Accepted Peer-Reviewed Presentations

  • Copeland V., Edwards, F., Fong, K., Raz, M., Dettlaff, A., (2021, Feb). Administrative Burdens in Child Welfare. Russell Sage Foundation Conference: Administrative Burdens as a Mechanism of Inequality in Policy Implementation. New York City, NY. 
  • Copeland, V. (2021, Sept). The Commodification of Black Family Separation. Panel at the IAMAS 2021 Conference: Building Racial Equality In and Across Motherhood, Virtual. 
  • Tulley, B., Copeland, V., Mickell, D. (2021, Sept). “I Wanna Give Her Her Space”: How Young  Adults Exiting Foster Care Navigate Living with Family After Foster Care’.  Presentation at the European Scientific Association on Residential & Family Care for Children and Adolescents Conference, Virtual* 
  • Copeland, V. (2021, Aug). Countering Carceral Data Infrastructures through a Praxis of Dark  Sousveillance. Poster Presentation at the CURIS Conference: Stanford University,  Virtual. 
professional experience
  • Community Organizer and South Central Youth Empowered thru Action (SCYEA) Wellness Intern, Community Coalition, Los Angeles CA.
  • Care Management Intern, WISE & Healthy Aging, Los Angeles CA.
  • Juvenile Justice Advocate, Youth Advocate Programs, Las Vegas NV
service experience
  • Guest Peer Reviewer, Special Issue of Child Welfare: Transforming Child Welfare through Anti-Racist Approaches in Child Welfare
  • Founding Member, SPACE: Survivor Photos: A Collaboration for Empowerment.
  • Founding Member, Social Work Anti-Racism Committee, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs-Department of Social Welfare.
  • Panelist & Mentor, Luskin Diversity Fair.
  • Lobby Days Leader, NASW Lobby Days.
    • Bills included: SB10 (Bail Reform), AB186 (Harm Reduction), SB982 (CalWORKs Grants Amounts), AB163 (Group homes), SB568 (Postsecondary Education)
  • Inaugural Member, NASW 23-Strong Council
  • Conference Session Chair, The National Academy of Neuropsychology Annual Conference.
  • Research Consultant, UpEND, The Center for the Study of Social Policy and the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work. 
  • 2021 — William T. Grant Foundation, Theories of Blackness, Indigeneity, and Racialization in Research to Reduce Inequality in the Lives of Young People Writing Fellowship ($2,000) 
  • 2021 — UpTurn: Toward Justice in Technology, Washington DC. Summer Fellowship ($10,200) 
  • 2021 — Black in Artificial Intelligence Grant Program, Black in AI, ($1,500) 
  • 2021 — Alisa Bierria Graduate Fellowship in Black Feminist Research, UCLA Center for the Study of Women, Black Feminist Initiative ($1,000) 
  • 2021 — Bruin Advocacy Grant ($1250) 
  • 2020 — UCLA/Alianza UCMX Binational Committee Covid-19 Funding ($5,000) 
  • 2020 — UCLA Graduate Council Diversity Summer Fellowship ($8,000) 
  • 2018 — Renee & Meyer Luskin Summer Funding ($5,000) 
  • 2021 – Franklin D. Gilliam, Jr. Social Justice Awards  
  • 2019 – UCLA MSW Thesis Award for Outstanding Research 
  • 2019 – UCLA Public Policy Leadership and Management of Nonprofits Competition Winner 
  • 2017 – UCLA Senior Fellows. Mentor: Judge Nash, Office of Child Protection 
  • 2016 – UNLV Research Showcase Outstanding Presentation Award, 3rd Place 
  • 2016 – UNLV Psi Chi International Honors Society Poster Competition Outstanding Presentation, 2nd place 
  • 2016 – UNLV Roosevelt Fitzgerald Outstanding Scholar and Leadership Award 
  • 2016 – UNLV Alliance of Professionals of African Heritage Outstanding Student Award 

2021 American Educational Research Association
2021 Society for Social Work and Research
2017 – 2019 National Association of Social Workers
2013 – 2016 National Academy of Neuropsychology
2014 – 2016 Psi Chi International Honor Society

  • Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBTWeb2.0) Certification
  • MANDT Certification