Faculty Spotlight: Dr. Jermaine Monk

A person’s health is affected by a variety of factors. Therefore, when we center health equity in our conversations about public health, we need to consider the myriad of factors that contribute to health inequity. Luckily, our CUNY Institute for Health Equity faculty come from a variety of disciplines so we are able to approach health disparities and possible solutions from many different angles.

One such professor, Dr. Jermaine Monk, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Social Work at Lehman College, as well as a faculty member of the CUNY Institute for Health Equity. He received his PhD from Rutgers in Urban Systems with a specialization in Urban Education Policy. Dr. Monk’s research is often focused around African American and Latino males and looks into the outcome disparities we see in the data (and in our communities). Dr. Monk’s research interests are gender dynamics regarding the low rates of men in the social work profession as well as matriculation rates of African American and Latino males in institutions of higher education.


Dr. Monk’s current research project is delving into substance abuse risk factors and treatment amongst African American and Latino males. In fact, just recently, Dr. Monk submitted a book chapter for publication, entitled: “Portrait of Addition.” Written with his co-author Dr. Audrey Redding-Raines, Dr. Monk explains that the chapter, “explores the process of changing addiction and treatment services for African American and Latino communities.” The chapter also discusses substance misuse and the challenges for the identified groups, broken down by gender. This chapter will be published in the book, New Directions in Treatment, Education and Outreach for Mental Health and Addiction. The book publisher is Springer and the book is edited by Thalia MacMilan and our very own Amanda Sisselman-Borgia.

Another exciting project that Dr. Monk is involved with is the highly-anticipated new experiential learning course entitled ‘Urban Leadership.’ Part of Lehman College’s mission is, “actively engaging students in their academic, personal, and professional development.” Experiential learning is a great way for students to integrate classroom academics with community learning. Dr. Monk helped develop the ‘Urban Leadership’ course, which will be offered for the first time in Spring 2018. The course was created in partnership with the Urban Male Leadership Program as well as in collaboration with Neighborhood Benches, a non-profit with a focus on supporting individuals from New York City Housing Authority -NYCHA developments.

Coming up this spring, Dr. Monk has many exciting projects on deck. Firstly, the Association of Baccalaureate Social Work Program Directors 33rd Annual National Conference 2018, which will be held in Atlanta, GA, will feature presentations that Dr. Monk reviewed this fall. Also, Dr. Monk, in collaboration with fellow Lehman professor Dr. Brenda Williams-Gray, is moving forward with a research project studying microaggressions experienced among undergraduate and graduate social work students. We are looking forward to seeing the published results of their study in the near future!

Learn more about Neighborhood Benches here.

Learn more about the Urban Male Leadership Program at Lehman college here.

Listen to Dr. Williams-Gray Public Health Minute segment here.

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