Meet a Roadrunner: Transfer student Sonie Johnson wants to empower domestic violence survivors
(April 12, 2017) -- Meet Sonie Johnson. This UTSA Honors College student is doing research on domestic violence in San Antonio and around the nation in an effort to influence public policy to help victims of abuse.
This spring, Johnson is on track to graduate with bachelor's degrees in English and Sociology from UTSA.
Johnson transferred to UTSA in the fall of 2014 and received a Terry Foundation Transfer Scholarship, a Distinguished Transfer Scholarship, a Walter O. Mason Jr. Education Foundation Scholarship, and a Sam and Ann Barshop Scholarship, which fund her top-tier education. During her first semester at UTSA, Johnson also became a McNair Scholar.
As part of her coursework, Johnson conducted research as an undergraduate student. Her honors thesis focused on the use of narrative writing to enhance wellness among survivors of domestic violence. Johnson researched the circumstances that negatively impact the lives of survivors, especially immigrants and those from low-income families. In March, she received a first place award for a poster on her project, "The Six Dimensions of Wellness of Survivors of Domestic Violence: An Assessment," at the 2017 COLFA Spring Research Conference.
"There is a great need to foster the wellness of women staying at shelters," said Johnson. "Self-realization can help survivors address the many challenges and factors that hinder their self-sufficiency."
In addition to working with women and children in the San Antonio community, Johnson shared her talents with students as a member of the UTSA Collegiate G-Force Work Study Mentorship program. She mentors students at high schools, at UTSA and at other higher education institutions across the state.
Johnson said the scholarships she received helped her focus on academics and her work in the community. Although the scholarship application process was unfamiliar to her at the start, she said she learned quite a bit along the way and those experiences encouraged her to guide other students who felt overwhelmed by the process.
"There are scholarships out there for students to take advantage of," said Johnson. "I help them navigate the process so they can take advantage of all the resources available to achieve their academic goals."
Johnson's goal is to pursue graduate study in social work to write, teach and help women and children living in shelters.
"I want to develop a course that can be taught in shelters to empower women to create a better quality of life for their families," said Johnson. "I want to write policies to help women and children living in shelters around the nation."
Do you know a Roadrunner who is achieving great things? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we may consider your suggestion for our next installment of Meet a Roadrunner.
The community is invited to the inauguration of UTSA President Taylor Eighmy, the sixth president of UTSA.Convocation Center, Main Campus
The Provost's Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Council hosts this forum to share and further explain the results of the survey and to offer the opportunity for faculty and staff to provide feedback.Durango Building La Villita Room (DB 1.116), Downtown Campus
For more than 20 years, Josie Méndez-Negrete, a UTSA associate professor in Mexican American Studies, has endured the emotional journey of watching her son, Tito, struggle with schizophrenia. Her powerful account is the first memoir by a Mexican American author to share the devastation and hope a family experiences in dealing with this mental illness.H-E-B Student Union Travis Room (HSU 2.212), Main Campus
Graduate and undergraduate student researchers pursuing majors in the College of Liberal and Fine Arts will present their original work.Student Union Retama Auditorium (SU 2.02.02), Main Campus
March Into Your Major is a major exploration fair intended to provide students with information on selecting their major.H-E-B Student Union Ballroom (HSU 1.104/1.106), Main Campus
The UTSA community is invited to this town hall meeting to learn more about progress of the Student Success Presidential initiative.Frio Street Building (FS 1.512), Downtown Campus
Author Annette Angela Portillo will read her book, which examines Native American women’s autobiographical discourses and multiple-voiced life stories that resist generic conventional notions of first-person narrative.McKinney Humanities Building (MH 3.02.24), Main Campus
Chelsea Wentworth, anthropology professor at High Point University, will discuss women’s roles in changing customary feasting patterns so that feasts can serve as a coping mechanism for children’s food insecurity in urban areas the South Pacific Island nation, Vanuatu.H-E-B Student Union Travis Room (HSU 2.202), Main Campus