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Milojevich Receives APA Award for Outstanding Research and Practice

 June 26, 2024

Helen Milojevich, Research Scientist in Sanford’s Center for Child and Family Policy, has been honored with the esteemed Karen Saywitz Early Career Award for Outstanding Research and Practice by the American Psychological Association’s Division 37 Section on Child Maltreatment. This award recognizes Milojevich's exceptional contributions to the field of child maltreatment through her innovative research and dedicated professional practice.

The Section on Child Maltreatment of Division 37, also known as the Society for Child and Family Policy and Practice, is committed to advancing scientific inquiry, training, professional practice, and advocacy in the realm of child maltreatment. The mission of this section is to foster the development of a scientific understanding of child maltreatment, support sound professional practices, disseminate updated information on maltreatment, encourage interdisciplinary networking, and promote the well-being, health, and mental health of children, youth, and families through rigorous scientific inquiry and professional engagement.

The Karen Saywitz Early Career Award is specifically designed to recognize early career professionals who have shown outstanding promise in the area of child maltreatment. The award is named in honor of Karen Saywitz, whose work significantly advanced the understanding and practice of child psychology, particularly in the context of legal proceedings involving children.

Milojevich’s groundbreaking research at the Sanford School of Public Policy has not only deepened our understanding of the complexities of child maltreatment but has also paved the way for the development of highly effective interventions. Her work, marked by a steadfast commitment to scientific rigor and practical application, has translated her research findings into tangible benefits for the children and families affected by maltreatment, inspiring a new wave of research and practice in the field.

Kenneth Dodge, William McDougall Distinguished Professor of Public Policy Studies and Professor in the Sanford School of Public Policy, celebrated Milojevich’s achievements while nominating her for the award.

“In a short time, Helen has contributed 28 peer-reviewed publications, which have been cited over 800 times. She has identified child maltreatment as her primary area of study and has made significant contributions to all three domains of science, practice, and policy. What forecasts her emerging transformational contributions is her unique ability to connect science, practice, and policy. This award also honors her work in mentoring the junior members of her research team, including undergraduates, post-bachelor research assistants, and doctoral students.”

Milojevich’s work reflects Sanford’s dedication to addressing critical social issues through interdisciplinary research and practice. Her recognition brings renewed attention to the importance of protecting vulnerable children and advancing their well-being through informed policy and evidence-based practices.

The Section on Child Maltreatment will formally present Milojevich with the Karen Saywitz Early Career Award at the APA annual convention in August. This event will gather leading professionals and researchers from around the world to celebrate achievements and discuss future directions in the fields of psychology and child maltreatment.