Scholarship memorializes beloved Tulane social work faculty member

September 18, 2013

Barri Bronston
Phone: 504-314-7444

A new scholarship at Tulane University School of Social Work has been established in honor of the late Jeannette Jennings, an associate professor who created a legacy of breaking barriers and advocating for the disenfranchised.

The endowed Dr. Jeannette Jennings Memorial Scholarship was established by a generous gift from the Delta Foundation through the efforts of Roger and Carol Nooe. 

The Delta Foundation is a charitable group that supports college and graduate education, especially for students in the Mississippi Delta. Recipients will be selected based on need, with preference given to students from underrepresented groups at Tulane.

“The Delta Foundation has always been about creating opportunity for people who were denied,” said Roger Nooe, who received a master of social work degree in 1966 and a doctorate in social work in 1972 from Tulane. The Nooes sit on the foundation’s board. 

Roger Nooe met Jennings at Tulane in the late 1960s while she was working on her master’s degree in social work. He later recruited her to join the faculty at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, where he worked for 30 years.

In 1970, she became the first black faculty member at the University of Mississippi and was also the first black female social worker at the Mississippi Department of Public Welfare. 

At Tulane, where Jennings was an associate professor from 1998 until her death, she taught social work students the history of the profession and demonstrated how to do meaningful work in the community. Her research involved poverty and gerontology.

“The scholarship will support students who, like Jennings, have an interest in helping the larger society achieve social justice,” said Marva Lewis, an associate professor at the Tulane School of Social Work.

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Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5000