Serwaa S. Omowale

Serwaa S. Omowale, LMSW is a dual PhD Social Work/MPH student with a focus on improving maternal health and birth outcomes among Black women. Serwaa is a graduate of Georgia State University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in African American Studies. Serwaa went on to earn a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Pittsburgh with a focus on clinical practice. During her time as a social work graduate student, Serwaa was a Hartford Partnership Program for Aging Education fellow and completed a certificate in Gerontology. She has eight years of clinical social work experience in aging services, disabilities services, substance use/mental disorders treatment, and maternal health. In addition, Serwaa continues to work with community organizations around issues of access to health care and improving maternal health.

Serwaa’s primary career goal is to become a leading researcher focused on understanding, addressing, and improving maternal health and birth outcomes among Black women. Serwaa seeks to examine the effects of workplace psychosocial stress and discrimination on racial disparities in adverse birth outcomes (i.e. infant mortality, preterm birth and low birth weight).

She is currently the Principal Investigator of the “Black Women’s Work and Maternal Health Research Project”. This study aims to explore what factors in the workplace influence the maternal health of Black women through in-depth, in-person interviews.

Current Research Support

3R01HL135218-03S1, Mendez (PI)                       9/2019-08/2021                        NIH/NHLBI

The purpose of the Diversity Supplement grant is to support Serwaa’s specific research project, which will examine the relationship between stress, discrimination, and adverse birth outcomes.

Selected Presentations

Omowale, S.S. (2019). Reconsidering Risk: Racial Differences in Maternal Health and Low Birth Weight Among College-Educated Black and White Women.
Society for Social Work and Research. San Francisco, CA

Omowale, S.S. (2018). Maternal Health and Infant Mortality Among Black Women.
National Council for Black Studies. Atlanta, GA 

Mendez, D.D. & Omowale, S.S. (2018). Workshop. Maternal Mortality Review: Lessons Learned from Texas and Insight for Pennsylvania. Healthy Start Cheryl Squire Flint Cultural Sensitivity Symposium: This Woman’s Work. Pittsburgh, PA

Current Service Activities  

University of Pittsburgh, School of Social Work, International Committee

Allegheny County Infant Mortality Collaborative, Executive Officer

University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health Center for Health Equity, Healthy Start Pittsburgh, Healthy Baby Zone partner