Sarwat Sharif

  • PhD Student, Social Work
  • Research Assistant, Social Work

Sarwat Sharif has approximately 15 years of experience working in Pakistan, Turkey, and Kenya on various projects, mentoring the community members through participatory engagement. She returned to school to learn more about international development, peacebuilding, and trauma-informed care practices.

Currently, she works with Dr. James ‘Dimitri’ Topitzes, as a research assistant on an innovative prison reentry project "Smart Reentry’’ managed by the Department of Justice. The project goal is to reduce the recidivism rate for high to medium risk project participants by 50%. The project is associated with the Center Street Corridor in Milwaukee.

Sarwat's research takes an interdisciplinary approach to address complex social issues through a global lens. She is motivated to address the gaps in targeted school violence (TSV) policies and practices, especially school shootings. She aims to advance research in trauma-informed practices to help mitigate the effects of TSV among children and adolescents by taking a human-centered approach.


  • MSW, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • Master's in Sustainable Peacebuilding, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, College of Nursing
  • M.S., Computer Science - Iqra University, Karachi-Pakistan

ICFW Projects:

  • Smart Reentry Milwaukee
  • Project Safe Neighborhood

Research/Practice Interests:

  • Targeted School Violence
  • Impacts of Mass Shooting on Survivors
  • Adverse Childhood Effects
  • Trauma Informed Care Practices
  • Program Evaluation and Intervention Design