Headshot of Jennifer McClendon wearing a blue shirt against a gray background

Jennifer McClendon, Ph.D.

Associate Professor


Jennifer McClendon's first job out of graduate school was providing family and caregiver support for families coping with chronic and severe mental illness. She co-facilitated psychoeducation groups for these families as part of a federally-funded research project, and her duties also included recruiting and interviewing subjects, and collecting and analyzing data. For seven years, she worked as a crisis intervention counselor in St. Louis, Missouri, providing phone support and working as a member of the mobile outreach team. Jennifer also has professional experience with fundraising, grant writing, organizational development, program evaluation, and program development.


Ph.D., Social Work, 2009 Washington University, George Warren Brown, St. Louis, Missouri

Courses taught

At University of Nevada, Reno:

  • SW 321 Basics of Professional Communication, 780 Advanced Practicum

Other places:

  • Principles of Social Work Practice
  • Foundations of Practice
  • Evaluation of Programs and Services
  • Human Behavior in the Social Environment
  • Organizational Context for Professional Practice
  • Social Work Research Methods

Research interests

Jennifer's research focuses on services for homeless youth and young adults. Other areas of academic expertise and interest include mental health crisis intervention, services for LGBT youth, access to children's mental health service systems, and family support for chronic and severe mental illness.

Presentations (Past five years)

  • Pollio, D.E., McClendon, J., Rice, E., Stella, A., Thacher, J. & Rosenthal, D. (2013, November). Development of a social network website to prevent HIV in a young adult homeless population. Paper to be presented at the APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition, Boston MA.
  • McClendon, J. & Jonson-Reid, M. (2010, January 15). Using cross-sector service use patterns to explore intra-group differences among sheltered runaway youth. Paper presented at the Society for Social Work and Research 14th Annual Conference, San Francisco, CA.
  • Bender, K., Ferguson, K., Pollio, D., Thompson, S. & McClendon, J. (2009, November 10). Technology as an underutilized tool for providing health services and support to street youth. Paper presented at the American Public Health Association 2009 Annual Conference, Philadelphia, PA.
  • Pollio, D., Thompson, S.J., Bender, K., Hunter, S., McClendon, J., McKean, B. A comparison of transience and risk in street youth: St. Louis, Missouri and Austin, Texas. Society of Social Work and Research Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA, Jan 10-14, 2007.


  • McClendon, J. & Jonson-Reid, M. (under review). Using cross-sector service use patterns to explore intra-group differences among residents of community-based youth shelters.
  • McClendon, J. & Jonson-Reid, M. (under review). Comparing runaways across three service sectors: Community-based shelters, juvenile justice, and foster care.
  • McClendon, J. & Lane, S. (forthcoming). Homeless people. In A. Gitterman (Ed.), Handbook of social work practice with vulnerable and resilient populations, 3rd edition. New York: Columbia University Press.
  • Pollio, D.E., North, C.S., Hudson, A.M., Hong, B.A., Osborne, V.A., & McClendon, J.B. (2012). Psychoeducation responsive to families (PERF): Translation of a multifamily group model. Psychiatric Annals, 42:6. DOI: 10.3928/00485713-20120606-06.
  • McClendon, J., Pollio, D. E., North, C. S., Reid, D. L., & Jonson-Reid, M. (2007). School-based groups for parents of children with emotional and behavioral disorders: Pilot results. Families in Society, 88, 124-129.