Korina Barry has spent the better half of her life advocating for children and families. She started her career as a youth worker supporting youth in foster care. This work encouraged her to return to school at the U of M where she earned a master of social work and began her direct practice career in child welfare. Today, she is the director of outreach at the U’s Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare (CASCW “cashew”). Korina works on public policy, develops training, manages communications, and sustains relationships with various stakeholders in the child welfare field across Minnesota. Korina has a deep commitment to give back to the Native community. She is a cofounder of KWESTRONG Indigenous Women’s Wellness, a grassroots movement building empowerment through health activities. Korina is Anishinaabe from Gaa-zaagaskwaajimekaag (Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe).
Director of Outreach,
Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare, University of Minnesota
BA Child Psychology and American Indian Studies with an emphasis in Ojibwe language,
MSW with a focus in Child Welfare, 2011
Many of the courses in my master of social work program allowed me to connect my personal experiences and experience as a youth worker supporting homeless youth at the time of my program, with class assignments and classroom discussions. Classes like "Treatment of Trauma" and "Child Welfare and the Law" were very impactful in helping me understand the unique needs of individuals I was supporting, but also how to be a strong advocate on a systems and policy level.
My educational experience in CHED offered me a quality education, mentorship, friendships, and professional opportunities. I am very proud to be a social worker and to be a CEHD and School of Social Work alum.
I stay grounded in community. Being active in community greatly contributes to the energy and lens that I bring to my work.
I will forever remember the day I graduated from the University of Minnesota with my bachelor’s degree. My father and and many other relatives rallied to cheer me on that day. Through all of the challenging life experiences and being a first-generation college student, this was an unforgettable moment for me.
I have been most inspired by the mothers and elders of my community. I have been fortunate to work for and with amazing women all of my life. These women have shared teachings and life lessons that have impacted my life greatly.
I think strong connections to community are imperative, whether that be your personal community or professional community. Working in the field of social work I greatly understand the importance of self-care and strong support networks. I believe both of these are essential for emerging professionals of any field.
I love podcasts. I enjoy most outdoors activities, including hiking, cycling, running, canoeing, and archery!
Compassionate, dedicated, resilient.
Passionate, caring, insightful.
Ceremony by Leslie Marmon Silko
As a social worker and Director of Outreach, I love meeting new people and learning from their stories. I enjoy developing relationships and partnerships across the state.
When I was a kid I liked to play imaginary teacher. I would set up stuffed animals and dolls and pretend they were students that I was teaching.
I was born with a tooth. It fell out right away, but my family called me "fang" for a while.