Mark Smith, PhD, LCSW
Mark S. Smith has been a social work faculty member at Barry University for 14 years and holds the rank of Associate Professor. His undergraduate degree is in Early Childhood Education (University of South Carolina) and his MSW is from San Francisco State University. His practice experience includes work in child welfare, hospital and community-based health care, mental health clinics and in-patient facilities, employee assistance programming, and community organizing and advocacy. He maintains a small practice specializing clinical supervision and in narrative-based work with adults, adolescents, children, and families. Dr. Smith’s areas of interest and expertise include: resiliency-focused clinical practice, social group work, family practice, community responses to disaster and trauma, LGBTQ youth and adults, international social work and social development, anti-racist/oppressive social work pedagogy, narrative and constructivist clinical practice, spirituality, and participant-based qualitative research. He is currently a member of the Board of Directors for the International Association for Social Work with Groups (IASWG) organization.
A foundation of social work practice is the ability to skillfully use ourselves in the helping relationship in order to facilitate desired changes identified by the client. My teaching efforts and my interactions with students reflect core convictions I hold which are congruent with those of contemporary social work practice. These core convictions include an unshakable belief in the basic goodness of people, the importance of respecting the dignity and worth of all people, the importance of continuously working toward justice, and the moral imperative of engaging in practices that encourage personal liberation. In my classroom the focus is on collective learning, and I am constantly striving to help students learn ways to engage both clients and colleagues in reflective dialogic conversations wherein all parties interactively negotiate, understand, and reflect on themselves and each other.
Selected Professional Activities
- 2006: Doctorate of Philosophy, Social Work Barry University, Miami Shores, Florida Dissertation Title: The Development and Psychometric Evaluation of a Rapid Assessment Instrument Measuring Hardiness in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Persons
- 1990: Masters in Social Work, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, California Degree focus: “Developmental Enhancement” Masters Thesis: “Where Policy and Practice Meet: Interrelationships Between San Francisco Public Schools and San Francisco Mental Health Department, 1988-1990.”
- 1978: Bachelors of Arts in Education University of South Carolina, Spartanburg Degree focus: “Early Childhood Education”
Memberships and Professional Affiliations
- National Association of Social Workers, (member since 1989).
- Academy of Certified Social Workers, National Association of Social Workers. (member since,1994).
- Association for the Advancement of Social Work with Groups. (member since 1998.)
- Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Florida.
- Licensed Clinical Social Worker, North Carolina.
- Licensed Clinical Social Worker, California.
Training, Presentations, Papers, Colloquia, Workshops
- 27th International Symposium, AASWG, Jersey City, NJ. From Rubble to Resilience: Groups for Helping Families and Communities Increase Resilience and Capacity Following Major Disasters. (June 27. 2007)
- 1st Annual Katherine A. Kendall Institute for International Social Work Education. A Three-Tiered Framework for Teaching Disaster Knowledge and Skills: Social Justice, Definitions of Disaster, and Prevention/Resiliency Promotion Strategies. (January 10 – 12, 2007).
- Annual Program Meeting, Counsel on Social Work Education, Chicago, Illinois, A Social Justice and Prevention Oriented Framework for Infusing Disaster Related Knowledge and Skills. (February 19, 2006).
- Annual In-service Training, Miami-Dade School Social Workers Miami Dade Public School District: Using Collaborative Approaches to Help Multi-Stressed Families & Children (May 18, 2004).
- Beulah Rothman Memorial Lecture, Groups with Younger Adolescents: Integrating Our Knowledge with Effective Practice Strategies and Skills, (January 19, 2005).
- 25th International Symposium, AASWG, Boston, Groups with LGBTQ Adolescents: Who They Are, Why Groups Work, What Narrative Approaches Offer. (October 18, 2004.)