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      About the Program

      The PhD in Social Work program is dedicated to educating graduate social workers who will contribute to the creation, dissemination, application, and evaluation of practice-relevant knowledge. The purpose of doctoral education is to prepare graduates for careers in applied social work research, teaching, and leadership in the field of practice. Organized around a developmentally integrated curriculum that attends to both methodological rigor and issues of social justice, students are prepared to engage in independent research and scholarship that informs social work practice at multiple levels.

      Within the broad goal of preparing advanced social work scholars and practitioners, the educational objectives of the doctoral program are to prepare our students to:

      1. Demonstrate the capacity for leadership and advocacy focused on promoting social justice.
      2. Demonstrate expertise in producing independent research that informs social work practice, service delivery, advocacy, and system change.
      3. Conceptualize, critically evaluate, and construct theory to advance social work knowledge, education, and practice.
      4. Integrate the values and ethics of the social work profession in teaching, scholarship, and service.
      5. Demonstrate comprehensive mastery of a substantive area of social work.


      Doctoral student Jennifer Williams along with Associate Professor Dr. Joanne Whelley will be conducting a paper presentation at the Council on Social Work Education, Annual Program Meeting (CSWE-APM) in Tampa. FL. entitled, “CAM: Critical Component in Advancing 21st Century Social Work Education”. Additionally, Jennifer’s proposal for Barry’s mini-conference, “The Promise and Peril of Personalized Medicine” in Oct was also accepted; she will be co-presenting with Dr. David Feldman (psychology) on “Epigenetics, Neuroplasticity, and Mental Health Care.”

      Doctoral Students Fabio Naranjo and Tania Paredes presented at the Latino Social Work Organization’s 2014 Conference held at the Jane Addams College of Social Work at the University of Illinois, Chicago. Tania presented her poster entitled, “The Role of the Latino Culture and Post-Partum Depression Symptomology: A Student’s Qualitative Inquiry” and Fabio presented his paper, “Policy Matters: Making Policy-Work Relevant to all Social Workers.”

      Congratulations to doctoral student Cassandra Scott for acceptance of her workshop, “Paperwork or Social Work: Using Information Technology in Social Work” at the 64th Annual Conference of the North American Association of Christians in Social Work (NACSW) in Annapolis, Maryland in November.

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