I joined the faculty at Widener University in 2004. I teach policy and community organization at the BSW, MSW, and PhD. levels. Preparing students as generalist social workers involves helping students understand the multiplicity of roles that we as social workers must play in order to access nec...
I joined the faculty at Widener University in 2004. I teach policy and community organization at the BSW, MSW, and PhD. levels. Preparing students as generalist social workers involves helping students understand the multiplicity of roles that we as social workers must play in order to access necessary resources and seek change with and for our clients. My courses are designed to increase students' awareness of the intersections between direct micro-practice (the individuals in the communities) and macro-practice (the communities in which those clients live and the policies which determine the type and extent of services that are available to address the client's issues).
My courses are highly interactive and focus on 4 key areas of skill acquisition: advocacy and commitment to social justice, assessment, working with diverse populations, and use of technology. I focus on these skills because, I recognize that there will be many challenges that our students will face in the future. They will emerge out of college in the midst of a recession at a time when conservative pundits and ideologues are once again questioning the social work profession and undervaluing its contributions to society. It will be necessary for them to be active leaders in their communities and advocates for their clients. My vision for my students is that they see themselves as leaders capable of engaging any population. Through modeling, I seek to inspire them to be active contributors to the communities in which they live and work.
My courses demonstrate the social work values of partnering with clients, non-judgementalism, and valuing the uniqueness and capabilities of individuals. An assessment of strengths is an integral aspect of both my teaching and my practice. I believe that every person has inherent strengths and gifts that will allow them to contribute to society and address their own issues. For this reason, community partners are welcomed into the classroom to help design interventions, develop research protocols, and provide valuable insights regarding community dynamics.
Ultimately, by engaging students in advocacy campaigns and community development activities, I seek to inspire my students to take control of their own education, to become active participants in their own lives and to be dedicated and committed to the eradication of social injustice.
My motto is "you can't be an antisocial social worker". I want to educate social workers who aren't afraid of the people they serve and aren't afraid to stand up for what is best for their clients. My goal is to turn out social workers who love what they do and have a genuine respect for the people that they serve.