From the Dean’s Desk

The trauma and vulnerability of detained families and separated children are not as easily undone as a policy change. In designing interventions, we must account for the accumulated impact of adverse events that result from complex interactions at various levels, scales, and across social systems and policy responses. BCSSW faculty are pursuing new approaches in their research and teaching that recognize the nature of complex social systems driving individual, community, and institutional behaviors.

Learning Through Community Engagement

Eight Boston College School of Social Work (BCSSW) MSW candidates are engaged in a novel Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) course designed and taught by Assistant Professor Samantha Teixeira that provides hands-on experience in the context of an existing community-engaged research partnership. In the course, students design and implement a specific project, then reflect on the possibilities for using CBPR in future settings related to community development, community organizing, and academic research.

BCSSW Delivers Report on Catholic Social Innovation & the Refugee Crisis to FADICA

A team of researchers from the Boston College School of Social Work’s (BCSSW) Center for Social Innovation delivered a research report to the philanthropic network Foundations and Donors Interested in Catholic Activities (FADICA) that offers a working definition of “Catholic social innovation” and highlights 64 examples of such work in response to the global refugee and migrant crisis.

Fellowships Support Doctoral Research

Each spring, two doctoral students at the Boston College School of Social Work are awarded fellowships to further their research and their work in the field. The Carolyn B. Thomas Fellowship, established in 1989 by a longtime BCSSW professor, recognizes the accomplishments and supports the future endeavors of a doctoral student who works with families and children, while the Elaine Pinderhughes Fellowship is given each year to an outstanding African-American PhD student.

Innovation from Within book cover

Innovating for the Common Good

In today’s culture of fast-paced technological and entrepreneurial innovation, nonprofits have much to gain by looking within their own organizations to find new solutions to social problems, according to a new book by Stephanie Berzin, an associate professor and assistant dean of doctoral programs at the School of Social Work. Co-authored with Humberto Camarena, Innovation from Within: Redefining How Nonprofits Solve Problems (Oxford University Press, 2018) offers a practical framework for how leaders in the nonprofit sector can foster innovation and creativity within their organizations.

Susan Tohn

Tohn to Pilot Solution-Focused Therapy Workshops in Spanish

Associate Professor Susan Tohn and Boston College School of Social Work  alumna Suelen Yancor, MSW ’05, offer a two-day training on Solution-Focused Therapy techniques with a focus on Spanish language interventions, a project designed to help practitioners understand some of the unique cultural competencies associated with best serving Latinx populations.

From the Dean’s Desk

The Grand Challenges in Social Work highlight important societal dilemmas that demand innovation and the creation of new knowledge networks. To lead research, scholarship, teaching, and practice around these challenges, social work scholars must bring together relevant disciplines and professions, social work practice partners, and communities. These knowledge networks leverage the strength of a diversity of fields and draw on the lived experience of communities and populations embedded in the problems of concern to us.