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Apr 2 / Julie Alter-Kay

School of Social Work to host Planting of Pinwheel garden to mark National Child Abuse Prevention Month, along with Leadership Workshop

           School of Social Work to host Planting of Pinwheel garden to mark National Child Abuse Prevention Month, along with Leadership Workshop


Join us on Thursday, April 3, 2014 for a very special end-of-the-year celebration.

From 2:45 to 3:30 p.m., we will be planting a pinwheel garden in front of the Thompson Home as part of an initiative with Kids-Talk, Children’s Advocacy Center in honor of National Child Abuse Presentation Month. A pinwheel for Prevention is a nationwide initiative for Prevent Child Abuse America and its state affiliates.  “The pinwheel is an uplifting reminder of childhood and the bright futures all children deserve,” according the national PCA website. “When all children don’t have equal opportunities for healthy growth and development, we put our future as a society at risk.”

Immediately following, we will be holding a panel presentation and discussion on Mind, Body and Spirit Social Work Approaches to be held in room 1114 Old Main.  The agenda is as follows;

Associate Professor Ann Alvarez will provide an overview of this new course with highlights of opportunity for social work leadership in this area.

Ph.D. Student Laurel Hicks will inform and demonstrate the use of mindfulness in social work practice.

M.S.W. Cynthia Sweet will discuss the use of therapy dogs in a variety of settings with opportunity to meet therapy dog, Hardy.

To conclude the event, certificates will be presented to student organization members with updates and overview.  Refreshments provided.

ALL ARE WELCOME TO JOIN US!  For more information, call (313) 577-4409.

Mar 29 / Julie Alter-Kay

Exploring Human Rights: The Experiences of Refugees and Survivors of Human Trafficking

Exploring Human Rights: The Experiences of Refugees and Survivors of Human Trafficking

The School of Social Work International Student Social Work Organization will host this lecture on April 2, 2014, from 5 to 7 p.m. in the Std. Ctr. Bldg., 2nd Floor, Hilberry B.  Deborah A. Drennan, Executive Director, Freedom House will lead a discussion on this important topic.   

Freedom House is a temporary home for survivors of persecution from around the world seeking legal shelter in the United States and Canada.  Their mission is to uphold a fundamental American principle, one inscribed on the base of the Statue of Liberty, providing safety for those “yearning to breathe free.”   In 2012, they became a formal partner in the Northern Tier Anti-Trafficking Consortium servicing victims of human trafficking.  Some services provided by Freedom House include housing, food, clothing, legal aid, medical care, mental health care, English as a Second Language training, education, job training, recreation, transportation and transitional housing after asylum is gained.

The School of Social Work International Student Social Work Organization collaborated with Freedom House to bring this FREE lecture to our campus,Freedom house in order to educate the public about the plight of refugees.  Please attend and show your support of this important social issue.  Light refreshments will be provided. For more information, contact (313) 577-4409(313) 577-4409.  All are welcome to attend.

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Mar 21 / Julie Alter-Kay

March is Social Work Month – Register for S W 1010 to learn more about the field.

March is Social Work Month – Register for S W 1010 to learn more about the field.

The National Association of Social Workers has identified the 2014 March Social Work Month theme as All People Matter.  The theme was selected “to help raise awareness about the American social work profession’s 116-year commitment to improving social conditions and quality of life opportunities for everyone.”

Employment of social workers is projected to grow 19 percent from 2012 to 2022, faster than the average for all occupations (Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, Social Workers, on the Internet at

Are You Considering a Social Work Career?  If yes… then consider taking S W 1010 to learn more about the profession and the Bachelor of Social Work program at Wayne State University.

S W 1010 – Introduction to Social Work and Social Welfare is being offered Spring/Summer 2014, CRN # 32977, Mondays from 5:30 to 8:15 p.m. in room 0151 Old Main.  The course provides an introduction to social work including the knowledge, skills, values, and ethics, which guide the profession.  A learning community component is included in the course, which provides students with the opportunity to engage with organizations while exploring issues central to social work practice. Guest speakers facilitate presentations in this course to discuss different areas of practice and share their experiences and insights into the profession.

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For more information, contact Shantalea Johns at 313-577-4409 or email at  VISIT US @

Feb 1 / Julie Alter-Kay

School of Social Work Student Organization to host leadership workshop

The School of Social Work Student Leadership Learning Community is designed to enhance and develop leadership skills.  As part of the leadership series, a workshop will be held this Thursday, February 6, 2014 from 3 to 4:30 p.m. in room 150 of the Thompson Home.   Larmender Davis will facilitate this workshop entitled:  Leadership for the 21st Century.  The discussion will include the concept of management vs. leadership and an exercise to develop an elevator speech.

Larmender is immediate past president of the SSW Alumni Association Board and is the supervisor of the Social Work Department at Karmanos Cancer Institute with over 20 years of experience in non-profit management.  Most recently she was elected for a two-year term to serve as a Board Director at Large for the Association of Oncology Social Work (AOSW).  The purpose of  Board of Directors is to assist with the leadership and general promotion of AOSW in support of the organization’s mission and vision of advancing excellence in the psychosocial care of persons with cancer, their families, and caregivers through networking, education, advocacy, research and resource development. The AOSW is a non-profit, international, 501(c) 3 organization with over 1,000 members. Prior to getting elected as a board member, she served as the Michigan State Representative for AOSW as a member of the Membership Committee.

Don’t miss out on what is sure to be an informative and engaging workshop.  Delicious refreshments provided. Everyone Welcome!

L. Davis

Jan 22 / Julie Alter-Kay

Are you a social work student in need of money for school?

The 2014-2015 application for the School of Social Work private scholarships is now available!


Completed applications must be received by the School of Social Work Office of Admissions and Student Services (SSW OASS) by 5 p.m. on February 7, 2014.

The application is writable. Upon completing the form, SAVE IT and send the saved completed application back to us. It can be mailed or delivered directly to the Wayne State University School of Social Work, Office of Admissions and Student Services at 4756 Cass Avenue, Detroit, MI 48202. It can also be faxed at (313) 577-4266 or sent via email as an attachment to

Applicants no longer need to indicate which scholarship they are applying for with all applicants automatically being considered for those scholarships in which they meet eligibility. Please note the listed scholarships on the application that require essays.

All applicants must complete a Free Application For Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP). This information will be verified through the Wayne State University Financial Aid Office.  B.S.W. with missing or remaining Wayne State University general education requirements are not eligible to receive school-based scholarships or financial aid.   Receipt of this award is contingent upon agreement that we may inform the donor of the scholarship of your name and selected general information regarding your qualifications for this award. You must submit a copy of your thank you letter to the donor to the office of OASS and attend the annual scholarship reception.  Failure to do so will result in the rescinding of the scholarship award.  Contact the SSW OASS for further questions at 313-577-4409.

Jan 14 / Julie Alter-Kay

Get Vaccinated and Protect Yourself – And Others – From the Flu

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), flu activity in the United States most commonly peaks in January or February. So don’t let this week’s sun and mild(ish) temperatures lower your guard. Flu season is kicking into high gear – and you can protect yourself!

The School of Social Work’s Student Fitness and Wellness Organization, in conjunction with the University Health Clinic, is holding a flu clinic on Thursday, Jan. 16, from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. in room 1114 of Old Main. Flu shots will be given free to all WSU students. It’s easy math: a 30-minute stop by the clinic could save you days laid up in bed with a fever, aches and pains, a sore throat, a cough…you get the unpleasant idea.

But here’s another incentive: getting vaccinated also protects those you live, work, and spend time with. According to the CDC, the following groups face a higher health risk from the flu: children younger than 5 (but especially children younger than 2 years old); adults 65 years of age and older; pregnant women; and American Indians and Alaskan Natives. Certain health conditions also make people more vulnerable, including asthma; neurological conditions; lung and heart disease; blood, endocrine, kidney, liver and metabolic disorders; and – of course – a weakened immune system. If you are routinely in contact with people at heightened risk from the flu, you can keep them safe by getting vaccinated.

From a public health standpoint, vaccination works best when we all do it, because a sickness can’t spread if no one has it. Stop by our flu shot clinic on Thursday and enjoy peace of mind for the rest of the winter!

More information on the flu is available here:

Jan 8 / Julie Alter-Kay

SSW holds Concentration Day this Saturday

The Wayne State School of Social Work produces world-class M.S.W. practitioners united in their pursuit of economic and social justice for individuals, families and communities. But while master’s level practitioners share this vision of an equitable society, the approach they take to achieve it varies and is informed to a significant extent by their specialization – or “concentration” – in the M.S.W. program.

To prepare students to make this choice, the School of Social Work is hosting a Concentration/Curriculum Day on Saturday, Jan. 11 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Student Center Ballroom, 5221 Gullen Mall, Detroit, MI 48202. The event will be useful for senior B.S.W. students who have applied to or been admitted to the M.S.W. program; first-year full-time or second-year part-time M.S.W. students preparing for the advanced year curriculum; and prospective M.S.W. students.
Faculty and students will be on hand to describe the M.S.W.’s two concentrations:  Innovation in Community, Policy and Leadership (I-CPL): This concentration contextualizes student learning into three platforms of practice related to 1.) developing and sustaining effective communities, 2.) developing and sustaining effective policies, and 3.) developing and sustaining effective organizations through leadership. Two of these platforms – leadership and community building/development – will be discussed at the Concentration/Curriculum Day.  Interpersonal Practice: This concentration offers students a particular theoretical orientation and clinical method from among three theory “tracks”: 1.) Cognitive-Behavioral, 2.) Family Systems, and 3.) Psychodynamic.
Get the information you need to make this important career decision! Join us on Jan. 11 – and bring your questions!  RSVP today at   For further information, please contact the Office of Admissions and Student Services at (313) 577-4409.

Dec 13 / Julie Alter-Kay

The spirit of social work: Service as a holiday tradition

As Thanksgiving approached last month, Wayne State B.S.W. student Shamekia Schoffner was feeling preoccupied. She was looking forward to her family’s annual holiday tradition of a happy get together with food, warmth and laughter, but her recent volunteer work at a Detroit homeless shelter made her heart heavy at the thought of the many people in the city who would spend Thanksgiving hungry and alone.

Then, as she sat in her social work policy class, she felt empowered to do something. Her professor, Tonya Fleming-Fuller, mentioned that one year she had invited a family living in a shelter to come to her home for dinner.

“It was an ‘aha’ moment,” remembers Schoffner. “She planted a seed, and I said, ‘I‘m going to do something this year.’”

With help from classmates Amelia Allen, Angela Bell, Oliviah Marshall and Kelly Theile, Schoffner organized a food drive, reaching out to two B.S.W. classes for donations. The drive yielded four cases of canned and boxed food, which Schoffner delivered to Cass Community Social Services on Thanksgiving Day.

“I am so proud of her as an organizer and advocate,” Fleming-Fuller said of Schoffner. “She exemplifies the spirit of social work.”

Schoffner’s initiative also demonstrates the power of social work education to raise awareness about social and economic injustice. The volunteer work that motivated Schoffner to organize the food drive had fulfilled the service learning requirement of her social work methods class, taught by Reggie Huff, and took place at Neighborhood Service Organization (NSO), where Huff is director of homeless services and director of clinical training. While there, she participated in intake sessions and the Road Home, a unique mobile outreach program through which NSO staff make direct contact with homeless individuals living in the streets and encourage them to seek NSO services.

“I was out of my comfort zone,” Schoffner said, “and I appreciated that.”

Schoffner, who has decided to start a Thanksgiving tradition of service with her family, said the food drive was merely “consistent with social work.”

“A lot of the time we think about ourselves and not the next person, but social work is different and that’s why I love it,” she said. “Even if we helped to feed one person, I feel I was doing my job as a student, a social worker, and as a human being.”

Shamekia Schoffner

Dec 3 / Julie Alter-Kay

Interested in Macro Social Work?

Macro practice focuses on changing larger systems, such as communities and organizations, and is one of the key distinctions between social work and the other helping professions. Are you interested in a career in macro social work?

If so, we invite you to the Parlor of Thompson Home on Dec. 5 from 4 to 5:30 p.m. to discuss opportunities with faculty and WSU alumni employed in macro practice. Alumni will share helpful hints for the job search and describe how they have created their own social work identity in the workplace. Faculty will discuss what to expect after graduation and job positions that are a good fit with macro practice.

Light refreshments will be provided. We hope you can stop by for a few minutes or longer to connect with us and get answers to your questions about future job prospects in macro social work.

For additional information, please contact the Office of Admissions and Student Services at 313-577-4409 or

Nov 27 / Julie Alter-Kay

Looking for a career that makes a difference? Consider DHS opportunities on Dec. 5!

The Department of Human Services is Michigan’s public assistance, child and family welfare agency. It directs the operations of public assistance and service programs through a network of more than 100 county offices around the state.

If you are pursuing a career in social work, sociology, psychology, family ecology, consumer/community services, family studies, family and/or child development, guidance/school counseling, counseling psychology, criminal justice, or another human services area, DHS is an ideal place to look!

On Dec. 5 from 3 to 4 p.m., DHS will be in Room 1163 of Old Main to discuss careers opportunities. Alumni and current students in a human services-related bachelor’s or master’s degree program are encouraged to attend.

For more information, contact the Office of Admissions and Student Services at 313‐577‐4409 or For parking fees and information, see