The Social Work Profession’s Contributions to Administration of Social Services



the next the next presentation is going
to be by Mike Austin University of California Berkeley on
social administration management and then the discussant is jennifer Mosely
my colleague and school social service administration after that we're gonna
have about a 15 minute break but there's a lot of us there's there's coffee in
the corner if you want to get up and have coffee feel free I do want to
remind everybody somebody fills you at the beginning these signs that are all
over the place just reminding you we are recording this we're archiving this
it'll be on our website perhaps other websites and we are going to be these
folks get a chance to revise these papers and they'll go through peer
review and it's gonna be published in a special issue social service review this
December so you'll have lots of times that rethink this so we haven't I want
to thank work for the opportunity to share some ideas in his rapid 20-minute
time slot but to also reflect a little bit about this notion of a hundred years
and the mind-boggling challenge that that represents for me it's also
influenced by the fact that as a social work practitioners
I've lived fifty of those hundred years as a macro practice social worker of
course I got my MSW when I was nine years old so you can do the math but I
think part of the challenge for me and and I think with hats off by the way to
Rick Barth in our audience for helping to push us in the direction of these
Grand Challenges I'm gonna be talking a little bit more about the fact that
Grand Challenges also need grand strategies and this is the entry point
for me for macro practice and how we think about macro practice so I'll come
back to that as well clearly as I look back in our literature which is
absolutely fascinating and I'm gonna bore you with some of it I'm struck by
what has changed and what has not changed and some of the literature that
I'm reading has to do with things like in 1950 a colleague in the Social Work
management field out of Minnesota came and quoted in one of his articles and
saying you know he called it direct he called it casework and administration I
call it micro and macro cannot be separated from each other without
changing the character of each try that again that the micro and macro
distinctions in our field that are currently today and these were this was
a 1950 paper cannot be separated from each other without changing the
character of each and so part of what I'll be talking about because we have a
whole direct practice discussion coming but to talk more about macro practice
and particularly around the management issues it wasn't until the mid 70s where
actually it was in the mid 50s that the first course in administration was
taught in schools of Social Work as a single course for everybody that is now
gone in many schools it doesn't even exist so one of the interesting things
was well what happened after that one of the things that happened was this
evolution of thinking around well shouldn't we have specializations that
allow students to major in this macro practice arena management community
practice and so on my original I I graduated from UC
Berkeley with my MSW in what was called community organizing and administration
this was one of the first programs in the country along with Columbia and Ohio
State and others they were offering actually specialized programs for MSW
students so one of the things that that I've been intrigued with is how come
this management or even macro practice broadly continues to be ancillary to
direct practice interests of students because in our school it's 85% direct
practice 15% macro practice and I describe myself as a social worker who
happens to work on campus which is a little bit different from my colleagues
because in the context of working on campus I'm a Social Work educator and
I'm a social work researcher that's defined by the institution I work for so
let me sort of share with you the perspective that I bring to this because
I think it may may be helpful in the context of describing the future of
management practice so you'll see several sort of items for me that that I
find important seeking a big-picture perspective that represents the view
from the top of only one mountain they'll mountain I sit on and so that
means you're only hearing one person's perspective I'm hoping I'm representing
others but maybe not to that context is everything obviously we've talked
already about the impact of the presidential election and redefining
citizenship from passive I go and vote and some people don't even do that to
active which is more than voting what else do we do when it comes to thinking
about the future of our country and and obviously Social Work practice I come
from a perspective that focuses on the centrality of practice which means in
for my definition that what we are doing in our in our social work programs has
to do with theory inform practice policy inform practice evidence inform practice
values inform practice but the the focus is always on why are these students here
and why are we there as educators teaching them for me it's a practice
focus and and I'm not always sure even in my own colleagues whether people
really buy into that notion management obviously from my perspective is a form
of social work practice but only a part of macro practice because the community
practice and policy practice are equally important components of what we mean by
macro practice so that's sort of one one aspect of perspective for me a second
aspect has to do with the fact that not only are we practice focused but the
core value of our profession is social justice among many but that's that's one
of the premier values and the question is how does that get played out and in
multiple ways I'm assuming I won't spend a lot of time on these because is
Michael here and see him in the audience is he couldn't be rang you see you
discussing done on today yeah anyway there he is
okay this is your thunder so I'm not going to steal it other than to indicate
that this is a piece of why we think about the role of managers playing in
the social justice agenda of our field and it includes everything from
maintaining the big picture to understanding both the ethical
imperatives of social justice into practice
engaging in risky activism and obviously the notion that the survival of macro
practice is in the collective self-interest of the entire profession
and so we aren't just the other stepchildren in the room we are also
players in the social work practice arena we can probably get into a huge
discussion on that so themes from the past hundred years and this is quick
though it'll be much more in the paper but I like to think of Jane Addams as a
manager she's known for other things but I like to think of Harry Hopkins as
a manager obviously in public policy arena and I
like to think of somebody whom you may not have heard of called Fred Ross who
was what we would call today the campaign manager in California for
farmworkers he was the behind-the-scenes person managing the entire process
including knocking on the door of cesar chavez as a young family father of I
think one at that time in San Jose saying do you know what's happening to
the Latino workers in this in this state of ours and you need to get involved and
I want to show you and of course Fred Ross was trained out
of the Chicago model of the industrial areas foundation and the whole early
elinsky thinking about how does this play itself out to me he is one of our
early campaign managers in the context of how we think about management now
another thing I noticed as I was looking through the history and this is only a
beginning piece as Mark says we're writing these papers trying to figure
out how to cram a hundred years into one paper but one of the things I noticed is
in in our field in Social Work the production or the codification of
practice knowledge turns out to be in many places but the most dominant place
that appears is in our textbooks and if you looked at the late 70s to the early
2000s roughly that 25 30 year period and I haven't stopped counting yet but I'm
over the number 15 right now of a flourish of text books on social work
management in our field and that's a part of our history and the meaning of
that obviously needs to be both explored and thought about more it was in the
late 70s as well that we launched our first journal then called administration
and Social Work today call human service organizations so mark
wanted us to focus in this presentation less on history and more on so what's
the present and where are we going which is part of what I'm trying to do in this
piece and these are things that I think many of you in the audience already know
the proliferation of undergraduate degrees and nonprofit management we are
very marketplace sensitive and macro practice we're looking at who else is
doing the stuff that's like ours whether it's an urban and regional planning for
our community organizer types or in other grassroots nonprofit non
university based training programs extensive same and true and potent in
the area of Public Administration was mentioned earlier and in public policy
at the same time we have this huge expansion of generalist and advance
Social Work practice going on where supposedly macro practice is mentioned
in in in some programs it's a week and some current programs that may be three
weeks but the notion that that somehow this got mixed into both generalist
practice and advanced practice means we lost ground the question is how much
into what effect we are also operating obviously in in in the scarcity of
resources because the growth of macro practice has taken place in our big
schools whether it's Michigan or Maryland or Hunter these have been
places where the resources are there and by definition the stated value of this
form of practice is being clearly enunciated not so in the vast majority
of other schools where they're also wiping out the macro practice program
because they're the university budget cuts our major student demand is direct
practice we don't need this we need to get rid of this so this is happening in
lots of places it's not well-known because these are embarrassing
developments for most schools of Social Work as well as universities more
broadly this is also taking place in the midst of the third wave of our
legislative arena just to mention a few having to do with
the a da in early 90s the child health piece obviously some of the classic
examples of welfare reform I've been studying for the last number of years
the implementation of that policy and the community level what has that meant
but also the implicit in the implementation of the ACA and whatever
the White House is trying to do with it now this comes at the very same time
where Jack Bronfman helped us pioneer at the University of Michigan and UCLA in
helping us sort of hold up a mirror to ourselves and say hey folks you got to
wake up to what is happening in our field with regard to macro practice
broadly and did that obviously as part of a report that was that was initially
managed obviously out of a cosa but also within a commission set up to follow up
on that whole activity and that's that was obviously can be described and has
been described elsewhere so the question then becomes what's the central role of
Social Work profession in management practice this is what what is direct
practice helping us in thinking about and clearly they it includes a number of
things and I'll just briefly mention them but they're all familiar to you the
history of the commitment to serving vulnerable populations and core values
of social justice the value based and strength based notions of our field the
centrality of relationships and conscious use to self in implementing
practice principles this is core to anybody who is an effective manager let
alone a community organizer the centrality of group work I'm always
struck by what happened internationally to our field when we exported casework
principles to developing countries and not group work principles and yet that
was where collective societies could have benefit is so much more from our
development than necessarily handling a case in a case record you know in you
know developing countries situation advocacy based as amplifying the voices
of service users and agency staff in some cases unionization clearly on the
agency staff side but also the notion and I've been looking at some of the
work in the Nordic countries around how do we amplify the voices of service
users as a management responsibility not just a community
responsibility and obviously the work ethic that's associated in good Social
Work practice with documenting service delivery and some of my research more
recently is on in child welfare looking at case records qualitative data case
records of child welfare Social Work practitioners so the uneven role of the
profession and promoting management is is I think somewhat well known we're
obviously operating in a highly competitive labor market there's been
limited national support for for macro practice so I think that's changing as
both cswe has been responding a bit to the macro practice matters the issues we
now have a section I think in NSW that's not too too many years old around
administration we've got a network out there called the network on social work
management and obviously we have a special interest group here it's it's
work on groups on organisation and management but I think the the primary
dilemma for us is shelf space in a Social Work curriculum it is so
competitive to who gets shelf space and for the macro practice folks it's it's
quite limited and part of it is is linked to the fact that student demand
is primarily clinical or direct service and faculty are appropriately responding
to that and yet it's not always clear to me when I talk to my direct service
colleagues that they have any real understanding of what the knowledge and
skill base is to function in management as a social worker so the uneven role
also includes student attitudes and and we've had a number of interesting
examples where when in the first semester of our MSW program and a
faculty member says well what what are the concentrations represented in this
room mental health child welfare and so on and then the management planning
students say well I'm interested in management planning and there's a
hissing sound in the room not checked by the faculty member and the question is
what's that about and I've been intrigued with this over the years where
this sort of what what what in fact is happening in some cases is that our
incoming students are carrying with them the ad
Tuesday vyx an experience that they've had in the agency and part of those
attitudes have to do with management doesn't know what the hell it's doing
and management's attitude line staff isn't in in completing their case
records in a timely way etc so this notion of the internal tension that's
going on in our agencies okay is brought back onto campus and we see it in our
classrooms as well anyway so the notion here is that that there's sort of a call
for paying attention to this whole area I'm gonna skip these principles they're
gonna be elaborated more in the paper itself and to focus more on the themes
that I see emerging out of this whole arena that are worth paying attention to
in my mind anyway in the area of innovation I work by the way within a
collaborative that's now thirty years old that's made up of 12 Bay Area County
social service directors these are county directors meet with them five
times a year these are all people in the policy implementation business and
trying to figure out what how to change policy but also how to how to handle the
the impact of public policy on their work and one of the things they've been
wrestling with is this concept of doing instead of doing more with less doing
doing more differently fundamentally differently and I can if we I'm happy to
elaborate on that too that there's craftsmanship needed to design and
implement new service strategies around in the context of innovation and that
one of the challenges that many of our agencies are facing is how do we develop
learning organizations in order to engage in knowledge sharing activities
that supports workers who are interested in evidence inform practice the
mechanisms the structures aren't there to help staff actually utilize some of
the research that we've all been talking about second is that that a major theme
also is around data informed decision-making managing the increased
amounts of data and defining and measuring outcomes a huge issue for us
in our field balancing the quantitative admin data with a qualitative case
record data service quality and accountability the collaborative service
user service user centered and culturally informed service programming
requires us to be paying more attention to the quality and account of
the services were now currently delivering and then the last set of
themes have to do with leading I think organizational reform making the
transition from individual program outcomes to social impact lots of
current discussion around how do you define and measure social impact
continuing to promote cultural and gender responsive human service
organizations managing the continuing flow of legislative changes increasing
reliance on cross sector contractual relations part of our research is
looking at what is this contracting relationship between county government
Social Services and the nonprofit providers that they rely so heavily on
rebuilding bridges between micro and macro practice this is huge this is just
huge because it's we are in this boat together and we keep forgetting that for
some reason and and yet they're not the mechanisms clearly for for for crossing
those bridges and then more cross sector coordination collaboration is a huge
issue among public nonprofit and and nonprofit agencies so what does this
mean for the future of Social Work education it means confronting the past
in my mind 80 to 90 percent of the managers are coming from the clinical
ranks we are not producing enough social
workers to meet the needs in the field and so the question is how do we build
upon that as opposed to how do we ignore that huge issue I think in terms of
training model modules rethinking the MSW program there are many students now
coming in with can I get an MSW and an MPP and public policy and or other dual
degree programs and and how how do we respond to this in a more and a more
unified way over time including the bridges now to our new clinical or
direct service whatever you want to call that DSW programs and where where is
macro practice in that discussion because all I hear is clinical and
getting people ready for private practice of some form call for obviously
massive I use massive advisedly here Social Work
in-service training programs because we also need to confront the fact that 80
or more percent of the people delivering social service in the public sector and
in the nonprofit sector have no Social Work background none and so we're now in
the midst of sort of putting together training materials and I'm working with
a New York animating videographer to figure out how do you tell the story of
the social welfare legislation from 1935 to 2010 in 7 minutes 7 minutes to be
infused into the training program of all staff clerical on up in our public
agencies so anyway the notion here of this is what I mean by massive and then
for the future of Social Work practice increased use of obviously data
analytics because we're generating so much data to inform organizational
decision making the need for an office of innovation and human service
organizations I can talk more about that and then the volunteer governance
question around we've got people sitting on our nonprofit boards who don't really
understand social services don't understand Social Work don't understand
the history the agency they're serving on the board and therefore is a huge
challenge of for us to educate and then finally the future for Social Work
research we are all struggling with the research to practice gap linking on one
hand and reduce interdisciplinary research to both 202 interdisciplinary
practice we don't talk about about that linkage what is that how does that work
how could that work secondly expanding the role of practice to search this is
an energy an area that I've been devoting a lot of time to which is how
do we define a research minded practitioner and how do we help them in
their own practice what does that mean and then finally obviously and this is
my own bias building more University Agency Foundation research consortium
this has been the basis of my work over the last number of years in this Basques
is the Bay Area social services consortium that some of this is a
reflection of and that's it yeah hi so let me start by just saying
that it's really a privilege to be part of this group and to be asked to comment
on Mike's excellent presentation to me I think that the central challenge Mike
presents to us is the material that he addressed in the beginning of his talk
which I think maybe can be stated even more plainly specifically I would ask
does management even have a future in the Social Work profession as it
currently stands I don't think that the future looks that bright as the latter
part of his talk shows we actually know quite a bit about the challenges of
management in the 21st century and how to address those challenges but I think
that without a renewed commitment by the profession to teaching mentoring and
research in this area I think that social work is running the risk of
becoming irrelevant in conversations about how to best lead human service
organizations which are obviously the very same organizations and which most
social workers carry out their practice so I want to make clear first why I
think that we should care of social work has a voice in management so early in
the presentation he made two points that I think bear repeating
first he noted that macro practice leadership on management practice
specifically is where we translate the ethical imperative of social justice
into action so he wrote that the survival of macro practices in the
collective self-interest of the Social Work profession because it's at that
level that we organize and advocate for social work values in other words we
need social workers to also be managers if we're to see our collective values
expressed in the agencies that we practice in I would push this one
further even though as I alluded to just before if we abdicate our historic
professional identity of contributing to management as well as direct services
we're giving up the opportunity to control many of the conditions that
influence the quality of our work increasingly it's folks with MBA is that
nonprofit boards want to hire and do executive director and top management
positions and yes MBAs often have lots of great skills and lots of areas but
folks with MBAs are not trained to think about what social workers do on any
level other than the quantitative an outcome measurement those things are
important but they're not the only things that are important our clients
are individuals not widgets and as I see chasm filled drilled into my brain in
graduate school people are raw material right and people are really complicated
that's a central insight into the work of human service organizations and the
reason why sometimes even when we provide perfect services we don't have
perfect outcomes the difficulty of the work that we do and the inconsistency in
outcomes leads to the cyclical accountability and
legitimacy crises that are experienced in the human services furthermore it's
those legitimacy crises that make human service organizations prime targets for
people who would wish to call into question the value of relational work
and then outcomes oriented world or challenge the notion that marginalized
populations can and do make meaningful contributions to society so all this is
to say that I would much rather have someone who has comprehensive training
regarding the nature of the work that social workers actually do be in charge
of explaining it to others of raising money for others and entering into
agreements about how its carried out so mike lays this out really well on his
talk I think commitment to shared leadership inclusion of marginalized
voices strength space and client centered approaches to practice
recognition of the importance of advocacy these are all har marks of a
social work perspective and I would argument that they make social work
uniquely well-qualified to study and lead mission based organizations these
are the values that we make that we bring to management and they're what
make us good at management increasingly good management is getting defined as
being able to maximize something called impact an impact is important but calls
for impact are often tied to larger cultural tropes about the wastefulness
and the Human Services and result in policies that emphasize economic value
over moral value and I don't think that any one is better situated in social
workers to thread the needle in pursuit of both of those things
so does management have a future in Social Work
Mike had up on his slide something about a 20% by 2020 campaign all right is that
even possible and I think and I agree with him that you know with pressed I
would have to admit that in most schools of Social Work I don't think that it's
currently possible for an MSW student to get a solid background in management and
I think that students know that and so those
that have a specific interest in administrative practice or looking at
elsewhere we can't get to 20% if we don't have robust programs for folks to
enroll in complicating manners again as Mike points out there's been that
explosive growth in nonprofit management programs and an increased focus in
nonprofit management in public administration programs those folks are
getting specific training and leading mission focused organizations and
they're much harder to pick on they incorporate types that think that they
can solve all our problems by just being business minded so should we encourage
students who know that they're interested in organizational leadership
to just attend those programs or will we build the space for them in social work
right now in many schools by not having a robust management curriculum we're
effectively communicating that either a management is so easy or unimportant
that we assume people can learn on the job just by doing it or that we don't
care of people with the Social Work background ever end up in those
positions and I think that needs to change
so what should we do first in order to rebuild our position in the larger field
I think that we have to participate more and interdisciplinary conversations
meetings and knowledge development there's a lot of work being done in this
area by an interdisciplinary community of scholars but there are a few leaders
from Social Work admittedly I've talked a lot about curricular and practice
issues just now but I hope you see why if we aren't teaching management and
organizations we aren't hiring and building institutional support for
organizational scholarship and there's been a real decline and the numbers of
social workers involved in organizational scholarship and the
impact of their work as a result so I think that we need to re-envision and re
articulate much more clearly what the value added is of thinking about
management from a Social Work perspective and I think that that can
help clarify what we uniquely have to offer to that larger interdisciplinary
conversation but perhaps more importantly it might help remind
ourselves about what we have to contribute so beyond simply applying our
values and perspective what should a social work centered management
curriculum look like what should would be teaching so that our students are
prepared to lead and what do we need to focus on in our research so that we're
building the knowledge base that can help push the field forward in new ways
Mike lays out some of this the end of his talk um so I just wanted
to highlight a couple of his ideas so first in regards to curriculum design I
appreciate that he encourages us to think outside the box about what the MSW
should look like a real struggle is the simply the limited amount of time that
we have with students and the limited degrees of freedom that they have in
their schedules so perhaps an additional semester that would be in a management
intensive would work for some students that have interests in both micro and
macro practice second in regards to teaching I think improved data analytics
and evaluation training is crucial if our students are to be more competitive
when they graduate it's imperative now for directors at all levels to be able
to manage and make sense of lots of data to know what's useful and what to act
upon and how to assess and communicate program outcomes both quantitatively and
qualitatively that would also benefit our policy students and that can't be
learned adequately on the job if there aren't one area that I might challenge
Mike to think more about in the next iteration of his paper is what the
scholarly contributions of social workers to this field have been and what
questions we need to be working on more as we move forward so for example one
thing that social workers are really good at doing is thinking across levels
right so for example the relationship between micro and macro or the interface
between organizational and policy practice so that's a place where we
could make a real contribution to the literature in terms of thinking about
how those different planes interact I also didn't hear that much and it's talk
about collaboration and working in teams I think advancing knowledge in that area
is really important and face in the face of demands to participate in collective
impact initiatives collaborative governance processes but it's also a
recognition that that old notion of a single siloed hierarchical organization
doesn't work very well in today's society our professional knowledge about
systems in power I think gives us a competitive advantage in that area and
then the last thing that I want to urge Mike to address in the final version of
his paper is diversity and inclusion and human service organizations so this is
an area in which social work is well positioned to lead but in order to do
that we need to reckon with our own past and come to terms with their own history
of marginalizing and siloing women and people of color this is a problem that's
particularly endemic to administration and management which I think especially
and the most professionalized social service agencies
remains unrepresentative of the field in terms of the proportion of white men so
my hope for the future is that Social Work can live its values by encouraging
supporting and training more women and people of color to take those top
leadership roles and then I'll just conclude by saying that I think that the
current generation is really ready for these changes their entrepreneurial
their innovative they've been raised to be leaders and creative thinkers if your
schools are anything like mine they're also an activist generation that want to
see changes in the status quo and I think that's exactly who we need leading
the way in social work organizations but we're letting them down by not providing
the training and the tools for them to pursue the path of organizational
leadership so we have done better in the past I think we can do better and I'm
gonna just throw my hat in with Mike and saying that I think that administrative
practice is an important part of the legacy of social work and it worries me
deeply to see us just let it go thanks much much to think about we've
got about 10 minutes before our coffee break so questions comments thoughts hi
my name is Tina shurelya L maniac from West Chester University of Pennsylvania
and I was glad to hear you recognize dr. Austin the network for social work
management they've recognized my dissertation in 2014 for looking at the
organizational factors related to burnout and job satisfaction and one of
the things that I think that we're missing in the current self care
movement is what our organizations do to our workers and how we're not addressing
the fact that we are overwhelming them and they are increasingly leaving the
field and by them leaving the field then we
lose the next generation of leaders because they're not doing the work
they're not getting trained to take on leadership positions and then the gap is
being filled by the NPA's and the MBAs and so I think we need to stop looking
at self care from an individual movement it's not about how much yoga we do or
how much counseling we get for ourselves it's about the organizational practices
that are burning out our workers and our students and our future leaders so just
my comment thank you couldn't agree more I think part of the
the challenges I'm delighted that you mentioned your dissertation as well is
is this question of what constitutes organizational leadership that's
internally focused and what constitutes organizational leadership that's
externally focused and these are both areas that I think are in desperate need
of new thinking the kind you're suggesting what is the workplace we're
generating by the way of the way by the way in which work is allocated over time
let alone how are we connecting outside of our agency with others who might also
help in the rethinking of the nature of the work being done so I think your
points well-taken it it's a huge huge challenge that you're posing if there's
not I'm gonna make a comment that I was gonna make the last talk that I actually
think is relevant to this as well I'm categorizing social work into silos
is hard right and so the comment I still a lot of Martin a lot of mic talk was
about macro practice not about management prep you know management
practice being a part of macro practice and that's why I think what I'm about to
say although I was thinking about it in the policy domain also fits in this in
this article as well or this talk as well and that is that I think that a
huge contribution of social work I was gonna say social work to social policy
but we can say social work tomorrow practice is what I would see is our
competitive advantage in going inside the black box of organizations that
carry out policy and also to really dig into the lived experience of people who
are affected by our policies and thirdly I think a huge contribution of social
work to social policy and to macro practice is our
in tents I focus on distributional effects in a way that other disciplines
don't do it so we think very intentionally I many of us do most of us
do I think about the effects of policies the effects of organizational practices
on oppressed groups on marginalized groups and we often Center those groups
in our in our analysis so I think actually this it sounds like Mike and
Jennifer's work for this for this this journal is talking about those things
that I was glad to see it in the in the management practice chapter and I I kind
of hope it's also in the policy chapter because I think it's a huge part of the
contribution of social work to social policy I think we do a lot of work
really good work on policy analysis and all the work that was was mentioned is
really important but in addition I think as I said our competitive advantage is
actually also on the implementation side and the lived experience side and the
distributional effects side so I think that has to be in the journal somewhere
I feel like that's that's really where we've done a lot of our work yeah I just
I'm really pleased that you're reinforcing some of the questions that
relate to people who manage and also people who are dealing with public
policy both from an implementation side but also from a redesign and advocacy
side and I just think I'm just intrigued with this notion that over the years we
have educated students about social welfare policy things you ought to know not so much things about what you ought
to do with what you know about the Social Security Act or recent ACA
legislation whatever it might be so this is why I keep coming back to the fact
that it's it's our faculty responsibility although my colleagues
don't always share this to be envisioning themselves as educators with
regard to policy informed practice how do practitioners think about what
they're doing in the light of the public policies that influence this
services they deliver and I think what we've done over the past is help people
see all these policies that evolved over time their strengths and their
limitations but not in the context of daily practice and so I think this is
another area that you're you're flagging and I think Jennifer did too I'm sorry
to be so chatty today but it's very exciting I teach social welfare history
and policies so I'm really excited about it anyway you know there's a little
tendency here to bifurcate with the management in the business schools and
you know this sort of thing I just want to say that at the University of
Pennsylvania's schools social policy and practice we have a very big MSW program
we have a Master of Science in Social Policy program and we have a non-profit
leadership program and what we're working towards now mostly is inter
articulating all three of those programs in two major courses that they all can
take and learn from each other so there is that route as well which I think you
would approve up that's really exciting it's exciting from another perspective
that you may not know but when I arrived at the University of Pennsylvania in
1985 there was no macro practice opportunities for students zero and it
was sort of like do we need that and I said yes it's part of Social Work
practice so I'm delighted to see that this has evolved considerably from that's great public affairs I'm the
director of social welfare and alongside public policy narbon planning and even
though there's competition around this domain from all three departments who's
gonna be in charge of Human Services we are collaborating form an undergraduate
major so I think just as he said like the collaboration is
possible but if we try to just stay car claim without that collaboration I think
we'll lose something one other point I just wanted to make in regard to
Jennifer's comment was about hiring faculty who are invested in
organizations and management and I think with the recent push to hire folks who
are NIH funded Bowl this is for faculty Oh everyone in the room but I think we
need to really think about if that's what we're valuing is are we really
going to hire students who want to be students of management administration
and so forth which is not as much in the NIH domain so I'd love I don't know if
we have time but I'd love to hear a quick response to that because that
concerns me around who we hire at at schools that are trying to promote
faculty in all these areas I mean I would agree I think all those things are
interrelated right I mean we've seen growth in some parts of the curriculum
and a contraction in other parts and they go right along with sort of success
and grantsmanship and how much external funding you're bringing in and I think
that those pressures on schools are very real right so I don't I recognize
they're buying that folks are in but I do think that we have to think about the
big picture and what we're losing if we're only if we're letting essentially
someone else's research agenda dictate what it is that social work should be
focusing on broadly good one last hopefully quick comment a question Jeff
Charlene from University of Pennsylvania I'm just thinking about your comments
about the shift in where curricula are you're from a current to more micro I
just interesting kind of throwing out there also the labor market part of the
piece of the puzzle and you know who when job postings are for social workers
like what they're looking for and how and there's obviously interrelate with
each other while who's being trained for what and who is being looked for for
what but how yeah that's basic question is that clear
so um thing with the labor market for social workers is predominately for
micro practice clinical when people want managers as what say there oh there's a
trend work to look for the MBAs the outcome oriented so I'm just wondering
how you see those two interrelate the labor market demand and then on the
training side for social workers well that's interesting
our program is small so we have 15 to 18 graduates a year coming out of our
program and they get absorbed in a large you know service economy surrounding
both the Bay Area but California and we were talking about 36 million in this
state so it there's we are drop in the bucket but I think your question in part
relates to how do people enter the field in ways and and we've had students you
know focus in several different directions there's usually about I'd say
25% of our graduates who came into the program saying I've been in direct
service I don't want to do that anymore and I said well what do you want to do
is that wanna do systems change I said okay you're in the right place that 20
and that same 25 percent when they graduate say you know I kind of miss
working with the kids and I kind of miss working with the seniors I think I'm
gonna go back into practice and direct/indirect practice position
because I know it won't be long before they're gonna ask me to supervise staff
and run a program and become whatever so there's sort of that model and then
others who are really committed to being program managers they look for those
positions they don't call them Social Work positions they're called something
else same with our community practice folks you know the label is outreach
worker but it happens to be the community organizer for the neighborhood
health center so it I think the dilemma is recognizing how these jobs are
described in the labor market because they do not begin with social work and
our students need help sometimes realizing that's how they need to look I
mean I also involve students a lot in in informational interviewing
you shouldn't graduate without three informational interviews in your final
semester and they usually say what is that and I go into the description to
that but the notion is you should be talking to people who are doing jobs
that you find interesting and find out why what what are these jobs entail how
did they get into these jobs what do they find rewarding about them because
that's the kind of information that puts somebody in a more proactive instead of
internal locus control its external locus and control activity that looks to
see how can I utilize that information to find my own work nine times out of
ten that are not job announced but your resume got passed to somebody and you
get a call for a job that's relevant to what you were looking for
so there all kinds of things that go with that I won't bore you with all that
stuff so let's let's thank Mike in

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