What's New at Wurzweiler

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Wurzweiler Hosts Undoing Racism Workshop

On March 19th, thanks to a gift from the the Schott Fund for Social Advocacy, Wurzweiler School of Social Work was able to bring the Undoing Racism Workshop to our School. Thirty Wurzweiler faculty and administrators, and one Board of Governors member had a condensed version of the training, which usually lasts two and a half days.

The topics included power analysis, gate-keeping, learning from history, sharing culture, maintaining accountability, and defining racism. The Undoing Racism initiative is the work of The People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond. The Institute was founded in 1980 by Dr. Jim Dunn and Ronald Chisom as a movement to transform our society through collective action. It has been conducting workshops all across the U.S. for the last 25 years and, for the last five years, focusing on training social workers in New York City. With the support of New York social work schools, hundreds of faculty, students, practitioners and administrators have been trained.

One of the important outcome of the one-day workshop was the sense of community building among those present. The hope is that Wurzweiler can continue these discussions in future workshops. (Thanks to Dr. Carmen Hendricks for reporting this event.)

Monday, February 05, 2007

6 Jewish Communal Service Students Attend Winter Seminar in Israel

During January, six students from Wurzweiler's Jewish Communal Certificate program attended a 12 day Graduate Study Seminar in Israel, along with six students from other NY universities. The seminar, organized by the UJA Federation of New York for graduate students interested in working in the Jewish community, afforded participants an insider's perspective on Israeli society and its social services. One subject of study was the recent war in Lebanon, its impact on Israeli communities, and the response of government and not-for-profit agencies to the needs of the civilian population.

Seminar participants visited social service agencies in Jerusalem and northern Israel and met with professionals and volunteers. The critical challenges on Israeli's social agenda included rebuilding the physical and social service infrastructures in the aftermath of the war with Lebanon, aiding evacuees from Gush Katif, combatting poverty and hunger, understanding the challenges facing Arabs in Israel, and helping the recent wave of immigration. Special focus was also given to understanding the evolving relationships between diaspora communities and Israel.

Students returned with a wealth of new knowledge, new friends and colleagues from other universities, and a reinforced commitment to pursuing careers in the Jewish community.
(Thanks to Saul Andron, Director of the Certificate in Jewish Communal Service program, and Rachie Jacobson, a student in that program, for reporting this event.)

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Wurzweiler Celebrates its Alumni

As part of Wurzweiler's 50th Anniversary, our faculty has been traveling around the US and Canada, meeting with alumni, conducting seminars, and celebrating fifty years of outstanding social work education.

Dr. Morton Teicher, our founding dean, Dr. Susan Bendor, a faculty member who hails from Canada, and Mark Miller, our alumni director, celebrated in Toronto on October 29th of this year. On December 7th, Dr. Teicher, Dr. Norman Linzer, and Dean Sheldon Gelman gathered to greet alumni and friends at the Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore, Maryland. Dr. Teicher, and Dr. Sam Goldstein, a former dean of the school, Dr. Elspeth Couch, a retired faculty member, and Dean Gelman met with alumni at the Fair Lawn Jewish Center in New Jersey, on December 6th. President Richard Joel, Dean Gelman, and Dr. Linzer met with California alumni at the Beth Jacob Congregation in Beverly Hills. Dr. Linzer, a prominant ethicist, spoke on Ethical Dilemmas in Social Work Practice.

Click here to view an online photo-album of our adventures.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Wurzweiler Students Attend UJC General Assembly

Sixteen Wurzweiler students joined with Jews from across the nation and around the world at the United Jewish Communities' 75th Annual General Assembly. The GA was held in Los Angeles this year, from November 12 through 14.

Wurzweiler students had the opportunity to network with other Jewish communal professionals, participate in a variety of plenaries and smaller learning sessions, and meet Wurzweiler alumni currently serving the Jewish community. The unique experience was part of the Certificate in Jewish Communal Service program at The three day program included sessions with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, journalist Fareed Zakaria, French philosopher Bernard-Henri Levy, and an exclusive session for Wurzweiler students with Professor Gerald Bubis, founder and Director of the School of Jewish Communal Service at Hebrew Union College. The focus of this year’s agenda was Israel and the future of the Middle East. Other topics included the role of women in Federation life, the effects of the 2006 Elections on the Jewish Community, practical leadership skills for the field, and the effects of terrorism on the Jewish community.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Wurzweiler & AECOM Sponsor HIV/AIDS Conference

Wurzweiler School of Social Work, in collaboration with Albert Einstein College of Medicine and the AIDS Research Center at Montefiore, held a conference, "Twenty Five Years of the HIV Epidemic: An Interdisciplinary Symposium" on Friday, November 17th at The New York Academy of Medicine. The conference featured three internationally renowned pioneers in the field of HIV/AIDS: Dr. Arye Rubenstein, Chief of the Division of Allergy and Immunology at YU's Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Dr. Katherine Anastos, Associate Professor of Medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Executive Director for Clinical and Scientific Programs of WE-ACTx (Women's Equity in Access to Care and Treatment), and Chief Social Worker, Dr. Lori Wiener, of the National Cancer Institute in Washington, DC. The symposium was generously underwritten by Robert Schwalbe, Chair of the Wurzweiler's Board of Governors, and hs wife Janie.

The afternoon workshops included a range of topics such as: HIV and Family Issues, Older populations affected by HIV, HIV and cultural competency, HIV and substance Abuse, and issues concerning spirituality. WSSW faculty who presented their work in these workshops included Professor Rozetta Wilmore- Schaeffer, Academic Associate Dean Carmen Ortiz-Hendricks, and Professor Gary Stein. Each workshop was moderated by WSSW faculty.

The conference was well attended and the audience was deeply moved and inspired by the day's events. Many reported being reignited in their commitment to provide effective and compassionate care to clients affected by HIV/AIDS.
(The CyberProf thanks Nancy Beckerman for reporting this event).

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Immigration & Culture at Fieldwork Breakfast

On Tuesday, October 24, over 50 field instructors from around the tri-state area gathered in Belfer Commons for the annual breakfast and seminar for field instructors, a long standing tradition at Wurzweiler School of Social Work.

Over hot scrambled eggs, pancakes, bagels and fresh fruit, Dr. Roberta Nassar spoke about the tightening of immigration laws since the 1996 Welfare Reform and the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center, common misconceptions about the requirements for US citizenship, and the difficulty of obtaining visas, particularly for young applicants without families to anchor them to their homeland. Dr. Nassar has a long-standing interest in immigration and international social work.

Next, Dr. David Strug discussed how immigration and cultural differences impact on clinical assessment. Dr. Strug used a case study involving a Mexican family living in the US who are referrred to an agency after a report of child abuse. Dr. Strug discussed the different perspectives taken by a case worker who assessed the case without considering the cultural context, and another case worker with a keen understanding of the cultures involved. A genogram helped the audience grasp the relationships within the family.

Finally Dr. Ronnie Glassman, Director of Field Instruction, presented clips from the British film Bend it like Beckham and the Korean film, The Way Home, to illustrate issues of intergenerational cultural conflict.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Monday Night Lectures for CEUs

Two of Wurzweiler's favorite professors, Joanna Mellor and Rozetta Wilmore Schaeffer, will be offering six Monday evening lectures for CEU credits this fall at Belfer Hall, on the Wilf Campus at Washington Heights (directions). Topics will range from the latest in understanding and treating trauma to experiencing and nurturing creativity in ourselves and our clients. These lectures will be particularly useful for those in the helping professions and we particularly look forward to seeing Wurzweiler Alumni! The cost is $100 for the series, $20 for an individual lecture.

Attendess must preregister for the series, or an individual lecture (view or download the brochure first!)