Session: Implications of the Social Work Grand Challenges Initiative for PhD Programs (Society for Social Work and Research 23rd Annual Conference - Ending Gender Based, Family and Community Violence)

145 Implications of the Social Work Grand Challenges Initiative for PhD Programs

Friday, January 18, 2019: 3:30 PM-5:00 PM
Continental Parlor 7, Ballroom Level (Hilton San Francisco)
Cluster: Research on Social Work Education (RSWE)
Denise Burnette, PhD, Virginia Commonwealth University, Julia Henly, PhD, University of Chicago, Carmen Logie, MSW, PhD, University of Toronto, Michael Hurlburt, PhD, University of Southern California and Stephanie Berzin, PhD, Boston College
Spearheaded by the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare (AASWSW), the Grand Challenge for Social Work Initiative (GCSWI) aims to identify and advance solutions to some of today's most significant and persistent social problems. Twelve focal challenges are subsumed under three broader, interacting rubrics: (1) Individual and Family Well-being (healthy development for all youth, close the health gap; stop family violence; advance long and productive lives); (2) Stronger Social Fabric (eradicate social isolation; end homelessness; create social responses to changing environments; harness technology for social good); and (3) Just Society (promote smart decarceration; build financial capability for all; reduce extreme economic inequality and achieve equal opportunity and justice). The GCSWI enlists and galvanizes social work faculty and allies from the practice, management, and policy communities to critically engage through avenues such as the AASWSW website, topical webinars, special interest groups, “professor to professor” (P2P) linkages. A recent volume titled Grand Challenges for Social Work and Society elaborates the challenges and calls for the profession's explicit engagement with GCSWI. GCSWI's success depends partly on contributions of scholars across seniority levels. Because individual faculty and Schools vary in their uptake and alignment with GCSWI, doctoral students are unevenly prepared to critique, engage with and contribute to the framework as it evolves into an essential discourse for organizing the profession and establishing it directions and activities. This roundtable will consider avenues for involving doctoral students in the GCSWI. Five social work faculty engaged with initiative will lead this interactive session. Drs. Burnette, Henly, Berzin and Hurlburt are Ph.D. program directors and Dr. Logie is involved with Grand Challenges Canada. After a brief overview of GCSWI, the participants will discuss challenges and promising strategies for integrating Ph.D. students in the GCSWI. Directors will address opportunities and challenges in their respective programs. Dr. Logie will reflect on her experience with Grand Challenges Canada, considering similarities and differences across the U.S., Canada and global efforts, and offering suggestions for strengthening a GC framework into doctoral education. 1. Background: What is the SWGCI? What are the purpose, goals, and structure? What are examples of high-impact research to emerge from the GC? (15 minutes) 2. Challenges: How do PhD students fit with the GCSWI? To what extent, in what ways, and to what ends ought students be encouraged to engage with the initiative? What about students whose interests lie outside the 12 challenges? (15 minutes) 3. Current efforts: What are promising pedagogies for educating doctoral students to productively critique, engage with and contribute to the GCSWI? (15 minutes) 4. Potential avenues and brainstorming for engaging PhD students in the GCSWI (30 minutes) ● creation of scholar knowledge networks ● funding opportunities for GC-related RAs, dissertations, post-docs ● inter-disciplinary and inter-university collaborations ● engagement with existing Grand Challenges, including at international / global levels ● group mentorship by faculty nationwide who are involved in each GC ● annual reporting at GADE and SSWR about PhD activities and opportunities 5. Summary of discussion and next steps (15 minutes)
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