Social Work News Roundup, February 2014

USC School of Social Work News

New Class of PhD Students Bring Diverse Backgrounds, Real-life Experience

With their first semester under their belts, the eight new USC School of Social Work doctoral students are surely feeling a tremendous feeling of pride … and relief. For some of these students, entering the doctoral program was a successive continuation of their educational careers. However, for most, the decision to enter a classroom after a long respite was based on years of professional experience.

USC Social Work Travels to Philippines to Assist in Typhoon Recovery

Annalisa Enrile, a Filipina American with a strong background in community organizing, and a group of USC School of Social Work faculty and alumni formed a delegation to travel to the affected areas of the Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan. From Dec. 14 to 22, 2013, this group offered trauma response training to local social service organizations. Going forward, Enrile, Marleen Wong and the rest of the USC team would like to continue aiding in the recovery efforts, including offering further training on more specialized topics such as preventing child sexual trafficking, community safety and security, and other evidenced-based interventions.

Book Sheds Light on Social Work in Agencies and Communities

As the profession of social work becomes increasingly specialized and focused on clinical practices that help individuals and groups, two faculty members at the USC School of Social Work are hoping to bring renewed attention and energy to a wider perspective of the field. A new book authored by Clinical Professor Murali Nair and Assistant Professor Erick Guerrero seeks to increase understanding of the higher-level forces that affect social work practice and impart proven strategies that help professionals work closely with communities, agencies and other complex entities.

In Other Social Work News…

Medicaid, Ethics, Mental Health Among Key Issues in General Assembly Session

Expansion of Medicaid, and changes in ethics rules, mental health policy and the Standards of Learning will face state lawmakers during the 2014 General Assembly session — a 60-day sprint to adopt a two-year budget and make those weighty policy decisions.

New Federal Guidance Should Help Slow the Flow in “School-to-Prison Pipeline”, But Much Work Remains

Advocates for fair and effective school discipline practices received a boost from the federal government with new guidance issued by the departments of Education and Justice on Jan. 8. The guidance instructs schools on how to administer school discipline without discriminating on the basis of race, color or national origin. In addition to the guidance, the Administration issued a package of resources to assist in the improvement of school climates and discipline, including key principles and action steps based on best practices and emerging research.

Affordable Care Act Offers Opportunities to Strengthen Trauma Systems

Traumatic injuries are the leading cause of death and disability for people under the age of 45 and the fourth-leading cause of death for people of all ages. Much progress has been made over the last 50 years in developing statewide regionalized trauma systems to care for these injuries, but authors of a review appearing in the December issue of Health Affairs believe more work is needed to ensure the right patient gets to the right place at the right time, and that the Affordable Care Act may offer opportunities to strengthen trauma systems.

Want more News? Visit our previous Social Work News Roundup!