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Widener University
Center for Social Work Education
Vol. II, Issue II
December 2012
In This Issue
Phi Alpha Honors Society Updates
BSW Student's International Experiences
Meet the New Center Advisory Board
Save the Date: Alumni Banquet
BSW Club Updates
New PhD Graduate: Jen Cullen
MSWSO Updates
Ethics, Electronic Communications, & Professional Practice Workshop
Harrisburg Highlight: Student Presentation
NABSW Updates
Research Update: Wanja Ogongi, PhD Alum
Ethics Reporting for the Human Service Professional
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Looking for Field Placement Supervisors
If you or someone you know has an MSW and would be interested in becoming a field placement supervisor for the Center's current BSW or MSW students, please contact Pat Fletcher, Director of Field Education at 
610-499-1133 or pafletcher@widener.edu.
Support the Center for Social Work Education
Did you know that the percentage of alumni giving is almost as important as the amount a university receives?  Your donation of as little as $5 can make a big difference for the Center for Social Work Education.  Please consider helping to support the Center and its students by mailing a check to:
Widener University Development Office
Attn: Center for Social Work Education
One University Place
Chester, PA 19013

or through the University Advancement Office's website.

Thank you for your support of Widener University's Center for Social Work Education. 
Greetings!

 

John Giugliano

 

The Neurobiology of Addiction by John R. Giugliano, PhD, LCSW  

 

The term "addiction" is not used in the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the DSM.  Instead, the manual uses the term "substance dependence."  When the general public uses the word "addiction" they are usually referring to what professionals call "dependence." 

 

Substance dependence is characterized by impaired control over the drug, preoccupation with use, and continued use despite negative consequence.  Psychological addiction happens when the cravings for a drug are psychological and/or emotional. People who are psychologically addicted feel overcome by the desire to have a drug.  They may lie or steal to get it.

 

Current technology has given us an opportunity to observe how the brain functions.  As we know all addictions begin with a pleasurable experience.  Usually, when we think of addictions, we think of substances that people ingest into their bodies.  But there are also addictions to behaviors.  In this case, our own body internally produces the chemicals that create the addiction.  The activity may be a game, sex, gambling or being with a particular person that results in mood altering sensations.  All psychoactive substances have an effect on neurons in the brain that form what is called the pleasure or reward circuit.

 

The Pleasure or Reward Circuit

Addiction begins with the basic pleasure and reward circuits in the brain.  These reward centers are designed to activate during pleasurable acts such as sex, eating, or gambling.  Whenever ingesting a substance causes these reward circuits to activate, addiction/dependence is possible.  Physical addiction appears to occur when repeated use of a drug (ingested or produced) alters the reward pathways in the brain.  The addicting drug/ behavior cause physical changes to some neurons (nerve cells) in the brain.  The neurons use chemicals (neurotransmitters) to communicate with each other.  Dopamine is a "reward neurotransmitter" that is produced by pleasurable activities.  The connection between dopamine and reward seeking behaviors is an important discovery.  Research discovered that rats that were engaged in gratifying activities had an increase in their dopamine levels in certain parts of the brain (Yamamoto, et.al, 2007).

 

Research demonstrates what happens when there is a decrease in dopamine levels.  The relationship between dopamines and reward seeking behaviors were observed in lab mice after removing the gene for VMAT2, an essential part of the dopamine system.  With the absence of this gene the newborn mice had a diminished supply of dopamines resulting in a failed reward system.  Without pleasure (reward) the mice were not motivated to eat or drink.  Even if the pups were placed on their mother's nipple, they did not nurse.  Without a reward system the mice lost the desire to seek pleasure (eating or drinking) and thus could not survive (Yamamoto, et.al, 2007).

 

The brain's main function is to help with survival; so we can stay alive and reproduce.  The "Desire-Action-Satisfaction Cycle" drives the behaviors that are vital for our survival.  There are three important phases in the pleasure cycle (Childress, 2007):

  1. In response to stimuli, the brain drives us to take actions to satisfy our needs. For example, hunger makes us eat, sexual desire drives us to seek available partners, and loneliness makes us want to socialize.
  2. Our actions are rewarded by sensations of pleasure.  But it is important to note that it is mainly the action itself that is rewarding, not just the actual reward.  For instance, receiving a nicotine patch will satisfy your craving for a cigarette, but it will never give you as much pleasure as having an actual cigarette while socializing.  The action, which often takes the form of a ritual, therefore is at the very heart of the pleasure experienced.
  3. In the third phase, the feeling of satisfaction brings an end to the actions.  For example, when we feel full after a meal, we realize that our hunger which drove the activity is satisfied and we no longer need to continue eating.  An orgasm is often seen as completion or an ending point when being sexual.  When an action is rewarded, the behavior that was the source of this satisfaction is reinforced. (Hoffman and Froemke, 2007).

So how does this relate to addiction?  Why don't we always act on pleasure?  Our brain lets us know when to take action and when to stop the action.  Scientists have learned which parts of the brain send these messages.  Addictive substances or behaviors change the reward circuits in the brain.  It is this system that keeps us from having that one drink for the road, because the brain will tell us that doing so would be both dangerous and illegal.  In this case, the "stop" system sends a message that the consequences of doing the pleasurable behavior (drinking) are too negative (Childress, 2007).

 

According to Dr Anna Rose Childress, researcher at the University of Pennsylvania, the reward circuitry and the 'stop' circuitry really are interconnected and communicate with each other to help weigh the consequences.  That means if you had one too many drinks you will think of the consequences and choose to find a ride, call a cab, or sleep over at a friend's house rather than risk the chance of being pulled over or hurting someone.  "Rewards (go)" and "Consequences (stop)" have communicated with each other, and "Consequences (stop)" prevailed.  For addicted people, these "stop" and "go" systems are impaired and become functionally disconnected (Childress, 2007).  It is as though the 'go' system discontinues listening to the 'stop' system and the individual is unable to slow the impulse to act.  Drugs damage a person's ability to make decisions.  This explains, in a general sense, why people with addictions sometimes forsake all other life activities and obligations and even their own health in pursuit of the addictive substance or behavior.  This is addiction.
 

Childress, 2007

Hoffman, J., and Froemke, S. (2007). Addiction: Why can't I just stop? Emmaus, PA: Rodale Books.

Yamamoto, H., Kamegaya, E., Hagino, Y., Imai, K., Fujikawa, A., Tamura, K., Enokiya, T., Yamamoto, T., Takeshima, T., Koga, H., Uhl, G.R., Ikeda, K., and Sora, I., (2007). Genetic deletion of vesicular monoamine transporter-2 (VMAT2) reduces dopamine transporter activity in mesencephalic neurons in primary culture. Neurochemistry International, 51, (2-4), 237-44. 

Phi Alpha Honors Society Updates
Phi Alpha E-Board
(l-r) Lindsey Kunkel, Roberta Thomas, Jennifer Harvey, Sheena Mackin
The Center would like to extend congratulations to the Phi Alpha Honors Society, Nu Alpha Chapter's newest members!  During the group's first meeting of the semester, members were elected to serve on the executive board.  Lindsey Kunkel was voted to serve as President, Jennifer Harvey as Vice President, Sheena Mackin as Treasurer, and Roberta Thomas as Secretary for the 2012-2013 school year.  In terms of projects, the Chapter participated in the Toys for Tots drive from November 19th to December 7th along with the MSWSO and other student organizations.  They have also collaborated with the Widener Partnership Charter School in adopting needy families this holiday season.  Next semester, Phi Alpha will hold its induction ceremony in March to officially welcome its members into the society.
BSW Student's International Experiences Liz Braccia

BSW student Liz Braccia has had the good fortune of being able to travel to China on two different occasions with Widener.  In the summer of 2011, she went to Chongqing as part of an exchange program.  They also spent time in Beijing and Cheng Du.  While there, Liz and the other students took two 3-credit courses which ran Monday through Wednesday each week.  On the days they did not have class, they were provided with cultural experiences including taking a tea class and a culinary class.  On the weekends, the students would travel to Cheng Du to see the pandas and attend Chinese Operas.  They also got the opportunity to visit a Chinese orphanage and a motorcycle factory.   During their time there, they were provided with an exchange partner who helped them navigate things a bit better.  Liz was even able to learn to speak a little Mandarin.

 

In 2012, Liz was referred by Paula Silver to be an intern with Study Group.  Study Group allows students to travel to other countries to promote their academic program.  The majority of Liz's work involved recruiting students to come to Widener.  The interns traveled to ten different cities in China and attended international college fairs.  They also went on agent visits.  Agents are people that Chinese students hire to help them with applications to different schools, visas, and other important transitional paperwork.

 

In regards to her experiences in China, Liz professes that it is a very different culture.  There is no personal bubble there like people are used to in the United States.  She feels it was a great experience to be put outside of her comfort zone and to witness a different way of life.  Liz believes that social workers should be constantly learning about and becoming better acquainted with others' cultures because this can help social workers in their practice and in their views of the world.  

 

When asked what she would tell other students who are considering studying abroad, Liz replied without hesitation: "I would say, do it!"  But she added a note of caution: "Be aware of what you can handle.  You have to go in with a different mindset since their culture is very different from ours."  She strongly believes all individuals should put themselves out of their comfort zones and learn about and from other cultures to help them personally and professionally, but that the best growth occurs when people have an open mind.

Meet the New Center Advisory Board 

As part of the process for reaccreditation by the Council on Social Work Education in 2012, John Poulin, Ph.D., Director and Associate Dean of the Center, along with faculty envisioned an active and involved Advisory Committee composed of the various constituencies with a stake in the Center - alumni, faculty, students, field instructors, and community professionals. Initial brainstorming with faculty to develop the role of the Advisory Board created subcommittees within the Board-Diversity, Field Placement and Supervision, and Management-because they provide ways for Board members to work together in small groups, utilizing their expertise and interests, as well as develop projects supportive to the Center.

 

This vision for the Board-to make it more active in the Center-and the vision for the Center-to make it more prominent within the social work community-are the springboards for the Board's work. The Board participates in strategic visioning for the school and supports the primary players in the implementation of that, i.e. students and faculty. Subcommittee meetings in 2012 produced several ideas and avenues for work. Starting in 2013, each subcommittee will develop its own plan with goals, tasks, and deadlines so they can move from discussion to action. As a beginning, the Board is dedicated to reengaging alumni through celebratory events, like the Alumni Banquet scheduled for March, outreach, fundraising efforts, and involvement with current students through activities like the Alumni Speaker Series.

 

Gail Ober, LSW, and Harriet Burton-Wilson, a current MSW student, were elected co-chairs of the Advisory Board in March 2012. This selection reflects the efforts to bring various perspectives to the Board. Gail received her MSW from the University of Pennsylvania and her career has focused on clinical social work practice and executive leadership in services to children and families. Through her work Gail became increasingly involved with students, alumni, and faculty members from Widener's social work program. She recognized the value of Widener's small size, clinically-oriented program, and positive learning environment and developed great respect for the knowledge base and professional commitment of her Widener colleagues. Gail has scaled back from full time work which opened up opportunities for her to be engaged elsewhere. Co-chairing the Board keeps her involved with professional social work and education. She has been impressed by the Widener students and alums she has met through the Board, particularly in how positively they speak about their experience with the school.

 

Harriet is a returning student after several years of employment at the Philadelphia Department of Human Services, which helped her identify the need for professional education. She has found that the Center is responsive to her educational needs and competing demands on her time as she both works and learns. Because of this, Harriet plans to continue her involvement with the Board following her graduation this year.

 

The Board is comprised of interesting, energized and diverse colleagues who are all connected to Widener in some way. It is valued and respected by the faculty and serves an increasingly important function within the Center. During the reaccreditation process, the Board was highlighted by the accreditors for its role in supporting the Center. New members are welcomed, so if you are interested in joining please contact John Poulin at jepoulin@mail.widener.edu.

Alumni Banquet
Please SAVE THE DATE!  The MSW Alumni Organization will be hosting an MSW alumni banquet on Friday, March 15th, from 6:30 to 10:30 pm at Heritage Ballroom in Holmes, PA.  We will be celebrating 20 years of graduating classes from Widener University! The evening will provide a chance to visit with former classmates and other fellow alumni, eat, drink, dance, and participate in other festivities such as a 50/50 and possibly some type of auction. The charge will be $30 per person.  Details about how to sign up will be sent out as the date approaches.
BSW Club Updates
BSW E-Board
(l-r) Sara Watson, Erica Lopez, Liz Braccia 
The Center would like to extend congratulations to the BSW Club's new executive board! For the 2012-2013 school year, Liz Braccia will serve as President, Sara Watson as Vice President, Paige Fuss as Secretary, Erica Lopez as Treasurer/MSW Liaison, and Ann Demkin as SGA Representative.

The BSW Club has been busy this semester and will remain so through December.  On Wednesday, October 24th, Blake Cohen from the Domestic Abuse Project of Delaware County came to speak to students about victim services and domestic violence.  Ms. Cohen offered resources to attendees and spoke about the incidences of dating violence on college campuses.  On Friday, October 26th, Club members went to the Child Development Center to give the children a safe trick-or-treating presentation.  Also, in the beginning of October they co-hosted a viewing event for the PBS documentary "Half the Sky."  The purpose of the documentary is to raise awareness about worldwide oppression against women and how it can be turned into opportunity.  About 30-40 students attended.

On November 7th, the BSW Club held a fundraiser at Buffalo Wild Wings.  The Club received 10% of each participant's bill and will be using that money to adopt a family through City Team Ministries and buy the children Christmas gifts.  Members already collaborated with City Team Ministries on November 17th to deliver Thanksgiving boxes and turkeys to families in the community.  Finally, the Club honored World AIDS Day (celebrated on December 1st) on November 28th by displaying the informational poster timeline on AIDS which was brought to campus last year for the first time.  A representative was available to answer questions and Club members staffed an informational table giving out ribbons for awareness and condoms.
New PhD Graduate: Dr. Jen Cullen
Jen Cullen
Dr. Cullen and Dissertation Committee: (l-r) Dr. Ginny Focht-New, Dr. Beth Barol, Dr. Jen Cullen, Dr. Justin Sitron

Jen Cullen, LSW, PhD recently successfully defended her dissertation as part of the PhD program at Widener.  Jen is a previous Widener graduate as she obtained her B.A. in Psychology in 1996.  She then went to the University of Pennsylvania to complete her MSW.  In 2006, Jen returned to Widener as a caseworker in Academic Support Services providing coaching and support to students on the autism spectrum.  During that time, Jen recognized her desire to earn another degree, but knew that she wanted it to be something that would continue to keep her in the fields of counseling and education.  In a fortuitous event, the Center was just launching its PhD program as Jen was considering her options.  Ultimately, Widener's program seemed to offer what Jen was looking for-a diverse, knowledgeable faculty and a curriculum that prepared students to teach.  For these and other reasons, Jen joined the PhD program as part of the second cohort in the fall of 2008.

 

When it came time to choose a dissertation topic, Jen's work in Academic Support Services actually provided the inspiration.  In working with students on the autism spectrum, Jen realized that most support services are academic in nature and miss the social support aspect that can be so crucial for this population.  However, when her office attempted to offer support groups for students the turn-out was low.  Wanting answers, Jen decided to focus her research on uncovering what college students with Asperger's Syndrome want and need in terms of social supports at school.  Entitled "Perspectives of College Students with Asperger's Syndrome," Jen used online questionnaires, individual interviews, and focus groups to obtain first-hand knowledge from this under-studied group.  She found that students with Asperger's Syndrome vary greatly in their desire for social interaction, just as neurotypical students can range from introverted to extroverted.  In contrast to what is normally done for this population, Jen feels you cannot generalize their needs and wants.  Instead, colleges should provide social supports to students on the spectrum in much the same way they provide them to neurotypical students, since the social transition to college can be difficult for anyone.

 

With her dissertation complete, Jen now hopes to publish this information and present it at conferences in order to share these important discoveries with others in the field of postsecondary education and disability services.  In September, Jen was promoted to Assistant Director of Disability Services at Widener.  She hopes to incorporate her research findings into the programs they offer to students in order to enhance their current work.  Additionally, Jen hopes to continue teaching SW 503 in the MSW program as she has done for the past two Fall semesters.  She finds this class unique and feels that it begins the important process of introspection for future social workers.  She thinks the Center has created a wonderful academic experience for its students and she is glad to be a part of teaching this new generation of social workers.

 

Overall, Jen enjoyed her experience in the PhD program.  She feels there are great cohorts in the program who offer a mix of learning, new experiences, and networking.  Jen thinks that all of the professors in the program have a wealth of knowledge and each has expertise in a different area, leading her to feel like she learned something new from each professor she encountered.  As an educator herself, she found it useful that the Center is comprised of an eclectic faculty that could provide her with a well-rounded educational experience.  Jen felt supported every step of the way and truly felt that the Center and its faculty wanted her to be successful in completing her dissertation.  She is so appreciative of the wonderful people who supported her, including her dissertation committee, her readers, Dr. Tom Young, and Dr. John Poulin.  The Center wants to congratulate Jen on completing her dissertation and wish her the best of luck in all of her future endeavors!

MSWSO Updates
MSWSO E-Board 2012
(l-r) Cole Glaser, Helen Zwiebel, Shae Begolly

Congratulations to the new Master's of Social Work Student Organization (MSWSO) executive board!  The votes were tallied and students elected Helen Zwiebel as Director of Communications (also filling in as Fundraising Committee Chair), Shae Begolly as Assistant to Director of Communications, and Cole Glaser as Service Committee Chair.

 

The MSWSO is currently working on multiple items for the Fall 2012 semester. They are focusing on professional development by providing students with opportunities to attend workshops and lectures.  Career services presented at their resume and interviewing skills workshops, and the Institutional Review Board (IRB) spoke with students about their protocols and ethical research. One way the organization combined networking and community outreach was to participate in the AIDS Philly Walk/Run on October 21st. They were successful in raising AIDS awareness and funds.

 

The MSWSO also wants to build upon their previous successes. Last year the Toys for Tots drive brought in over 40 donations, so the MSWSO gathered toys again this year from November 19th to December 7th, along with Phi Alpha and PsychNoir, in hopes of another round of success

 

For the upcoming semester, the MSWSO will be doing much more. They plan to collaborate with other student organizations and provide students more opportunities for professional development. They want to host a guest speaker series. Covered topics will include marriage and family therapy, couple's therapy, sex offenders, art therapy, LGBTQ focused therapies, and many others. They have an exciting year ahead of them, so please keep your eye out for MSWSO's upcoming events!

Upcoming CEU Workshop

Ethics, Electronic Communications, and Professional Practice

Presented by Linda Knauss, Ph.D., ABPP 

Wednesday, January 9th from 6 to 9 pm in University Center Webb Room

 

This workshop will address the challenges created by the Internet for the field of mental health.  As an emerging area of practice, technological advances demand unique approaches to ethical decision making.  Mental health professionals must keep the welfare of clients in mind with regard to confidentiality, informed consent, and release of records.  Issues regarding HIPAA, FERPA, and electronic record keeping will be discussed as well as the confidentiality and security concerns of using email.  Case examples will be presented, and participants are encouraged to share their own ethical dilemmas.  Click here for more information and to register.
Harrisburg Highlight: Student Presentation
Harrisburg Students
(l-r) Stacie Barrett, Valerie Broody, Justin Walker
On October 11, 2012, three students from Widener's Harrisburg MSW program--Stacie Barrett, Valerie Broody, and Justin Walker--had the opportunity to showcase their research at the NASW-PA annual conference in Valley Forge, PA.  The students gave a poster board presentation, with related paper and power point, entitled "Co-Occurrence of Mental Illness and Drug Abuse: Prevalence of the Problem, Types of Treatment, and Access to that Treatment by the Target Population."
 

As caseworkers within the Children and Youth system, these students have come across several instances where the clients served have had both serious drug and alcohol addictions as well as serious mental health problems.  The problem then becomes locating effective treatment, as the students have come across the problem of the mental health system not being willing to treat the client until their drug addiction is under control and vice versa.  The client and the caseworker then need to find a way for the client to locate the treatment they deserve and need in order to accomplish their goals and objectives that are most likely court ordered.

 

In researching the treatment options for individuals with co-occurring diagnoses, it was discovered that there are almost no options for those who fall into this category.  There are several area providers that will treat either mental health or drug and alcohol, but there is currently only one provider in the area that will treat both simultaneously. However, there are ten separate providers in Dauphin County that are licensed to treat those with co-occurring drug addiction and mental health issues, but only one currently has the properly trained staff to do so.

 

The authors reached out to several area providers including: NAMI PA Dauphin County, the Institute for Research, Education, and Training in Addictions, PA Department of Drug and Alcohol, Dauphin County Drug and Alcohol, and Dauphin County Case Management Unit.  Their responses, or lack thereof, are included in the paper.  The authors chose to write several advocacy letters instead of just one, choosing to write to the Dauphin County Commissioners, Dauphin County MH/ID, Dauphin County Drug & Alcohol, NAMI PA Dauphin County, and the PA Chapter of NASW.  The purpose of the letters was to inform these agencies of the lack of services which affects their target population that seems to be growing rapidly.

NABSW Updates
NABSW E-Board
(l-r) Stacey Moultrie, Paula Gallimore, Barbara Cobb, Paullette Matthews, Ashley Wright
Congratulations to the newly-elected executive board of Widener's chapter of the National Association of Black Social Workers (NABSW)!  For the 2012-2013 academic year, Ashley Wright will serve as president, Paullette Matthews as vice-president, Barbara Cobb as treasurer, Paula Gallimore as secretary, and Stacey Moultrie as parliamentarian.  
The members of NABSW will hold a chat and chew in the upcoming month, where they will formally get to know the current members of NABSW as well as recruit new African American undergraduate and graduate students interested in joining.  Next semester the members of NABSW plan on participating in the MLK day of service at main campus, having a gift basket and a raffle for Black History month, volunteering for Take Back the Night, and holding a clothes drive.  Dates and times for these events will be announced at later dates.  Other events will be emailed and announced at meetings, which undergraduates and graduate students are invited to attend.  NABSW's next meetings will be held on January 16th and 17th in Bruce Hall room 1 from 6:00 pm to 6:30 pm. 
 
Students interested in joining must pay $25 in membership dues.  Checks or money orders made out to Widener University can be given to Mary Ellen Ferkler in the social work office.  Questions, concerns, and comments can be directed to Ashley Wright at awright@mail.widener.edu.
Research Update: Wanja Ogongi, PhD Alum
wanja
In July of 2009, Stoneleigh Foundation Emerging Leader Fellow and Widener PhD student (now alum) Wanja Ogongi was selected to partner with Community Legal Services (CLS) to address Philadelphia's high rate of children returning to foster care within 12 months of being reunified with their birth families. Wanja's project consisted of analyzing existing research on reunification and conducting qualitative research with a sample of parents and key informants. The purpose of this study was to identify the challenges families faced during and after the reunification process and make recommendations for how CLS could better support its clients. 
 
Now, three years later, Community Legal Services continues to use Wanja's research and findings to improve reunification outcomes for vulnerable families. Her research identified some common problems that families tend to experience, which influence reunification outcomes. Her work has also provided useful evidence that has helped CLS advocate for policy and practice reforms. As a member of the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare (DPW) workgroup charged with drafting a new policy on post-reunification planning, CLS has used Wanja's research to advocate for better reunification planning policy. The goal of the workgroup was to address the problem of re-entry to care. As the only Pennsylvania specific research study that has been done on reunification barriers, the workgroup relied on Wanja's report and broadly incorporated her recommendations into the text of its draft policy bulletin, which included encouraging the use of evidence-based practices and stronger advance planning.

Wanja and CLS shared her research findings and recommendations with the Department of Human Services. As her fellowship was ending, the Department was beginning a major transition to a single case management model called Improving Outcomes for Children (IOC). During the planning and development of IOC, CLS was asked to participate in workgroups and the Steering Committee informing the transformation. Wanja's work is reflected in the new practice model, which requires aftercare services for all children returning home from any placement.  
As the IOC unfolds, CLS will continue to provide input to DHS and work directly with the community-based agencies providing case management and aftercare services to families to ensure that Wanja's findings inform their aftercare programs. 

Wanja has impacted CLS' internal practices as well. Moving forward, CLS will use her findings to strengthen its counsel, social work practices, and communications with clients regarding public benefits and service transfer. As a result of Wanja's work, CLS has identified the need to participate in aftercare meetings and keep cases open post reunification to provide necessary follow-up counsel. 
 
CLS continues to advocate with DHS regarding systemic reunification-related problems and standards of aftercare. CLS will also engage with the behavioral health system to highlight the service disruption that frequently occurs post-reunification and collaborate on ways to minimize this.  In addition to the internal practice and protocol changes, CLS is drafting a sample protocol document which will be shared with parent and child advocates outside the agency.
Ethics Reporting for the Human Service Professional: The Truth and Flame of It
Ethics Workshop

On Friday, November 30, 2012, the Center for Social Work Education presented the 3 credit continuing education workshop entitled "Ethics Reporting for the Human Service Professional: The Truth and Flame of It." Brent A. Satterly, PhD, LCSW, CSE, CST, Associate Professor and BSW Program Director in the Center for Social Work Education and Don Dyson, PhD, LCSW, CSE, CST, Associate Professor and Director of Doctoral Studies in the Center for Human Sexuality Studies were the presenters of this dynamic and informative workshop. In attendance were 32 participants from various clinical backgrounds, including faculty, field supervisors, and professionals in the field.

 

The workshop explored the major ethical codes of professional organizations that guide the work of human service professionals. Identified were the prevailing ethical substrates and commonalities between them. The role of Ethics Boards and their specific practices, as well as essential and contemporary ethical issues in the practice of clinical work and education in light of these codes and boards were discussed. Participants of the workshop described the experience as "informative and interactive, while promoting critical thinking involving the application of ethics in the practice of social work."