Congratulations to all the award winners!
For some readers of this blog our subject might be a reminder to submit an application. For some readers this might be the first time you’ve thought about submitting an application to get your MSW. For some, you’ve already submitted and are probably thinking “did I get in?”
For those that have not yet submitted their application it is not too late! We thought we would provide some tips for applying and know it’s not too late to apply and still join us next Fall!
GSSW has three different MSW program applications currently available. One in Denver, one in Durango, and one in Glenwood Springs. Now the question might be: what program is right for me? Well ask yourself the following question:
Where do I currently live or would prefer to live as a MSW student?
If you answered Denver then you will need to apply online by visiting: http://www.du.edu/socialwork/admission/index.html
- Our Denver program is currently accepting applications for our Advanced Standing (BSW holders only) and Two-Year MSW programs. If you are applying as a two year student select Fall, if you are applying as an Advanced Standing select Summer when starting your application.
If you answered Durango then you will need to download our application and mail it into our office. To get your very own copy of our application please visit: http://www.du.edu/socialwork/media/documents/fourcornersapplication.pdf.
- Our Four Corners Program (located in Durango) is currently accepting applications for our Advanced Standing (BSW holding) students only.
If you answered Glenwood Springs then you will need to download our application and mail it into our office. To get your very own copy of our application please visit: http://www.du.edu/socialwork/media/documents/westerncoapp.pdf.
- Our Western Colorado Program (located in Glenwood Springs) is currently accepting applications for our Two Year program.
Have your transcripts sent to GSSW directly. This is for all programs!
What’s the address you may ask? Well our address is:
Graduate School of Social Work
University of Denver
2148 S. High St.
Denver, CO 80208
GSSW can accept some electronic transcripts. Before requesting an electronic transcript be sent please check with Nick Ota-Wang at Nick.Ota-Wang@du.edu.
Ask for recommendations before you apply.
Giving a recommender a heads up that you are applying will give them time to watch for our recommendation request and give them time to submit your recommendation.
Remind your recommenders that our email maybe in their junk/spam folder.
Your career goal statement, and your resume are your documents. Both tell us about you and why you would be a great fit to join the GSSW student body.
Keep your career goal statement between 7-10 pages double spaced. Answer questions in order asked, and if you want to use labels please do. If you want to write a flowing essay please do. It’s up to you!
Your resume should be a professional resume but remember that volunteer experience.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call our office 303-871-2841 with questions, check your application status, and to ensure we have received your materials. We want to hear from you!
Fun face about GSSW: We were founded in 1931, have been fully accredited since 1933, and are the oldest MSW program in the Rocky Mountain Region. Come be part of a long historic tradition of excellent Social Work Practice!
Interested in obtaining your MSW degree? Ever wonder how the application process, financial aid, and academic work happens at the University of Denver’s Graduate School of Social Work?
If your answer to any or all of the questions above is YES then please consider signing up for one our information sessions this year!
2014-2015 Information Sessions
- September 20 (Saturday, 9-noon)
- October 10 (Friday, 1-4)
- November 14 (Friday, 1-4)
- December 5 (Friday, 1-4)
- January 10 (Saturday, 9-noon)
- March 6 (Friday, 1-4)
- May 15 (Friday, 1-4)
To RSVP click here.
The sessions will be held in the Community Room in Craig Hall.
If you have any questions or would like to have the opportunity to speak with one of our Admission & Financial Aid staff please email us at email@example.com or give us a call (303)-871-2841.
We look forward to seeing you or speaking with you soon!
LEVERNE MCCUMMINGS (1932-)
5TH GSSW Dean, 1978-1985
The first person of color to serve as director or dean of GSSW.
The first African American to serve as a graduate dean at the University of Denver.
LeVerne McCummings was born and raised in South Carolina, attending segregated elementary and secondary schools in Marion County. Although his family moved to Philadelphia when he was 19, McCummings returned to the South, attending St. Augustine’s College in Raleigh, North Carolina from 1952 to 1960. (His undergraduate work was interrupted by two years of military service in the U.S. Army.) He graduated from St. Augustine’s (a four year liberal arts college for African Americans, operated by the Episcopal Church), majoring in social studies, with minors in psychology and urban mental health. As a college student, he was active in two national civil rights organizations. After graduation, he married Betty Hall, who later earned a doctorate in public administration from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs.
He began his practice career in the Philadelphia area, starting in 1960. Over the next 15 years, McCummings worked in various positions as a public school teacher; a public welfare caseworker; development director for the Lutheran Social Mission Society; community development director for the Wharton Settlement House; and held several administrative or executive positions in the Model Cities Program in Philadelphia. He also held administrative positions in public and private agencies in Columbus, Ohio, while completing his doctorate.
McCummings completed his MSW in 1966 at University of Pennsylvania. In 1973, he joined the social work faculty at University of Kentucky. He earned a doctorate in social work from Ohio State University in 1975, while also serving on that faculty as an assistant professor. His areas of expertise were group work, administration, health, and aging. He spent two contentious years as a faculty member at Syracuse University School of Social Work, battling what he perceived to be entrenched institutional racism.
He came to DU in 1977 as Associate Professor. Became GSSW Dean in 1978, at age 45. Later, was elected president of the Council of Deans and Directors (1982-1985). His tenure as GSSW Dean occurred during a period of prolonged severe financial crisis at the University. Much conflict occurred with the faculty over program direction, hiring, budget and spending priorities, and the threat of GSSW’s potential consolidation with the School of Professional Psychology and College of Education–which would have resulted in the loss of GSSW’s status as an independent academic unit. McCummings left GSSW in 1985 to become the President of Cheyney University in Philadelphia, one of the oldest Historically Black Colleges in the United States, which was threatened with loss of accreditation because of its own prolonged financial crises and administrative turnover. McCummings served as president of Cheyney until 1991.
KENNETH W. KINDELSPERGER (1914-2000)
4th GSSW Dean (1971-1978)
Interim Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs (1978-1979)
Acting Dean, Colorado Women’s College, 1980-82 (supervising its merger with DU)
Recipient, Outstanding Service to the University of Denver Award, 1986
Ken Kindelsperger was born in Galesberg, Illinois. Ken received a B.S. and M.S. degree in social group work from George Williams College (Chicago) in 1942. He completed his doctorate at the Syracuse School of Social Service Administration in 1956. He held various social work positions in Chicago while attending college and graduate school. During WW II, Ken served as Lt. Commander, U.S. Naval Reserves, which included a stint as Fleet Morale Officer at Pearl Harbor. After the war, he was the Secretary for Planning and Research for the Council of Social Agencies at Syracuse, NY, and eventually joined the social work faculty at University of Buffalo in 1950. Subsequently, he served as dean of schools of social work at three universities: Syracuse University, University of Louisville (KT), and University of Denver.
Two major themes highlight his career as a social work educator and administrator. First, he was committed to international social work. He worked for two years in India, studying social problems and helping to establish schools of social work. Later, he made two visits to South Vietnam as a consultant for the Agency for International Development, studying social welfare conditions and making recommendations. He traveled to many other countries and served on numerous international committees at CSWE and other social work organizations. Second, he was deeply committed to the advancement of civil rights for oppressed racial and ethnic groups. As Dean of the Kent School of Social Work at Louisville, he participated in the march on the state capital to demand passage of civil rights legislation.
He came to GSSW during the time when student protests over the Vietnam War and racial discrimination were at fever pitch. Although faced with the loss of federal stipends for social work training, instituted by the Nixon administration, he nonetheless managed to increase significantly the number of MSW and doctoral students of color, and also increased the faculty of color. He was a widely respected administrator, known as hard working, compassionate, and fair.
Ken and his older brother, Walter, were both deans of social work at the same time–the only known set of “brother deans” in the history of the profession.
Dr. Rebecca Chopp
18th Chancellor University of Denver
Photo courtesy of: University of Denver
The University of Denver announced today, June 12, 2014 that the 18th Chancellor of the University of Denver is Dr. Rebecca Chopp.
Dr. Chopp comes to DU from from Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania where she has served as President since 2009 and will join the University of Denver community as Chancellor on September 1, 2014 as the first female chancellor of the university.
More information about Dr. Chopp’s appointment as Chancellor and her professional background can be viewed online: http://www.du.edu/chancellor-search/index.html and/or by reading her interview with the DU Magazine: http://magazine.du.edu/campus-community/university-of-denver-names-rebecca-chopp-president-of-swarthmore-as-18th-chancellor/
The Graduate School of Social Work looks forward to welcoming Dr. Chopp to campus tomorrow and again in the coming months. For more information on tomorrows events at the Anderson Academic Commons please visit: http://www.du.edu/chancellor-search/index.html.
The University of Denver will celebrate its Sesquicentennial (150 Years) as a university in 2014.
Below is a picture of campus as it would have looked in 1864.
Photo courtesy of: http://blogs.du.edu/magazine/files/2013/11/OldCampus-2c892s3.jpg
Below is what campus looks like today (2014):
Photo courtesy of: http://i246.photobucket.com/albums/gg112/MobyLL/DU/UniversityHall2.jpg
Both photos are of University Hall which was is currently the oldest building on the DU campus. Ground breaking on University Hall took place around 1890 (http://hdl.handle.net/10176/codu:55330)
As part of the larger university celebrations the university is hosting many events throughout the year to help the DU community, supporters, and alumni celebrate this momentous moment in the universities history. The main university blog posted a great article about the history of the university that we at GSSW think you all should go read and share. Their blog can be viewed at: http://blogs.du.edu/magazine/campus-community/university-to-celebrate-150th-anniversary-throughout-2014.
In addition to this great article the university has a Sesquicentennial website with all the events and information that will happen over the next school year. We encourage everyone to visit: http://www.du.edu/live/eventseries.html#sesquicentennial.
The GSSW Class of 2014 is graduating in an unique year for the university and are also our last class to graduate under our old curriculum. Lots of changes are happening at GSSW and at DU and we hope everyone is ready for the journey with us!
Happy Sesquicentennial DU! We’re glad to be a part of such a great university!
Every October in Colorado brings a few new things:
1) Fall colors.
2) New students to DU’s campus.
3) The start of a new application to join the MSW and/or PhD programs here at GSSW.
The Office of Admission & Financial Aid looks forward to all three of these new things each Fall. We are excited to announce that our 2014 applications of our MSW programs in Denver, Durango (Four Corners), and Glenwood Springs (Western Colorado) as well as our PhD in Social Work.
For our MSW program in Denver the application information can be viewed at: http://www.du.edu/socialwork/admission/msw/index.html. Click on apply online to apply online for our MSW program.
For our MSW program in Durango, Colorado the application information can be viewed at: http://www.du.edu/socialwork/admission/msw/applyfourcorners.html. Click on the Four Corners application link to download our application.
For our MSW program in Glenwood Springs, Colorado the application information can be viewed at: http://www.du.edu/socialwork/admission/msw/applywcolorado.html. Click on the Western Colorado application link to download our application.
For our PhD program in Denver the application information can be viewed at: http://www.du.edu/socialwork/admission/phd/index.html . Click on apply online to apply for our PhD program.
Have questions about one of our programs? Contact us!
Denver MSW & PhD Programs
MSW program. Email an admission staff member at: firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call at (303)-871-2841.
PhD program. Email Dr. Eugene Walls, PhD Program Director at Eugene.Walls@du.edu or call him at (303)-871-4367
Four Corners MSW Program
MSW program. Email Patti Ellison, Interim Program Director at: Patricia.Ellisor@du.edu or call her at (970)-247-9773.
Western Colorado MSW Program
MSW program. Email Richard Bishop, Program Coordinator at GSSW.WestCo@du.edu or call him at (303)-871-3615 or email Rachel Forbes, Program Director at GSSW.WestCo@du.edu or call her at (970)-945-1133.
Want to learn more about any of these programs? Contact the Office of Admission at email@example.com or give us a call at (303)-871-2841. We look forward to hearing from you and reviewing your application!
(Apologies for the cheesy title)
It’s been an exciting 9 days, having just returned from traveling in 2 rural counties in Sichuan province. On the 5th of July I set out with Professor Sarah Bexell, another staff member from the Chengdu Research Base for Giant Panda Breeding’s Conservation Education Department, and 6 college students. We’d already spent 3 days together training for the summer camps we were going to lead (LINK) and we were ready to get started. Our first day involved a charter bus ride to relatively nearby Le Shan (famous for its giant stone Buddha carved into the mountain side), a bus across the city, another charter bus to E’Bian, and a city bus ride– and the trip took all day. The trip was a good opportunity for me to see Sichuan outside of Chengdu. The region is incredibly mountainous and has a lush green environment due to heavy rainfall and excellent clay-rich soil. Our ride took us winding through mountains very different than the Rockies. These mountains bore more of a resemblance to cliffs or ridges rather than gradually sloping mountains. As we snaked on roads along the Dadu and Min rivers, we cut across ridges that generally had grades steeper than 45 degrees. This region is home to the Yi people. The Yi are an ethnic minority who live in the southwestern provinces of China. The dominant ethnic group in China is the Han. Like whites in the United States, Han control most of the wealth, power, and official positions. Yi speak their own language, in addition to Mandarin, and have a distinct culture. Traditional clothing incorporates a black vest or jacket embroidered or brocade with gold and bright colors. Adult women also wear headdresses of a similar style.
In E’Bian we met the staff of Heizhugou nature reserve, who would collaborate with us to plan the nature hikes and bird watches in the camp. The next morning we set out for a 2 hour bus ride into the mountains to reach Ha Qu (pronounced ha-choo), a village less than 10 miles from the nature reserve. (Nature reserves in China are protected lands where only staff are supposed to be admitted and even they are restricted from the centermost regions. In reality, illegal collection of wildlife and plants is present; poachers and mushroom and bamboo shoot collectors illegally enter reserves.) We had 20 students from a nearby village and their teacher join us in Ha Qu—meeting us there as the village could accommodate the camp’s needs. Half of the town had recently been reconstructed with western development funds. While eastern and coastal China has seen huge development and modernization, central and western China has remained a network of small villages. While Ha Qu had electricity and plumbing before the redevelopment, even afterwards few people had cell phones and many homes still had earthen floors. We were informed that $4 million RMB (roughly $626,000 US) had been invested to construct 2-dozen houses complete with balconies and multiple indoor bathrooms, a restaurant, a plaza, a general store, and a community center. The village lay in a river valley surrounded by mountains and we took several hikes up to ridges similar to wild panda habitats. The high mountains were also inhabited by leeches, which we encountered on our second day.
We ran similar camps at both sites for 8-12 year olds: scavenger hunts, nature hikes, water and bird walks, games involving animals, camouflage, or habitats, and a final performance which resembled a talent show. Videos below shows a bird watching trip and camp members performing in Ha Qu. My role in the camp was that of an English teacher. The Ha Qu campers had some preliminary knowledge so we went over basic introductions and phrases, animals local to Sichuan, words for the environment (tree, leaf, etc.), colors, and numbers. We played the hokey pokey (a huge hit) and sang nursery rhymes. We performed “I’m a little teapot” for the finale. Each camp lasted 3 days.
After the first camp we drove back to E’Bian, took a bus to Ma’Bian (the next county), and a car to Sha Qiang The trips together took nearly 2 days. The most exciting part was the road to Sha Qiang, the village where we held the second camp. We spent the trip winding through the mountains, half of the time on unpaved roads while traveling 40 miles/hour (video posted below). Sha Qiang was a small village with one a single road that deviated from the main thoroughfare. We stayed in the local school’s dormitory with half of our 26 campers—because some of them lived as far away as a 2-hour walk. Our second set of campers were just as friendly and engaged as the first. While they had less experience with English, they still loved the hokey pokey (and danced it in the final performance). The area had experienced heavy rain and storms the day before our arrival. As mentioned Sichuan is a fertile region with steep mountains, this is combined with an intense harvesting (one might categorize it as pillaging) of natural resources. Nickel mining is an especially prevalent industry—on our trip we passed more nickel-laden trucks than all other vehicles (although motorbikes were the dominant presence). Agriculture and construction have also increased in the region. Mining and logging has resulted in a loss of natural growth, resulting in rock falls and land slides after heavy rains. While these are natural occurrences, human activity has greatly increased their frequency. When traveling, our car frequently had to dodge fallen rock. This also extended our travel time as traffic was often limited to a single lane on a two-directional road. Overall the trip was an extended roller coaster ride that was quite fun and worth filming.
The trips gave a great perspective on how large Sichuan province is. The shortest route between Sha Qiang and Chengdu was 7 hours total although both cities are in the same province. Coming from the East Coast, it was still surprising that one could travel 7 hours in one direction and remain in a single state. The camps were also a great opportunity to spread basic information on animal welfare and conservation with the aim to have children teach their peers and families. Our counselors were local college students in order to help spread conservation education at the university level as well. One significant barrier to the camps, however, is the cultural attitude towards animals in China. While many people in the US have pets and can be tempted to appreciate animals when shown pictures of cuddly, baby mammals, Chinese culture is overall very different. Domestic animals in rural areas are working cats and dogs—or sources of food or income. Wild songbirds are caught in cages for singing competitions. Pets are often luxury objects appreciated for their ability to act cute and move. Very few people I’ve encountered treat animals as Americans would, making it difficult to increase the human-animal bond. That’s not to say that our campers were apathetic to animals though—quite the opposite. They just needed a little extra education—and have their work cut out for them. We wish them the best.
I’ll be off to visit a few sites in Chengdu and travel around the country for the next week. My internship is winding down but ahead are still visits to Jiuzhaigou Nature Reserve, the Le Shan Buddha, and the terracotta warriors of Xi’an—and one final blog post.
Here is a video taken during a bird-watching nature hike nearby Heizhugou nature reserve. We had 20 campers from a nearby village. On our hour-and-a-half trek we climbed up a nearby ridge and spent time looking at the wildlife.
The finale of our camp performance included a group song with all Chinese counselors and all 20 campers. This is taken in the village square at Ha Qu near Heizhugou nature reserve.
This video was taken on our route back from the village of Sha Qiang, where we held our second camp. We’re en route to the county seat, Ma Bian. The trip lasted nearly two hours- half of which was on unpaved roads.