Harvest on the Rio Grande dedication ceremony

Harvest on the Rio Grande – Dedication Ceremony

On Wednesday, May 6, 2015 from 4:00pm – 5:30pm in the Quadrangle east of Craig Hall, University of Denver 2148 South High Street, Denver 80208 GSSW, the University of Denver, and community members had a dedication ceremony for the Harvest on the Rio Grande sculptures generously donated to the University of Denver.

The site selected for the work, adjacent to the Graduate School of Social Work, celebrates shared themes of family and community. The artist will attend the dedication ceremony, which will include a Native blessing. GSSW Dean James Herbert Williams and DU Chancellor Rebecca Chopp spoke. We hope you will join us as we welcome the six life-size figures of Harvest on the Rio Grande into the University of Denver community!

To learn more about the sculptures please visit: http://www.du.edu/socialwork/gsswnews/2015/15-4-sculpture.html

Please see below for pictures of the ceremony.

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The Hyde Sculpture Garden at GSSW

The Hyde Sculpture Garden has been installed. The sculptures, entitled “Harvest on the Rio Grande”, were created by Douglas Hyde and donated to DU by Gerri Cohen. Mrs. Cohen’s husband was a long-time member of the DU Board of Trustees. Chancellor Emeriti Ritchie & Coombs both requested that the sculpture garden be given to GSSW. A dedication celebration which will include a shaman’s blessing will take place on Wednesday, May 6 at 4:00 p.m. out by the garden.

All faculty, staff and students are encouraged to attend.

Watch the main GSSW Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/GSSWDenver) for further information about the shaman blessing on May 6.

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Come check out the sculpture garden just east of GSSW on the green near Frontier Hall.

MSW Priority application date is right around the corner!

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!

Tip #1

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.

Tip #2

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.

Tip #3

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.

Tip #4

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.

Tip #5

Email gssw-admission@du.edu 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!

GSSW & DU closed for the Holidays & New Year!

Happy Holidays & Happy New Year!

We at GSSW want to wish all of our readers of this blog a very Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year!

As a reminder we will be closed from December 25 – January 1, re-opening on January 2.

See everyone in 2015!

9th GSSW Director/Dean – James Herbert Williams, PhD – GSSW’s current Dean

James Herbert Williams, PhD, MSW, MPA, University of Denver

9th GSSW Dean/Current Dean

2010 – Present

pf-williams

James Herbert Williams is Dean and Milton Morris Endowed Chair at the Graduate School of Social Work at the University of Denver. His research and practice focuses on human security and economic sustainability, health promotion and disease prevention, behavioral health disparities and health equity, global practice and sustainable development, adolescent violence and substance use, mental health services for African American children in urban schools, disproportionate minority confinement of African American youth in the juvenile justice system, school safety and violence prevention, and community strategies for positive youth development. James Herbert joined the University of Denver faculty as dean in 2007; prior to his appointment as Dean, he was the Foundation Professor of Youth and Diversity at the School of Social Work at Arizona State University and the E. Desmond Lee Professor of Racial and Ethnic Diversity at the Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis. He also served as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the Brown School. His funded research and training includes grants from NICHD, NIMH, NIDDK, DOJ, DOE, DHHS, UNCRD, OMH, and the Danforth Foundation. His scholarship has been published in several health and social science journals.

James Herbert is currently the Editor-in-Chief for Social Work Research. He is a member of International Editorial Advisory Board for Regional Development Studies; member of the Editorial Board for the Journal of Adolescent Health; and member of the Scientific and Technical Advisory Group for the Global Risk Forum’s One Health Initiative. James Herbert has held various leadership roles including President of the National Association of Deans and Directors of Schools of Social Work (NADD), and three CSWE Commissions (Educational Policy, Diversity and Social and Economic Justice, Information Management and Research); a member of the Action Network for Social Work Education and Research (ANSWER), a board member of the Institute for the Advancement of Social Work Research (IASWR), a member of the International Committee of the National Association of Social Work, and he has twice served as a member of the Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR) Board of Directors both as a member-at-large and as Vice-President. He served as a member of the NADD strategic planning task force and co-chair of the NADD task force on health disparities.

James Herbert received his B.A. from Grambling State University, his MSW from Smith College, his MPA from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, and his PhD from the University of Washington, Seattle..

If you like to get an appointment with Dean Williams or contact him please email gsswdean@du.edu or call the Office of the GSSW Dean at (303)-871-2203.

8th Director/Dean – Catherine Alter

CATHERINE FOSTER ALTER (1938-present)

Dean and Professor (1996-2006)

Dean Emerita (2006-present)

Catherine Alter

Catherine Alter attended Grinnell College (Iowa), graduating in 1960 as a double major in American Studies and Journalism. Her MSW was completed at University of Iowa (1975). The results from her masters thesis, indicating the overrepresentation of children of color in special education classes in the Davenport, Iowa School District, were used as data in supporting a complaint of racial bias filed with the U.S. Civil Rights Commission, which eventually led the school district to institute a plan of remediation. She completed her Ph.D. in social work at the University of Maryland (1985), conducting dissertation research on interorganizational service delivery systems.

Alter’s prior professional practice career includes staff and executive positions in public relations, television production, urban planning, administration of area-wide services for seniors, directing a program for at-risk children, and conducting research on social and economic development. She has held paid and/or consulting positions with the Children’s Defense Fund, the Carnegie Council on Children, the Institute for Social and Economic Development, and served as technical expert for the Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.

Prior to coming to GSSW as the eighth head of the social work at DU, she was a faculty member at St. Ambrose College (Iowa), University of Maryland, and University of Iowa. At University of Iowa, she chaired the four-city social work satellite programs, was Director of the School of Social Work, and Coordinator of the Graduate Program.

Notable achievements during her tenure as GSSW Dean include curriculum innovations such as: the distance education program in the Four Corners area; certificate programs in working with Latino/as, survivors of trauma, and the use of animals to assist social work practice. She instituted the first comprehensive strategic planning and budgeting process at GSSW; greatly expanded the size of staff and faculty; significantly increased the financial aid assistance to MSW and doctoral students; created continuing education and outreach programs to alumni, community practitioners, and human service agencies; networked with other Colorado social work education programs about the advancement of the profession; coordinating the efforts among NASW, Colorado Society for Clinical Social Work, and other groups to continue social work licensing in Colorado; and, most recently, successfully led a seven year capital campaign which raised over $11 million for the renovation and expansion of the School’s present home, Craig Hall. As a result of these efforts, along with increased faculty scholarship and research, GSSW has moved significantly higher in the national rankings of accredited schools of social work place.

2014-2015 Information Sessions

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 gssw-admission@du.edu or give us a call (303)-871-2841.

We look forward to seeing you or speaking with you soon!

7th GSSW Dean – Dr. John ‘Jack’ Jones 1987-1996, Dean Emeritus, 2004-2013

John F. Jones (“Jack”) 1923-2013

Dean and Professor, GSSW,1987-96

Interim Provost, 1989

Professor 1996-2004

Dean Emeritus, 2004 -2013

Jack JonesPhoto courtesy of University of Denver Magazine

 Jack Jones was born in Dublin, Ireland. He earned a BA from the National University of Ireland (1953), an MSW from the University of Michigan (1966), an MA in Public Administration and Ph.D. (social work) from the University of Minnesota (1968). Prior to coming to GSSW as its seventh program head, Jones served for 12 years as the Director of the social work program at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (1976-1987) and was the founding dean of the School of Social Development, University of Minnesota-Duluth (1971-1976). He also has held academic positions at Hong Kong University, the University of Wisconsin, and Case Western Reserve University.

During his nine years as GSSW dean, the enrollment of the School nearly doubled, and the volume of faculty research and training grants significantly increased. Jones played a key role in establishing, and later chairing, the Colorado Human Services, Research, Education, and Training Consortium (a partnership between the social work programs at DU, Colorado State University, and Metropolitan State University) that brought in $1.5 million training grants in child welfare to GSSW. In addition, Jones was involved in establishing the Bridge Project, a program serving the children, adults, and families of Denver’s public housing.

Drawing on his extensive international experience and research on three continents, and more than 20 years of consulting with the United Nation, Jones published a dozen books and numerous articles on social development, transitional economies, and human security in Asia and Africa. He led GSSW in establishing a unique international partnership with the All China Youth Federation to reestablish the profession of social work in China. As a result, GSSW and the China College of Youth Politics in Beijing have engaged in several faculty exchanges and joint research projects.

Jones served on numerous international boards and committees, such as the Advisory Committee of the United Nations Center for Regional Development and the International Council of Social Welfare. His national and local voluntary service included the American Humane Association, Volunteers of America, the Governor’s Business Commission on Child Care Financing, Warren Village, and the Colorado chapter of NASW. In recognition of his work in founding the Inter-university Consortium for International Social Development, he received its Founders’ Award in 1992.

Following his retirement from the GSSW faculty, Jones continued his work at the University as a research professor in DU’s Conflict Resolution Institute. Emeritus Dean Jones worked on several publications with the current dean of GSSW James Herbert Williams until his death on February 20, 2013. Dr. Jones is a missed member of the community both in Denver and at the University of Denver.  His influence on faculty, staff, and students is memorable.

To read a great article about Dr. Jones in the University of Denver magazine following his passing please visit: http://magazine.du.edu/campus-community/former-gssw-dean-jack-jones-dies/

6th Head of GSSW – Katherine “Kay” Vail – Acting Dean 1985-1987

KATHERINE VAIL (“Kay”) (1924-2007 )

GSSW Professor (1969-1989)

Acting Dean (1985-1987), 6th Head of GSSW

Emeritus Professor (1989)

“Kay Vail is an organizer. She organizes organizations and people in the organizations.”

The Denver Post, March 19, 1973

Katherine (Kay) Vail

Kay Vail was born in Topeka, Kansas, but grew up in a small town in Texas where her father owned a cotton gin. In high school, she was “double promoted,” graduating at age 16. She graduated from Baker University (Kansas) in 1945. She was not able to study music, because that department had been eliminated because of WW II, so she majored in physical education. For the next 15 years, she worked for the Girl Scouts in Topeka. “They were looking for people who were particularly interested in camping, and that was my specialty.”

Vail completed her MSW at DU in 1955, specializing in group work. She then worked for the Girls Scouts for two years in Portland, OR. Vail’s love of the outdoors brought her back to Colorado in 1959, where she worked part time on a dude ranch while also serving as the Executive Director of the Colorado White House Conference on Children and Youth. From 1960-66, she was the Coordinator of Special Services for the Metropolitan Council for Community Services in Denver.

Her teaching career at GSSW began in 1967 as a field instructor and course instructor in group work. In1969, she joined the faculty full time, teaching a wide range of courses, including the practice of social work, group work, social policy and administration, management and staff development, integrated practice, and group research. Vail also took on many administrative tasks involving the internal functions of the school. She was in charge of the Continuing Education programs, and established the Satellite Education Program in Pueblo, extending MSW education to an underserved area of the state. As Associate Dean (1983-1985) and then Acting Dean (1985-1987), she put GSSW’s financial affairs back in order, led the faculty in reevaluating and revising the curriculum, and developed the Information Technology Center, bringing GSSW into the computer age. She served on many University committees as well as numerous community boards and organizations. In retirement, she continued her work on various human service projects in Park County, CO, and also in Mexico, where she spends the winter.

Kay Vail passed away in an Aurora nursing home on April 20, 2007, after a long illness. She was 82 and was preceded in death by her husband, Richard. Kay is survived by two step-children, Richard and Pat of Aurora, former daughter-in-law (called “daughter” by Kay), Helene Burns of Bailey, ten step-grandchildren, and three nephews and a niece. Kay will also be missed and remembered by her many friends and associates in Park County. Funeral services were private (http://www.theflume.com/obituaries/article_2b42f2ba-94cc-5779-a311-4bb997baeac9.html)

Kay is still supporting education in the community. In her will, she bequeathed generous annuities to the Park County Library and the Park County Education Foundation. (http://www.theflume.com/obituaries/article_2b42f2ba-94cc-5779-a311-4bb997baeac9.html)

The Platte Canyon community, Park County, and the many people Kay worked to help are grateful for her commitment and her very active life here. (http://www.theflume.com/obituaries/article_2b42f2ba-94cc-5779-a311-4bb997baeac9.html)