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School hosts 2014 Field Instructor Appreciation Conference

On May 16, the School hosted its highly successful annual Appreciation Conference for Field Instructors and Task Supervisors, with 120 participants. Ronni Zuckerman, clinical instructor and field faculty, coordinated this year’s event. Photo gallery

Conference participants were greeted with a slideshow of photos of students, field instructors, and task supervisors, and quotes from students sharing their appreciation. Dean Jack Richman and Director of Field Education Rebecca Brigham welcomed participants and shared how influential their field experiences had been in their own professional social work educations.

Adam Linker of the N.C. Justice Center and Lisa Lackmann, clinical assistant professor at the Behavioral Healthcare Resource Program at the UNC School of Social Work, presented a timely keynote address, “The Unsteady March to Health Reform in North Carolina.” Afternoon workshops included three options: “Motivational Interviewing: Using Field as a Proxy for Change” presented by Marty Weems, UNC Chapel Hill School of Social Work; “On the Diagnosis and ‘Treatment’ of Homosexuality: When Prejudice Masquerades as Science: An Ethical Retrospective,” presented by Bill Meyer, Duke University Medical Center; and “Self-Care and Advocacy,” by Michelle Johnson, MSW ’98, Dismantling Racism Works. The field education faculty also provided a curricula update on anticipated changes to a competency based system.

Each year, the School gives awards to local agencies that exemplify “the best of the best” in field instruction. Award winners this year were Durham Public Schools, presented by faculty member Tauchiana Vanderbilt; the Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Campaign, presented by Brigham; CareNet, presented by faculty member Theresa Palmer; Urban Ministries, presented by faculty member Jean Livermore; and the Healing Place, presented by Brigham.

The conference was very well received by participants. One attendee wrote on their conference evaluation, “I have been to several of these events and felt that this one was the best one yet. The presenters were relevant and engaging, and appropriate for the audience as a whole.”

The Field Education Program recruits and develops new field instructors on a continuous basis. If you are interested in becoming a field instructor, please contact Brigham at

By Ronni Zuckerman