Nearly 140 people participated in the School of Social Work’s Appreciation Conference for Field Instructors and Task Supervisors on May 20. This year’s conference, “Contemporary Conversations About Race and Inclusion,” encouraged participants to think critically about the importance of engaging students, as well as clients and colleagues, in a dialogue to examine bias and increase cross cultural knowledge and skills.
Field faculty members Ronni Zuckerman, clinical assistant professor; Amy Levine, clinical instructor; and Linda Pridgen-Braswell, field education office manager coordinated this year’s conference. Dean Jack M. Richman and Associate Dean of Academic Affairs Lisa Zerden welcomed participants and spoke about the importance of field education in the MSW experience. Assistant Dean of Field Education Rebecca Brigham also welcomed participants and highlighted the importance and complexities of this year’s conference theme.
Karen Bullock, head of the Department of Social Work from North Carolina State University, provided the keynote address, “Giving Voice to Cultural Competence in Social Work Practice: Isn’t It Time We Talk?” Afternoon workshops were divided into two tracks: “The Holistic Model to Frame and Address Health Equity,” which was presented by Diane Rowley with UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health; and “Exploring Current Contexts and Engagement with Diverse Populations,” which was facilitated by David Juarez Torres with Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Raleigh Hispanic Family Center; Manzoor Cheema with Movement to End Racism and Islamophobia; Qua Lynch with UNC American Indian Center; and Mignon Hooper with Namaste Psychotherapy and Consulting.
In addition, participants engaged throughout the day in a respectful dialogue that explored the impact of our current social, political, and economic environment on specific populations and identified tools for building relationships and engaging across difference.
Each year, the School presents awards to local agencies that exemplify “the best of the best” in field instruction. Award winners this year were: Central Regional Hospital and UNC Clinical Care Management, the YWCA of Greensboro, the Orange County Department of Social Services, and Chapel Hill Training Outreach.
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 Rebecca Brigham at firstname.lastname@example.org.