Children and Grief: A Developmental Perspective

Ruth Pearlman, LCSW, LICSW, MEd
Register Now for CE programs nowWed, June 5, 2024
10 am – 12 pm
2 CECs

Registration Fee: $50
10% discount for UConn SSW Alumni and Current SSW Field Instructors

Webinar link will be emailed when your registration is complete.

Even before COVID children were grieving losses that were not largely recognized or understood. COVID has magnified the grief experience of children on multiple levels.
This webinar will explore children’s concepts of death and non-death losses from a developmental perspective. We will apply Piaget’s Cognitive Theory to understand how
children conceptualize loss at each stage of development.

In this webinar, we will:

  • review Piaget’s Cognitive Theory and apply it to children’s understanding of loss
  • identify a spectrum of non-death losses in childhood
  • examine the role of magical thinking in children’s developmental understanding of loss
  • identify modern grief terminology
  • specifically examine the loss and grief trajectory in the lives of children in foster/alternative care

Building a Private Practice – Live Virtual

Jennifer Berton, PhD, LICSW, CADC-IIRegister now for CE programs
Live Webinar
Tues, July 9, 16, and 23
10 am – 12 pm
6 CECs – participants must attend all 3 sessions to earn CECs

Registration Fee: $150
10% discount for UConn SSW Alumni and Current SSW Field Instructors

Webinar link will be emailed when your registration is complete.

Welcome to the Building a Private Practice Series. This training is not only for people who are thinking about starting a practice, but also for those who have an existing practice. It’s never too late to make some adjustments to your practice that will help it grow more effectively. This training relates to direct practice as it aims to help the clinician build a practice that will benefit the clients it serves and ensure their practice adheres to the strictest of ethical principles. Participants will learn how to build a private practice that meet the needs of the clients they serve and strengthens both the client’s treatment experience and the profession as a whole.

This training is split into 3 consecutive Thursday webinars. Participants must attend all 3 sessions to earn CECs.

PART I covers the top mistakes people make in private practice, and begins to layout the framework for building a better one. We will explore the nuts and bolts of who, why,  where, and when to open a private practice. Then we will dive into how to set up your practice with your own policies and procedures.

PART II begins with ironing out all the financial aspects of your private practice, including how to set a fee schedule, how and why to work with insurances, how and why to work with private pay options, bank accounts, insurances, and taxes. We will then lay out all the clinical paperwork you need to safeguard your practice the right way.

PART III begins with a discussion of how to market your business, where you should focus and what you should ignore. We then round out the series by exploring how to develop your practice, how to effectively close your practice, and how to troubleshoot your practice when it isn’t growing as you would like it to grow.

Coming Home: Readjustment Reactions following Military Service and Deployment

Register for CE programs now

This webinar provides 2 hours of content on working with veterans.

Christopher Morse, LICSW, MVF-ASW 

Saturday, June 8, 2024
10 am – 12 pm

$40 – UConn SSW Alumni and Current Field Instructors
$50 – All Others

Webinar link will be emailed when your registration is complete.

While not all service members experience mental health issues, many will experience difficulties returning to the civilian world. Participants will learn about common readjustment issues faced by military and veteran populations. We will also examine the effects of trauma on readapting to life after deployment. In response to the many requests of participants who attended his trainings on Understanding Military Culture, Christopher Morse, LICSW developed this program to shed light on another important aspect of working with veterans and active military personnel.

This webinar will:

  • examine common readjustment reactions following military service and deployment to combat theaters
  • explore the effects of trauma on readjustment following combat service
  • introduce the use of common military cultural artifacts and concepts in translating therapeutic concepts into principles common to military service

Building a Private Practice – In-Person

Register Now for CE programsJennifer Berton, PhD, LICSW, CADC-II
Monday, June 10, 2024
9:30 am – 4:00 pm
5 CECs

Fee: $125
UConn SSW Alumni and Current Field Instructors receive a 10% discount

Classroom location, directions and parking details will be included in your email confirmation

Do you have a private practice or are you interested in opening one? Are you utilizing all the available tools to protect and build your practice? This seminar will give you everything you need to build a solid, practice that adheres to HIPAA regulations, ethical principles, and scope of practice restrictions to effectively help the clients you serve.

We will explore the necessary paperwork to use with clients, as well as steps you need to take to protect your practice. This seminar will also provide a plethora of ideas about how to grow your business to its full potential. If you have a private practice, or wish to build one, you need this training to make sure the practice you build is at its clinical best.

This seminar will enable you to:

  • gather materials to set up your practice correctly and efficiently
  • learn how to effectively build a solid client base
  • explore all the vital tools you need to protect your practice
  • examine the potential ways to grow your business

One Stone Meditation for Our Clients and Ourselves

Donald deGraffenried, LCSW
In-personRegister Now for CE programs
Friday, June 21, 2024
9 am – 12 pm
3 CECs

Registration Fee: $75
UConn SSW Alumni and Current Field Instructors receive a 10% discount

Classroom location, directions and parking details will be included in your email confirmation

This three-hour in person training will explore the teachings of Buddhist Monk Thich Nhat Hanh. Participants will learn about his history with mindfulness, his advocacy for peace and social justice, and his connection to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Trainer Donald deGraffenried, LCSW will explain the origin of the “One Stone Meditation” and demonstrate how to use this powerful, yet simple experience of mindfulness with clients or for yourself.

This is a gentle introduction to the process of mindfulness and enhancing the greater ability to be fully in the moment. It has wide application for use with clients, especially in the management of stress and anxiety. Participants will also have the option via a practicum to enhance/strengthen their experience by using bi lateral taping which comes out of the work of Francine Shapiro, Ph.D. and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR).

In this interactive and experiential seminar, participants will:

• practice the “One Stone Meditation”
• develop the meditative experience
• have the opportunity to practice and strengthen their experience by using bi lateral taping

Kathryn Libal, director of the Gladstein Family Human Rights Institute, has been promoted to full professor

Professor Kathyrn Libal

On April 17, the University of Connecticut (UConn) Office of the Provost announced awards of promotion and/or tenure to faculty, including the School of Social Work’s Kathryn Libal, Ph.D.

Since 2007, Libal has taught at both the School of Social Work (SSW) and the Gladstein Family Human Rights Institute (HRI), specializing in human rights, refugee resettlement, social welfare and qualitative research methods. She has directed the HRI since 2015, where she has worked to deepen interdisciplinary and cross-professional educational programs, research, and outreach inside and outside the university. She teaches courses on human rights and social work, qualitative research methods, social policy analysis, and approaches to human rights advocacy, some of which also contribute to the university’s Graduate Certificate in Human Rights.

Libal’s scholarship has focused on the Middle East and United States. She has published on women’s and children’s rights movements in Turkey and on the advocacy of international non-governmental organizations on behalf of Iraqi refugees. Currently she is researching the politics and practices of voluntarism and refugee resettlement in the United States in collaboration with SSW faculty S. Megan Berthold, Scott Harding and several doctoral students in social work. The team is examining how voluntarism in an era of xenophobia and backlash creates new forms of civic connection and political participation among volunteers, social service providers, and refugees and asylum seekers.

In addition to publishing several co-edited volumes, a co-authored text, and numerous articles on refugees, migration, and human rights and social work, Libal has helped to shape the field of human rights and social work through serving for many years on the Committee on Human Rights, which was the precursor of the Council on Social Work Education’s Council on Environmental Justice and Human Rights. She is the UConn’s liaison with the Scholars at Risk Program and a founding member of the executive committee of Scholars at Risk USA chapter. Her role as director of the HRI also has afforded her the opportunity to serve on the executive committee of the Consortium of Higher Education Centers for Holocaust, Genocide and Human Rights Studies.

Compassionate Care: Elderly Protection and Advocacy

Qur-an Webb, MSW
Thursday, August 22, 2024Register Now for CE programs
Live Webinar
2 pm – 4 pm
2 CECs

Registration Fee: $50
10% discount for UConn SSW Alumni and Current SSW Field Instructors

This training addresses a critical concern in today’s society by focusing on the protection of the elderly from abuse and neglect. Participants will examine the various forms of mistreatment that older individuals may face and explore strategies for prevention, detection, and intervention. The webinar will emphasize the importance of creating safe environments and nurturing a culture of respect and dignity for the elderly. In this interactive training, participants will learn skills to identify signs of abuse and neglect, report incidents appropriately, and work collaboratively with relevant authorities. This training aims to equip individuals with the knowledge and tools needed to champion the rights and well-being of the elderly and foster a society that values and safeguards its senior members.

Participants in this webinar will:

  • become familiar with mandatory reporting procedures and increase their knowledge of elders’ rights to self-determination
  • examine the role of staff when working with the elderly population to better understand their unique needs and challenges
  • learn about available resources and effective strategies tailored to address the specific needs of the elderly population

Unmasking Gang Culture: Understanding and Addressing Gang Behavior

Qur-an Webb, MSW
Tuesday, June 4, 2024Register Now for CE programs
Live Webinar
6 pm – 8 pm
2 CECs

Registration Fee: $50
10% discount for UConn SSW Alumni and Current SSW Field Instructors

In this training we will look at the psychological and social factors that contribute to gangs and their historical roots and evolution in America to gain an understanding of the socio-economic factors that fuel their existence. We will examine the alarming intersection between gangs and Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking (DMST), shedding light on the complex dynamics that perpetuate exploitation. We will analyze the pervasive influence of media on gang culture, from its portrayal in movies to the role of music in shaping perceptions and recruitment. Finally, we will explore effective strategies and solutions aimed at addressing gangs, encompassing community-based interventions, law enforcement approaches, and preventative measures to create safer societies.

Participants in this webinar will:

  • understand the historical roots and evolution of gangs and the socio-economic factors that impact their existence
  • explore the psychological and social factors that contribute to the formation of gangs
  • examine the intersection between gangs and Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking (DMST)
  • explore a range of strategies aimed at addressing gang-related issues

Professor Cristina Wilson Elected to GADE Board of Directors

The UConn School of Social Work (SSW) is proud to announce that Professor Cristina Mogro-Wilson was elected to the board of the Group for the Advancement of Doctoral Education (GADE). Wilson, an at-large board member, will join the current board in supporting GADE’s mission to promote excellence and equity in social work doctoral education.

As the administrative body of GADE, the board of directors provides strategic leadership to its members and its constituencies. It comprises 10 doctoral program directors, who serve three-year rotating terms and are elected by GADE membership.

New and re-elected board members, who begin their terms June 1, 2024, also include: Krystal Hays, associate professor and DSW program director, California Baptist University; Poco Kernsmith, professor and Ph.D. program director, University of Texas at Arlington; and Anne Williford, associate professor and Ph.D. program director, Colorado State University.

“These scholars bring a wealth of experience and expertise to our work as an organization,” said GADE President Denise Burnette in an announcement. "Each has held key leadership roles in their respective universities and professional communities, and they bring years of deep knowledge about social work doctoral education.”

Wilson, a professor and co-director of the SSW’s P.D. Program, was recently appointed to the Zachs Chair in Social Work, an endowed chair that provides leadership of the SSW’s doctoral program. In 2022, Wilson was named editor-in-chief of Families in Society: The Journal of Contemporary Social Services, a core journal in social work research for over 100 years.

Read more about her work.

NIA-Funded Study Explores Re-Engagement of Black Older Adults After COVID-19

With the support of a $7 million National Institutes on Aging (NIA) Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Center grant, Assistant Professor Rupal Parekh is leading a pilot study about the impact of social isolation and loneliness on the health and well-being of Black and African American older adults in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Parekh’s research goal is to investigate both the barriers and the facilitators of engagement for Black and African American older adults in activities they enjoyed before the pandemic. These activities include attendance to church services, which formed the center of social engagement for many in this community, as well as involvement in senior centers. A body of research shows a direct relationship between isolation and negative health outcomes for older adults.

Preliminary findings are based on focus group interviews with leaders, staff and volunteers at churches and senior centers in the Greater Hartford area. The interviews explored engagement and disengagement among the older adults who had largely stopped going to church and senior centers during the height of the pandemic.

One finding is that older Black and African American adults are going to church again but more of them do it online than before the pandemic. “What I'm seeing is that churches have had to be creative in their offerings and they offer a variety of modalities for adults to be engaged,” says Parekh. Rather than return to attending in-person, where these elders had “eyes and ears” on them in the community, many older adults are compensating by continuing to attend online.

While this form of engagement helps reduce isolation for older adults, it does not encourage physical activity, which also decreased during the pandemic. “When you're only online, you're not getting up, going in a car, you're not moving,” she observes. “There's likely an impact in the long run with health and health outcomes.”

Generally, Parekh and Co-Principal Investigator Christine Tocchi, an assistant professor at UConn School of Nursing, have found that despite ongoing concerns about COVID, older Black and African American adults have been excited to return to church and to senior centers in their communities.

In the second phase of her work, which is near completion, Parekh and the research team are conducting one-on-one interviews with 30 seniors. Those interviews examine how the adults are engaged in various aspects of their lives, including shopping and gathering with friends. Once those interviews are analyzed, the plan is to present the findings to the older adults and service providers to co-develop interventions that will foster re-engagement.

Read more about the research in a story on UConn Today and Parekh’s work.