Dear Social Work Colleagues, Students, Agencies, and Allies,
The CSUN Department of Social Work expresses our sadness and outrage at the killing of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and Tony McDade due to racist police actions and institutionalized white supremacist violence. We strongly believe that BLACK LIVES MATTER. We wish the lives of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, and countless others weren’t violently cut short. We recognize that racist policing policies and white supremacist violence have been legally used as tools of terror against Black people for over 400 years. Our Department understands and is outraged by this shameful, long-standing state-sanctioned violence. We recognize that state-sanctioned violence extends its reach of harmful policies and practices toward Indigenous people, People of Color, LGBTQ communities, homeless and economically vulnerable people, Immigrants and Refugees, Deaf people, and people with disabilities and lived experiences with mental health.
The mission of the CSUN Department of Social work is to prepare professional social workers for anti-oppressive, strengths-based practice with individuals, families and communities in the urban setting. Our mission reflects both the universal values of social work “to promote the well-being of individuals, families and communities” while reflecting the unique context of California State University Northridge—an urban setting in the heart of the San Fernando Valley, Los Angeles County. We offer a single concentration: advanced generalist social work practice. This focus offers students the opportunity to learn strategies for working in any urban environment at the micro (individual/family), mezzo (group/community) and macro (policy/societal) levels.
Mission Statement and Program Goals
The mission of the California State University, Department of Social Work is to prepare professional social workers to be anti-oppressive, socially just agents of change by promoting well-being in urban settings. As an advanced generalist program with a focus on urban communities, the Department will teach and create collaborative learning experiences with students.
Urban settings describe communities with densely populated areas and a vast array of subcultures. Utilizing a lens that espouses an intersectional, trauma-informed collaborative perspective, the Department celebrates a strengths-based inclusive identity, emphasized by the shared experiences of community, culture, and location.
- Examine and apply an intersectionality, power, and privilege lens to address social, political, and systemic change.
- Empower and be relevant to the diverse needs of the multi-national, multi-ethnic, multi-cultural San Fernando Valley and its surrounding communities.
- Advocate for an equitable and socially just society.
- Enhance critical consciousness through research, practice, and trauma-informed knowledge, values, and skills.
When it comes to the promotion of social justice, CSUN MSW students are ready to work. The We Are Power: Community in Action Conference was an inspirational example of what that work can do. Held in February of 2020 and organized by students of the Department of Social Work at CSUN, this year’s annual conference marked the first to move away from the title “Diversity Day” and embrace the words coined by Native activist and poet, John Trudell: “We Are Power.” Watch the conference video.
Written by Perla Colin, the CSUN Today article entitled "Promotores de Bienestar Mental: Bilingual YouTube Channel Promotes Mental Health in Latinx Communities Through CSUN MSW Program" recognizes a group of MSW students and their launching a bilingual YouTube channel. The channel “Promotores de Bienestar Mental” (“Promoters of Mental Wellbeing”) provides a space to foster the mental health and well-being of the Latinx community. Read the CSUN Today article.
The Social Work Profession is 151 years strong. This means the profession has survived major cultural shifts and pandemics. The state of our circumstances today is not new to us, we have been at this place before. This is what gives social workers the drive, dedication, and commitment to keep adapting in the face of an act of nature or humankind. Read the rest of the story.