School of Social Work

60 Year Anniversary

Study at Syracuse University to become a social worker

Social workers have a strong internal push to dedicate their lives to serving others. They are determined to be catalysts for positive and lasting change. There are more than 650,000 professionally trained social workers in the United States today. Because they experience society’s most pressing issues up close, social workers are well-informed and ideally suited to shape policy and oversee its implementation on the local, state and national levels.

Thousands of professional social workers have earned their social work degrees at Syracuse University and find themselves in rewarding social work careers today. Our programs accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) are rigorous, requiring field placement in addition to social work courses. Our Office of Field Instruction has long-standing relationships with more than one hundred human service agencies, offering opportunities for students to train in human service and government organizations, school systems, correctional facilities, mental health clinics and hospitals. In many instances, students are hired upon graduation in the same agencies where they’ve held field placement positions. Job opportunities for social workers are expected to increase much faster than average for other occupations, with anticipated growth areas encompassing mental health, substance use disorders, services specific to veterans and their families, child welfare, health care and gerontology.

Falk College’s academic portfolio in Social Work includes:

Opportunities for research with faculty abound, with topics including childhood bullying and school violence, combat-related PTSD, family caregiving, aging issues, and disability issues among many others. Want to become a social worker? Graduates of Falk College’s School of Social Work have unlimited potential to change the world. The change you want to see in the world starts with you—and it starts today.

Recent News

Freshman empowers young girls through Straighten Your Crown Freshman empowers young girls through Straighten Your CrownBy Caroline Schagrin, staff writer. Courtesy of The Daily Orange. Once a week, Maddy Oliva goes to Clary Middle School to talk about women empowerment. Oliva, a freshman social work major, works with the Syracuse University organization Straighten Your Crown, where she acts ... Read more

Research training program for veterans now accepting applications Research training program for veterans now accepting applicationsTo improve access to undergraduate research experiences in the area of trauma for groups typically underrepresented in this research, including veterans, a collaborative venture between Syracuse University’s Falk College, SUNY Oswego, and SUNY Upstate Medical University is now recruiting students ... Read more

Students, faculty, staff participate in Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service Students, faculty, staff participate in Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of ServiceIn recognition of the 60th anniversary of the School of Social Work in Falk College, the Syracuse University community was invited to participate in the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service on Monday, January 16 from 9:00 a.m. to ... Read more

Falk student-athlete Justyn Knight finds connections in social work and sports Falk student-athlete Justyn Knight finds connections in social work and sportsSocial work student Justyn Knight ’18 is noticing what it takes to work in the helping professions. By learning about others, and about himself, Knight says he is feeding his passion for lifting others up. “The thing I enjoy most ... Read more

View all Social Work News

Upcoming Events

School of Social Work Social Justice Award Program @ Heroy Auditorium
Mar 6 @ 6:45 pm

In celebration of its 60th anniversary, the School of Social Work, along with Falk College, present the annual Dan and Mary Lou Rubenstein Social Justice Award Program.

Keynote speaker: Beth Broadway President, CEO, InterFaith Works of CNY “Building Bridges of Understanding in a Divided Time Challenges Facing Immigrants and Refugees, and How Our Community Can Help”

The evening will include presentation of 2017 Social Justice Awards to Beth Broadway and Clifford Ryans, Founder, O.G.’s Against Gun Violence. For over 30 years, the Rubenstein Social Justice Award recognizes those who reflect the values of social justice in their professional and personal life. The award is given in honor of the late professor Dan Rubenstein, a former faculty member in the School of Social Work and his late wife, Mary Lou, a former school social worker.

Reception to follow. Please RSVP to Laura Marra at

View or download the Social Justice Award Program flier.

Equine-Assisted Therapies: Lessons from Horses for Helping Professionals @ Whispering Hill Equestrian Center
Apr 28 @ 1:00 pm – 4:30 pm

The School of Social Work in Falk College, an approved provider of continuing education for LMSWs and LCSWs in New York State (NYS), presents “Equine-Assisted Therapies: Lessons from Horses for Helping Professionals.” This course will focus on presenting and demonstrating basic themes of equine-assisted learning (EAL) and equine-assisted psychotherapy (EAP). A brief introduction will be followed by two hours of participation in and/or observation of experiential exercises of EAL/EAP, followed by “lecture and discussion” related to the experiential component. Workshop attendees will gain the most valuable understanding from participating in the exercises with the horses, but this is not required to attend the workshop. All participants will need to sign liability release forms, on site, prior to the beginning of the workshop.
Participants will be able to:

  • Explain the nature of horses as aids to motivation, learning, growth and healing.
  • Explain how horses are helpful with a variety of the physical, cognitive, emotional, and relational challenges people face.
  • Describe the basic principles of equine-assisted psychotherapy and equine-assisted learning, and how they provide insight into helping people make change.
  • Provide examples from equine-assisted therapy approaches that are applicable in other settings, and without the use of horses.

To register, please visit Continuing-Education/
Date: Friday, April 28, 2017
Time: 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Cost: $ 60.00
NYS Dept. of Education and NYS Social Work Board has approved this workshop for 3.5 contact hours.
Contact: Social Work Continuing Education –

Presenters: Paul Caldwell, MSW, Ph.D. and Andrea Collela

Paul Caldwell, MSW, PhD is Associate Professor of Social Work in The David B. Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics at Syracuse University. He worked for 15 years in various mental health and addiction treatment settings before joining the faculty of the School of Social Work in 1994 to pursue teaching and research in these areas. Paul affiliated with From the Ground Up Therapeutic Horsemanship, Inc. in 2011, where he developed interest in the use of horses for therapeutic purposes. He is an Equine-Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA) Certified Mental Health Professional, and he and Andrea Colella co-facilitate equine-assisted psychotherapy and equine-assisted learning sessions. They also developed and co-teach the three-credit course “Introduction to Equine-Assisted Activities and Therapies” at Syracuse University.

Andrea Colella is Executive Director of From the Ground Up Therapeutic Horsemanship, Inc., New Woodstock, NY, where she oversees all programs in equine-assisted activities and therapies. She is a SUNY Cobleskill Equine Science graduate, a Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship (PATH) International Certified Instructor, a National Strength and Conditioning Association Certified Personal Trainer, and an EAGALA Certified Equine Specialist. Andrea has more than 35 years of experience working with horses, and her dedication to fostering health and quality of life for others led her to co-found From the Ground Up in 2002.
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EMDR Therapy Basic Training @ ASI Conference Room 312
May 5 – May 6 all-day

emdrtrainingflier2017The School of Social Work in Falk College, an approved provider of continuing education for LMSWs and LCSWs in New York State, will offer Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) Therapy Basic Training this spring/summer.  EMDR Therapy is a highly effective evidence-based psychotherapy for the treatment of PTSD and trauma-based problems. It can be used to treat a wide range of problems, such as depression, anxiety, relationship difficulties, and low self-esteem.  The American Psychiatric Association, the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Department of Defense, and the World Health Organization have all endorsed EMDR as an effective treatment for PTSD.

This EMDRIA-approved EMDR Basic Training will be presented in an eight-day format via four (4) two-day trainings (full days, Fridays and Saturdays) over three months. The 50-hour training meets EMDRIA’s (the EMDR International Association’s) requirements for the complete EMDR Therapy Basic Training: 20 hours of instruction, 20 hours of supervised practicum, and 10 hours of case consultation.  Participants receive individualized attention, as the instructor to participant ratio is 1 to 10.

To be eligible to take the training, professionals must: 1) have a master’s degree or higher in a field of mental health counseling, 2) be licensed or certified as a mental health professional by a state or national board that authorizes independent practice, and 3) have a current clinical caseload. Participants will learn:

  • The Adaptive Information Processing model of EMDR;
  • How to identify clients for EMDR, and how to develop skills in preparing them for EMDR trauma processing;
  • Skills using all eight phases of the EMDR protocol;
  • The three-stage standard protocol;
  • EMDR Therapy applications with a variety of special populations, and;
  • How to integrate EMDR into a comprehensive trauma-informed treatment approach.


Training dates: May 5 & 6, May 19 & 20, June 23 & 24, July 28 & 29. Attendance is mandatory at all sessions.  Partial credits will not be given.

Cost: $1,500 (remitted tuition may not be used for the training, as this is a continuing education course)

NYS Dept. of Education and NYS Social Work Board has approved this workshop for 50 contact hours

Contact: Tracey Marchese:


Tracey Marchese Portrait

Presenter: Tracey Musarra Marchese, MSW, LCSW-R

Tracey Musarra Marchese is an EMDR-certified therapist and EMDRIA-approved EMDR consultant and trainer. She is a licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) in New York and New Jersey. During her 23 years of experience, Tracey has worked in various health and mental health settings, as well as in private practice. She has developed expertise in trauma, dissociation, and mind-body wellness. She is a certified perinatal bereavement counselor, a certified prepare/enrich counselor, and has advanced training in Evolving Thought Field Therapy (EvTFT). Tracey is a professor of practice in the School of Social Work at Syracuse University, with a private practice in Syracuse.

Restoring Hope and Rebuilding Lives: Working with Resettled Refugees in the United States @ Conference Room A, Catholic Charities,
May 19 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm

The School of Social Work in Falk College, an approved provider of continuing education for LMSWs and LCSWs in New York State (NYS), presents “Restoring Hope and Rebuilding Lives: Working with Resettled Refugees in the United States.” This course will focus on the long, rich history Syracuse has of welcoming newcomers to Central New York. As these populations grow, many social workers have or will have the privilege of working with refugee clients. Considering the current political climate and the national spotlight on immigration reform, it is important for service providers to understand the challenges refugees have faced and continue to face as they adjust to life in the United States. This training will define the term “refugee,” discuss the refugee experience and highlight common themes regarding mental health issues, barriers to treatment, overcoming obstacles, and identifying helpful resources.
Participant learning objectives include:

  • Define who refugees are and gain a basic knowledge of the history of refugee resettlement in the United States.
  • Understand the three stages of the refugee journey: preflight, flight, and resettlement.
  • Increase knowledge regarding refugee trauma and mental health implications.
  • Recognize common barriers to treatment and possible ways to overcome obstacles.
  • Develop local and national resources helpful when working with refugee populations.

To register, please visit continuing-education
Date: Friday, May 19, 2017
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Cost: $ $45.00
NYS Dept. of Education and NYS Social Work Board has approved this workshop for 3 contact hours.
Contact: Social Work Continuing Education –

Presenter: Jenna Curtin, LMSW

Jenna Curtin has been working with children and families in a variety of settings for 17 years. She received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology, her master’s degree in Social Work and a Certificate of Advanced Study in Trauma Informed Care from Syracuse University. Her learning focus during graduate school was on refugee trauma. In 2008, Jenna started working with Syracuse’s Unaccompanied Refugee Minor Program, first as an intensive case manager and then as the program therapist. She works with refugee youth who have experienced extensive trauma and are resettled in the United States without adult caregivers. As a member of Catholic Charities’ Refugee Mental Health Services steering committee, as well as the Refugee Services consultation group, Jenna works to promote collaboration and connections among local refugee service providers and support to others working with these vulnerable populations.

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Mindfulness-based Psychotherapy @ Conference Room A, Catholic Charities
Nov 3 @ 8:30 am – 4:30 pm

The School of Social Work in Falk College, an approved provider of continuing education for LMSWs and LCSWs in New York State (NYS), will offer “Mindfulness-based Psychotherapy,” Mindfulness-based CBT is considered a second generation CBT model. Integrating mindfulness-based approaches in psychotherapy can enhance outcomes. Social workers will gain an understanding of the valuable role for mindfulness in psychotherapy practice. Mindfulness-based models that have significant research evidence will be highlighted.
Participant learning objectives:

  • Describe the essence of what mindfulness is and its benefits for psychotherapy
  • Understand the difference between CBT and Mindfulness-based CBT
  • Practice mindfulness themselves and link their experience to their work with clients
  • Utilize several in-session activities to teach clients key concepts around acceptance, distress tolerance, and mindfulness practice
  • Improve client outcomes through integrating personal values, self-compassion, and stress awareness to mental and physical wellness goals.

To register, please visit Continuing-Education
Date: Friday, November 3, 2017
Time: 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Cost: $115.00
NYS Dept. of Education and NYS Social Work Board has approved this workshop for 6.5 contact hours.
Contact: Social Work Continuing Education

Presenter: Christine Tyrrell-Baker, Ph.D.

Christine Tyrrell Baker has championed the implementation of both Evidence-Based Practices and Person-Centered Care towards improving quality of care for persons with serious mental illness. She is intensively trained in Dialectical Behavior Therapy and in Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction models. She currently teaches Syracuse University’s course on Evidence-Based Mental Health Practices as part of the NYS Deans of Social Work collaboration with NYS to promote competency in evidence-based practice for graduating social workers. Currently, Dr. Tyrrell Baker is a NYS licensed clinical psychologist in private practice specializing in mindfulness based cognitive behavioral therapy for adults.

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