Yvonne Smith

Assistant Professor

Yvonne (Eevie) Smith’s research addresses the complex ways that mental health workers use knowledge from multiple sources to shape their everyday practice. Her ongoing ethnographic research in youth residential treatment centers explores the processes through which workers develop expertize in their sites of practice, pointing to a need for greater recognition and transmission of organization-specific local knowledge. Her most recent study investigates the unique challenges and opportunities of hiring, training, and retaining an expert workforce in the complex field of youth residential treatment.

Eevie has practiced in a range of social work settings, including residential treatment for adolescents with mental illness, harm reduction outreach with substance users, supportive and transitional housing, and therapeutic foster care. She has an interest in milieu-based interventions and the growing area of animal-assisted therapies.


Ph.D., School of Social Service Administration, University of Chicago

Master of Arts in Social Work (A.M.), School of Social Service Administration, University of Chicago

Bachelor of Art (B.A.) in English, Ohio Wesleyan University


workforce issues in youth residential treatment, clinical expertise and decision-making, apprenticeship learning in social work practice, psychotherapeutic process, ethnographic methods, animals in social work


SWK 328: Human Diversity in Social Contexts

SWK 403/603: Social Work and the Human-Animal Bond

SWK 626: Persons in Social Context

SKW 628: Human Diversity in Social Contexts

SWK 743: Advanced Integrated Social Work Practice

Recent Publications