Katherine Briar-LawsonFrom the Dean

A few years ago, I left academia for a time to work in a public child welfare agency. The experience opened my eyes to many things, including the value that schools of social work can bring to the most vulnerable people in our world.

Today, I am proud to serve a school that provides such value - every day.

So many elements make the UAlbany-SUNY School of Social Welfare a vibrant place for students and community partners alike:

  • Our faculty, who consistently make the top five of all U.S. schools of social work for research and scholarship
  • Our alumni, who pioneer new services, conduct groundbreaking research, and teach the next generation of social workers
  • The opportunities available to our undergraduate, MSW, and Ph.D. students to develop their skills as 21st-century leaders and change agents
  • Our strategic location near the seat of state government, which allows us to play a pivotal role in impacting social welfare policy

In addition, I cannot overstate the importance of collaborative partnerships for our students, our School, and our world. These partners range from elementary schools in our neighborhood to community organizations in Ghana, from state agencies to South Korean universities. They form the context in which our researchers explore new models for best practices, innovations in service, and lessons from cultures entirely different from our own.

At UAlbany-SUNY, students become part of something larger -- a nexus for fresh ideas and social change. Partners forge new ways to serve those who need it most. All of us work together in the interest of serving the marginalized and oppressed, promoting effective practice and social justice.

Our world desperately needs change. We -- faculty, partners, students, alumni -- are committed to being agents of that change.

Katharine Briar-Lawson, Ph.D.
Dean and Professor
School of Social Welfare
University at Albany