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Bertha Rosenstadt Trust Showcase

On February 6, 2015, to celebrate the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work’s 100th anniversary, nine organizations presented the initiatives undertaken with the funding provided by the Bertha Rosenstadt Trust. The Showcase provided the opportunity for members of the social work field to gain insight into the ongoing research projects conducted by their colleagues.

About The Bertha Rosenstadt Trust Fund

Bertha Rosenstadt graduated from the University of Toronto (U of T) with her BA in 1898 and with her MA in 1899.  Her brother, Jacob Rosenstadt, bequeathed funds from his estate in her name to the U of T.  “In doing so, it is my desire to commemorate the achievement of my dear departed sister, Bertha Rosenstadt, as being amongst the first Jewish women to graduate from the University of Toronto.”

The Bertha Rosenstadt Trust Fund in Health Research –available to all Health Sciences Faculties at U of T – is an important way for the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work (FIFSW) to recognize the contributions of partner organizations who offer placements to FIFSW students.

In 2007, FIFSW designated Bertha Rosenstadt Trust Funds to be used specifically

  • to encourage and support the continuing commitment of field practicum partners to social work education,
  • to develop and enhance social work research in FIFSW practicum settings.

How does it work? An organization agrees to take a pre-negotiated number of practicum students for three consecutive years. In return, the organization receives a three-year grant to conduct a research project, developed in consultation with FIFSW, that expands social work field education knowledge.

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Toronto East General Hospital

Exploring Barriers Around Field Instruction

Presenter:  Sharon Tracey

The purpose of this study was to identify barriers that hinder social workers from taking students and to work with management to address those barriers.   Findings were challenging as the atmosphere was one of defensiveness in that social workers appear to feel unsafe or unwilling to participate in the research.  In an effort to understand the culture, key assumptions were obtained through interviews, observation and self-reflection.  Social workers were not volunteering as field instructors due to fear of the unknown students, the perceived inability to manage limited time and the lack of significant institutional incentives.  Now that this insight into the social workers and student dynamic has surfaced, it is important for systemic barrier to be addressed.

Toronto East General Hospital slide presentation (PDF)

Mount Sinai Hospital

Social Work Student Employment Interview Simulation Project

Presenter: Mary-Katharine Lowes

Students who have not had previous employment experience may find it difficult to obtain employment interviews and successfully articulate the skill sets developed from practicum opportunities. This presentation describes an innovative participatory learning experience which prepares students for actual interdisciplinary employment interviews. Each student completed 2 videotaped interviews.  Interview #1 consisted of a panel of social work staff while interview #2 had a panel of interdisciplinary health professionals.  Students were provided with direct feedback and a CD following both interviews. Upon completion of the placement, the project team conducted a focus group with consenting students to assess the longer-term utility of the process.

Mount Sinai Hospital slide presentation (PDF)

St. Michael’s Hospital

What’s in it for us?  The Perceived Benefits and Burden of Being an MSW Field Instructor

Presenter:  Marisa Cicero

The increasing number of MSW students has created pressure on organizations to provide more field placements whilst the number of social workers remains largely the same. How organizations accommodate these requests is therefore increasingly relevant. In this qualitative study, social workers at an academic teaching hospital were asked to examine their views about what impacts their decision to provide field instruction.  It is hoped that these results will help both academic institutions and clinicians better understand the current climate around field instruction and provide insight into the benefits and barriers to becoming-and staying involved in the signature pedagogy of social work students.

St. Michael’s Hospital slide presentation (PDF)

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

Social Work Student Education Program: Evaluating the Social Work Student Education Standard

Presenter: Illana Perlman

Field placements have been referred to as the “signature pedagogy” of our profession, underscoring the preeminence of this component in the education process. The issue of how to generate sufficient numbers of student placements has long been a concern and a challenge for both universities and field alike. In this context, the social work service at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre has developed an innovative and unique approach to ensuring that each of our staff is fulfilling their teaching mandate –  a Social Work Student Education Standard. This ensures participation in teaching activities, and specifically in the area of offering student placements. The Bertha Rosenstadt Trust Fund is enabling research on the implementation and evaluation of the impact of this Standard.

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre slide presentation (PDF)

George Hull Centre for Children and Families (GHC)

(1) Expanding a Family Therapy Program

(2) Developing a Field Instructor Support Program

Presenter: Reem Abdul Qadir

GHC endeavors to create an orientation process and support system for new and returning field instructors by matching evidence-based practices with organizational, cultural and professional needs.  The GHC is committed to work to make explicit a shared vision of the teaching and training at the centre as well as an understanding of the core components of MSW learning and develop flexible options for implementation of this vision. The goal is to create a sustainable program.

George Hull Centre for Children and Families slide presentation (PDF)

Sick Kids – The Hospital for Sick Children

(1) Developing, teaching  and evaluating a course in Social Work Practice in Pediatric Health Care at SickKids

(2) Bringing Community Leaders to a Paediatric Hospital Setting: Evaluation of a Group Support Program for Children/Youth with HIV

Presenter:  Barbara Muskat

Thanks to funds received from the Bertha Rosenstadt Trust, several exciting projects have been completed at SickKids.  The first is the development, delivery and evaluation of an elective course in social work in pediatric health care, delivered on-site at SickKids, which provided an opportunity for social work practitioners to transmit information to students about the clinical work delivered in daily practice.  A second project is an evaluation of a group for children and youth with HIV, offered at an ambulatory clinic at the hospital.  The positive results have been presented at numerous conferences and submitted to a peer reviewed journal.

Hospital for Sick Children slide presentation (PDF)

University Health Network

Strengthening Social Work Pathways of Care through Education

Presenters: Gina Dimitropoulos, Victoria Freeman, Patti McGillicuddy

Social workers engage in a multitude of roles within the Canadian health care system.   Using a mixed method design, this study aims to identify the theoretical frameworks and evidence based practice guidelines which guide the direct practice of social workers at the UHN. The sample consists of 21 social workers working in administration and with patients with complex health and mental health issues. Preliminary data will be presented based on the results of the Interdisciplinary Perception Scale and the qualitative data.

University Health Network slide presentation (PDF)

Women’s College Hospital

Reflecting on Practice through Arts and Narrative

Presenters: Ingrid Cologna, Karen Gold

The purpose of this project was: (a) to explore the use of arts-based and narrative methods in enhancing reflective practice and relational skills in field practicum; (b) to provide a facilitated arts-based supervision group for students. Informed by the idea that the stories of clients (and ourselves) are central to social work practice and emerging professional identities, the presentation provides a brief overview of the curriculum (teaching methods and practice themes), and shares examples of students’ work. Feedback from participants, challenges, facilitators’ reflections and dissemination will also be discussed.

Women’s College Hospital slide presentation (PDF)

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health

Presenters: Sandra Cushing, Suraya Faziluddin, Kiren Sandhu, Claudia Tindall

(1) Quality Improvement & Evaluation of Social Work Mentorship Program at CAMH

The aim of the mentorship research project was to evaluate the effectiveness of social work mentorship program at CAMH. To achieve this aim, quantitative and qualitative data were collected and analyzed over a period of time from all the participating mentor/mentee matches.  The overall feedback for the program was very positive and it helped to improve it.  It continues on.

(2) Developing high-support housing: How hospital-community partnerships are creating pathways to community in Toronto

The aim of the high-support housing partnership was to evaluate the success of the transition of long-stay, difficult to house clients to a high intensity community-based supportive housing program using a partnership approach between the housing, hospital, and case management follow-up programs. Qualitative and quantitative evaluation results have demonstrated successful outcomes with this model. This housing partnership continues today and has remained a success.

(3) Forensic Division:  Two-year Pilot Study on Prevalence of Traumatic Life Events – Implications for Assessment and Treatment

The purpose of this study is to examine the prevalence of potentially traumatic life events in an inpatient forensic population – also reports of trauma symptoms, substance use, mental health diagnosis, social bonds, index offence etc. The authors plan to then use these data to gain further insight into the assessment and treatment needs of this population. This study is at the mid-point of a two-year data collection process.

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health slide presentation (PDF)

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Presentation by Women's College Hospital team

CAMH team presenting

Illana Perlman Vice Chair of ATC Giving Opening Remarks

CAMH Group Photo

University Health Network Presenters

Women's College Hospital Presenters

Toronto East General Hospital Presenter Receiving Certificate

Presenters and Guests Mingling

Presenters and Guests Mingling

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