Factors Impacting the Recruitment and Retention of Graduate Students of Color in Social Work Education


The limited number of people of color graduating from social work programs has created a serious shortage of social work practitioners and educators in the workforce. For that reason, attracting people of color to social work education and preparing them as practitioners and educators are major priorities of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) and the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). There is a need to identify, strengthen and develop successful recruitment and retention strategies. The University of Connecticut School of Social Work success in recruiting and retaining Black and Latino/a students is known to many in United States. Empirical data is needed to document which are the factors that have made the SSW successful in recruiting and retaining students of color, particularly Blacks and Latinos/as. The knowledge gathered can be used for internal purposes and offered as a scholarly contribution to social work programs nationally and to other fields as well. The purpose of this project is to gain awareness and understanding of the factors that contribute to successful recruitment and retention of students of color in graduate social work education. The goal is to gather data from Black and Latino/a social work alumni about the factors that influenced their decision to come to the University of Connecticut (UConn) School of Social Work (SSW), the challenges they encountered and the factors that helped them complete their graduate education. This study consists of three focus groups. The data will be used to design a survey that will be administered in the spring of 2010 to Black and Latino/a alumni from the last 10 years.

For additional information regarding this Project, please feel free to contact, Lirio K. Negroni, Ph.D., Associate Professor.

Project Title:
Factors Impacting the Recruitment and Retention of Graduate Students of Color in Social Work Education

Principal Investigator:
Dr. Lirio K. Negroni

Co-Investigator:
Tilitha Conyers, MSW

Award Sponsor:
University of Connecticut Research Foundation

Award Amount:
$2,300

Period of Award:
November 19, 2008 to November 19, 2009