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FSW Education

Advancing Economic Stability

New Elective for Macro and Clinical Advanced Year Students


Financial Stability for Individuals, Families, and Communities

This course is an advanced elective for both clinical and macro students at UMSSW who have completed their foundation year courses, including their first year placements.  It examines barriers to and opportunities for the financial stability of individuals, families, and the impact of low wealth in communities.  The course uses a comprehensive approach examining social programs and direct practice interventions, financial services, and policies that can move individuals, families, and communities along the asset-building continuum.  The impact of issues such as life stage, social class, and cultural background will be examined.  Policy issues include savings, consumer protection, tax credits, public benefits, and innovative programs; practice issues include financial assessment and goal setting, financial coaching, and integrating financial interventions with traditional psychosocial interventions.  Topics over the duration of the course include such diverse areas as social justice theories and ethical dilemmas; key public policies; financial and consumer finance systems; financial social work approaches and interventions serving individuals, families, and groups; types of financial stressors; the impact of race, gender, and culture on wealth creation; special needs of emergency and transitional populations; innovative programs to increase access to assets for vulnerable populations; and community asset ownership.  Assigned readings are substantive and thought-provoking, and assignments are designed to foster financial self-awareness and underscore the role that financial stability plays in social work practice across diverse vulnerable populations.

Instructors: Robin McKinney, MSW, Director, Maryland CASH Campaign and Christine Callahan, PhD, LCSW-C, Research Lead Specialist, Clinical, UMSSW Financial Social Work Initiative

Continuing Education Offerings

Medical Debt and Financial Social Work: Helping Your Client Find Solutions and Manage the Stress: The goal of this workshop is to examine the prevalence of medical debt faced by clients and families and how social workers and other human service professionals can work effectively with them to help reduce that debt, connect with useful resources, and manage the emotional stress that accompanies such large debt, along with related psychosocial stressors and obligations.
Thursday, December 4, 2014, 1:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., Baltimore, $65
CEUs: 3
Instructor: Christine C. Callahan, PhD, LCSW-C

For more information on details and registration on these and other courses, go to

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