Equity, Justice, and Inclusion

Coming Together to Enact Change

From the classroom to work in the communities, we train students to use evidence-based social work practice to enact social change and promote the values at the heart of our discipline: equity, justice, and inclusion.

The mission of our Equity, Justice, and Inclusion Initiatives (EJI) is to develop policies and practices that promote a caring, respectful, and inclusive community. EJI promotes open and honest conversations, fosters interdisciplinary collaborations, and expands access to opportunities for historically marginalized groups, including women, racial minorities, and the LGBTQ+ community.

EJI Certificate: Leaders for Equity and Justice in the Workplace

Professor Samuel Bradley Jr., who oversees the EJI committee, has created a new certificate program that will prepare you as a social worker to direct equity, justice, and inclusion programs at colleges, public agencies, and companies in the private sector. The certificate launches in Fall 2021.

The program is comprised of three courses:

Re-thinking Diversity: Systems of Oppression and Privilege
Explores the root causes and consequences of oppression and privilege based on race, ethnicity, age, gender, identity, ability, religion, and sexual orientation.

Creating the Inclusive Workplace
Discusses strategies to train their colleagues to promote inclusivity in the workplace. Examines ways to reshape hiring practices to increase diversity.

Dismantling Organizational Bias
Prepares students to manage diverse teams, resolve conflicts in the workplace, and coach executives to integrate equity, justice, and inclusion into their business practices.

Black Leadership Initiative

We are pleased to announce the creation of an initiative designed to support, develop, and prepare MSW level practitioners regarding issues faced by the Black community. This unique program will enroll an inaugural cohort of approximately 15 student fellows in Fall 2021. The Black Leadership Initiative continues BCSSW's legacy in innovation through providing one-of-a-kind professional development through a curriculum that focuses on an Afrocentric approach to social work practice. The Afrocentric approach to social work practice emphasizes community, collective action, cultural context, and Ubuntu- the West African concept of shared consciousness and group cohesion.

Latinx Leadership Initiative

The Latinx Leadership Initiative exemplifies the ethos of BCSSW: The best way to create sustainable solutions to complex problems is to work with the people who live those problems every day.

Students enrolled in the Latinx Communities field of practice develop a nuanced understanding of the barriers that prevent Latinx communities from accessing equitable education, social services, and healthcare. They take courses in Spanish, complete internships in schools, hospitals, and prisons around the world, and conduct cutting-edge research that shapes the strategies social workers use to support Latinx clients.

The EJI Committee

The EJI committee actively works to tackle inequalities that contribute to unfair outcomes in the classroom, better prepare students to work with diverse populations around the world, and create a culture steeped in mutual respect and lifelong learning. The committee includes four subcommittees dedicated to helping BCSSW achieve its strategic directions:

Training and Events Working Group
This working group will focus on building skills in conducting courageous conversations; strategies for disrupting racism; and training others in good antiracist and anti-oppressive social work practice.

Curriculum Working Group
This working group, dedicated to crafting innovative methods of teaching and learning, will continue the process of decolonizing the curriculum by challenging instances of racism and oppression throughout the course offerings here at the Boston College School of Social Work. This goal will be achieved through mapping how equity, justice, and inclusion show up in classes and developing methods to resolve gaps in social work education.

Metrics + Measurements Working Group
This working group will focus on capturing and analyzing the impact of our efforts to dismantle white supremacy at BCSSW. This group has been working hard to craft metrics that inform our thinking and decision making.

Student Development and Leadership Working Group
This working group is dedicated to creating student leaders focused on securing and ensuring an antiracist school that is safe for all students. Members of this group focus on the student body; analyzing policy to encourage a welcoming environment; and pursuing action-oriented advocacy on behalf of all part-time and full-time MSW and PhD students.

Transforming Institutions

Students, faculty, and staff are crafting initiatives to incentivize research focused on EJI. They are dedicated to reshaping the curriculum, holding the belief that those with diverse social, cultural, and ethnic backgrounds should play a major role in helping to eliminate systemic racism and inequality in the workplace and on college campuses.

We partner with The OpEd Project, a nonprofit organization that trains under-represented experts to share their ideas with the world, so that BCSSW students have support presenting their work to the general public.

BCSSW hopes to continue providing ways for students to learn how to communicate their own experiences, skills, and knowledge, to identify social inequities, and to offer workable solutions.

Courageous Conversations

Annual events, guest lectures, and training workshops facilitate conversations about race and promote scholars who embrace social justice.

The Pinderhughes Diversity Lecture Series has featured doctors, anthropologists, and journalists who have reflected on topics like poverty, racism, and same-sex marriage. The lecture honors Elaine Pinderhughes, a professor emerita of BCSSW, whose seminal research revealed that race, ethnicity, and power strongly influence how social workers interact with clients.

EJI training workshops help students, faculty, and staff deepen their awareness of the issues, extend their knowledge, and build new skills that they can apply to their work. These training experiences are designed to help the community engage in discussions related to equity, justice, and inclusion.