Committee on Diversity & Inclusion

Winter Retreat Progress Report Out 2021

February 17, 2021

Committee on Diversity & Inclusion

Committee Members: Amanda Ngola, Lynette Studer, Alejandra Ros Pilarz, Ellen Smith, Cindy Waldeck, Aaron Raasch, Sheri Meland, Tawandra Rowell-Cunsolo, HeeJin Kim & Alice Caceres-Turcios

Strategic Plan Goal: Increase the diversity of our students, (staff, faculty, and other governing bodies.)

Objective: Plan and host a Visit Day for prospective/admitted MSW students with a focus on students of color and other historically underrepresented students. The day could potentially include having students connect with community members, faculty, other students; attending a class; a luncheon or other meal; social activity, etc. The purpose is to increase enrollment and matriculation.


  • Previous Progress Made:
    • School hired a Recruitment Specialist and has significantly increased scholarship support.
  • Recent accomplishments that have focused on achieving this goal include:
    • We have scheduled the visit day date (March 9th, 2021) and the majority of the of speakers confirmed.
    • Coordinated with the Admissions committee so that an invitation to the visit day will be included in the Admissions offer letter for full-time students, and specific individualized outreach will go out to Part-Time MSW students and to students of Color.
    • Finalized RSVP page which includes not just registration but requests for admitted students to prioritize topic areas, and ask questions covering both specific and broad topics.
    • Confirmed 18 presenters for 4 panels covering topics including a welcome address, financial aid, surviving and thriving in graduate school, and a current student panel
    • Panels pull in faculty, staff and students from the Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work, and additional staff from 7 departments across the university including The Graduate School, The UW Library, The Office of Financial Aid, The Gender and Sexuality Campus Center, The McBurney Disability Resource Center, Multicultural Student Center, and University Health Services
    • Each panel will be facilitated by a member of the Visit Day Subcommittee
    • Organizing asynchronous activities and resources including a recording of the March 2nd Title IV-E Alumni and Current Student Panel, highlighting videos of Field Unit instructors on SSW website, student profiles on social media sites, and university-level virtual campus tours
  • Action Steps moving Forward
    • Finalize arrangements & complete the visit day on March 9th, 2021
    • Gather data to determine what worked and what may need to be altered, including who attended, who did not, and reasons for non-attendance.
    • Explore possibility of coordination with the PhD Visit Day
    • Continue to build on visit day content – record all but the student panel in order to explore different topics each year
    • Explore how to utilize our School’s strength of holding the Social Workers Confronting Racial Injustice Conference (e.g., invite applicants to attend, recruit students or even faculty at the event)
    • Create a Striving for Inclusion webpage, to report out on our School’s inclusion and equity efforts.
    • On our developing CoDI webpage, create a page showcasing our Visit Day in effort to be more transparent and visible.