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CSWE–SSWR–GADE Social Work Doctoral Student Policy Forum

June 18–19, 2020, in Washington, DC

Forum Overview

CSWE, the Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR), and Group for the Advancement of Doctoral Education in Social Work (GADE) announce the inaugural Social Work Doctoral Student Policy Forum, a new opportunity to connect social work research with policymaking in Washington, DC. Students accepted into this first cohort will receive specialized training in a 2-day workshop to be held in Washington, DC, in June along with opportunities to visit Capitol Hill. Applications may be submitted Tuesday, February 11, 2020, through Friday, March 6, 2020 (11:59 PM ET).

Program Purpose

The objectives of the CSWE-SSWR-GADE Social Work Doctoral Student Policy Forum are to create an opportunity for doctoral students to make a stronger link between their research and policy, expose social work researchers to the ways their research experience and backgrounds are used by practitioners in government to influence and inform policy, promote the value and significance of investments in social work and social work research on Capitol Hill, and cultivate a cadre of social work researchers who can advocate for investments in social work education and research as well as disseminate this information among their communities of practice.


Eligible applicants must have:

  • Enrolled full-time in a social work doctoral program in 2019–2020 academic year,

  • Completed qualifying/comprehensive exams or, if your program does not have such an exam, to have completed at least half of your coursework, and

  • Doctoral program must be a U.S.-based member of GADE.

Consideration will include academic achievement, the strength of one’s personal statement and letters of recommendation, representation reflecting the breadth and diversity of the social work profession, and a commitment to the inclusion of policy considerations in one’s research.  Awardees will be selected by a committee comprised of the three sponsoring organizations. 

Support for Participation

Up to 20 individuals will be selected to participate in this event. Students will be responsible for covering the cost of travel. The organizers will cover the cost of 2 nights at a hotel, some meals, and the program, including an evening reception and meetings on Capitol Hill.

Application Process

The application will be a two-step process:

  1. complete all the questions and a personal statement in the online application, and

  2. identify two individuals to submit a recommendation on behalf of the candidate.

You can access the application system here:

  • If you have not used CSWE's application system before, then you will need to register before you can access the application.

  • After you log in to the system, select "Doctoral Student Policy Forum" in the eligibility section

  • You should then be able to access the forum application

Deadline:  Friday, March 6, 2020, 11:59 pm ET

If you have questions about the forum or application process, please contact Jessica Holmes (