CSWE Press

Women of Color as Social Work Educators: Strengths and Survival

Halaevalu F. Ofahengaue Vakalahi, Saundra Hardin Starks, Carmen Ortiz Hendricks
Publication Date: 09/14/2007
ISBN: 978-0-87293-125-1
Pages: 320
Publisher: CSWE Press
Topics: Social Justice Women
Inside the pages of this beautifully presented book are the narratives of 20 women of color who are social work educators in predominantly White systems and institutions. Women of Color as Social Work Educators brings to life the voices of women of color and illuminates their unique experiences as contributors to the betterment of social work education. Their stories reveal them as scholars who are change agents and enlighten and inspire all educators to work towards collective unity and justice. Each woman’s story is told in her own voice and describes the personal and professional challenges that lead her on the path toward social work education. This book is ideal for faculty, students, and practitioners in the fields of social work education, women's studies programs, ethnic studies programs, and research programs.

M. Jenise Comer, Anita Curry-Jackson, Ruby M. Gourdine, Darlene Grant, Saundra Hardin Starks, Andrea Stewart, Dianne Rush Woods, Paula Toki Tanemura Morelli, Rita Takahashi, Barbara A. Candales, Debora M. Ortega, Corina D Segovia-Tadehara, Ada E. Deer, Christine Lowery, Hilary N. Weaver, Halaevalu F. Ofahengaue Vakalahi, Debbie Hippolite Wright, Suzie Cashwell, Diana M. Dinitto, Kathleen Kirby, and Clifford Mayes

About the Editors

Halaevalu F. Ofahengaue Vakalahi
is an associate professor and director of the MSW program at George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia. Her areas of teaching interest include social policy, human behavior and the social work environment, macro-level practice, and cultural diversity. Her research interests include juvenile delinquency, adolescent substance use and abuse, women's issues, and Pacific Islander communities.

Saundra Hardin Starks is an associate professor in the Department of Social Work, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky. Her teaching interests include social work practice and multicultural diversity. Her research interests include women's issues, spirituality, and cultural diversity.

Carmen Ortiz Hendricks is associate dean and professor at Yeshiva University Wurzweiler School of Social Work. She was formerly on the faculty of Hunter College School of Social Work, City University of New York. Her areas of teaching and research encompass culturally competent social work practice and education, including field education, working with Latino communities, and culturally competent approaches to child welfare practice.


"This book exposes the operations of power and dominance in social work education, academic institutions, and broader society. Beyond illuminating societal and institutional practices that work in opposition to equity and inclusion, these narratives and the editors' analysis of them reveal strategies that support these women's abilities to confront power and successfully negotiate difficult terrain. Educators and aspiring academics of all backgrounds will find this book inspiring and practically useful in their personal and professional lives. Administrators, mentors, and allies will gain invaluable insights into the transformation needed in social work education and the academy to advance diversity and social and economic justice.” —Salome Raheim, former chair, CSWE Commission for Diversity and Social and Economic Justice; associate professor of social work, The University of Iowa

"Intersectional theory is brought to reality in this wonderful anthology that weaves the voices of women of color sharing their stories of life as social work educators. Reading this text leaves one with a sense of awe and inspiration and calls one to work to change the unjust structure of higher education that overtly and subtly mute voices of the ‘other’.” —Larry Ortiz, professor and director, MSW Program, California State University Dominguez Hills

"Every person in the academy must read this book that contains honest, poignant accounts of the hurdles, obstacles, resources, and successes of women of color as they climb the fragile career ladder to leadership." —Mit Joyner, professor and director/chairperson, undergraduate social work program, West Chester University
Women of Color as Social Work Educators: Strengths and Survival