Barbara Trainin Blank

Barbara Trainin Blank is a free-lance writer. Formerly based in Harrisburg, PA, she now lives in the greater DC area.

Collegiate Recovery Programs (CRPs) provide a supportive environment within the college campus culture for students in recovery. The person-in-environment approach is one that is in sync with social work. Read more



Photo courtesy of National Council for Behavioral Health.

The growing Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) movement helps individuals identify, understand, and respond to signs of mental illness. Social workers are among both the trainers and the trainees. Read more

Practice 5 Comments

A native of Cherkasy, a town in Ukraine, Alina Kheyson is pursuing her MSW at Touro College Graduate School of Social Work. Read more


Animals and social work are connected through animal-assisted therapy, veterinary social work, and programs for people and pets in crisis. Read more

Practice 1 Comments

Public libraries have always been democratic, serving a cross-section of the population. After all, they are public, often easily accessible, and free. As these populations have shifted, some libraries are hiring social workers. Read more

Practice 9 Comments

Bubbly, energetic, driven. These words describe Cierra Kaler-Jones, a bachelor of social work (BSW) student who not only is competing for the Miss America title, but aims to someday become the U.S. Secretary of Education. Read more


Practically no one pursuing higher education comes away without some accumulation of loan debt before graduating college or graduate school. The debt tends to be more burdensome for social work graduates than others because their salaries, as a rule, Read more

Education & Credentials

Aside from clinical training and experience, the one skill a clinician must develop is that of communication. That sounds simple enough—talking and hearing. These abilities are not enough. Let’s look at the ability to LISTEN with purpose and SPEAK wi Read more


Biblio/poetry therapy, one of the creative arts therapies, is the use of the written word (although it may be read out loud) to bring healing and personal growth. Read more


Using dance therapeutically—to lift spirits or remove evil spirits—is ancient, as well. Dance has been an important part of self-expression, ceremonial and religious events, and health in most cultures throughout history. For example, medicine men Read more

Practice 1 Comments

It seems that a growing number of social workers are marrying their professions to art or photo therapy to enhance their practices. H. Mari Pizanis arrived at art therapy from the practice and later teaching of fine art. She has a master’s in fine Read more


Social workers who love incorporating music into their work might consider additional training in music therapy or therapeutic music. But even those not interested in such practices themselves might consider incorporating the services of such Read more


Rap music, hip-hop, and social work may seem like an unlikely combination. They may, in fact, seem contradictory, because of rap's themes of misogyny, violence, and racism-but some social workers find hip-hop not only a possible but highly beneficial Read more

Practice 1 Comments

Probably few social work students or new practitioners realize when they enter the field that they may be a target for assault. Yet threats of violence and actual violence occur more frequently than even experienced social workers care to admit, acco Read more


Despite the decades that have passed since the beginning of the civil rights movement, racism is still a major issue in America. We still see organized hate groups, news stories of racial slurs and attacks, and examples that we observe in our Read more

Ethics 4 Comments

Settlement houses have changed, but contrary to many people' perceptions, they do exist. Some no longer continue the primary orientation toward immigrants, although others do serve newer immigrant populations from different shores, such as Asia and L Read more


Couples in which both are professional social workers are profiled in this article. Read more



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