The membership of International Academic Social Work Associations, which include the African Association of Schools of Social Work (AASSW) and International Association of Schools of Social Work (IASSW), has admitted the Social Work Department of Monrovia-based United Methodist University (UMU).
A release issued yesterday by the UMU administration quoted the chairman of the Social Work Department, Prof. Sam Togba Slewion, as saying that the admission of the Social Work Department of UMU into the two international associations was confirmed recently in a letter to the Department from Viahanthie Sewpaul, the president of the African Association of Schools of Social Work, based in South Africa.
In the letter, President Vishanthie explained that the application for membership from the Social Work Department of UMU was unanimously approved after a thorough review by the Executive Council of the AASSW. She added, “We are very elated to have your institution as part of our membership, joining other social work practitioners in promoting social work education and best practices of the profession on the African Continent.”
The release quoted President Vishanthie as noting further that based on recent policy changes; the membership of the Social Work Department of UMU into the AASSW has automatically qualified the Department to become a member of the IASSW based in the U.S.
By virtue of the membership of the Social Work Department of UMU into the two international bodies, the Department is expected to receive numerous benefits, including staff development, student and faculty exchanges for sharing of knowledge and culture as well as support for research initiatives through joint partnerships and collaborative work between member organizations.
For his part, Prof. Slewion indicated that the Department will leverage the opportunity of membership into the two international organizations to enhance the social work program and advance best practices of the profession in Liberia.
“We will also take advantage of the research collaboration, utilizing both our faculty and students to undertake research of social policies and social issues affecting the welfare of vulnerable social groups in our society as a means of enabling UMU to address numerous post-war social problems in Liberia,” Slewion added.
In a related development, Prof. Slewion has been invited to attend the Annual Conference of the AASSW, which is slated to be held in October in South Africa.