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Students from Japan Encounter Social Work and Education, New York Style


Twenty-one undergraduate students from Tokyo University of Social Welfare (TUSW) got a taste of American social work and educational practices last week through a summer study program co-sponsored by Fordham’s Graduate School of Social Work (GSS) and Graduate School of Education (GSE).

The annual program includes class lectures and on-site visits to interest-specific agencies and schools in the city. This year’s study tour focused on child welfare, elementary education, and the role of school psychologists, said Martha Bial, Ph.D, faculty research scholar for the Ravazzin Center on Aging and director of the GSS’ Institute for Japanese and American Studies at Fordham Westchester (pictured above, center).

Among those agencies the group visited were Children’s Village, a residential treatment center for abused and neglected children in Dobbs Ferry, N.Y., and P.S. 175, a Manhattan elementary school. The students were accompanied by American chaperones, an interpreter and TUSW faculty and staff.

On July 25, Peter Vaughan, Ph.D., dean of GSS and Anita Batisti, Ph.D., associate dean and director of GSE’s Center for Educational Partnerships, presented the visiting students with certificates of completion at the Lowenstein Center on the Lincoln Center campus.

This marks the third consecutive year that GSS and GSE have collaborated on the program with TUSW, which is Japan’s top-ranked school in job placement for its graduates.

“We learned a lot about American systems of social welfare, education and psychology, especially the programs that are widely accepted in New York City classrooms,” wrote Nori Nakajima, chancellor of TUSW. “It is meaningful to be able to experience this diversity in the heart of Manhattan. We are looking forward to studying next year at Fordham.”

—Janet Sassi


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