Graduate School of Social Work Honored by National Association of Social Workers –New York City Chapter at 13th Annual Leadership Awards Gala

Touro College Graduate School of Social Work (GSSW) was honored as “Social Work School of the Year” by the National Association of Social Workers–New York City Chapter last week at the organization’s 13th annual Leadership Awards Gala.

Touro is the first social work school to receive the award, created this year to acknowledge the institutions that educate their members and serve as a foundation of the profession. The inaugural award went to Touro for its leadership and contributions in building the profession. Specifically, it acknowledges the school’s commitment to social justice through its teaching, advocacy, and clinical excellence.

“In Hebrew, we call this tikun olam, perfecting the world. We may not be able to complete the task but – as it says in the Talmud – we’re not relieved from trying. Our mission is to help those in the general and Jewish communities who are most at risk and train outstanding social work professionals.” said Founding Dean Dr. Steven Huberman. “At Touro we focus on creating clinicians who can work to empower others, to improve lives. We will never sleep and never stop until our task is complete. We look forward to serving the community for many years.”

Over 200 guests attended the virtual event – “20 to 20 and Beyond” – celebrating social workers’ achievements, commitment to social justice and the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, guaranteeing women’s constitutional right to vote.

“A Strong Name in NYC”

NASW-New York City Executive Director Dr. Claire Green-Forde highlighted the “amazing work and dedication” of Founding Dean Dr. Steven Huberman, faculty, staff, and students.

“Touro has made a strong name for itself in New York City, and the dean’s leadership and dedication go well beyond the institution. He and Touro have elevated our profession through the innovative ways that students are educated, and worked to evolve and face issues head-on so that we remain strong,” she said.

Touro College and University System President Dr. Alan Kadish said, “We are all thrilled by this honor. Touro has created a school with strong roots that allows graduates to survive the storms of life. We look forward to continuing to make valuable contributions to our communities to assist the underprivileged and those who need our help.”

Launched in 2006 by Touro’s Founding President Bernard Lander z”l, the school opened under the leadership of Founding Dean Dr. Steven Huberman with 60 students. It has since grown to 325 students enrolled in two locations in Manhattan and Brooklyn, and alumni numbering over 1,000. Both men’s and women’s cohorts are offered and the school follows the Jewish calendar.

Touro Graduate School of Social Work offers flexible schedules, scholarships, and the opportunity to learn skills that will make students employable in a growing field. Field placements are available at many premier Jewish agencies and facilities, including Mt. Sinai Beth Israel, Madraigos, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services, and Yachad. A unique partnership with UJA-Federation of New York – the Chesed Leadership Program – prepares women to lead Jewish institutions.

Additionally, over the past four years, the Graduate School of Social Work has been awarded $7 million from the federal government and the private sector to train students, faculty, and staff in fighting the opioid crisis and to provide scholarships for disadvantaged MSW students.

“I chose social work because I wanted to be able to make a difference in people’s lives,” said Binyamin Nussbaum, LSW, a psychotherapist at a mental health agency who completed his Touro MSW last year. “Touro has provided me with the education, knowledge, and proper perspective to be able to successfully help others. The professors are experienced mental health professionals and give over their knowledge and passion for helping others.”


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