Letter from the Chair

Dear Prospective Doctoral Student,
I am delighted in your interest in doctoral education. The Mandel School’s doctoral program offers excellent preparation for careers in social welfare research, policy and teaching. Our highly ranked school has a diverse and nationally recognized faculty committed to doctoral education and to a close and supportive relationship with our doctoral students. We offer a strong program of research in a variety of areas of concern to social workers and a curriculum that prepares social work leaders who demonstrate competency in research, social welfare theory, teaching and leadership. Our program attracts students from all over the United States and the world and offers both full-time and part-time study options.

PhD cohort portrait

This is an exciting time to begin your doctoral work at the Mandel School. Our faculty has just approved exciting changes to our curriculum. New courses have been added in advanced research methodology and statistics as well as more opportunities for elective coursework. We have developed a new integrated research seminar that provides a link between your coursework and your doctoral dissertation along with many opportunities for peer interaction and feedback. In addition to the traditional doctoral dissertation format, we now offer a three-paper dissertation option.  Our faculty’s research projects are at an all-time high for the Mandel School, offering increased opportunities for doctoral student participation in funded research.
We strive to support students in a variety of ways—academically and personally. The typical student in our program will work closely with a faculty mentor throughout his or her doctoral training; will have hands-on experience in various phases of the research process; will have opportunities to learn and practice teaching skills; will develop presentations for national professional conferences; and will be actively involved in writing and publication for scholarly journals.
In addition to coursework, there are a variety of supports for career development and preparation for leadership in the profession: regular workshops on class and conference presentations and professional writing and publications; colloquia and workshops on research methodology; practice and preparation for job interviews; and colloquia presentations of completed dissertation research.
As a Mandel School student, you will be part of the vibrant campus of Case Western Reserve University, which offers interprofessional opportunities with your colleagues in medicine, nursing, psychology, sociology and other disciplines. You will also be part of Cleveland, a city with a rich philanthropic history and a large array of excellent human service programs.
I welcome questions from you about our program and the application process. I would be happy to arrange a phone appointment or Skype call with you. We also encourage visits to the school by applicants who can do so. Please feel free to call or email me. You can also contact swphd@case.edu with questions or to talk about our application process.

Sonia Minnes, PhD
Chair, Doctoral Program