Letter from the Chair

Dear Prospective Doctoral Student,

headshot of Victor Groza

I am delighted in your interest in doctoral education. The Jack Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences’ doctoral program offers excellent preparation for the next step in your career. Our school, consistently ranked in the top 10 Nationwide and number 1 in Ohio, has a diverse and nationally recognized faculty committed to doctoral education. We offer a strong program of research in a variety of areas of social welfare and a curriculum that prepares graduates to demonstrate competency in research, social welfare theory, teaching and leadership. Our program attracts students from all over the world and offers both full-time and part-time study options.

This is an exciting time to begin your doctoral studies at the Mandel School. Our faculty approved exciting changes to the curriculum in 2018. New courses have been added in advanced research methodology, statistics and theory as well as more opportunities for elective coursework. We have an 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. We offer many opportunities for doctoral students to participate in faculty research, both within the Mandel School and in other programs at the University.

We support students in a variety of ways and have many opportunities.. Students work closely with a faculty advisor and mentor throughout his or her doctoral training. Students can have hands-on experience in various phases of the research process. Students will have opportunities to learn and practice teaching skills. Students can develop presentations for professional conferences. Finally, students can be actively involved in writing and publication for scholarly journals.

In addition to coursework, there are a variety of career development and preparation for leadership opportunities both within the school and the larger university. Opportunities include workshops on presentations, professional writing, and research methodology. The ability to prepare for job interviews including mock job talks. There are also University-wide opportunities such as participating in the University Center for Innovation and Teaching Excellence or the Social Justice Institute.

As a Mandel School doctoral student, you will be part of the vibrant campus of Case Western Reserve University, which offers interprofessional opportunities 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. Cleveland has many cultural events and strong arts programs.

We offer webinars about the Doctoral program. I would be happy to arrange a personal conversation with you to answer questions you may have. Please feel free to call or email me.

We look forward to reviewing your application portfolio!


Victor Groza, PhD, LISW-S
Grace F. Brody Professor of Parent-Child Studies
Chair, Doctoral Program
Director, Child Welfare Fellows Program
Jack, Joseph & Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences
Case Western Reserve University
Cleveland, OH 44106-7164