Faculty Contacts: Jennie Romich and Jennifer Brower

The Administration and Policy Practice specialization prepares social workers to assume leadership roles in today’s complex human services organizations and policy arenas. Our graduates will be life-long learners with skills in defining and measuring social problems; devising and analyzing policy and program alternatives; influencing policy decisions; and leading diverse human services institutions in program planning, design, implementation, evaluation, and change. Students may also choose to develop competency in resource development, fiscal management, legislative advocacy, or participatory community-based evaluation. Students in this specialization are required to take 3 Methods courses; however they are not required to take a Policy/Services course. Students wanting to take a Policy/Services course as an elective are free to do so (on a space-available and schedule-permitting basis).

Required Methods courses:

550 - Strategic Program Management and Change Leadership in Human Services: Examines tools and techniques required for leadership, program planning, implementation, and program change. Topics include strategic planning, logic modeling, agency-bound relations, work-group facilitation, and diversity-promoting management.

560 - Policy Processes, Institutions, and Influences: Focuses on the process and institutions through which social policies are developed, adopted, and implemented, with special attention to the implications of these processes for social justice. Develops practice skills in analyzing and influencing the policy process, including social problem definition, policy design, policy adaptation, and policy implementation.

AND 1 of the following Methods courses:

561 - Concepts and Methods of Policy Analysis: Engages students in the concepts and applied practice of policy analysis and evaluation. Prepares students to address two generic policy questions: Given an identified problem, what policy or program should be selected? Given a particular policy or program, how do we evaluate effectiveness? Particular attention paid to social justice implications.

551 – Human Resource Management in the Human Services: Theories and techniques for 1) designing human services workplaces that support employees' performance and well-being, and 2) managing diverse, satisfied, and high-performing human service staffs. Topics include job quality analyses; job descriptions; employee interviewing, supervision and performance evaluation; models of negotiation and conflict resolution; and strategies for working with volunteers.

Recommended electives:

552:  Financial Management in Human Services

574:  Collaborative Community-Based Evaluation 

580:  Grant Writing and Fund Development

586:  Policy Advocacy

*Policy/Services course OPTIONAL: any of the following as an elective • 519 - Health-Mental Health Policy/Services • 521 - Child and Family Policy/Services • 526 - Social and Healthcare Policy in an Aging Society • 527 - Global and Local Inequalities Policy/Services

Potential Practicum Site Examples

  • City of Seattle, Human Services Department or Office for Civil Rights
  • City of Bellevue, Parks and Community Services
  • King County Public Health, Environmental Services Department
  • Paul G. Allen Family Foundation
  • School's Out Washington
  • Social Justice Fund NW
  • Solid Ground, Statewide Poverty Action Network
  • United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 21
  • United Way of King County Community Services
  • Vietnamese Friendship Association
  • Partners for Our Children
  • Washington State House of Representatives

Core Specialization Faculty:

Jennie Romich, Amelia Gavin, Bill Vesneski, Jenn Stuber, Emiko Tajima, Melissa Martinson, Ariana Cantu, Makeba Greene, Lan Pham, Jenn Ozawa, Jennifer Brower (Field Education Rep.)