CUSSW is pleased to welcome four new Professors of Professional Practice (PPP) to the School of Social Work faculty: Mary Sormanti, Marion Riedel, Marianne Yoshioka and Tazuko Shibusawa. The “PPP” program is an innovative new track aimed at faculty members with a unique blend of practice expertise, teaching experience and scholarship.

Dr. Mary Sormanti has extensive clinical experience as a pediatric oncology social worker. She worked for many years at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute and Children’s Hospital in Boston, MA, where she specialized in bone marrow transplantation and bereavement. Currently she maintains a small private practice with a focus on adaptation to serious illness, loss and bereavement. From September 2002 through August 2003 Professor Sormanti served as Clinical Program Director of “A Common Ground” which was developed in response to community mental health needs of union members, their families and others in the wake of the events of September 11th.

Dr. Marianne Yoshioka’s areas of expertise include partner violence among immigrant populations, HIV prevention among at-risk adults, the design of culturally appropriate measurement and intervention protocols. She has received funding from NIMH and private foundations to conduct research in these areas. Current research includes the development of a model to explain the ways that the cultural context impacts the intimate partner violence experience. Dr. Yoshioka has worked as a social worker in the area of addictions and marriage and family therapy.

Dr. Marion Riedel has worked as a social worker specializing in intergenerational work with urban families related to problems such as HIV/AIDS, homelessness, incarceration, and substance abuse. She trains and lectures nationally on the topic of harm reduction. Dr. Riedel also has extensive experience in intervention research with these same populations. In addition, Dr. Riedel is a staff trainer with the Harm Reduction Training Institute and a clinical supervisor in community-based organizations. She is collaborating on several structured clinical interventions incorporating harm reduction principles into work with mothers living with AIDS and the dually diagnosed in a spectrum of residential care.

Dr. Tazuko Shibusawa, a Hartford Geriatric Social Work Faculty Scholar, has 20 years of clinical practice experience in the areas of geriatric, psychiatric and school social work. Her work has been published in over 50 works in English, Italian and Japanese. Dr. Shibusawa’s research focuses on aging among vulnerable populations. Her study on HIV-risk among drug involved older adults has been funded by NIDA. Dr. Shibusawa has played a major role at CUSSW in integrating interactive digital video-based technology in teaching advanced clinical practice.

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