The Work And Impacts Of Gertrude Wilson Social Work Essay

When prosecuting a grade in societal work, a pupil experiences equal exposure to group work and single instance work. The course of study set out by the Council for Social Work Education ( CSWE ) requires that a healthy mixture of the two be taught in order to allow a grade in societal work ( CSWE, 2010 ) . Every individual becomes involves with different groups during their life, but within societal work, groups are a tool for assisting bring people together and work out jobs, non merely for diversion. One of the people responsible for the foundation of group work instruction in America was Gertrude Wilson.

Gertrude Wilson was born in 1895, three old ages before the first class on societal work was available at Columbia University in 1898. She was raised in a town with fewer than 200 people in Dana, Illinois ( Chambers, 1986 ) . Miss Wilson grew up seeing adult females like Jane Adams and Frances Perkins holding an impact on the societal cloth of America through the colony house motion. She entered Illinois Women ‘s College in 1915, but ended up having a Bachelor ‘s grade in Doctrine from the University of Chicago ( Chambers ) .

After two old ages of learning high school, she became a secretary for the Young Women ‘s Christian Academy ( YWCA ) in Pennsylvania. Ten old ages subsequently, she returned to Chicago as the decision maker of the new Women in the Workforce subdivision of the YWCA. Miss Wilson has stated that her experience with the YWCA opened her eyes to the ability of groups to act upon people ‘s lives for the better ( Greenwood, 1985 ) .

It was during her clip with the YWCA that she met Grace Coyle, a sociologist, who convinced her to go forth the YWCA and take a place instruction at Western Case University in Cleveland, Ohio in 1935. Wilson attended the University of Chicago portion clip while learning in Ohio and received her M.A. from its School of Social Service Administration in 1938 ( Chambers, 1986 ) . She became a member of the American Association for the Study of Group Work ( AASGW ) and assisted Coyle with some of the first research done on groups in societal work.

Shortly after having her grade, Wilson moved to the University of Pittsburgh. It was here that she published her foremost two, and what many believe, most influential books ( Weil, Southerland, & A ; Chou, 1991 ) . Her first book, Case Work and Group Work was published in 1941.When Wilson began composing, the field of societal work was dominated by instance work, a more single based attack that applied methods of psychoanalytic theory instead than analyze environmental factors. Along with Coyle, she was among the first to reason that personal jobs were non entirely internal, but besides found in external beginnings such as household organisation and interaction. She advocated an incorporate attack that involved both instance work and group work to handle separate issues together instead than separately ( Wilson G. , Case work and group work, 1941 ) .

Case Work and Group Work was non written with the purpose to do group work seem more of import than instance work. In the first few pages of Case Work and Group Work, Wilson decried the “ short-visioned small cults of method and map that claim their high quality at the disbursal of healthy clients ” ( Wilson, 1941 ) . Hers was an statement to consolidate the two attacks instead than make separate subjects. Group societal work existed, but still lacked any individual academic foundation for survey. She presented the book before the AASGW, the Psychiatric Social Workers Association ( PSWA ) , and multiple schools of societal work around the state.

At the National Conference on Social Work in 1942, Gertrude Wilson farther expanded on what she began discoursing in Case Work and Group Work. Wilson believed that group work could convey about alterations in the values of persons and society as a whole. She argued that a worker could dynamically act upon the environment of the group for the better by directing certain procedures towards specific societal ends ( Wilson G. , 1942 ) . At this conference she defined three different ways in which the worker might act upon the group by

“ a╦ć┬Ždirecting the procedure toward the achievement of a societal end conceived in a democratic doctrine. They are 1 ) developmental, as it provided for normal societal growing ; 2 ) protective or restorative, in that it could be offered to people without groups ; and 3 ) instrumental in accomplishing of socially desirable ends. “ ( Wilson )

Her position put forth the thought that the good of the one and the good of the many were dependent on each other and societal workers had a societal duty to turn to both in order to construct society ( Weil, K. , & A ; Southerland, 1991 )

After several old ages at Pittsburgh University, Miss Wilson and her co-worker Gladys Ryland published Social Group Work Practice. Group work had lacked this academic foundation for so many old ages. It offered a systematic method of using group work for societal work pattern. As the first book to really offer a procedure for using group work, it became the first text edition for group work and was used in schools of societal work across the United States. It was called the “ Green Bible ” due to the colour of its screen and size ( Weil, Southerland, & A ; Chou, 1991 ) . Many still see it the most influential book on group work in societal work history ( Chambers, 1986 ) .

The 700-page book can be divided into two subdivisions: pattern methods and instance surveies. The first half of the book described group work methods and theories about groups. For the first clip, a societal group work method was described. This was based on Wilson and Ryland ‘s experience with groups and Grace Coyle ‘s research. Miss Wilson expressed the cardinal end of group workers as such: “ The worker ‘s purpose is to assist the members of groups develop the capacity to transport on their ain group life and achieve ends ” ( Wilson, 1949 ) . This end is still considered of import and appears in the National Association of Social Workers ( NASW ) Code of Ethics to this twenty-four hours NASW, 2009 ) .

The 2nd half of the book contained analyses of different groups, their specific activities and how the societal group work method applies to them. Miss Wilson ‘s research over the old ages is seen here in the elaborate instance surveies included in this subdivision. The instance surveies cover groups from preschool to retirement, reflecting the extent that Miss Wilson went to in researching the book. Significantly, much of the instance study stuff was drawn from work in recreational and informal educational bureaus because group societal work was non practiced frequently in a clinical scene at that clip ( Weil, Southerland, & A ; Chou, 1991 ) .

The instance surveies included in Wilson ‘s book may be dated, but the constructs of group work that they represent have withstood the trial of clip. The last half-century has seen a great trade of societal alteration and legion group work text editions since Social Group Work Practice, but Wilson ‘s original thoughts about group work have remained mostly unchanged and few modern texts can mention to group work without citing the work of Gertrude Wilson, particularly this book.

One of the most stormy times in Gertrude Wilson ‘s life was during the clip that she and Gladys Ryland were seting Social Group Work Practice together at the University of Pittsburgh. During the late fortiess, anti-communist politicians began assailing the field of societal work because of its progressive positions and support of New Deal policies to help the needy ( Andrews & A ; Reisch, 1997 ) . One of the chief marks was Marion Hathaway, the manager of the School of Social Work at the University of Pittsburgh ( Reisch & A ; Andrews, 2001 ) . Wilson was among the several pedagogues and pupils that supported Hathaway and her support ( along with many other module members ) caused clash between the School of Social Work in Pittsburgh and the university Chancellor of the Exchequer ( Wilson, 1978 ) . Wilson was one of the many professors who resigned from the college in 1950 under force per unit area ( Wilson ) . Ryland was terminated after declining to vacate a few months after Wilson left ( Andrews & A ; Reisch ) .

Wilson did non allow this contention halt her calling. She joined the School of Social Welfare at Berkeley in 1951. It was here that she developed a professional instruction plan focused on developing new societal workers. Originally known as the “ Certificate Program in the Social Services, ” it contained specific classs over a biennial period that ended with a two-week seminar on campus ( Greenwood, 1985 ) . The Council on Social Work instruction ( CSWE ) in 1952 adopted this plan as the theoretical account for national accreditation ( Weil, Southerland, & A ; Chou, 1991 ) .

At Berkeley, Wilson taught classs in both theory and pattern in group work. She was a frequent talker at seminars and conventions all over the United States and she guest-lectured at the Columbia, Smith, and Tulane Schools of Social Work. Even after retirement, she served as a adviser to societal bureaus, schools of societal work and professional associations. Wilson used her ain experience to invariably polish what she considered a dynamic facet of societal work ( From pattern to theory: a individualized history, 1976 ) . Wilson wrote tonss of conference documents, journal articles, chapters in books, and monographs although she will most likely ever be remembered for Social Group Work Practice with Gladys Ryland in 1949.

She was one of eight societal work innovators chosen for the NASW Oral History Project in 1978. Each participant took portion in a 1-2 hr interview that was recorded and placed in the Library of Congress. Berkley performed a similar interview on videotape in 1982. Both recordings are really hard to obtain. Although she officially retired from Berkeley in 1963, the college was really gracious following her decease from malignant neoplastic disease in 1985 ( Greenwood, 1985 ) .

Gertrude Wilson was an astonishing adult female who pushed societal barriers as an pedagogue and militant. She was one of really few adult females with a full chair in the 1930s. Her work in the first half of the twentieth century still influences societal work today in the 21st. She had a passion for assisting people that encouraged her to analyze a field of pattern that was hardly recognized until the fortiess. Not merely did she prosecute that field, she made it possible for others to make so every bit good by composing the first text edition on the pattern of group work. Her certificate plan at Berkley was the foundation for modern undergraduate societal work course of study in universities across the state.

These are all achievements she made in her field that show her feeling on the pattern, theory and future practicians of societal work. Personally, I am inspired by her resoluteness to follow her passion even though there was n’t a route to follow ; she dug it out herself so that she could make her finish and so that others could follow her. It is this attitude that inspires me in my chase to implement school societal work in Oklahoma. It will ne’er be in Oklahoma if people do non contend for it and hold a practical manner to pattern it once it does.

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