Saint Leo to Host 2014 Military & Veteran Social Work Conference

Theme of only social work conference of its kind in the United States will be “Veterans in Transition.”

Bookmark and Share November 21, 2013

In the spring of 2014, Saint Leo University will be the site of the only conference in the nation for social work practitioners and educators dedicated solely to the field of military social work.

Hosted by the university’s Office of Veteran Student Services, the Military and Veteran Social Work Conference will take place June 6-7, 2014 at the school’s main campus in St. Leo, FL.

The theme of the conference, “Veterans in Transition,” was selected because, as increasing numbers of troops return home from the Middle East, social work practitioners anticipate a burgeoning need for services to assist them with transitioning back to community life.

Dr. Jose Coll, director of Veteran Student Services and associate professor of social work at Saint Leo, who is the conference chair, says the event will provide an opportunity to explore the myriad issues related to the challenges these veterans will face.

Military social work: a growing field
According to Dr. Coll, of the approximately 2.6 million troops who have served in the Middle East, nearly 50,000 have physical injuries and more than one-third report psychological concerns.

“Assisting vets with these types of issues makes military social work a growing field,” he said.

“Social workers who understand military culture and values and how to treat military personal are greatly needed to help support their transition back into their families and their communities. Social workers can help them adjust to civilian life, find employment, and navigate the VA system of benefits and resources.”

Saint Leo University offers an on-ground B.S.W. program and an online Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) program taught by faculty, including Dr. Coll, who are experts in the field of military social work.

Purpose of conference
Aimed at generating and nurturing ideas to advance the understanding of social work practice with veterans, military personnel and their families, the conference will focus on effective teaching and training of social work students in military/veteran social work.

“We intend to address a wide range of topics that affect both veterans and their families: from strategies for helping vets transition to the civilian workplace or succeed in higher education to behavior and health concerns,” said Dr. Coll.

“However, while most conferences are very theoretical-based, this one will be very practitioner based,” said Dr. Coll. “Our presenters will have time to demonstrate their work. Sessions and workshops will be very practical-oriented.”

For more information about the conference, registration, or to submit a presentation proposal, click here.


About Saint Leo University

Accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools*, Saint Leo University was chartered in 1889 in the town of Saint Leo, about 30 miles north of Tampa. Today it is one of the largest and most innovative Catholic universities in the United States, offering more than 40 academic programs. Saint Leo University enrolls approximately 16,000 students across its campus, regional education centers, and online programs. Saint Leo is a leader in the field of online education and one of the nation’s foremost providers of higher education to the military.

Saint Leo University’s online education programs are among the top in the nation according to two 2013 rankings: U.S. News & World Report’s “2013 Best Online Education Report” and the Guide to Online Schools.

For more information about Saint Leo’s online MSW program, contact a graduate admissions counselor at 800.707.8846 or complete a request information form.

*The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges can be contacted at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, GA 30003-4097, or (404) 679-4500.