Dr Ruth Weinzettle, professor and head of Northwestern State University’s Department of Social Work, has been appointed to the Commission on Accreditation (COA)of the Council on Social Work Education. Weinzettle has served as a site visitor for the COA for the past 10 years, visiting and reporting on university social work programs seeking re-accreditation. Part of Weinzettle’s duties on the national committee will be to read social work programs’ self-studies, vote on accreditation and re-accreditation, conduct site visits to schools in the candidacy stage who are seeking to develop new programs, and collaboratively write accreditation policy.

Weinzettle’s term will be effective through Jun 30, 2023.

The work of the Commission on Accreditation fulfills the critically important function of maintaining and advocating for quality in social work education through its accreditation/candidacy of more than 860 social work programs in the United States. In addition, the Commission acts as the policy body for developing and interpreting accreditation standards and assuring that policies and procedures are fairly and consistently applied to all social work programs.

Membership on the Commission on Accreditation is a demanding commitment of time with the commission meeting three times each year to review and take action on an agenda of programs seeking candidacy, initial accreditation or reaffirmation of accredited status. Each meeting takes place in Alexandria, Virginia. Preparation for these meetings involves review of self-studies and associated documents and requires a minimum of 2−3 full days of effort. Commissioners are obliged to conduct two commissioner site visits each year and develop a detailed report.

The next COA meeting will take place on October 8-10, 2020, but will be held virtually due to COVID-19.

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