The National Center for Social Work Trauma Education and Workforce Development (‘the National Center’) was founded in 2009 to transform social work trauma education to better prepare social workers for trauma-informed, evidence-based work with traumatized children and adolescents, and their families. It also seeks to help build a sustainable system of evidence-based service delivery. The National Center is a member of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) and is funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

A collaboration between the Fordham University Graduate School of Social Service and the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College the National Center furthers its mission through collaborative work (see figure at left) with agencies and schools at the local level and with partners such as  trauma treatment developers and trainers, the NCTSN, the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), and the National Implementation Science Resource Network (NIRN), at the national level.

The National Center has disseminated its Core Concepts curriculum to more than forty schools of social work and sixty faculties and is establishing its full educational model, the “upstream model,”  of coursework, training, and fieldwork at a growing number of partner schools. The Upstream Model creates partnerships between schools of social work and local community-based agencies. Students attending partner school receive coursework, training in an evidence-based trauma treatment, and practical experience at the agency. All of the National Center’s educational products enhance students’ understanding of the developmental impacts of trauma. The National Center is available to advise schools and agencies that are interested in working more closely together to prepare students for evidence-based practice.

Current special projects of the National Center include dissemination of the CSWE’s guidelines for advanced social work practice in trauma and working with the NCTSN to widely disseminate Core Concepts training and educational products. Additionally, in partnership with NIRN, the National Center is working with select partner schools and their agencies to enhance agency readiness for implementation of trauma-informed, evidence-based trauma treatment practices.