Smucker Lecture

Talk to address social work in today’s economy

Arvis Averette, social work coordinator at the Chicago Center for Urban Life and Culture, will discuss “The Economics of 2014 and the BSW Social Work Programs’ Reaction to Its Implications” in a Bluffton University forum on Tuesday, Feb. 25.

This year’s Smucker Lecture in social work at Bluffton, the presentation will begin at 11 a.m. in Founders Hall. It is free and open to the public.

Averette says the current economic climate makes it more difficult for students to earn a bachelor of social work (BSW) degree, and a lack of viable jobs has made it more difficult for social workers to assist clients who need employment. With jobs leaving the United States and the numbers of unemployed and underemployed far outnumbering available jobs, he asks how limited resources should be invested in response.

Averette supervises social work field placement and Conducting Social Work seminar courses at the Chicago Center, where he has worked for the last 20 years following an initial stint in the 1980s. For the last 25 years, he has also been an instructor at Columbia College in Chicago, teaching economics and a freshman seminar course.

The Smucker Lecture, which brings significant contributors to the field of social work to Bluffton, is named for Carl Smucker, who taught social work on campus for 34 years beginning in 1944.