Suzanne Pritzker, M.Ed., MSW, Ph.D. has been chosen as the Coalition Scholar for the Coalition for Policy Education and Practice in Social Work. She began her professional career as a policy advisor for the Virginia Secretary of Education and as an analyst for the Virginia General Assembly. With a front-line view of the policy-making process, she developed a passion for educating and empowering vulnerable populations to participate in – and influence – public policy development and implementation. Her scholarship investigates how youth become civically involved and on practice interventions to increase their engagement. Her research has focused on the impacts of interventions such as community-based participatory research, in the form of Photovoice, and service-learning on youth’s civic engagement, and she received a state-wide grant to evaluate service-learning programs in Texas.
Dr. Pritzker is also committed to strengthening how the social work profession prepares students for their ethical responsibility to advocate with and on behalf of vulnerable populations. In addition to conducting research on the preparation social work students receive for civic involvement nationally, she seeks through her teaching to guide students to understand how policy is developed and implemented, ways they can participate in these processes, and skills necessary to engage both themselves and their clients in policy advocacy.
Dr. Pritzker coordinates the GCSW’s Political Social Work Specialization and the College’s Austin Legislative Internship, a competitive internship program that places social work students in the Texas legislature for the entirety of each biennial legislative session. She created the College’s Policy Insider Series, a monthly policy seminar series co-sponsored by the GCSW, One Voice Texas, the GCSW Alumni Association, and the student Policy Insider Advisory Committee. She is also faculty advisor for the College’s M.A.C.R.O. Student Network and the Policy Insider Advisory Committee.