Saint Louis University

ON TOPIC: Ferguson - One Year Out

Saint Louis University's School of Social Work invited community members to reflect on the past year in a panel discussion on Sept. 22, with keynote speaker Reverend Starsky D. Wilson, co-chair of the Ferguson Commission, to present on the findings, recommendations, and implications of the Commission's newly released report.

A headline in the Huffington Post asks: "Will The Ferguson Commission's Final Report Just Collect Dust On A Shelf?"

We asked the four panelists of Social Justice Night their thoughts on that very question.

About Social Justice Night

Each fall, since 2000, the Doerr Center for Social Justice Education and Research at the School of Social Work has celebrated the Jesuit mission for social justice with its annual Social Justice Night, a free event for students, faculty, staff, and the wider community.

About the Doerr Center 

The Emmett J. and Mary Martha Doerr Center for Social Justice Education and Research is an independently funded center within the School of Social Work that promotes long range solutions to social problems through education and research.

The center was established in 1996 through the vision of Father William J. Hutchison, SJ, a former dean of the School of Social Work. It was funded through an endowment by the Doerrs, the family of a 1937 graduate of the School, and through contributions by faculty and friends of the School.

The center's work draws on the social work profession's tradition of addressing structural issues at the root of many of the problems of human, community, and international relations. The center advances knowledge, critical thinking, and open dialogue about our understanding and implementation of social justice in today's world by offering students opportunities in both academic and practice environments, and by promoting academic research related to social justice.

We offer opportunities for students and faculty to investigate and address issues of social justice locally, nationally and globally through the following:

  • Educational events, including the annual Social Justice Night
  • Scholarships for social work students to participate in international coursework
  • Scholarships for MSW students who have a strong commitment to social justice
  • Facilitation and funding of social justice-related research through collaborations of faculty, students, and community organizations
  • Fellowships for students in our new PhD in Social Work program who are completing social justice-related dissertations

Since its inception, the Doerr Center for Social Education and Research has held over 50 educational events; and funded over 350 students in international field practica and courses, social justice graduate assistantships, advocacy events, and other activities.

The Center has funded more than 20 research collaborative research projects involving students, faculty and community organizations. These projects have resulted in over 40 publications in professional journals and 40 presentations at professional conferences.

In addition, the Center has edited three books, including Raising Our Children Out of Poverty (1999, Haworth Press), Practicing Social Justice (2003, Haworth Press), and Educating for Social Justice: Transformative Experiential Learning (2011, Lyceum Books).

Contact Us:

Amelia Blanton
Administrative Assistant
School of Social Work
College for Public Health and Social Justice
Saint Louis University