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Saint Louis University School of Social Work Timeline

The Saint Louis University School of Social Work was formed in 1930. It has been continually accredited since 1933 and is currently accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.

Built upon an unwavering commitment to social justice, the school is a leader in integrating social work practice and education with faculty members who have made substantial contributions to the profession.
Interactive teaching methods integrate community-based practice with classroom activities and discussions. Small class sizes facilitate an atmosphere of intellectual dialogue that fosters relationships between students and faculty.


Social work education at Saint Louis University is founded with Joseph C. Husslein, S.J., as dean in 1930 in the wake of the nation's stock market crash. It emerges as one of the first social work programs in the region. 


The social work program is accredited in 1933 by the American Association of Schools of Social Work and converts its social work program to a master's level degree. The social work program offers late afternoon and early evening classes not available in other schools at the time. As a result, the program draws men and women from throughout the nation to pursue social work degrees.


The social work program becomes the first department at Saint Louis University to admit an African American student.


Aloysius H. Scheller, S.J., succeeds Father Husslein and directs the school for the next 23 years.


The social work program is admitted as an accredited charter member of the Council on Social Work Education.


Bernard Coughlin, S.J., becomes director of the social work program, a position he holds for the next 11 years.


The social work program separates from SLU's Graduate School to become an autonomous School of Social Work with its own dean.


The School of Social Work moves into its current home, Tegeler Hall, named after Jerome F. Tegeler, a 1929 SLU graduate and member of the Board of Trustees whose generous donation made the new structure a reality.

Tegeler's son, Timothy Tegeler, continues the family's commitment to the school. His financial contributions have been significant in assuring that Tegeler Hall is maintained as a modern, well-equipped, state-of-the art building.


The School of Social Work adds a bachelor's of science in social work. 


Father William Hutchison (dean, 1984 to 1995) collaborates with Dr. Susan Tebb (dean, 1995 to 2007) to create the Doerr Center for Social Justice Education and Research. The center was initially funded by a generous gift from Emmett J. and Mary Martha Doerr and hosts a wide range of activities to support social justice.


The School of Social Work joins the College of Education and Public Service as one of five professional programs.


The School of Social Work adds an evening undergraduate program. Donald Linhorst, Ph.D., becomes director of the school.


The School of Social Work adds a continuing education program.


The School of Social Work adds the first off-campus master's of social work program.


The School of Social Work adds programs in applied behavior analysis.


SLU's schools of public health and social work combined to form the College for Public Health and Social Justice. The School of Social Work also adds a criminology and criminal justice program.


The School of Social Work becomes an independent academic unit with Noelle E. Fearn, Ph.D., as its dean.