Group of study abroad students

Global Learning Opportunities

The Crown Family School offers a range of opportunities for master's-level students to learn about social welfare policy and practice internationally: in the classroom, certificate programs, programs of study, seminars and workshop presentations, and through experiential learning opportunities abroad. The Crown Family School’s orientation to international social work is designed to provide students with the opportunity to think about social problems, social policy, and social work practice in a comparative cross-national perspective. Courses are integrated into the broader curriculum, providing all students with an opportunity to incorporate some international perspectives into their work locally. For students with an interest in working abroad or with immigrant and refugee populations at home, the programs provide an opportunity to dig deeper and establish a foundation of knowledge and skills to pursue these interests. 


Kiphart Scholars will embark on a rigorous course of study focused on understanding social problems, social policy, and on-the-ground practice in a globalized world. The Kiphart Scholars Program in Global Health and Social Development focuses on providing students with both a particular knowledge base (on global processes, historical trends, and comparative perspectives) as well as a set of skills (regarding intercultural awareness, self-reflection, critical assessment, project implementation, program evaluation, etc). It places particular emphasis on understanding and working with culturally diverse and economically disadvantaged populations, attention to the needs and circumstances of individuals in the context of their local environment and in light of the structures and influences that shape their conditions and opportunities at more macro levels, and an understanding of the social construction of social problems that hones students’ capacity to think critically and flexibly across contexts. This program is rooted in values of self- awareness, community centeredness, consultation, and accountability to self and others.

There are two tracks for this program: Parallel and Immersive.

Rationale for Program

Global social work practice has some similarities and distinctions from US practice, students interested in global practice need comparative perspective and experience. Global social work practice tends to integrate direct practice and social administration, our students need the opportunity to learn across these concentrations. Our students need an understanding of frameworks common in global practice including: Human Rights and associated Conventions, Social and Community Development, Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS). 

Concentration(s) Eligible: Clinical and Social Administration

Program Requirements for BOTH Parallel and Immersive Tracks

  • Winter Quarter: First year
    • Community building workshop
    • Discussion series: #1
  • Spring Quarter: First Year
    • Ethics workshop
    • Discussion series: #2, #3
  • Summer Quarter through Graduation
    • Integrated seminar for all Kiphart Scholars co-facilitated by a clinical and an admin field consultant for the duration of the time at Crown Family School

Parallel Track Requirements

  • One required Spring quarter class in first year, 2 global electives thereafter
  • A summer international internship or study abroad program
  • Advanced coursework completed parallel to engagement in nine-month concentration field placement selected from coded placements in field database
  • One integrated seminar for all Kiphart Scholars co-facilitated by a clinical and an admin field consultant for the duration of the time at Crown Family School
  • Preparation and delivery of community presentation in Spring of graduating year, or opt-in to independent study/completion of capstone project

Immersive Track Requirements

  • Three required courses and two global electives
  • All coursework completed prior to engaging in an immersive (six-month) integrated field placement
  • One integrated seminar for all Kiphart Scholars co-facilitated by a clinical and an admin field consultant for the duration of the time at Crown Family School
  • Independent Study completed while in field placement culminating in capstone project presentation and paper


This program is not suitable to Advanced-standing students because the international component must be completed before the beginning of the second academic year.

Evening, part-time day, and dual-degree students are welcome to apply.

Financial Support

The Kiphart Scholars Program in Global Health & Social Development offers a stipend to help support the international component of the program.

Benefits to Students in the Kiphart Scholars Program

Kiphart Scholars earn a notation on their transcript indicating this accomplishment. Students completing the program will be prepared to assume leadership in the development and provision of policies, programs, and practices that address problems in the international social work arena. These include careers in international, national, state, and local social welfare and human services agencies; international advocacy organizations; and firms and non-profit organizations that engage in global social work initiatives. Further, our program alumni are part of a growing network of practitioners, administrators, advocates, policy makers, and activists.

Applications Due: June 15, 2023. 

  • Rolling admissions with priority consideration given to earlier applications.
  • Students who are accepted into the Kiphart Scholars Program before matriculation will then engage in an interview in the Winter quarter of their first year to determine which program track they will complete (immersive or parallel).
  • The Kiphart Scholars Program will reopen the application portal during Fall term, pending availability of space in the program.

The Kiphart Scholars Program application can be accessed here .

Selection Criteria

Criteria for acceptance include an ability to critically reflect on the implications of cross-cultural practice and an articulation of an interest in the type of work this program can prepare students to engage with post- graduation. Our program is rooted in a set of values including self-awareness, community centeredness, consultation, and accountability to self and others.

Program Leadership and Contact Information

Associate Instructional Professor: Jessica Darrow,
Assistant Director: Cristina Gros,

The global burden of disease poses a significant barrier to the well-being of people around the world. Students today are interested in addressing issues that cross national borders, including global health. To address this need, the Crown Family School's Graduate Program in Health Administration and Policy (GPHAP), the Center for Global Health, and the Pritzker School of Medicine (PSOM) have collaborated to develop the Global Health Certificate Program,. This program, which is open to students in participating UChicago schools, addresses issues in global health from the perspective of a variety of disciplines, including biomedicine, business, law, economics, public policy, social work and socio-cultural studies.

Please contact Laura Botwinick, Director of GPHAP, with any questions about the Global Health Certificate Program.

Courses at the Crown Family School and Throughout the University.

To search the Crown Family School course catalog, choose the keywords 'global' or 'international' from the drop-down menu.

Additional courses are available at other units of the University including the Pozen Family Center for Human RightsThe Harris School of Public Policy Studies, The Pritzker School of Medicine, The Law School,  and The Booth School of Business. Check individual school schedules for courses and times.

Seminars & Workshops

International scholars with expertise from a variety of international perspectives are invited to speak at the Crown Family School throughout the academic year. These scholars are in addition to the numerous speakers that are invited to University and to other units.

Study Abroad

The Crown Family School offers two intensive, multi-week study-abroad programs. The first is focused on urban poverty and community practice in India in collaboration with the Tata Institute of the Social Sciences Centre for Community Organization and Development Practice in Mumbai. The second program is focused on urbanization, migration, and poverty and is in collaboration with the Hong Kong Polytechnic University’s Department of Applied Social Sciences in Hong Kong and Peking University's Department of Sociology. Applications for both programs are accepted in the spring quarter. 

For More Information

Please contact Cristina Gros, Assistant Director, International Programming at 773.702.7107.

International Program Staff

Robert Chaskin
Robert J. Chaskin

McCormick Foundation Professor; Deputy Dean for Strategic Initiatives; UNESCO Chair for Inclusive Urbanism
Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice

Area of Expertise: Children and Adolescents, Community, International, Non-Profit Organizations, Poverty and Income, Urban

Jessica Darrow
Jessica Darrow

Associate Instructional Professor; Coordinator of the Kiphart Scholars Program in Global Health and Social Development
Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice

Area of Expertise:Human Rights, Immigration, International, Non-Profit Organizations, Refugees, Government and Policy

Cristina Gros
Cristina Gros

Assistant Director
International Programming
950 E 61st St., Woodlawn Social Services Center; Mailing address: 969 E. 60th St. Chicago, IL 60637