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Lisa Ganz Named 2012 Social Work Student of the Year


Rita Langdon,Associate Provost and Director of Public Relations & Marketing
Long Island University, LIU Post

Lisa GanzBrookville, N.Y. -- Lisa Ganz, a recent graduate of the Master of Social Work program at LIU Post, has been named the 2012 National Association of Social Workers (NASW) - New York State Chapter, Nassau Division Social Work Student of the Year.

A resident of Hauppauge, Ganz, 23, graduated from LIU Post on May 7 with an M.S.W./Specialization in alcohol and substance abuse. She recently completed an internship at Central Nassau Guidance and Counseling, where she facilitated groups for adults diagnosed with mental illness and co-occurring substance abuse disorders. Last year she worked as an intern for the Huntington Youth Bureau with Project Excel.

Social work wasn't Ganz's first career choice. She holds an associate's degree in marketing and advertising communications and a bachelor's degree in human development with a concentration in psychology.

"I started my career path with advertising and marketing which is a clearly different field from social work," she said. "But what fascinated me most about marketing was how it has such an influence on people and society, especially from a behavioral and sociological perspective. So I switched gears and began to focus on human development and psychology, which led me to pursue social work. I'm really interested in how people interact with each other, the world and society."

"Lisa has made significant contributions to the field of social work through her volunteerism and classroom achievements," said Dr. Ilene Nathanson, chief administrator of the Collaborative M.S.W. Program and chairman of the Department of Social Work at LIU Post.

"She has a strong work ethic and a steadfast commitment to her clients. She exemplifies what it means to be a social worker."

Ganz, who was inducted into the Phi Alpha Social Work Honor Society, is an active member of the Master of Social Work Graduate Student Association (MSWGSA), this year serving as the group's president. Under her guidance, the organization completed a host of community service projects including collecting over 500 bags of candy at Halloween for needy children, volunteering at the Mary Brennan INN Soup Kitchen over Thanksgiving and raising over $2,000 for the annual Walk Along For Lupus event. The group also secured a grant from the New York State NASW chapter to host a forum for social workers and other professionals on the special needs of veterans.

Dr. Elissa Giffords, professor in the Department of Social Work and the faculty liaison to the MSWGSA said, "It is a pleasure to work with a student like Lisa, who clearly demonstrates a genuine belief in community service and a strong commitment to her education. She is extremely deserving of this very prestigious award." 

The Social Work Student of the Year award honors a current student enrolled in a degree program who demonstrates commitment to the community, the social work profession and academic study. NASW is the largest membership organization of professional social workers in the world, with 145,000 members. The group works to enhance the professional growth and development of its members, to create and maintain professional standards, and to advance sound social policies.

LIU Post, formerly known as the C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University, is located at 720 Northern Boulevard in Brookville.

Posted 05/14/2012

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