Student Organizations

Students at Berkeley Social Welfare represent a core of diverse leaders practicing social justice, advocacy, leadership and scholarship. 

To update your group's information or add a new group, contact Communications Manager Jennifer Monahan.

Asian and Pacific Islander (API) Caucus

The Asian and Pacific Islander Social Worker Caucus is a group of MSW students at UC Berkeley who self-identify as Asian and/or Pacific Islander (API). The purpose of the group is to promote networking and connection amongst emerging social workers of API backgrounds, as social services catered to the broad API community are so sparse and limited. API Caucus was also formed to create a safe holding space for API folks to build community with each other and reflect about their experiences in and out of the MSW program.

Contact Brianne Imada (brianne_imada@berkeley.edu) and Kirsten Joie Ignacio (kjignacio@berkeley.edu) 


Black Caucus

Contact: Tara Montgomery (taramontgomery@berkeley.edu) and Alexis Stuckey (alexisstuckey@berkeley.edu)


Cal ARC

The Cal Anti-Racism Collaborative (Cal ARC) creates non-academic spaces for UC Berkeley Social Welfare students, faculty, and alumni to discuss topics of power, privilege, and oppression within the field of social work. This student-led initiative seeks to empower members of the School of Social Welfare community with tools to bring an anti-racist and anti-oppressive lens to their practice in order to advance the movement to end structural racism.

Contact: Lizette Martinez (lizette_martinez@berkeley.edu) and  Paulina Machi (paulinamachi@berkeley.edu)


Indigenous Student Caucus

(RE)generation: Indigenous Social Welfare Caucus is a first of its kind inter-tribal graduate student group within the UC Berkeley School of Social Welfare. Developed by Indigenous social welfare graduate students and supported by the faculty and staff of the School of Social Welfare and the American Indian Graduate Program (AIGP). We acknowledge the harm that has been inflicted on the ability of many Indigenous Peoples to maintain wellness in the face of colonization and oppression. We believe in the regeneration of Indigenous Peoples and their ability to rise past adversity by recognizing the historical trauma effects on individuals, families and communities. We rise purposefully to create opportunities for future generations to carry on this well-being and heal what was once broken by: Creating spaces and events for inter-tribal cultural exchange and collaboration between (RE)generation members, working to develop inter-cultural relationships with students, faculty and staff within the School of Social Welfare and the University at large by utilizing individual student member skills and strengths through organizing around civic engagement and community service.


Latinx Caucus

The purpose of Latinx Caucus of Social Welfare is to support Latino/a, Chicano/a students and faculty to advocate for the retention and recruitment of students and faculty, and to become politically involved in issues that affect the Latino@ community. The purpose of the Caucus is to unite the efforts of social welfare students who desire and are committed to working towards the improvement of the quality of life of Latino@ people and their communities.

Goals:

  • The social welfare caucus is a space for Latin@ students to work together to fill the gaps in social work education while looking into the community needs and bring forth advocacy of what is missing on the UC Berkeley campus
  • Empower Latino/a, Chicano/a students to find avenues for change within the community
  • Create partnerships with faculty, students, and social work professionals to bring Latino/a, Chicano/a voices into the classrooms and curriculum
  • To enrich the Social Work education of Latin@ students’ and non Latin@ students’ who are committed to serving the Latin@ community.

Contact: Yesenia Cisneros Chavez (ycischa@berkeley.edu) and Gabriela Padilla (gabbypadilla@berkeley.edu)


LGBTQIIA Caucus

Contact: Aza Frias (aza_frias@berkeley.edu)


Lobby Days

To support the profession and advocate on behalf of clients and programs, NASW holds their annual Lobby Days in Sacramento each spring semester. This two-day event gives social work professionals, and students at the undergraduate and graduate levels from across the state, the chance to convene in Sacramento to meet each other, learn skills related to lobbying and advocacy, and meet with legislators to discuss issues related to social work policy, research and practice. Each year, undergraduate and graduate students from Berkeley Social Welfare mobilize to learn about and engage in the process of advocacy, lobbying and legislative action.

See Lobby Days page for more information.


Social Welfare Association for the Greater Good (SWAGG)

SWAGG is a student run organization consist of undergraduates enrolled in the major. There are multiple purposes of our organization:

  • To exemplify social work values such as service, social justice, integrity, and the importance of human relationships through volunteerism and advocacy throughout the community.
  • To enhance the experience of social welfare undergraduates by connecting students with each other, the campus, and the larger community.
  • To become a liaison between UC Berkeley students and the social welfare community through distributing flyers on campus with fact sheets, sponsoring charity fundraising, guest speakers, advocacy and lobbying events as well as promoting and educating about the profession of social welfare.

Social Welfare Graduate Assembly (SWGA)

All UC Berkeley MSW students are automatically part of the Social Welfare Graduate Assembly (SWGA), an organization that seeks to empower students and support other student groups. SWGA members sit on various committees and task forces of the School of Social Welfare, providing the student voice to faculty and administration. SWGA also receives funding through the Graduate Assembly, which it then distributes through an application process to other groups. SWGA meets once a month.

Contact: Lily Mejia (lily.mejia@berkeley.edu) and Amy Tran (amytran11@berkeley.edu)


Social Justice Symposium

The Social Justice Symposium (SJS) grew out of student organizing and a desire for a stronger social justice focus within the MSW program experience. Planned around the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, this free annual event now serves 300-500 students and community members each year. Through keynote speakers and performers, dozens of workshops, and a resource fair during the free lunch, this event aims to educate and inspire while building social justice consciousness and community. Contact: Megan Shea (megan_shea@berkeley.edu)


Students of Under-Represented Cultures and Ethnicities (S.O.U.R.C.E)

Students Of Underrepresented Races, Cultures & Ethnicities is intended to serve as a support platform for School of Social Welfare students who identify with an underrepresented race, culture, or ethnicity at UC Berkeley’s School of Social Welfare. SOURCE is an inclusive entity that will includes UC Berkeley graduate students and faculty/staff. The group provides a space for School of Social Welfare students to promote racial justice and community. By centering our conversations on narratives outside of mainstream dialogs, we heal each other and uncover the intersecting oppressions we share. Contact SOURCE


White Accountability and Anti-Racist Practice Group 

Contact Maxx Malloy (maxxsmalloy@berkeley.edu)