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The Stretch Towards Resilience-A Different Look at Leadership

Penny Damaskos, PhD, LCSW, OSW-C, FAOSW and Susan Hedlund, MSW, LCSW, OSW-C, FAOSW
Recorded on July 29, 2019

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About this Live Interactive Webinar 

Contributing factors of professional development for an oncology social worker has been the focus of many articles. However, sustaining connection to the work throughout one’s professional trajectory can be tenuous at times which can result in burn out and compassion fatigue. Many studies have focused on the factors that contribute to burnout of clinicians working in oncology that examine why staff burn out while fewer have examined the factors that keep oncology social workers engaged in the field. The focus of this talk will be to look at the mid-career oncology social worker that do not want to leave oncology but are looking at ways to renew their connection to their work and professional development. Cultivation of flexibility is the cornerstone to resilience and subsequently longevity in the field. Case examples include the application of clinical skills in other areas of care and connection to leadership opportunities will be presented.

Learning Objectives
At the end of the presentation, the participant will be able to:
  1. Examine the career trajectories of oncology social workers, including burnout and resilience. 
  2. Discuss what contributes to sustained meaning in one’s professional life.
  3. Identify the leadership and clinical skills that can be applied to other professional opportunities.

    Penny Damaskos, PhD, LCSW, OSW-C, FAOSW is the Director of Social Work and Chaplaincy at Memorial Sloan Kettering.  Penny started her career at MSK and has served as an oncology social worker there and at other area hospitals for more than 25 years.  She graduated with her Master’s from New York University‘s Silver School of Social Work and received her PhD degree from Yeshiva University.  She was the recipient of an American Cancer Society Doctoral Training Grant to support her doctoral studies that focused on the presence of resilience in oncology social work.  Penny co-authored several chapters in the Oxford Handbook of Oncology Social Work  on cancer survivorship, supervision of oncology social workers and building programs for resilience in an institutional setting.  Penny served as the president of the Association of Oncology Social Work and is the recipient of several awards: the Association of Oncology Social Work’s  Leadership in Oncology Social Work,  the Project of Death in America, (PDIA) Career Achievement Award, the Health Care Chaplaincy Network’s Wholeness of Life award and as a Fellow of the Association of Oncology Social Work. 

      Susan Hedlund, LCSW, LCSW, OSW-C, FAOSW  has been a social worker in the health care field for thirty years and has extensive experience working with individuals and families facing life threatening illness and loss. She is currently the Manager of Patient and Family Support Services at the Knight Cancer Institute at Oregon Health and Sciences University and is an associate professor at OHSU School of Medicine and PSU School of Social Work.
She is a past president of the Association of Oncology Social Work, received AOSW’s Leadership Award in 1999 and the ACS Quality of Life Award in 2009, and the Sojourn’s Award for Palliative Care in 2013.


Continuing Education Credits
Level - Advanced
Participants will earn 1.5 CE credits upon successful completion of a quiz and a post-webinar evaluation. 

Course Designation
This course has been approved for 1.5 clinical continuing education clock hours.

12:00 p.m. - 12:25 p.m.: Examine the career trajectories of oncology social workers, including burnout and resilience. 
12:26 p.m. - 12:48 p.m.: Discuss what contributes to sustained meaning in one’s professional life.
12:49 p.m.-1:09 p.m.: Identify the leadership and clinical skills that can be applied to other professional opportunities.
1:10 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.: Questions and Answers


ASSOCIATION OF SOCIAL WORK BOARDS (ASWB):  This organization, Association of Oncology Social Workers, ACE Approval #1351, is approved as a provider for social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) through the Approved Continuing Education (ACE) Program. AOSW maintains responsibility for the program. ASWB Approval Period: 11/11/16 - 11/11/19.  Social workers should contact their regulatory board to determine course approval for continuing education credits. 

Association of Oncology Social Work, Inc., SW CPE is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #0320.

GRIEVANCE POLICY: ASOW will comply with all legal and ethical responsibilities to be non-discriminatory in promotional activities, program content and in the treatment of program participants. The monitoring and assessment of compliance with these standards will be responsibility of the Education Director in consultation with the Education Chair and clinical director from committee. We do our best to anticipate problems and, when they do present themselves, will attempt to alleviate complaints as quickly as possible. When a complaint, either verbally or written, is received, the following guidelines are followed with respect to achieving resolution: (1) Complaints relative to a speaker or workshop leader, contents of instructional materials being presented, or an individual educational style being utilized, the individual voicing disapproval is requested to place his/her comments in writing. An AOSW representative will convey these comments to the speaker, assuring the confidentiality of the grieved individual. (2) If the complaint concerns a continuing education activity, its content, level of presentation, or facilities in which the event is being held, the representative in charge will attempt to resolve the matter as expeditiously as possible. If the offered resolution (resolutions offered may include, but not be limited to partial/full refund of registration fees paid; credit toward future event) not satisfactory to the individual filing the complaint, then further action may be taken as follows. (3) The individual is requested to place his/her complaint in writing to the attention of the Education Director, The Association of Oncology Social Work, 17W110 22nd St, Suite 800, Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181. The complaint is then reviewed by the Education Director in consultation with the Clinical Director and Education Advisor. A written response will be issued within 30-days of receipt of the written complaint.

ADA ACCOMODATIONS: For questions about accessibility or to request accommodations please contact AOSW Education Department at 847-686-2233. Advance notice is necessary to arrange for some accessibility needs.