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A glocal perspective on social work education

Over 30 post-graduate students and faculty members from the Department of Social Work at Madras Christian College, India, recently paid a visit to Methodist College Kuala Lumpur (MCKL) for a study tour, as part of their curriculum requirement. The half-day programme saw six speakers from various institutions like the Malaysian Association of Social Workers (MASW), to share their organisational structure, work, and experiences when aiding the underserved communities in Malaysia and around the world. The purpose of the trip was also to learn more about the Diploma in Social Work offered at MCKL along with its modules and requirements to become a qualified professional in the field. 

Master’s students from the Madras Christian College, India arrive at the MCKL campus to share views and experiences in social work with MCKL’s Diploma in Social Work & six NGOs 

Social work has come a long way since its fervid past, overcoming stigma, and expanding its role within the community at large in both developed and developing countries. What remains constant is that anyone in the field of social work makes a significant impact in their society and will continue to see the rippled effect as time moves forward. It is then integral to ensure that the curriculum developed and adopted fully reflects the issues and challenges faced in society.  

Dr Chua Ping Yong, Chief Executive Officer, MCKL, welcomes Madras Christian College and visitors before the session begins 

The sharing session by MCKL’s Diploma in Social Work programme, the Malaysian non-governmental organisations (NGOs), and Madras Christian College saw similarities in their approach to attain competencies in social work. Although there are some differences in experiences expected from the lifestyle and cultural influence, the congruency between the institutions show that social work is deeply relatable – where exchanges like this can raise mutual understanding of social work, assisting local professionals in developing a more global understanding in their approach to support the community.  

Speakers from the session included: Mr Thomas Vijiyan Ramasami, Community Development Leader, Malaysian CARE; Ms Jenny Pui Wan Lee, Head of Social Work, ElShaddai Centre; Dr B Prince Solomon Devadass, Assistant Professor at Madras Christian College; Mrs Jasmine Adaickalam, Tabitha Club; Nur Atikah Izzati, Lecturer of MCKL’s Diploma in Social Work programme, and Ms Laila Nasuha Mohd Jalil, Administrative Executive, Malaysian Association of Social Workers. 

A group photo with the Madras Christian College Master’s students, speakers from NGOs and MCKL academics from the Diploma in Social Work programme