Dr. Pritzker began her professional career as a policy advisor for the Virginia Secretary of Education and as an analyst for the Virginia General Assembly. With a front-line view of the policy-making process, she developed a passion for educating and empowering vulnerable populations to participate in – and influence – public policy development and implementation. Her scholarship investigates how youth become politically involved and on practice interventions to increase their engagement. Her research has focused on the impacts of interventions such as community-based participatory research, in the form of Photovoice, and service-learning on youth’s civic engagement, and she received a state-wide grant to evaluate service-learning programs in Texas.
Dr. Pritzker is also committed to strengthening how the social work profession prepares students for their ethical responsibility to advocate with and on behalf of vulnerable populations. In addition to conducting research on the preparation social work students receive for civic involvement nationally, she seeks through her teaching to guide students to understand how policy is developed and implemented, ways they can participate in these processes, and skills necessary to engage both themselves and their clients in policy advocacy.
Dr. Pritzker coordinates the GCSW’s Political Social Work Specialization and the College’s Austin Legislative Internship, a competitive internship program that places social work students in the Texas legislature for the entirety of each biennial legislative session. She is also faculty advisor for the College’s M.A.C.R.O. Student Network.
B.A., History, University of Virginia, 1996
M.Ed., Social Foundations of Education, University of Virginia, 1997
M.S.W., Virginia Commonwealth University, 2003
Ph.D., Washington University in St. Louis, 2009
Licenses and Certifications
Areas of Specialization
Youth civic engagement; policy analysis; political social work; macro social work
- SOCW 6203 Foundation Policy
- SOCW 7367 Advanced Social Policy Analysis
- SOCW 7329 Social Policy Advocacy
- SOCW 7198 Legislative Preparation Seminar
- SOCW 8334 Social Welfare Policy Analysis (PhD)
Youth civic engagement, service-learning, positive youth development, political social work, political advocacy and social welfare policy.
- 2014 Outstanding Faculty Award
- Selected as one of “10 Dedicated and Deserving Social Workers” by Social Work Today magazine, 2013