JSU alum appointed as inaugural professor of Social Work at Penn State





Dr. Christopher Wayne Robinson has been appointed as inaugural assistant professor of Social Work at Pennsylvania State University. In this role, he will launch the universities recently developed Bachelors of Social Work program at the PSU Greater Allegheny Campus in McKeesport, Pennsylvania.

“It is truly an honor and a privilege to serve the Pennsylvania State University system as the inaugural assistant professor of social work at the Greater Allegheny Campus,” Robinson said. “Traditionally, African-American men have been underrepresented in the field of social work education, particularly at research one (R1) Predominately White Institutions (PWIs). My historic appointment affirms Penn State University’s commitment to enhancing diversity, equity, and inclusion for all.”

Robinson accredits a large portion of his success to JSU and its School of Social Work.

“This first-rate opportunity would have never been possible without the unwavering support and high-quality training that I received from the social work faculty as a BSW student in the Jackson State University School of Social Work,” Robinson said.

Recognized as a top-performing School of Social Work among HBCUs, Jackson State’s BSW program thoroughly prepares social work students by positively instilling the necessary ethics, knowledge, skills, and values that are essential to effectively work with diverse individuals, families, groups, and communities.

Jackson State’s program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). This year, 31 students will receive a BSW degree, 75 will receive an MSW degree and one student will receive a Ph.D. in Social Work during the university’s commencement exercises. The SSW has a 96% job placement rate with 60% being in the area of social work.

The Michigan native says, “HBCUs and their graduates are on the rise, and I am happy to witness that Penn State recognizes the diverse strengths, skills, and innate talents of HBCU graduates who continue to contribute to society.”

Robinson’s appointment will assist with enhancing the student experience at Penn State and also advancing the institutional mission by improving Commonwealth communities.

“Penn State University inspires faculty and students to be excellent by collectively engaging in innovative, transformative educational experiences,” Robinson said. “I envision our newly developed social work program to serve as a catalyst for individual and social change throughout the greater Pittsburgh region. I also anticipate working closely with administrators, faculty, staff, and students in developing a Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) accredited program that is rooted in social action, social justice, and social change.”

As a licensed social worker, educator, social justice and HBCU advocate, Robinson has been committed to the area for more than 20 years and is elated about what his future holds in this new role.

Robinson concludes, “I look forward to partnering with accredited HBCU schools of social work, such as Jackson State, to create meaningful educational experiences and diverse partnerships for both of our students. The best is yet to come—expect great things.”