Developing HPPAE at the Salt Lake
City VA/GRECC and the Role of
Academic Mentors
Marilyn Luptak, PhD, MSW, LICSW
Associate Professor & Chair, MSW Aging Concentration
University of Utah College of Social Work, Salt Lake City, UT
CSWE 2013 Panel Presentation November 2, 2013
Enhancing Social Work Field Education in Aging: A VA/GRECC & HPPAE Collaboration
• University of Utah (UU) College of Social Work
(CSW) has long-term relationships with SWLI,
CSWE Gero-Ed Center, and JAHF
o HPPAE site 2006-2009; continued the model via the
College’s Neighbors Helping Neighbors Program after
funding ended
o MSW Aging in Social Work emphasis developed with
Gero-Ed Center support 2009-2011
o Additional benefits
• One of three VA/GRECC HPPAE pilot sites
(Cohort 1) launched in 2012
Operationalizing HPPAE’s Essential
Components at the SLC VA/GRECC
• University-Community Partnerships
• Competency-driven education
• Field rotations
• Expanded field instructor role
• Student recruitment
• Leadership
University-SLC VA Partnerships
• SLC VA is adjacent to – and has many affiliations
with – the University of Utah (UU)
• UU CSW and SLC VA Social Work Department
have a long-term collaborative relationship
• Many CSW 2nd year MSW students complete
traditional internships at the SLC VA
• Neighbors Helping Neighbors interns may complete
a rotation in the VA Geriatric Assessment Clinic
• I developed a productive research relationship
with SLC VA/GRECC colleagues when I joined
the UU CSW Faculty in 2005
University-SLC VA Partnerships
University of Utah College of Social Work
Brigham Young University School of Social Work
Salt Lake City VA
Neighbors Helping Neighbors
Salt Lake County Aging Services
Utah State Division of Aging and Adult Services
Student Recruitment
• Practicum Fair
• Special activities for students interested in
• MSW Aging Concentration
• Stipends
• Rotation model
• HPPAE association
Competency-driven Education
• Pre-Test defines areas of strengths and opportunity
• Action plan defines specific areas of development
• Field placement operationalizes the competencies
• Group supervision provides for didactic and collaborative
practice, case presentations with interactive discussion
SLC VA HPPAE Intern Requirements
• Complete a geriatric practicum placement
Medical Social Work
PACT (Patient Aligned Care Team) Social Work
Outpatient Mental Health
Community Residential Care and Medical Foster
Home Programs
• Complete an Outpatient Geriatric Evaluation
Clinic Rotation and one to two additional 7week Geriatric Rotations
• Facilitate Grief and/or Caregiver Support
SLC VA HPPAE Intern Requirements
Geriatric Rotation Options
Caregiver Support
Palliative Care
Spinal Cord Injury
Inpatient Medical Social Work
• Acute Medicine, Surgery, Mental Health
Heart Transplant
Access Crisis Team
Medical Foster Home
Community Residential Care
SLC VA HPPAE Intern Requirements
• Attend Monthly Didactic Groups
• Complete Community Organization and
Administrative Research Projects
• Present projects in the community (U of U
Careers in Aging Week, VA SW Month, CoA
Research Retreat)
• Complete Pre- and Post- tests to assess
SLC VA HPPAE Intern Requirements
Community Organization & Administrative Research Project Ideas
Revise Residents’ Rights Policies
Review VA Advance Care Planning Documents
Develop Gerontology 911 Resource Card
Create Community Resource Brochure
Develop a VA Geriatric Program Assessment
Design a Geriatric Competency Training
Establish an Online Geriatric Competency Forum
Advocate for Resident Rights and Preferences
Create Education Materials for Residents and
Expanded Role of Field Instructors
Facilitate basic requirements
Co-facilitate didactic groups
Provide enhanced geriatric competency
supervision to interns rotating in their site
Facilitate their interns’ presentations of the
Community Organization and Administrative
Research Projects
Guest lecture in MSW courses
Serve as Advisory Board Members
New Roles – New Definitions
• Field instructor oversees and coordinates the
overall learning experience for the intern
• Task supervisor/preceptor supervises the
intern within a specific rotation
• Field instructors instruct multiple interns for
shorter times
Benefits to Field Instructors
• Increased support
• Increased connections to others in field; exciting
new perspectives, resources
• Shared responsibility of intern
• Increased connection to Universities
• Opportunity to shape curriculum/shape interns’
• Can view their own practice in a larger context,
incorporating connections for clients
• Intellectual stimulation
Benefits to Field Instructors
University of Utah Online postgraduate
Gerontology Interdisciplinary Certificate
• Offers specific training in gerontology
• 1st field instructors started in May 2013
• 15 credit hours of online courses plus practicum
• SLC VA waiver program for field instructors – free
• Competency levels of field instructors will be
evaluated before enrolling in and after completing the
certificate program
Benefits to Students
• Increased diversity in learning
• Broader experience within service system
• Interdisciplinary learning
• Learn from experts
• HPPAE interns from UU CSW can deepen
their knowledge and enhance skills in the
MSW Aging in Social Work Concentration
• Community organization & administrative
research projects provide micro and macro
leadership opportunities for the interns
• Interns also develop leadership skills by
o Coordinating and strategizing with other HPPAE
demonstration site fellows regarding programmatic
needs and direction
o Joining the UU Center on Aging and participating in
Center activities
o Participating in the Student Network/Committee on
Leadership in Aging (CLIA)
Leadership: SLC VA/GRECC
HPPAE Interns in Action
HPPAE Interns with Posters & Mentors at the
University of Utah Center On Aging 2013
Research Retreat
Mentoring at SLC VA and Beyond
 Initial conference calls to plan HPPAE orientation at
 On-site orientation at SLC VA
 SLC VA Social Work Field Instructor training
 Ongoing consultation with SLC VA Social Workers
and BYU Director of Field Education
 SLC VA Monthly Didactic Group
 Facilitate collaboration with UU Gerontology
Interdisciplinary Program
 Mentoring other VA/GRECC HPPAE Pilot Sites in
Cohorts 1-3

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