Assistant Professor, Clinical and Assistant Dean for Student Affairs
Najor-Durack began her tenure at the School of Social Work in 1994 as the M.S.W. academic advisor and was appointed to direct the Office of Field Education in 2005. Her research area includes the use of Evidence-Based Practice (EBP) in social work education and fieldwork. Her practice experience spans mental health (inpatient and intensive outpatient care), family work, and work with Arab/Chaldean families.
Najor-Durack has worked closely with various faculty in the School of Social Work to develop programs to better prepare social work students for professional practice. She served as the principle investigator of the Hartford Partnership Program for Aging Education grant that helps to prepare M.S.W. students for work with older adults.In addition to her work in the School, Najor-Durack is the current Chair of the Michigan Board of Social Work. In her work with the Board, she reviews allegations to determine need for investigations and has served as conferee on substantiated cases. As a former member of the Boards Disciplinary Sub-Committee, she has deliberated and voted on many cases for final disposition.
Najor-Durack oversees the placement of all B.S.W. and M.S.W. students at the School. In addition to working with students to arrange and oversee field placements, she works closely with agency partners to cultivate strong relationships/affiliations that advance student preparation for professional practice.
Degrees and Certifications
Ph.D., Wayne State University
M.S.W., Wayne State University
B.S., Wayne State University
Office Location5447 Woodward Avenue, Rm 165
SW 7998 Concentration Field Work for Social Workers
Grand Challenges Project
A Strong Child Welfare Workforce
Najor-Durack and Associate Dean for Research Joanne Sobeck are working to promote a strong child welfare workforce in Michigan through Wayne Together – Child Welfare Learning and Leadership Collaborative in partnership with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. Aimed at increasing recruitment and retention in this vital workforce area, the federally funded initiative trains select M.S.W. students for child welfare positions with an expanded curriculum and a rotational field education placement in child protection, foster care, and adoption. It also provides coaching, workshops, and continuing education to publicly and privately employed child welfare staff in Wayne County.
Now completing its third year, the collaborative receives support from partners that include the Wayne County Department of Health and Human Services, Vista Maria, Judson Center, The Children’s Center, Christ Child House and Forever Families. In addition to coursework and field training, the program offers lunch-and-learn sessions, career development workshops, and self-care activities as a means of coping with the stress of child welfare work. Students selected to join the program earn a stipend to assist with tuition and other educational expenses. Learn more
Screening for Risky Substance Use
With $1 million from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the School of Social Work and the Wayne State College of Nursing are training social work and nursing students to assess patients in primary care settings for substance use with Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT). Similar to screenings for diabetes, hypertension and other chronic diseases, SBIRT helps health care providers identify risk levels for substance use and to employ early, appropriate interventions that can prevent escalation. These include education about related risks, motivation to change behaviors and — in the most serious cases — referrals to specialty care. The first university in Michigan to receive a SAMHSA grant to train students in SBIRT, Wayne State began the three-year initiative in 2015 and has trained 151 students at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Najor-Durack and Associate Nursing Professor Feleta Wilson developed the training curriculum with an interprofessional team of nursing and social work faculty that included Associate Social Work Professor Antonio González-Prendes and Assistant Social Work Professor Suzanne Brown. The program has also trained more than 20 health care professionals at Detroit-area hospitals and treatment centers where Wayne State students trained in the screening tool are receiving field instruction. Learn more