Abigail Wyche

Assistant Professor of Social Work

Office: 2406 Jamrich Hall
Phone: 906-227-2706
E-mail: awyche@nmu.edu

As the Department Head for Social Work at NMU, Dr. Wyche is honored to be working with her colleagues in educating a passionate and diverse group of students in a thriving career field. With a fast-growing job outlook, and a nationally recognized set of professional values and competencies, Social Work is attracting greater numbers of students who are looking for a clear career path. At NMU, our undergraduate, generalist curriculum provides students with a strong foundation in the liberal arts, while also honing a very specific set of practice skills. In the classroom, on campus and in the community students actively engage in learning through role-playing and simulation, service learning projects, and our signature senior field placement experience. Because of their own ongoing involvement in social work research, policy advocacy and practice, the Department Faculty, serve as excellent mentors and facilitators to students earning their BSWs at Northern.

Education

BSW, Virginia Commonwealth University, 1999
MSW, Virginia Commonwealth University, 2002
PhD, Virginia Commonwealth University, 2012

Scholarship

Dr. Wyche's primary scholarship interests center around the professional resilience among helpers--or the process by which human services professionals become and remain committed, healthy, happy and effective in their practice of helping others. Her interest in this topic was first spurned during her career as a child welfare worker, a field of social work in which she directly observed how the high incidence of burnout and turnover seemed to impact the quality of care given to vulnerable children. Over time, with experience and study, she has become aware of how sophisticated the process of resilience is, and the many potential points along their career which a social worker’s resilience might be enhanced. She is currently engaged in research about how BSW Education supports resilience in the new and future workforce.

Publications

Article

Fabelo, H., O'Connor, M.K., Netting, F. E. & Wyche, A.K. (2012) When the Paradoxical is Ideal: Employees' Perceptions of Their Organizations, Work Units, and Ideal Workplaces. Administration in Social Work, iFirst, DOI: 10.1080/03643107.2012.693461

Presentations

Wyche, A.K. (2013) Beyond parallel: Support for postmodern theories of supervision from ecosystems stakeholders. 9th International Interdisciplinary Conference on Clinical Supervision.

Wyche, A. K. (2013) Responding to the child welfare workforce crisis here and now: A constructivist approach to understanding supervision in Central Virginia. 25th National Symposium on Doctoral Research in Social Work.

Other Print

Wyche, A.K. (in press) Children’s Defense Fund. In Encyclopedia of Human Services and Diversity. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Wyche, A.K. (in press) Child Welfare League of America. In Encyclopedia of Human Services and Diversity. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Wyche, A.K. (in press) Multi-Ethnic Placement Act of 1994. In Encyclopedia of Human Services and Diversity. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Wyche, A.K. (in press) Runaway Youth/Human Trafficking, Services For. In Encyclopedia of Human Services and Diversity. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.