Faculty | Master of Social Work

Interim Program Director
541-632-8808

Joseph (Joe) Gallegos has been a professor of social work education with over forty years of teaching and administrative experience in higher education. He received his MSW from Portland State University and his PhD from the University of Denver. His research has broadly focused on cultural mental health, including specialization in gerontology and social policy. He is cited in the social work literature as initiating the concept of cultural competence which has guided much of his research and advocacy work. Joe also runs Western Research Associates, a consulting firm specialized in social research and program development. Most recently, he served two terms in the Oregon State Legislature House of Representatives.

Adjunct Instructor
541-632-8832

Indigenous-Salvadorian born American, Patricia Cortez is a Pipil-Mayan descendent. Trinidad Mejia, her loving grandmother was a Curandera (Shaman), who introduced her to the healing arts of Curanderismo (Shamanic Practices). Patricia Cortez studied Psychology at La Universidad Nacional de El Salvador. She immigrated to the U.S. in 1985 escaping civil war and relocated in Eugene in 1997. She earned an AAOT in Psychology at Lane Community College, a BA in Family Human Services from the University of Oregon and a Masters Degree in Social Work from Portland State University, becoming the first in her family to achieve a degree. Much of her time in life has focused on volunteer support and services for Latino youth and their families. Patricia’s main goals in life are ending oppression; promoting human rights, immigrant rights and trauma healing and sharing Shamanic Practices for self-healing and guidance for awakening or strengthening Spirituality. 

Assistant Professor
541-632-8829

Michele Eggers received her PhD from the University of Connecticut, School of Social Work in 2016 and her Master of Social Work with a Pupil Personnel Services Credential in School Social Work from San Francisco State University in 2000. Her work focuses on addressing reproductive global inequities from a reproductive justice framework. She also focuses on understanding the negative effects of globalization, such as environmental exploitation, and how these influence migration patterns to the United States. Dr. Eggers integrates human rights and social justice into social work teaching and practice.

Assistant Professor, Field Education Director
541-632-8813

As the Director of Field Education for Pacific University’s MSW program, Rachel Jensen seeks to strengthen the community-academy relationship, create opportunities for students to link classroom knowledge to practice, and prepare them to become lifelong, inquisitive learners. Her practice experience includes children and family services, school social work, community work, and medical social work. She received her Master of Social Work from Humboldt State University in May 2006.

Assistant Professor of Social Work
541-632-8827

Lalit Khandare received his PhD in Social Work from Indiana University in 2017 and his MA in Social Work from Tata Institute of Social Sciences in Mumbai, India in 2003. His work focuses on domestic violence, global social work, and human rights. He currently teaches Research Methods and Thesis, Program Evaluation, and Beyond the Cycle of Violence in the MSW program.

Bachelor of Social Work Program Director
503-352-3036

Don Schweitzer received his PhD in Social Work and Social Research from Portland State University in 2011 and his Master of Arts in Social Work from Boise State University in 2005. His research goals are to continue to conduct participatory and qualitative research in an effort to help shape innovative forms of policy, treatment models and service evaluation that can help overcome the problems associated with the homeless and runaway youth. He currently serves as the program director for the Bachelor of Social Work program.

Assistant Professor
541-632-8830

Jon Talebreza-May, Ph.D., MSW, LCSW, is an Assistant Professor of Social Work. Professor May received his Ph.D. from Pacifica Graduate Institute in 2013 and his MSW degree from New Mexico Highlands University in 2004. His work experience includes psychotherapy with individuals, families, and groups. In addition, Dr. May has experience in supervision and administration in the agency setting. His professional and research  interests include men's issues, race and ethnicity in clinical practice, and rural social work practice.

Assistant Professor
541-632-8831

Del Quest received her PhD in Social Work and Social Research from Portland State University in 2014 and her Master of Social Work from University of Denver in 2004. She has practiced as a clinical social worker in an adolescent residential treatment facility which served youth experiencing substance abuse and mental health diagnoses and youth in out of home placements. Her primary focus both as a researcher and social work educator is on suicide prevention and intervention. Her goals are to help those impacted by the death of a loved one to heal from the loss, and to support other clinicians as they cope with the loss of a client.

Program Coordinator
541-632-8828

Suzy Kropf earned her BA in Family and Human Services from the University of Oregon College of Education in 2015. Her most meaningful experience as an undergraduate was a service-learning trip to Pondicherry India, where she developed interest in capacity building and creating access to resources in communities. She was able to apply this interest by serving for one year as an AmeriCorps VISTA member with the Holden Center for Leadership and Community Engagement at the University of Oregon. Suzy is a certified yoga instructor, with a passion for supporting people in their wellness and self-care practices. She is also passionate about building strong, interdependent communities. Suzy supports the Master of Social Work program through detail-oriented program management, including special events, marketing, and communications.