School of Social Work
St. John’s College, J-3023
Memorial University of Newfoundland
St. John’s, NL A1C 5S7
Shirley attended Ulster University where she obtained a bachelor’s degree and PhD in social work. Her doctoral work investigated the engagement of fathers in social work in Northern Ireland. Shirley is a qualified social worker, with experience of working with young people in the care system. She was formerly a lecturer in social work at Ulster University in Northern Ireland. As a social worker, Shirley promotes the professional values and code of ethics in social work education. Shirley’s career to date has focused on the field of social work education, practice development and service improvement. Previously Shirley worked at the Social Care Institute for Excellence where she undertook research, evaluation and knowledge transfer to inform social work policy and practice. She has worked on a range of projects that reflect the diverse circumstances of social work recipients. This has included parental mental health, early intervention and child protection, sexual abuse, residential and kinship care, social care governance, and social work career development. Shirley’s teaching, research and supervision interests include: child and family social work, offending, gender, professional and research ethics, kforce development and international social work.