Omar López is a clinical associate professor of field education in the Department of Children, Youth and Families. He held the inaugural administrative appointment of vice-chair, field education from 2014-2018. He currently holds an administrative appointment as director of workforce development and stipend programs, leading a team of faculty and staff who manage and implement several specialized workforce development programs funded by federal, state and local dollars. Under his leadership, these programs have received $14.2 million in funding from 2014 to date (2018) with over $7 million distributed to 379 MSW students in stipends ranging from $4,000 to $37,000.
These programs offer students a specialized curriculum and training that prepares them to pursue careers in public child welfare, public mental health, integrative behavioral health and geriatrics.
As a former undocumented immigrant from Mexico with significant professional experience in the field of immigration, López applies his expertise to a number of initiatives. He developed and implemented a global immersion program titled “Pathways to Immigration," which is designed to increase the understanding of the causes and dynamics of immigration, including current policies and legislation that impact delivery of services to immigrant families in the United States. He has been faculty advisor to the school's Latina/o and International Social Work student caucuses. López previously shared responsibilities for all of the school's San Diego Academic Center field education activities, taught integrative seminars, and was the lead in the development of the Community Organization, Planning and Administration (COPA) concentration and nontraditional social work internships in San Diego.
San Diego State University: M. S. W. 2001
University of California, San Diego: B. A. 1999
Areas of Expertise (10)
Industry Expertise (8)
Appreciation Award by SDSU School of Social Work, Title IV-E Program (professional)
Exceptional Service and Commitment to the School and the County of San Diego
Certificate of Appreciation by County of San Diego, HHSA (professional)
Outstanding Service, Devotion, Dedication, and Lasting Contributions from 2001 to 2009
Teamwork and Collaboration for Valuable Contributions, County of San Diego, HHSA-South Region (professional)
40 under 40 award by San Diego Metro Magazine (professional)
Individuals with Bright Minds and Community Spirit - 2013
Angel in Adoption Congressional Award (professional)
Awarded by the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute in Washington D.C.
Under 40 Award from the Urban League of San Diego County (professional)
Urban Leader Under 40 award by Urban League of San Diego County
Hutto Patterson Foundation Award for Distinguished Faculty, USC School of Social Work (professional)
Commencement Marshal, USC School of Social Work (professional)
Grand Challenges (1)
Ensure healthy development for all youth
Within a decade, we can reduce the incidence and prevalence of behavioral health problems in
the population of young people from birth to age 24 by 20% from current levels and reduce
racial and socioeconomic disparities in behavioral health problems by 20 percent through the
widespread implementation of tested and effective preventive interventions.
- Corporate Training