The Practitioner Advisory Committee (PAC) serves as a guiding force in the continuing development of social work education at Bemidji State University. Its chief obligation is to ensure development of a social work program consistent with community needs and goals and high in professional quality.

The PAC assists in the maintenance of high standards for the program through their involvement in curriculum overview, student practicum, placement and community networking. The PAC provides a means for disseminating information about the program, obtaining feedback from key community leaders about how the program’s significance is perceived, securing suggestions for the program’s improvement and assisting the program in creating cultural responsiveness. The PAC encourages participation by professionals representing community agencies who have a commitment to social work education including members of local N.A.S.W. chapters.

PAC members are appointed by the Social Work Program faculty, consist of a group of 15 or more and include students, program alumni and professional and community leaders, representing a broad array of agencies and fields of practice who support the Baccalaureate Social Work Program.


With the above purpose in mind, the Practitioner Advisory Committee will advise the Social Work Program on the direction it should take. The PAC will meet formally three times a year. The PAC is the curricular and policy setting committee for the program. PAC members communicate with the Chairperson of the Program or designee between meetings when there is information to impart that should not wait for formal meetings.

PAC input will take the form of development of specific curricular areas and sequences (Practice, Policy, Research, Human Behavior and the Social Environment, Diversity, Social Justice, Special Populations, etc), assisting in the creation of field observation activities, support in creating cultural responsiveness, advising on elective offerings, providing local job information for graduates and giving guidance on a wider variety of topics. The PAC’s active participation in program accreditation endeavors, including site visits from the Council on Social Work Education will be extremely helpful in the Social Work Program’s successful accreditation efforts. It will fill an extremely vital role in ongoing self-evaluation and future development. The PAC is an excellent source of information and a particularly vital contact with the local professional community as well as local needs and trends in social services.

Practitioner Advisory Council Members

These are the current members composing the PAC.

First Last Title Institution
Cory Boushee Program Officer Community Impact NW Minnesota Foundation
Annie Butler Ricks Resource Development Officer United Way of Bemidji Area
Donna Enfield, QISW Behavioral Health Consultant Indian Health Service, Bemidji Office
Trish Hansen District Supervisor MN Department of Corrections
Jeff Lind Social Services Division Director Beltrami County
Paula Lind, LSW School Social Worker Bemidji Area Schools
Ashlea McMartin Behavioral Health Supervisor Sanford Behavioral Health
Amy Merschman, LICSW School Social Worker Bemidji Elementary Schools
Natascha Poole, LICSW Social Worker Cass Lake Indian Health Services
Rebecca Snyder, LISW School Counselor Trek North Jr. and Sr. High School
Wendy Thompson Executive Director Beltrami Area Service Collaborative
Dana Wind, LSW Lead Beltrami County

Practitioner Advisory Council Meeting Schedule

  • Friday October 30th, Noon – 1 PM (Zoom)
  • Friday February 26, Noon – 1 PM (Zoom)
  • Friday April 30, Noon – 1 PM (Zoom)