Faculty

James Caringi

Professor & Chair

Contact

Personal Summary

James (Jim) Caringi is a Professor  and Chair at the School of Social Work, College of Health Professions and Biomedical Sciences. Jim received his B.A. from The State University of New York at Albany. He earned his M.S.W. from Boston University and his Ph.D. in Social Welfare from the State University of New York at Albany. His interests are in the areas of the primary and secondary traumatic stress (STS), child welfare, work with groups and teams, as well action research, particularly with indigenous populations as partners. Examples of Jim's funded research include:

  • Coordinator of Qualitative Research: (20012-2016)  National Native Children’s Trauma Center.  Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)- Substance Abuse / Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 5U79SM058145. The goal of this research is to determine the effectiveness of an evidenced based trauma intervention in reducing symptoms of trauma in native youth.  This is a four-year continuation of a previous SAMSHA grant and will focus on training Indian Health Service mental health professionals ($2,400,000).
  • Principal Investigator:  (2012-2016) Transforming Tribal Child Protective Services (TTCPS) (ACF: 90CO1056).  The goal of this five-year grant is to create trauma informed child welfare systems in Indian Country.  This grant contains an implementation science study to determine the effectiveness of five evidence-based interventions to address traumatic stress in Native Children ($3,200,000).
  • Principal Investigator:  (2008-2014)  United States Children’s Bureau/National Child Welfare Workforce Institute Child Welfare Trainee grant   (NCWWI:  M2009-446).  The goal of this research is to develop traineeships for social work students interested in child welfare.  A secondary goal of this research is to identify the incidence of STS as well as contributing and mitigating organizational factors that contribute to STS levels ($550,000).

Jim brings over 20 years of practice experience in both clinical and macro settings and has worked from the inner city housing projects of Boston to the rural villages of Alaska where he lived and raised a family for over 7 years.  Jim is a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) and currently maintains a caseload, seeing clients that have experienced trauma pro bono at the University of Montana Clinical Psychology Center.  Jim’s wife is a public school teacher and artist and they have 2 daughters.

Education

  • Ph.D.  School of Social Welfare, UAlbany, State University of New York: May, 2007
    • Dissertation: Secondary Traumatic Stress:  A Study of New York State Child Welfare Workers
  • M.S.W  School of Social Work, Boston University: May, 1995
  • B.A. Political Science, UAlbany, State University of New York:  May, 1991

Research Interests

In my teaching, field research, and clinical work, I have been interested in research, policy, and practice related to trauma, secondary traumatic stress, complex post-traumatic stress disorder, and clinical interventions with groups. My recent funded research projects emphasize participatory action learning and research with teams. In addition, I am developing a specialization in community based participatory action research and practice with indigenous populations. My interest in this area arises from six years of clinical and community level experience with Alaska Native Tribes, and now increasingly focuses upon evidence-based interventions for childhood traumatic stress and secondary traumatic stress. My research employs mixed and qualitative methods, and currently occurs in partnership with rural Montana tribes. 

Projects

Coordinator of Qualitative Research:   2012-2016

National Native Children’s Trauma Center.  Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)- Substance Abuse / Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 5U79SM058145. The goal of this research is to determine the effectiveness of an evidenced based trauma intervention in reducing symptoms of trauma in native youth.  This is a four-year continuation of a previous SAMSHA grant and will focus on training Indian Health Service mental health professionals ($2,400,000).

Principal Investigator:  2012-2016

Transforming Tribal Child Protective Services (TTCPS) (ACF: 90CO1056).  The goal of this five-year grant is to create trauma informed child welfare systems in Indian Country.  This grant contains an implementation science study to determine the effectiveness of five evidence-based interventions to address traumatic stress in Native Children ($3,200,000).

Coordinator of Qualitative Research: 2011-2014

Sister Nations Empowerment Project (SNEP).  Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)- Substance Abuse / Mental Health Services Administration  (SAMSHA) (SNEP:1U79SM060451),. The goal of this research is to reduce the incidence and prevent suicide in native youth ($1,200,000).

Coordinator of Qualitative Research:  2010-2012

The University of Montana Safe Schools Center, Department of Justice (DOJ-COPS) –, 2009CKWX0632. The goal of this research is to evaluate the effectiveness of safe schools training ($400,000).

Coordinator of Qualitative Research:  2009-2012

The University of Montana Readiness and Emergency Management Grant, Dept. of Education, (UM-REM), Q184T090022.  The goal of this research is to evaluate the effectiveness of emergency management training ($499,900).

Coordinator of Qualitative Research:  2009-2014

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Programs (OJJDP) Field Initiated Research and Evaluation (FIRE) community based participatory action research grant (FIRE: 2009-TY-FX-0010)  The goal of this research is to determine the effectiveness of an evidence based trauma intervention in reducing symptoms of trauma and violent behavior in native youth.  Another goal of this research is to identify levels of secondary traumatic stress in providers who work with traumatized youth. This is a community based participatory action research project ($550,000).

Principal Investigator:  2008-2014

United States Children’s Bureau/National Child Welfare Workforce Institute Child Welfare Trainee grant   (NCWWI:  M2009-446).  The goal of this research is to develop traineeships for social work students interested in child welfare.  A secondary goal of this research is to identify the incidence of STS as well as contributing and mitigating organizational factors that contribute to STS levels ($550,000).

Coordinator of Qualitative Research:  2007-2012

National Native Children’s Trauma Center.  Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)- Substance Abuse / Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 5U79SM058145. The goal of this research is to determine the effectiveness of an evidenced based trauma intervention in reducing symptoms of trauma in native youth ($2,400,000).

Coordinator of Qualitative Research:  2007-2012

Native Youth Rising: Trauma-Informed Youth and Family Services for Substance Abuse Prevention and Intervention (OJJDP) 2007-JL-FX-0041.  The goal of this research is to determine the effectiveness of an evidence based trauma intervention in reducing symptoms of trauma, substance abuse, and substance abuse in native youth (1,000,000).

Principal Investigator:  2007-2010

University of Montana College of Health and Biomedical Sciences Grant.  Secondary Traumatic Stress in Licensed Clinical Social Workers The goal of this research was to identify the prevalence of secondary traumatic stress among licensed clinical social workers ($10,000).

Field of Study

  • Complex traumatic stress disorder, secondary trauma, mixed methods research, participatory action research, work with indigencous populations

Publications

Refereed Journals & Book Chapters

  • Caringi, J., Hardiman, E., (2015).  Secondary Traumatic Stress and Licensed Clinical Social Workers.  Traumatology.

  • Caringi, J., Stanick, C., Trautman, A., Crosby, L., Devlin, M., & Adams, S., (2015) Secondary Traumatic Stress in Public School Teachers: Contributing and Mitigating Factors. Advances in School Menal Health Promotion.

  • Caringi, J. & Lawson, H., (2015) Conceptualizing a Trauma Informed Child Welfare System for Indian Country. Journal of Family Strengths. 

  • Cross, S., Dry Water-Whitekiller, V., Norris, D., Crinig, J., Trautman, A. &Holder, L., (2015). NCWWI Tribal Traineeship Programs: Promoting diversity in the child welfare workforce.  Journal of Social Work Education.
  • Caringi, J. & Lawson, H., (2014) Conceptualizing a Trauma Informed Child Welfare System for Indian Country. Journal of Family Strengths. 
  • Caringi, J., Klika, B., Zimmerman, M., Trautman, A., & van den Pol, R., (2013). Promoting youth voice in Indian country, Children and Youth Services Review, 35 (8),  1206-1211.
  • Claiborne, N., Auerbach, C., Lawrence, C., McGowan, B., Lawson, H., McCarthy, M., Strolin-Goltzman, J., Caringi, J., & Briar-Lawson, K. (under review) An Innovative Model to Improve Retention.  Journal of Public Child Welfare.
  • Caringi, J. & Lawson, H., and Devlin, M., (2012) Planning for Emotional Labor and  Secondary Traumatic Stress in Child Welfare Organizations. Journal of Family                                 Strengths.  12(1) article 11
  • Whitekiller, V., Cahn, K., Craig-Oldsen, H., & Caringi, J. (2012) Social Work Education in Tribal and Urban Indian Child Welfare Settings. In (Eds.), McCarthy, M., Briar-Lawson, K., & Dickenson, N.Centennial of the Children’s Bureau: The Children’s Bureau:  Shaping a century of child welfare practices, programs and policies.  New York: NASW Press.
  • Caringi, J. & Lawson, H., (2012) Developing, Continuously Improving, and Disseminating Culturally-Appropriate Workplace Policies to Prevent and MitigateSecondary Traumatic Stress among Child Welfare Workers. Child Welfare 360.  University of Minnesota Press.
  • Borntrager, C., Caringi, J., van den Pol, R., Crosby, L., O’Brien, K., Trautman, A., & McDonald, M.  (2012).  Secondary traumatic stress among school personnel.  Advances in School Mental Health Promotion, 5, 1-13.
  • Caringi, J. & Hardiman, E. (2011).  Secondary traumatic stress among child welfare in the United States.  International Journal of Child and Family Welfare. 14(2)
  • Lawrence, K., Strolin, J.,  Caringi, J., Claiborne, N., McCarthy, M., Butts, E., O’Connel, K.,   (in press) "Designing Evaluations in Child Welfare Organizations: An Approach for Administrators".  Administration in Social Work. 36(2).
  • Pearlman, L.A., & Caringi, J. (2009). Vicarious traumatization and complex trauma. In C.A. Courtois & J.D. Ford (Eds.), Complex traumatic stress disorders: An evidence-based clinician’s guide. New York: Guilford Press.
  • Caringi, J. (2008) Secondary traumatic stress and child welfare.  International Journal of Child and Family Welfare. 11 (4), 172-184. 
  • Strolin-Goltzman, J., Lawrence, C., Auerbach, C., Caringi, J., Claiborne, N., Lawson, H., McCarthy, M., McGowan, B., Sherman, R., Shim, M. (2009).  Design Teams: A promising organizational intervention for improving turnover rates in the child welfare workforce.  Child Welfare, 88(5), 149-168.
  • Strolin-Goltzman, J.S., McCarthy, M., Smith, B., Lawson, H., Bronstein, L., & Caringi, J. (2008) A comparison study of intention to leave among public child welfare systems with high and low turnover rates. Child Welfare.
  • Caringi, J., Lawson, H., Strolin, J.,  McCarthy, M., Briar Lawson, K., (2007) Child welfare design teams as interventions to reduce turnover and facilitate organizational change. Research on Social Work Practice Vol. X No. X,
  • Strolin, J.S., McCarthy, M. & Caringi, J. (2007) Causes and effects of child welfare workforce turnover: current state of knowledge and future directions. Journal of Public Child Welfare. 1 (2),   29-52.
  • Lawson, H., Caringi, J., McCarthy, M., Briar-Lawson, K., & Strolin, J.S. (2006). A complex partnership to optimize and stabilize the public child welfare workforce.   Professional Development: The International Journal of Continuing Social Work Education, 9(2-3), 122-139.

Books

  • Lawson, H., Caringi, J., Pyles, L., Jurkowski, J., & Bozlak, K., (2015) Particpaptory Action Research, New York: Oxford University Press

Unpublished Technical Reports

  • Strolin, J.S., McCarthy, M., Smith, B., Lawson, H., Bronstein, L. & Caringi, J. (2005).  A comparison of counties with high and low workforce turnover. Albany, NY:  Social Work Education Consortium
  • McCarthy, M., Claiborne, N., Lawson, H., Strolin, J., Caringi, J., & Houston, D. (2004) New York State low turnover county workforce retention study phase 3: executive summary of s survey of 12 county systems with low turnover rates. Albany, NY:  Social Work Education Consortium.

Honors / Awards

  • Bill Reid Disseration Fellowship: 2007