National Academies of Practices Welcomes UH Dean to its Ranks

Ira Colby Inducted as Distinguished Scholar of Social Work

Ira Colby, dean of the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work (GCSW), was inducted into the prestigious National Academies of Practices (NAP) as a distinguished scholar in social work.  The ceremony took place at NAP's annual conference in Arlington, Va.

"It is my great honor to be inducted into this prestigious and important organization," Colby said.  "NAP's voice on public policy issues- particularly now -cannot be understated.  This diverse group of scholars and practitioners brings years of valuable experience and perspective, and I am proud to join them." 

NAP is an organization representing ten of the healthcare disciplines:  dentistry, medicine, nursing, optometry, osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, podiatry, psychology, social work and veterinary medicine.  Members provide guidance and perspective to policy makers regarding healthcare. 

As a distinguished scholar, Colby will participate in national policy forums, serve on various interdisciplinary task forces, and help author various policy papers dealing with health care.

Colby was nominated by Jerald Strickland, professor and assistant vice chancellor/vice president for international studies and programs, and chief global officer for the UH system.  Strickland also is a member of NAP.

"It is my pleasure to welcome Dean Colby into the National Academy of Practice," he said.  "He is especially qualified because of his leadership in social work education and his ability to move across professional boundaries into interdisciplinary healthcare space, a hallmark of Academy membership."

The Graduate College of Social Work (GCSW) advocates for innovative, collaborative, inclusive and humane policies and solutions that promote social, economic and political justice. The GCSW generates new knowledge through critical thinking that links rigorous scientific inquiry, ethical social work practice and community engagement.

Founded in 1981 in recognition of the need for interdisciplinary collaboration in healthcare, the National Academies of Practice is a nonprofit organization representing ten of the healthcare disciplines.  Members are elected to the National Academies of Practice with criteria that guarantee that only the best and most distinguished scholars and practitioners are admitted. 

For more information about the National Academies of Practices, visit
For more information about the UH Graduate College of Social Work, visit