There is ongoing interest in strategies for enhancing the reciprocal benefit derived from social work placements by students, host agencies, and universities. There is also recognition that interprofessional learning is an important aspect of social work education, and that field education placements have a role to play in this learning. This article reports on an innovation in community-engaged learning undertaken between a major public hospital and a university, where a team of social work and law students contributed to a focused inquiry into a socio-legal practice challenge faced by the hospital, namely the use of Advanced Health Directives (AHDs). Various collaborative processes involved in the early phase of the AHD project are reflected on by participants, with particular attention paid to the university–industry collaboration and interprofessional, student-learning aspects of the project. A preliminary evaluation of the process of establishing the AHD project supports the value of taking a systematic approach to university–industry engagement where interprofessional collaboration occurs vertically and horizontally within and across university and placement hosting agencies.
Advances in Social Work and Welfare Education / Vol. 16, No. 1, pp.81-96