Social-Work-Class HERO

Rachel Gatlin


Rachel Gatlin Clinical Assistant Professor 219.464.5520 Wesemann Hall 249


MSW, Indiana University Northwest, Gary, IN
BSW, Valparaiso University, Valparaiso, IN

Areas of Interest

School Social Work
Social/Emotional Learning
Child & Adolescent Behavior
Mental Health


Introduction to Social Work
Communication & Counseling Skills
Human Behavior & the Social Environment
Generalist Practice with Individuals & Families
Generalist Practice with Groups

Professional Experience

Rachel Gatlin is an alumna of the social work program at Valparaiso University. After graduating with her Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree, she started working for the Child Care Development Fund (CCDF) Voucher Program in LaPorte County, Indiana, to help low-income parents as they applied to receive financial assistance with childcare. After three years of serving families in this capacity, Rachel started her time in the school setting as a Home/School Advisor for Myers Elementary School in Portage, Indiana. She then earned her Master of Social Work (MSW) degree from Indiana University Northwest with a concentration in School Social Work and soon after became a Licensed Social Worker (LSW). After six years with Portage Township Schools, Rachel served as a school social worker for Valparaiso Community Schools (Cooks Corners Elementary and Valparaiso High School) and Morgan Township Middle/High School in the East Port County School Corporation. 

Rachel worked with students, families, and educators in the public school setting for a total of eight years and has experience with children and adolescents ages 4 through 18. During her time as a school social worker, she worked one-on-one with students to support social/emotional health and well-being, worked alongside educators to create classroom management and behavior plans, facilitated small groups and classroom social/emotional education lessons, served on the Response to Instruction team, attended Individualized Education Plan (IEP) meetings, served on safety committees, supported LGBTQ+ youth, linked families to community resources, and worked with students who had emotional disabilities. 

Rachel started her undergraduate teaching career as an adjunct instructor at Valparaiso University during the 2019-2020 academic year. The following year she began teaching as a full time faculty member for the social work program. During the fall semester of 2020, The Valparaiso University Fraternity and Sorority Community and the women of Sigma Lambda Gamma recognized Rachel for her Excellence in Teaching, in which they wrote, “Rachel has taught the importance of multiculturalism and community. She welcomes and shows acceptance to all of her students. Rachel continues to demonstrate what it means to be an advocate and works alongside her students to make sure they feel at home. Rachel is aware of real current events in society that affect her students and encourages meaningful conversation in class. Through her teachings, students are more aware of themselves and the world around them.” 

In addition to teaching Rachel coordinates the admissions process for incoming social work majors and conducts admissions interviews to welcome new students to the program. She serves on the Campus Suicide Prevention Group and is the faculty advisor for the Student Social Work Organization. Rachel lives in her hometown of Chesterton, Indiana, with her husband Kyle Gatlin and three children.