Wayne State University

Aim Higher

Caitlin Cassady

Photo for Caitlin Cassady
Anthropology & Social Work PhD Student, Graduate Research Assistant
Bio Sketch

Caitlin graduated with her MSW from Wayne State University in 2008. Before returning to fulltime doctoral study in 2015, she practiced as a clinical social worker in home health, hospice, emergency and intensive care hospital units, and oncology. Drawing on her clinical experience, Caitlin is interested in studying how individuals, families, and clinicians navigate choice, ethics, and morality at the end of life. 

Research Focus

Ethics and choice at end of life

Advance directive discussions, decisions, and implementation

Memory, dementia, and care

Palliative and hospice care



Areas of Expertise

Hospice and medical social work



Wayne State University:

Master of Social Work Degree, May 2008

Bachelor of Social Work Degree, May 2007


State of Michigan, Board of Social Work- Licensed Masters Social Worker, Clinical Specialty (Permanent ID# 6801093304)

State of Oregon, Board of Licensed Social Workers- Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW # L6023)



Professional Associations

Association for Gerontology Education in Social Work

American Anthropological Association

Society for Social Work and Research

National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization

Honors and Awards

First place, Wayne State Graduate and Postdoctoral Research Symposium (2016)


Cassady, C.M. (2016) Exploring and Articulating a Critical Suicidology: Conference report on Suicidology’s Cultural Turn, and Beyond. Medical Anthropology Theory. http://www.medanthrotheory.org/read/6335/critical-suicidology

Research Support/Funding

Graduate Research Assistantship, Wayne State School of Social Work (2016-2017)

Thomas C. Rumble Graduate Fellowship, Wayne State University (2015-2016)


Teaching Experience

SW 7820 Social Work Research Methods I

SW 7830 Social Work Research Methods II

SW 8350 Application of Cognitive Behavioral Theory to Interpersonal Practice



Cassady, C.M. (2016) “Assisted Suicide” or “Aided Dying”? How language comes to matter in North American discourses on hastening death. Poster presented at the Graduate and Postdoctoral Research Symposium, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI. 

Cassady, C.M. (2016) “I’m not killing myself. Cancer is killing me”: On the use of suicide in discourses on physician aid-in-dying in the United States. Presented at Suicidology’s Cultural Turn, and Beyond, The Institute of Ethnology, Czech Academy of Sciences, v.v.i. in Prague, Czech Republic
Hopp, F., Mendez, J., Ajrouch, K., Talab, A.D., & Cassady, C. (2014) Feasibility study for an Older Adult Day Care Program: Report.Presented to the Administrators of ACCESS in Dearborn Heights, MI.
Hopp, F., Mendez, J., Ajrouch, K., Talab, A.D., & Cassady, C. (2014) Assessing Needs for an Adult Day care Center for Ethnic Elders: Education in a Community Care Setting. (Author only) Presented at Association for Gerontology in Higher Education. Denver, CO. 
Cassady, C.M. (2013) Exploring barriers to palliative care and social work intervention: Utilizing education to start a dialogue in the ICU. Poster presented at the WSU Qualitative Social Work Research Symposium. Detroit, MI.