MICHAEL G. RANK, PhD, is the director of the school’s San Diego Academic Center. He was previously employed as a clinical associate professor for the school's Virtual Academic Center and has been affiliated with the USC Center for Innovation and Research on Veterans & Military Families since January 2011. He was a tenured associate professor at the University of South Florida (USF) School of Social Work from 1995 to 2010. Rank received his doctorate in social work education from the University of South Carolina, and his master’s degree in social work from Bryn Mawr College, and his bachelor's degree in sociology from Bloomsburg University.
Rank is a Vietnam War veteran, having served as an infantryman in the U.S. Army from 1969 to 1970. He spent 10 years as a state parole agent in Pennsylvania; directed family advocacy and Children Have a Potential (CHAP) programs for the United States Air Force; was a team leader for a Veterans Administration Vet Center program; and was director of employee assistance programs for Family Service America. He has designed and implemented domestic violence programs for perpetrators and survivors, and has conducted many critical incident stress debriefings following bank robberies, most notably for Bank of America (formerly Nations Bank) and the United States Postal Service. He has consulted for international programs of social work, most notably Kuwait University.
Rank’s research interests include post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic stress, bioterrorism, compassion fatigue, military social work, veterans’ issues, motivational interviewing, personality disorders, incarcerated fathers, and academic leadership and reaccreditation. Most notably he completed an investigation of the experiences of survivors of traumatic stress in three countries, Nicaragua, the Dominican Republic, and selected counties in South Florida, which was funded by the Office of Naval Research through the USF Center for Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance. He has also created a bioterrorism training protocol for mental health preparedness funded by the Department of the Army.
He is a consultant to programs of social work regarding curriculum development and accreditation issues. Rank was cofounder of the International Association of Trauma Professionals. He has presented numerous workshops, trainings and seminars about military social work, veterans’ issues, the psychological effects of biological and chemical disasters, critical incident stress debriefing, traumatic stress, PTSD, compassion fatigue, fatherhood, motivational interviewing and academic leadership. His publications include articles about PTSD, compassion fatigue, bioterrorism, traumatic stress, critical incident stress debriefing, academic leadership and accreditation, fatherhood, and resistance to change.