Lora Cantwell

DSW, LCSW, Assistant Professor and Field Director, Social Work

After graduating from the University of Virginia with a degree in Psychology, she began her professional career as a foster care social worker for the city of Charlottesville. She then moved to the Harrisonburg community, where for over ten years, she provided community based mental health services, such as intensive in-home and outpatient therapy, with a focus on children and adolescents. During this time she received a Masters in Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University and gained her clinical licensure in the state of Virginia (LCSW). In 2019, she graduated from the University of Tennessee with a Doctorate in Clinical Social Work Practice and Leadership. In 2017, she transitioned to Harrisonburg City Public Schools where she served as a mental health counselor at Harrisonburg High School for five years. During this time, she developed a passion for the concept of taking mental health services to the place where children spend the majority of their time: school. Lora is proud to be part of the cutting edge movement to integrate mental health into schools and is thrilled to see the benefits this service offers students and families. For several years she served as an adjunct professor for both JMU and MBU teaching classes in both Psychology and Social Work. She transitioned to MBU full time in the fall of 2022 to serve as professor and Field Director for the Social Work Department. She is thrilled to be part of creating a new generation of mental health professionals who are well trained and prepared for the realities of the profession. Outside of work, she has three sons and one daughter who keep she and her  husband very busy! They love spending time outdoors together and finding new adventures in the beautiful Valley.