College of Education and Human Development

School of Social Work

Katrina Cisneros

  • Senior Teaching Specialist

Katrina Cisneros

Areas of interest

Racial and Social Equity, Child Welfare, Trauma, Immigration, Community Mental Health, Culturally Responsive Services to Latinx Families and Clinical Supervision


BSW, Spanish, University of Wisconsin-Madison

MSSW, Social Work, University of Wisconsin-Madison

LICSW, Minnesota Board of Social Work


Katrina Cisneros (she/her) is a Senior Teaching Specialist, full-time faculty member and life-long learner at the School of Social Work, University of Minnesota Twin Cities. She is a bilingual Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker and activist that has expertise working with chronically stressed individuals and families in a variety of complex settings but, most importantly, always in community.

Katrina has extensive social work experience across multiple areas of direct practice including public child welfare, nonprofit settings, and international work. Her work in the development of mental health programming as an outreach worker to unhoused youth helped to bridge the service gap between children’s mental health and adult mental health for some of the most marginalized youth in the community. 

She also worked many years in Open Adoption/Pregnancy Counseling both as an all-options counselor and eventually as department supervisor. The majority of her career has been in the area of clinical mental health where Katrina has provided years of both individual and family therapy (diagnostic and intervention) both in outpatient settings as well as intensive community-based support.  She also provides reflective individual clinical supervision to support internal professional development as people begin their clinical careers. 

She has also worked internationally in Mexico, Venezuela and Argentina in community organizing, program development, teaching, and outreach. She currently supports work in Tijuana, Mexico providing care to the most vulnerable asylum seekers who are unjustly and dangerously awaiting entry at the border.  In Tijuana Katrina provides mental health support to front-line staff as well as direct mental health care to migrants both at shelters and at the clinic. 

Katrina enjoys teaching, training, and consulting in the areas of trauma informed approaches both in direct clinical practice and in organizations and systems.  Her community engaged passions center around embedding anti-oppressive practice in healing spaces and changing conditions that cause harm, with an emphasis on transformative justice and white accountability. At the School of Social Work, she teaches five courses across the lifespan of the MSW program including foundation, clinical, and special topic courses. Katrina’s students are her “why” and motivation. She enjoys bringing over 20 years of rich and unique practice experience to dynamic learning environments in which students are encouraged to think critically as they experience co-created learning environments that are centered around collective care and love.