Scott McCann, Ph.D., LCSW

"This is a message for psychologists: 'Get out of your office and get involved in people's life .'"


  • Ph.D., in Education, University of California -- Santa Barbara
  • M.A., in Social Work, San Diego State University
  • B.A., in Sociology, University of California -- Los Angeles


Dr. Scott McCann has been a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) since 1980.  He has taught at Antioch University in Santa Barbara for over 20 years, and at Santa Barbara City College since 2001.  He worked as the Director of Education for the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department and Planned Parenthood. Dr. McCann provides assessment, counseling, and behavior therapy to families, children, and adults with developmental disabilities and psychiatric disorders.  He has published numerous articles, curricula, and educational videos, presented at multiple national conferences, and has produced and hosted educational radio and television shows.

Q: Could you tell me more about your experiences an education director at Planned Parenthood?

Dr. McCann: "The thing I'm most proud of was the long term youth development. We had a mentoring program where my staff would get groups of 5 to 6 teenagers, either all male or all female group. We started in 8th grade. It started out as a pregnancy prevention program but I had been studying the work of this guy, Michael Carrera, in Harlem, where he was  studying super high risk children (e.g. school drop outs, drugs, gangs, crime, and teen pregnancy). Our first group was in Santa Paula, CA, and we went to a principal and said, 'give us your kids who are right on the edge.' We kept expanding...It became a 6 years long program when we would take the kids from 8th  grade to 1 year post-high school. These were kids who were very poor. Usually their fathers would be in jail for drugs or gangs, single parent mothers, and none of their family members went to college." 

Q: 6 years is long duration. What was the outcome of this program?

Dr. McCann: "We kept extending it because we realize if we we quit working with them, these children would be at risks for problem, until they got a career lined up. The results were incredible. About a third of the children went on to college; we also got them into trade programs because not all of them were academically prepared to go on to college. For example, one child became a licensed masseuse; one received license to drive specialist vehicles; one got his real estate license. Although they've stopped the program, unfortunately, we kept data on their school performance, arrests, drug abuse, and pregnancy. There was less drug abuse, no criminals or gangs involved.

What I learned was you have to get involved in people's life. Some of these kids did not even have money to buy proper clothes and backpacks. We took them on trips, to the swimming pool, on boats...Like parents, we taught them how to apply for college, how to register for classes, and all the stuffs they have to do on their own. We basically taught them how to live and broaden their worldview. Our staff were like their big brothers and big sisters."

Courses Taught at SBCC:

  • HE 111     : Understanding Human Sexuality
  • Psych 125: Psychology of Human Sexuality


  • Gerontology
  • Human Sexuality
  • Special Education
  • Youth Development
  • Human Service Administration and Health Promotion


Dr. McCann is currently writing a nonfiction book about his 16 years as vice president for education in Planned Parenthood of Santa Barbara, Ventura, and San Luis Obispo Counties. Please visit Dr. McCann’s website for more information: