The practice of social work actively seeks out and develops
peoples capacities by reaching for strengths in individuals,
families, organizations, communities, and society as a whole. Social
work rests on the firm belief that all people are of equal value
and that every person possesses the capacity to face challenges
and to grow and change. People experience problems in living
when life presents them with challenges of an historical, institutional,
interpersonal, or intrapersonal nature. The social work profession
has always been in the forefront of promoting positive social change
in the broader societal context, empowering our most vulnerable
The mission of the School of Social Work is to provide high quality social
work education for generalist social work practice at the baccalaureate
level, advanced practice and leadership at the masters level, and high
quality general education courses. Our intent is to educate social work
practitioners at both levels who are ethical, knowledgeable, and versatile
in serving rural and urban areas throughout the region and state. Through
collaborative efforts with community service agencies, social work professionals
and organizations, the program educates social workers who will become
lifelong learners and culturally competent practitioners who work to promote
social and economic justice in an increasingly complex, diverse, and interconnected
The baccalaureate curriculum and the first year of the MSW curriculum are
based upon competencies necessary for social work practice at the foundation
level. The second year of the MSW curriculum prepares students for advanced
social work practice. Faculty members assess students progress in acquiring
those competencies throughout their coursework, including all practicums.
Please refer to the undergraduate and graduate Social Work Student Handbooks
for more information.
Practicums are an integral part of social work education. Students are
placed as interns in regional social service programs to integrate social
work knowledge with the realities of working in the field. Practicums provide
opportunities for students to develop practice skills in relation to social
work values and ethics.
The baccalaureate program is accredited by the Council on Social Work
Education (CSWE) which assures students their education meets national
standards for social work education at the baccalaureate level and
increases their opportunities for employment and admission into
MSW programs. The MSW program was awarded official candidacy
status by CSWE on July 2, 2001, and is now working toward full accreditation.
The school administers the Aileen Collier Glenn, the Mary French, the Archie
McDonald, the Paul Martinsen, and the Art Preciado Scholarships, which
are awarded to BA-level students who have attained sophomore status or
above. For more information please consult the school. Students can apply
for these scholarships at the Financial Aid Office between November 1 and
January 30 of each year. Financial aid is being developed for the MSW program.
Contact the MSW Program for more information.
Social work is one of the fastest growing professions in the United States.
For variety, few professions can compare with social work. While social
workers are employed as lobbyists, administrators, and policymakers, they
frequently choose to work directly with individuals, families, and groups
of people who experience problems that are economically, politically, and
socially based. Social work is unique in its dedication to working with
people who are economically disadvantaged. Among the settings that employ
social workers are schools, hospitals, mental health clinics, private counseling
services, drug and alcohol clinics, job training programs, adult and child
social services, in-home services for isolated older
adults or persons
with AIDS, social welfare agencies, adult corrections and juvenile probation.