The Social Work program educates generalist Social Workers who, guided by professional ethics and standards, use culturally competent research and practice to promote individual and social change. Social Work students gain knowledge, skills and values for empowering individuals, strengthening families and communities, and promoting a global civil society based on human rights, social and economic justice, and peace. The Social Work program is a resource for social development by improving educational opportunities for women and underrepresented student populations, including low-income students and students of color, and by preparing women for leadership in the profession and in their communities.
Social Work is one of the fastest growing professions in the United States and includes diverse and varied fields of practice. Social work students prepare for careers in child welfare, community development, criminal justice, crisis management and disaster relief, elder services, health and mental health, immigrant and refugee services, school social work and many other fields. The University of Saint Joseph Social Work graduates hold leadership positions throughout the profession.
Social Work majors enjoy small classes and caring faculty who offer personal attention, academic advising and guidance in career development. Students gain professional experience while they complete two separate yearlong field placements. Many students qualify to enter graduate school with advanced standing and complete their master's degree in Social Work in one year rather than the usual two. More than 90% of the University of Saint Joseph Social Work graduates go on to earn their M.S.W. degree.
The baccalaureate Social Work program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.
The Social Work Program does not grant Social Work course credit for life experience or previous work experience.
The department's goals are to advance:
- The understanding of the interrelationships among people and their environments, including the experiences of oppression and liberation
- Culturally competent generalist practice with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities
- Efforts to eliminate prejudice and discrimination, including discrimination based on age, class, color, culture, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity and expression, immigration status, political ideology, race, religion, sex and sexual orientation
- Policies and programs that promote universal human rights, fundamental freedoms, and social and economic opportunities for all persons
- Scientific inquiry with the purpose of further developing and correctly applying professional knowledge
- Opportunities for undergraduate and graduate education, professional development and life-long learning among social workers
- Diversity, community relations, and the use of educational assessment strategies through the University of Saint Joseph