When you think about jobs that are in high demand, social work may not be the first one that comes to mind. But in this digital age, science and tech aren’t the only fields that are expanding. There’s always been a need for folks with a passion for working with real live people, and as…
I am a social worker myself. I have been for 19 years……while the demographic I work with has changed, my ideals, my passion, my interest in assisting others, problem-solving, and advocating has not.
The BSW might be good enough with a certificate program to follow after in a specialization, an MSW is certainly better, but the time required to obtain the MSW is different depending on where you live. Here is Quebec and Ontario, Canada-if one has a BSW, many universities offer a 1 year MSW program.
I did the somewhat unconventional route and obtained an AA degree in Humanities and Social Sciences, then obtained my BA degree in Sociology with an English minor and then went for my MSW degree which was a 2 year program. I can say the benefit to 2 years vs. 1 year in a MSW program were the internships and the courses. I took more courses which allowed me to explore my interests, but it also provided me with a strong foundation upon which to build my career. I was born and grew up in NY state, but moved to Canada 17 years ago.
2 internships- helpful as again, I was able to explore my interests with the population I wanted to work with in different capacities.
Social Work as a profession has been around for many years and it will stay as we do good work in assisting, guiding, advocating, mentoring…the list goes on.
Changes are needed though and like the medical oriented careers and particularly physicians who are asking for a national license instead of a license for each state; the same is true for social work, nursing, lawyers, accountants, and other professions. National licensing and/or certification is needed in both the USA and Canada. The current set-up is a money grab as far as I am concerned and especially in the USA. To make a professional take yet another exam, pay fees for different states-Why? Is there really that much difference in how one would practice from state to state or province to province?
In Canada, we deal with other issues which are more political and language oriented, particularly in Quebec where even if a professional has the education and work experience-if they do not speak and write French-they cannot join the provincial social work association. Last I heard, Canada was bilingual…..
If you are interested in being a social worker; do your research. Look at different university programs and fees. Interview and meet professionals in the field to see what your interests are, what demographic (s) you want to work with and do it because you have a passion to assist others. Do not do it for the money.