Social Work

As a student in the social work program, you'll find a strong emphasis on diversity and social justice. You'll learn how to connect people who are vulnerable and marginalized to programs that provide support and help. Our graduates help people find work, form stable relationships, avoid drugs and alcohol or cope with physical or mental disabilities. You will learn counseling and casework management methods used in private and public agencies. Your classes will prepare you to work in health settings, nursing homes, social services programs, family and mental health agencies, schools and the correctional system.

Program Highlights

  • Small classes with about 40 students per cohort.
  • Liberal arts education combined with intense core social work classes and field experience.
  • Coursework, internships and volunteer opportunities combine theory, values and ethics exploration and skill development.
  • Most graduates employed in social work jobs within nine months.
  • Active Social Work Student Association that links students to activities and issues in the St. Cloud community.

Program Distinctions

  • Bachelor of social work and master of social work degrees are Council on Social Work Education accredited.
  • Recent graduates work in McLeod, Mille Lacs, Benton, Kanabec, Wright, Sherburne and Crow Wing counties' social service departments; Mayo Clinic; Minnesota Legislature and Minnesota's Developmental Disabilities Unit.
  • Social work graduates serve as field instructors for students in their field practicums in locations that include St. Cloud Children's Home, Independent Lifestyles Inc., Central MN PATH, and United Way of Central Minnesota.
  • Notable alumna: Cara (Osterberg) Ruff '92 is executive director of Independent Lifestyles, Inc. and is the founding director of the Starfish Program, which mentors and provides stipends for women who have experienced abuse, domestic  violence and/or sexual assault.
  • Each academic year, students' knowledge and skills are assessed for the purposes of accrediting the program. View our 2013-14 results (PDF), 2015-16 results (PDF), and our 2016-2017 results (PDF).

Student Organizations

Popular Careers

  • Mental Health Social Worker
  • Health Care Social Worker
  • School Social Worker
  • Child Welfare/Family Services
  • Protective Services
  • Adoption Counselor
  • Crisis Intervention

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