A social worker aids a person in dealing with their problems and helps in functioning to the best of their ability. They also assist people with life threatening diseases. They work in close relation with the clients and assist in solving their personals as well as professional problems.
The Educational Requirements
In case you want to pursue a career in the field, you must have a bachelor’s degree along with a state license. For advanced positions, earning a master’s degree always helps. There are a number of different programs for your selection and the Council of Social Work Education provides a detailed list. The training modules include residential counseling, metal health assistance and case working to name a few. The course include:
• Cultural diversity
• Counseling strategies
• Research methods
• Social justice
• Human behavior
• Social psychology
• Group work
The master’s degree course is completed in two years. It provides specific training related to the area of interest. Emphasis is on professional attributes including leadership skills, caseload management and clinical assessment. The point to note here is that both Bachelor and Master’s course come with internship programs that provide you on field training.
You must also procure a license to serve as a professional of the field. One main requirement to get the certification is 3000 hours or two years of clinical experience under supervision.
With experience and education, you may rise to higher supervisory positions in the organization including the executive director.
For those interested in working as teachers or researchers can take up the doctorate program.
Skill Set Required
Those looking to make a career as a social worker must have the below skills and abilities:
• Emotional maturity
• Ability to work independently
• Ability to handle responsibility
• Maintain good working relationships with coworkers and clients
There are basically four specialties based on the type of work. These are:
• Medical and Public Health: The social workers work in close relation with patient and their families to provide support to those suffering from terminal, acute or chronic illness.
• Child, Family and School: The person works in close relation with the children in order to enhance the psychological and social functioning. They work with adults to cope up with job related issues or personal problems.
• Social work planners and policy makers: They are responsible for the development of programs that take care of issues including homelessness, child abuse, poverty, substance abuse and violence to name a few.
• Mental health and substance abuse: The workers provide support to those with medical illness or substance abuse problems including alcohol and tobacco to name a few.
The remuneration varies as per the specialty of the worker. The approximate median salaries are as under:
• Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers: $38,000
• Medical and Public Health Social Workers: $46,000
• Child, Family and School Social Workers: $40,000
• All Other Social Workers: $50,000