Social Work - Does the Same Approach Work For Everyone?


POSTED: Wednesday, December 26, 2012 - 12:58pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, December 26, 2012 - 2:10pm

A Master’s in Social Work (MSW) Degree can help a student to get the qualifications they need to work for the betterment of their community. Social workers help ordinary working adults to access the basic social services that they need to have functional lives, regardless of their ethnic background. The goal of the social worker is to help society's disadvantaged and underprivileged overcome obstacles and rise above their circumstances. A degree can provide a student with the necessary skills to do this over two and a half years. As a convenience for those who may have jobs and other responsibilities that prevent them from attending classes on campus, there are MSW courses that may be taken online. An online no residency MSW degree course can be taken at the student’s pace and on their schedule, all they need is an Internet connection and a computer.

Race and Social Work
Sensitivity to race and ethnicity is important for many services provided by the government, from policing to healthcare services, but nowhere is it a bigger factor than in the area of social work. Social workers deal firsthand with people from a variety of ethnic backgrounds and are required to provide services to them. The needs of one community may be markedly different from those of others. The differences mean that no one approach is suitable for all clients and that familiarity with other cultures is essential. While clients cannot be assessed on the basis of race alone, the fact is that it does play a large role in an individual’s life experience and outlook. In order to adequately serve society, the social worker will have to be familiar with racial issues and the way those of various ethnic backgrounds perceive themselves and society as a whole.

Social Work and the Hispanic Community
The Hispanic community is the fastest growing segment of the population in the United States. As a result of this growth, social workers may be required to serve members of this community at some point in their careers, wherever they work. It is essential that they be familiar with the community and the issues that are important to it. This type of knowledge is not only an important element of being able to provide the help community members need, it is an important ingredient in career-success within many governmental and nonprofit organizations. In many cases, leadership positions are reserved for those with master’s degrees in social work. A no residency MSW program like the one offered by Our Lady of the Lake University, can provide a student with the required knowledge and cultural understanding. This is just one of the many ways that such a program can help to prepare student of social work for their job.

As a 31 credit-hour no residency MSW, courses are available online to those who already hold bachelor’s degrees in social work. Aspiring social workers who have bachelor’s degrees in other areas may complete these courses with 54 credit-hours of work.    

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