Becoming a Social Worker in Delaware
You can do your social worker education in Delaware at the bachelor’s or master’s level. You can make your career decision when you are an undergraduate or you can opt for social work as a second career. The only advantage to an early decision is that you can take a more direct route.
Here are some tips for you whatever your current level of education.
If You Are in High School
Take a general college prep curriculum in high school. You may supplement it with courses in human development, psychology, and sociology.
It is a good idea to seek some experience in the human services. The Delaware Volunteer Credit Program lets high school students earn academic credit while gaining experience at the state's non profits.
Research social work schools. In most cases, you will first apply for university admission, then for admission to the social work program. Often you do not actually become a social work student until your sophomore year. However, the program will have prerequisites, so it is best to meet with an advisor early on.
Earn good grades throughout your social work education and use your internship experiences to make connections in the field.
You do not need to apply to the Delaware Board for licensure at this point, as the state licenses only social workers at the clinical level. However, if you were to take a social work position in a nearby state like Maryland, you would seek licensure there.
You may continue your studies and take on a clinical or other advanced practice role. If you continue on for a master’s degree, a BSW from an accredited program may be worth close to 30 semester hours of foundation courses – provided you have a good GPA and apply before too many years pass.
If You Have a College Degree
Consider the many MSW programs in Delaware and neighboring states. Some favor students with backgrounds in human or social services, but many will consider people with a range of educational and professional backgrounds, provided they have the personal attributes and can articulate commitment.
The Simmons College School of Social Work ([email protected]) is the nation’s oldest school of social work and is offering an innovative Online Master of Social Work program. You can complete this CSWE-accredited Master's in Social Work program in as little as 15 months. There is no GRE required for acceptance to this program. Request information.
The USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work offers a CSWE-accredited online Master's in Social Work. The GRE is not required to apply to the [email protected] program. A Bachelor's degree is required. Learn more about this program.
Fordham University's top-ranked School of Social Work offers an online MSW program that prepares students for relevant, integrated practice with all populations. GRE scores not required. Request information today.
Capella University is now offering an online Master of Social Work that is in CSWE candidacy status. The MSW program helps prepare students to enter the general or clinical practice role (in most states). Capella also offers an online Doctor of Social Work. Click Here to contact Capella University about their Master of Social Work program or Doctor of Social Work program.
If you don’t have experience in social services you may want to spend some time volunteering. In addition to any direct influence the experience may have on the admission committee, it will provide you with insights that you can share in your interview or personal statement.
Allow some time for the application process. MSW programs typically ask for three references; some require both an essay and a personal statement. A graduate admission test is sometimes required.
If you do not have advanced standing, your program will include 60 semester hours of coursework and take two years or the part-time equivalent. You will do a year of foundation courses and a year of studies in a concentration. The concentration may be advanced generalist or clinical; some schools offer additional sub-concentrations.
You will need to accrue 3,200 hours of post-graduate experience to obtain a clinical license. It is best to become familiar with the Delaware Board of Clinical Social Work Examiners well in advance.
Take steps toward licensure. You will have a criminal background check and apply to the Board of for permission to take the licensing exam; it is offered through the Association of Social Work Boards. When all steps are completed, you will be credentialed as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW).
An optional step is to join the National Association of Social Workers-Delaware. The organization may provide assistance with finding a supervisor; there are also professional development opportunities.