Social Work Degree Programs in Mississippi

When it comes to giving back to the community and helping vulnerable populations, no degree is better than the accredited social work degrees in Mississippi. These programs focus on at-risk youth, those at risk of complications from mental illness, and those individuals struggling to overcome imprisonment, abuse, or mental illness.

With programs at both public and private universities, and curriculum in areas that range from nonprofit work to public health and beyond, the state’s 11 institutions and 15 programs in social work are an absolute asset for those with a talent for helping, advising, and guiding others toward a better future.

Alcorn State University

Department of Social Sciences

Serving western and southwestern Mississippi, the Department of Social Work at Alcorn State University is chiefly concerned with helping students understand their professional responsibility as social workers in today’s world. It is for this reason that the department’s faculty and curriculum focuses so heavily on the cultural issues associated with social work professions, and the lifelong experiences that characterize those who seek social workers for help with everything from issues in the home to substance abuse and mental illness.

Bachelor of Social Work

The BSW degree at Alcorn State University is designed to lay a solid foundation for today’s students who intend to seek graduate-level training and state-granted certification in the growing social work industry. Alcorn’s faculty teach students key information in a few key areas: Cultural issues affecting social workers, the issues and concerns facing today’s youth, and the nature of chronic illness, addiction, and mental health struggles that are driving an increasing number of Mississippians to seek the help of social workers.

The school’s Department of Social Work ensures that all BSW students have the opportunity to seek real-world experience during their time at the university, through a combination of internships, work-study positions, and observations of those who are already operating in the social work field.

Accreditations: Council on Social Work Education Office of Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Contact

Alcorn State University
100 ASU Dr.
Lorman, MS 39096
Phone: (601) 877-6100
Email: amorris@alcorn.edu
Program Website

Belhaven University

Social Work Department

The goal of all departments at Belhaven University, including the expansive Social Work Department, is to give students the foundation they need to understand real-world problems through the lens of Christian values and morality. That’s why this particular program is so focused on the cultural issues that affect today’s social work patients and the largest number of cases: Things like substance abuse, divorce, child abuse, and mental illness concerns. Through a combination of major-specific coursework and values-centric general education, the Social Work Department gives students a diverse background that will serve them well in non-profit settings, public health departments, private practice, and even hospital social work positions throughout the state of Mississippi.

Bachelor of Social Work

As with virtually all bachelor’s degrees in social work, the program at Belhaven is quite diverse in terms of the topics conveyed to students by their professors. All Belhaven students start out with a Christian, values-focused general education core that teaches fundamental Christian values and the important of looking out for others. That translates nicely into the social work curriculum at the school, where BSW students take classes in non-profit social work, mental health topics, how to handle spousal and child abuse in a social work setting, and how the profession’s code of ethics governs the way social workers interact with both their own clients, their coworkers, and members of their family. Students are offered the opportunity, on a voluntary basis, to see out professional internships and work-study opportunities on campus that can give them deeper insight into the profession.

Accreditations: Council on Social Work Education Office of Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Contact

Belhaven University
Department of Social Work
1500 Peachtree St.
Jackson, MS 39202
Phone: (601) 968-8835
Email: agaddis@belhaven.edu
Program Website

Delta State University

Department of Social Work

The Department of Social Work at Delta State University is one of the more selective and demanding programs in the state of Mississippi. First and foremost, students are not admitted to the social work degree itself until they have completed at least 30 hours of liberal arts coursework in other departments. At that time, the department evaluates major applications and admits students who have at least a 2.0 GPA and a record of distinction in their general coursework. Upon admission, students learn a diverse array of topics and are eligible to partake in numerous clubs administered by the Department of Social Work. This includes the Social Work Club, an honors society, and numerous other organizations essential to long-term, professional networking.

Bachelor of Social Work

Delta State University’s selective program means that those who are admitted are considered highly qualified for a demanding course load that will cover a vast number of topics related to the position. Students start off with a basic introductory course that explains the nature of social work, how the profession is changing, and how social workers make a difference in the lives of others. This lays the foundation for more advanced topics, including professional ethics and specific, topic-centered classes.

At the conclusion of the program, students will take a capstone course that ties together their various courses and prepares them for their first job applications and interviews. They’ll also cover Mississippi state certification, for which they are eligible after graduation with a minimum of a BSW degree from an accredited university in the state.

Accreditations: Council on Social Work Education Office of Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Contact

Delta State University
Department of Social Work
Bailey Hall 216
DSU Box 3172
Cleveland, MS 38733
Phone: (662) 846-4407
Email: lmoon@deltastate.edu
Program Website

Jackson State University

School of Social Work

Jackson State’s School of Social Work is one of the largest in the state, with students who enroll in undergraduate, graduate-level, and doctoral degree programs in social work. The department also oversees several scholarship programs designed to offset the cost of tuition for students at all levels, and administers a professional honors society for those students who excel academically in their coursework. With the assistance of affordable tuition and extensive local connections, the school is one of the best ways for students to graduate with minimal debt, a real shot at a local social work position, and a strong standing in the LSW certification program administered in Mississippi after obtaining the BSW degree.

Bachelor of Social Work

The foundation for a success social work career is laid by the Delta State BSW program, which teaches student core professional standards as well as the core competencies needed to work in the field today. All students take a core social work curriculum that establishes a code of ethics and professional responsibilities, and all students take basic coursework in things like nonprofit work, mental health and incarceration, and youth social worker concerns. They then are free to take several elective courses that can help them deepen their knowledge of a given area, setting them up for a rewarding career in a specific niche of the social work profession.

Master of Social Work

MSW students at Delta State are admitted only when they have submitted the official application along with their existing BSW degree and transcripts, professional recommendations, and other documents. Unlike the bachelor’s degree program, the MSW is a bit more advanced and certainly more specific. Students engage in scholarly research under the supervision of a professor while focusing on psychopathology, human behavior, and the nature of a modern social work practice. Most students are expected to complete an internship or be professionally employed within the social work field during their time in the MSW program at Delta State.

Accreditations: Council on Social Work Education Office of Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Contact

Jackson State University
School of Social Work
1400 Lynch St.
Jackson, MS 39217
Phone: (601) 979-2121
Email: eugenia.r.cook@jsums.edu
Program Website

Mississippi College

Department of Sociology and Social Work

Mississippi College is a faith-based institution that brings a unique perspective to its BSW program. Students who are part of the Department of Sociology and Social Work take courses that reveal perspectives in faith-based counseling, social work in nonprofits and Christian organizations, and more standard fare like government work and private practice. While they study at Mississippi College, those students have the opportunity to become part of the Phi Alpha and Pi Gamma Mu honor societies, as well as several student-professional organizations that will serve to create strong professional networks.

Bachelor of Social Work

Though many courses focus on professional social work niches and the intersection of social work and faith, the expected outcomes of the BSW degree at Mississippi College are fairly standard. Students will be able to make ethical decisions by referencing their understanding of Mississippi state laws and the profession’s best practices. They’ll learn key skills regarding assessment and counseling, so that they can more easily identify how to help their clients. Students will learn to differentiate between the issues that affect young clients, adults, those incarcerated, those with addictions, and several other primary areas of concern within social work as well. All graduates will be eligible for the LSW certification in Mississippi.

Accreditations: Council on Social Work Education Office of Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Contact

Mississippi College
School of Sociology and Social Work
Box 4015
Clinton, MS 39058
Phone: (601) 925.3207
Email: dholt@mc.edu
Program Website

Mississippi State University – Meridian

Division of Arts and Sciences

Meridian’s Division of Arts and Sciences oversees all students in the social work degree program and enforces relatively strict requirements for initial admission to the major course of study. Students must complete at least 30 credit hours of liberal arts curriculum at the university with a 2.0 minimum GPA. They must then complete another 30 credit hours, with some credits in introductory social work, before they can apply for admission to the program. Faculty will review each application individually and grant admission to those capable of handling more advanced coursework. Upon admission, students will choose an area of focus and complete intensive study via major-related electives. DAS maintains several student-led social work organizations on campus for excellent networking.

Bachelor of Social Work

Upon admission to the BSW program at Meridian, students will immediately start taking upper division courses at the 300 level. These courses first cover the basics of professional social work: Handling youth problems, addiction, imprisonment, abuse, and more. Coursework on social welfare policy, social work research, and professional ethics will follow next. After completion of this upper-level core, students will select coursework that gives them a firm academic concentration in areas like nonprofit work, youth social work, addiction, and mental illness. These courses, combined with a capstone project, represent the final segment of the program prior to graduation. After receiving the BSW degree, students will be eligible to sit for the state of Mississippi’s LSW examination so that they can begin practicing in any number of capacities.

Accreditations: Council on Social Work Education Office of Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Contact

Mississippi State University – Meridian
Division of Arts & Sciences
1000 Highway 19 North
Meridian, MS 39307
Phone: (601) 484-0146
Email: rcarr@meridian.msstate.edu
Program Website

Mississippi State University – Starkville

Social Work Program

The Social Work Program department at Starkville requires students to complete a select list of liberal arts and social work course before they can be admitted to the major during their sophomore year. Some courses require a grade of “C” or better, while the introductory social work course requires at least a “B” for full admission to the program. Upon admission, students will select a concentration and be assigned an academic advisor within the social work faculty. They’ll be eligible for an honor society and several student-led organizations that are overseen by social work professors on campus, and they’ll be able to seek an internship with professional recommendations from within the program.

Bachelor of Social Work

The chief outcomes of the BSW at Starkville are concerned with professional responsibility and a generalist understanding of the key areas within the social work profession .For this reason, both the introductory social work course and a course specific to ethics must be passed with the grade of a “B” or better. Students will take basic coursework that teaches them about the differences between nonprofit, government, hospital, and private practice professions. Though an internship is not required of this BSW program, students on campus are strongly encouraged to consider pursuing one during their time at the university. On-campus seminars, job fairs, and networking events are sponsored by the social work program for student benefit throughout the year.

Accreditations: Council on Social Work Education Office of Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Contact

Mississippi State University
Social Work Program
207 Bowen Hall
Hardy Road
Mississippi State, MS 39762
Phone: (662) 325-2495
Email: linley@soc.msstate.edu
Program Website

Mississippi Valley State University

Department of Social Work

MVSU’s Department of Social Work oversees undergraduate and graduate-level studies into this fast-growing profession and, in order to encourage and celebrate student achievement, the department oversees both the Phi Alpha honor society on campus as well as the local chapter of the Association of Black Social Workers. Undergraduates must maintain at least a 2.0 GPA, while graduate students must maintain at least a 3.0 throughout the program in order to graduate. Faculty encourages internships and research assistantships at all levels once students have gained full admission to the program of their choice.

Bachelor of Social Work

The BSW program at MVSU is designed, as many of Mississippi’s programs are, to prepare a generalist social worker for a broad array of post-graduation professions in the state. Since Mississippi is one of the few states where a BSW qualifies for professional licensure, this is serious business. As such, admission to this program for undeclared students is competitive. Upon admission, great emphasis is placed on ethics and professional responsibility. Coursework is undertaken in a “social work core” that explains the unique role of social workers in numerous professional environments. All students are encouraged to take on an internship after at least one semester of upper-level coursework.

M.S. in Social Work

Unlike most Mississippi schools, where an MSW is the degree of choice, those pursuing graduate-level work at MVSU will get a Master’s of Science in the field. This is because the degree is a bit more research-intensive than other MSW programs in the state. In addition to research opportunities and requirements on campus, students are treated to unique coursework that focuses on the cultural issues of modern social work and how diverse populations require different types of treatment and consultation in today’s world. Focus is also placed on rural social work and underserved populations, and field experience is required prior to graduation.

Accreditations: Council on Social Work Education Office of Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Contact

Mississippi Valley State University
Department of Social Work
14000 Highway 82 W.
Itta Bena, MS 38941
Phone: (662) 254-9041
Program Website

Rust College

Department of Social Work

Rust College’s Department of Social Work is centrally focused on landing students a professional position after they earn an undergraduate degree in the field. For this reason, the school is one of the few in Mississippi that requires all students to complete at least one internship prior to graduation. In addition to a required practicum course and field experience, students will take extensive coursework covering all the various social work venues and professions, from faith-based organizations to nonprofit and even government work. On-campus organizations and job fairs will help students turn their internships into their first job opportunities by the time they receive their BSW.

Bachelor of Social Work

The BSW degree at Rust College is specifically advertised as a generalist approach to social work education, and it’s marketed to students as their best bet if they wish to land a job after graduation. Rust College maintains a large network of local connections that will help students land an internship during the second half of their undergraduate program, and that’s good news: Rust College actually required an internship, paired with a practicum course, in order for students to graduate. In addition to a professional organization on-campus for social work students, the school maintains an honor society for those who earn a high GPA and maintain a record of achievement.

Accreditations: Council on Social Work Education Office of Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Contact

Rust College
Department of Social Work
100 Rust Ave.
Holly Springs, MS 38635
Phone: (662) 252-8000
Program Website

University of Mississippi

Department of Social Work

The Department of Social Work at Ole Miss is easily the most prestigious such department anywhere in the state, thanks in no small part to the long history of the university, its massive student body, and a reputation for conducting groundbreaking research in social work and other areas. As such, students will need at least a 2.0 GPA to be considered for admission to the major after they’ve been at the university for at least two consecutive semesters. Graduate students will be expected to complete practical field experience and assist a professor with research on campus, which will set them up nicely for even further studies into social work at the doctoral level.

Bachelor of Social Work

Though an internship is not a requirement at Ole Miss for those in the BSW program, such work is strongly encouraged of all students granted admission to the program. To reward students for an internship, the university offers college credit for practical work experiences outside the university community. On campus, BSW professors enforce a strong commitment to ethics education, generalist studies, and a strong liberal arts core that gives social workers the skills they need to master their job at an entry-level position after graduation. The school’s strong program is also responsible for a very high LSW pass rate for graduates.

Master of Social Work

The MSW at Ole Miss is one of the toughest to get into statewide, and it enforces some of the most stringent requirements for academic coursework, research, and practical experience. Unlike the BSW program, those enrolled in the MSW will need to complete field experience before graduation. They’ll also take intensive research courses and have the opportunity to conduct scholarly research alongside a supervising professor. Coursework in children’s social work, nonprofit studies, and government social work cases are all key parts of the graduate-level curriculum.

Accreditations: Council on Social Work Education Office of Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Contact

University of Mississippi
Department of Social Work
Longstreet Hall, Room 212
P.O. Box 1848
University, MS 38677
Phone: (662) 915-7336
Email: socialwork@olemiss.edu
Program Website

University of Southern Mississippi

School of Social Work

Southern Mississippi is home to one of the highest-ranked social work programs in the state thanks to a strong department that has long emphasized well-rounded curriculum and well-rounded students. Admission is competitive for undergraduates, with 30 credits required and at least a “C+” GPA minimum. Graduate students must have a degree from an accredited institution in social work, and they must be prepared to submit academic and professional recommendations. An on-campus honor society and a student-professional organization create great networking opportunities for both groups of students.

Bachelor of Social Work

The school makes it a point to emphasize that the desired outcome for BSW graduates is a well-rounded understanding of the profession and a desire to take initiative within an entry-level position. Coursework focuses not only on ethics and professional responsibility, but also on leadership and management within social work organizations. Students learn general information about all outlets for the profession, from youth and spousal services to incarceration and addition. An internship is strongly recommended, but not required, and students can earn college credit for seeking field experience during their time at Southern Mississippi.

Master of Social Work

Unique topics are presented to MSW students at Southern Mississippi, including courses that study the impact of age on social workers and their clients. Other course cover things like spirituality, professional ethics, and scholarly research. Human rights are also covered, as is grant writing. During their time at Southern Mississippi, those who take part in this accredited social work degree in Mississippi will be encouraged to either seek field experience or cite an existing, related position as experience in order to obtain their degree.

Accreditations: Council on Social Work Education Office of Social Work Accreditation (CSWE), Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Contact

University of Southern Mississippi
School of Social Work
118 College Dr.
Hattiesburg, MS 39406
Phone: (601) 266-4168
Program Website

Excellent Programs for Students at All Levels in Mississippi

The numerous social work programs in Mississippi are evidence of a larger trend: Many more Americans than in years past are seeking the help of social workers to overcome a wide range of problems. Thanks to the numerous accredited social work degrees in Mississippi, the state is full of professionals who are able to fully guide those individuals toward better, healthier, and more sustainable outcomes.

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