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Social Work Careers

Your Master of Social Work online degree prepares you to advocate for and empower individuals, promote social justice and equality and make the world a better place for all people.

Why Social Work?

Choosing to pursue a career in social work is more than a noble cause; it signals a passion to transform people’s lives. 

As a social worker, you have the opportunity to cultivate strong relationships built on trust, empathy and transparency with individuals, families and communities. Through these relationships, you can help clients develop healthier minds and live healthier lives.

Social workers are valuable in every industry. With career options ranging from personal one-on-one counseling to non-profit leadership, the opportunities are endless! 

Master of Social Work Occupational Outlook

The following statistics come from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor.

Projected New Jobs

78,300 new jobs, or 12% growth, in the social work field from 2020-2030

Median Salary

MSW graduate hugging a family member

$51,760 annually or $24.88 hourly

Master of Social Work Career Titles

  • Addictions Counselor
  • Behavioral Health Consultant
  • Clinical Therapist
  • Family Advocacy Representative
  • Guidance Counselor
  • Non-Profit Manager
  • Substance Abuse Counselor
  • Victim Advocate

Master of Social Work Degree Outcomes

Upon graduation, every Master of Social Work student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate ethical and professional behavior
  • Engage diversity and difference in practice
  • Advance human rights and social, economic, and environmental justice
  • Engage in practice-informed research and research-informed practice
  • Engage in policy practice
  • Engage with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities
  • Assess individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities
  • Intervene with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities
  • Evaluate practice with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities

What can I do with this degree?

Community Social Worker

Community social workers support the well-being of a larger community like a neighborhood, school system, city or state. They can be involved in every stage of planning and running organizations that promote community health. Community social workers write grant proposals, advocate for the needs of a community, conduct research and manage non-profits or government agencies.

Corrections Social Worker

Corrections social workers assess inmates, provide therapy, and monitor inmates’ mental health while they are incarcerated. Corrections social workers also run group sessions to teach inmates how to regulate their emotions, learn coping skills, and set goals for success after they are released from prison. 

Foster Care Social Worker

Foster care social workers support children and families who are part of the foster system. They help place children into foster homes, conduct wellness checks, mentor foster parents and can even work to reunite families who have been separated. Foster care social workers can be found in family service agencies, schools and government agencies.

Health Care Social Worker

Health care social workers support individuals and families dealing with chronic, acute or terminal illnesses. They help patients find medical care, act as a patient advocate, provide therapy and assist with educational classes. Health care social workers can be found in home health services, hospice facilities, hospitals and inpatient mental health clinics.

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Licensed clinical social workers are mental health care professionals who provide psychotherapy to individuals, families and groups. They are required to become licensed in the state they wish to practice in and focus on assessing and diagnosing clients with psychological conditions as well as providing therapeutic interventions. Licensed clinical social workers can work in a wide variety of environments including private practice, hospitals, public schools and residential treatment facilities.

Military Social Worker

Military social workers help members of the armed forces process traumatic deployment experiences and assimilate back into civilian life. They also support veterans and service members’ families and advocate for access to benefits and rehabilitative support. Military social workers can be found on military bases and at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs offices.

Non-Profit Leader

Social workers in non-profit leadership positions have a unique opportunity to impact their communities. Working in organizations like child care agencies, homeless shelters, food banks, public health services and refugee and immigrant services, a background in social work can be an invaluable resource. 

School Social Worker

School social workers help students succeed by making connections with their school, home and community. They provide leadership in forming school discipline policies and conduct mental health interventions, crisis management and support services.  

Social Worker in Higher Education

Social workers play a critical role in higher education settings as they focus on the psychosocial functioning of individual students. They support students through academic challenges, relationship trauma and other life stressors. Social workers can also take positions as professors and conduct academic research.

Substance Abuse Social Worker

Substance abuse social workers help people who are suffering from addiction. They provide counseling and may arrange support group meetings and housing for their clients. Substance abuse social workers may also support clients who are in legal trouble by helping them uphold probation conditions or parole terms. 

Not sure what practice area to pursue?

Fieldwork can help you find your calling! This pivotal experience lets you explore different settings while being supervised by a master’s level social worker. 

Learn more about MSW Online Fieldwork

Didn't find what you're looking for?

Contact our Enrollment and Student Success Team for support by emailing us at MSWOnline@boisestate.edu or calling (208) 426-5921.