News • June 14, 2017

Master of Social Work program at CBU gains candidacy status

Master of Social Work

Riverside, Calif. (June 14, 2017) – The School of Behavioral Sciences at California Baptist University will launch its fifth graduate program—Master of Social Work (MSW)—starting fall 2017. The MSW program has been granted candidacy status by the Council of Social Work Education (CSWE).

Dr. Satara Armstrong, director of the social work program, said the MSW program comes at a much-needed time with a shortage of social workers in California.

“We have a number of social needs in our communities to deal with, issues such as intimate partner abuse, child abuse, human trafficking and access to affordable health care. The Inland Empire ranks higher than the national averages in these reported areas,” Armstrong said. “Our courses will be designed and tailored to equip our students to face these complex issues.”

Social work is a profession that is committed to enhancing people’s well-being and helping those in need, especially vulnerable populations, Armstrong added.

All students accepted to the program will be retroactively recognized as having graduated from a CSWE-accredited program when MSW achieves full accreditation, said Dr. Jacqueline Gustafson, dean of the School of Behavioral Sciences at CBU. Gustafson said the inaugural class is expected to draw nearly 50 students.

Gustafson said the MSW program has undergone a significant development phase to ensure CBU will launch a relevant program.    

“Our school has spent time researching the needs of our communities,” Gustafson said. “We have also formed significant community partnerships with government agencies and nonprofit organizations that have an understanding of the issues that affect our surroundings.”

Gustafson said the MSW program is tailored toward working adults with a flexible schedule option. Students will be assigned a faculty mentor who will help them identify a specific field of calling. Additionally, leadership-training aspects of the program will help prepare students to succeed in endeavors such as operating a social work practice. Students also will receive opportunities to work alongside government and community partners in their field practicum courses.

Students may choose between two tracks of study: Clinical Social Work or Community Social Work Practice. Additionally, there will be three optional focus areas: Children and Families; Older Adults; and Global Justice.

Gustafson said students will benefit from the diverse faculty who have spent significant time practicing social work.

“CBU School of Behavioral Science has been graduating successful students in the social work field for more than 20 years,” Gustafson said. “We have a solid reputation in the community, and we plan to continue to contribute to the growing needs of our community.”

For more information on the MSW program, please click here