Michigan State University
College of Social Science
 Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences  
Students Employers Faculty & Staff Alumni Family

Exploring Your Major - Social Work

MSU School of Social Work

Brief Overview
Social Work is a professional program that focuses on helping individuals, families, groups, and communities solve problems and promote social change.  Areas of study include Interviewing skills, biopsychosocial assessment, policy analysis, and social research skills; Ethically based intervention strategies to help people in their environment; Diversity, emphasizing social justice; and Specialized, yearlong, field experience in a social service setting.

Career Options
When exploring your major it is often helpful to know typical career paths and specific job titles.

One of the best ways to make contacts and to learn about employment opportunities is through joining a student organization and/or professional association for your field.

Major-Related Skills
Employers look for students who possess a certain skill set and competencies.  As a job applicant you should always be looking at ways to market yourself, articulate your unique skills, and distinguish yourself from other candidates. 

  • Insight into group dynamics
  • Conduct field studies
  • Observe human interactions
  • Project planning
  • Interviewing and surveying

Organizations That Have Hired MSU Social Work Graduates
Self-reported information by College of Social Science Graduates.

Job & Internship Search Engines
Research shows that 75% of jobs are never posted and are found through networking, so it is recommended that you utilize multiple search methods. If you’d like to start an online job search, here are a few links to get you started.

Salary & Job Outlook
Since it’s up to you to negotiate a starting salary, it’s important to be informed about the labor market both nationally and locally.