by Debra Johnson, Published June 18, 2012
YPSILANTI - Eastern Michigan University's School of Social Work ranked 89 for its master's program in social work, according to US News and World Report in their listing of "Best Graduate Schools 2012."
This ranking is based on surveys conducted in the fall of 2011, comparing all master of social work programs accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. In 2008, Eastern ranked 128.
"This significant improvement can indicate to potential students and community partners that this degree is valuable and marketable, even in this difficult economy," said Ann Rosegrant Alvarez, director and professor in the School of Social Work.
The school's high ranking may be due in part to the commitment of faculty members and its students to the school's mission statement, says Alvarez. The statement speaks to the school's commitment to prepare students for service with the poor, oppressed, vulnerable and underserved.
Most students in the program have strong previous work experience in human services, and have demonstrated their personal and professional commitment to the mission.
"The strength of this philosophy, combined with our strong academic curriculum has earned EMU's social work program the reputation of graduating highly trained and effective social work practitioners," Alvarez said. "Courses focused on empowerment, practice with women, and practice with people of color - as well as field placements in agencies across the state and Ohio - help students learn what they need to engage in social work practice effectively after graduation."
The College of Health and Human Services' School of Social Work offers a bachelor of science and a master's in social work. In developing the master's program, faculty responded to the demand by students by offering part-time evening and weekend programs, making the program an attractive option for working students who are often seasoned professionals seeking advanced education and training.
"The present economic and social challenges in Michigan have increased the need for social workers, specifically those committed to child and family services, substance abuse and mental illness as well as services to the aging," said Tana Bridge, program director. "With study concentrations aligned with these populations, our students are well prepared to support our Michigan and Ohio residents."
For additional information about EMU's social work programs, go to the school of social work homepage.