The ESU BSSW Program prepares students for generalist practice in an array of social service settings including those in behavioral health, medical social work, child welfare, community organizing, homeless assistance, school social work, and others.
The mission of the Bachelor of Science in Social Work (BSSW) Program at East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania is interwoven with the rapidly changing, exurban community in which we are situated. In a context marked by significant transition, we respect the dignity and worth of all persons and commit to the values of diversity, the importance of human relationships, social justice and service.
The BSSW Program embraces a global perspective, engages in scientific inquiry to expand knowledge, and commits to practices that seek the advancement of human rights and the elimination of poverty. It is our calling to provide students the educational background necessary as competent generalist social work practitioners to embrace the strengths embedded in our community while assisting in addressing the shifting needs within it; and to ensure that BSSW graduates have the preparation essential to successfully pursue graduate study in social work.
- Goals of Program
- Prepare students for competent generalist social work practice that promotes human and community well-being, and embraces a person and environment construct through the program emphasis on the requisite knowledge, professional values and skills.
- Serve as a resource to the community which is accomplished in several ways including:
- Engaging in scientific inquiry with local and regional community partners that seeks to expand knowledge, improve service delivery, enhance quality of life, and advance human rights.
- Contributing social work interns and program graduates to the community that are prepared to address the needs within it.
- Prepare baccalaureate-level social workers for generalist practice that is committed to utilizing a strengths perspective.
East Stroudsburg University was granted Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) Reaffirmation of Accreditation of the Bachelor of Science in Social Work (BSSW) program for 8 years in June 2019.
- Students are educated in generalist social work practice, and will gain the knowledge, skills, and beginning competence necessary to intervene with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities in many different social work practice settings addressing a variety of social problems experienced in society.
- Students learn various practice methods to provide services to a wide-range of client populations within a Person-in-Environment framework.
- Every social work student will complete experiential learning in the form of a 400-hour field experience during their senior year. This is an excellent opportunity for students to apply theory into practice in a highly supervised experience. The department has nearly 200 affiliation agreements with settings located across a wide geographic area where students can complete their internship. These field placement agencies include practice settings in mental health, substance abuse treatment, child welfare, medical social work, school social work, homeless assistance, domestic violence prevention, and numerous others.
- Every student takes a course in quantitative analysis and one in research methods. From these courses students learn how to design research projects, analyze and interpret data. These critical skills are needed in today’s job market as students will engage in evaluation research in the practice settings where they are employed.
- Our students have excellent success in obtaining employment after graduation. Additionally, many of our social work students choose to pursue advanced graduate study in social work.
- Students interested in child welfare also have the opportunity to apply for the Child Welfare Education for Baccalaureates (CWEB) program, which is a cooperative effort among the US Administration for Children and Families and the PA Department of Human Services, and for which ESU’s social work program is an affiliate.
- The program offers an array of electives including Child Welfare Services, Drug Use and Abuse in Society, Crisis Intervention, Juvenile Delinquency, among others, to further student learning in these areas of interest.
- We also encourage our students to expand their preparation for careers by minoring or double-majoring in Sociology or Criminal Justice in our department, or in related programs like the Crisis Intervention Certificate offered jointly by Social Work and Psychology.
Our alumni earn positions in:
Students across each major in the department have had the opportunity to serve as research assistants on a variety of faculty-led research projects related to different facets of the fields of sociology, social work and criminal justice.
Social work students have recently engaged in faculty-led research focused on the recovery model in mental health.
Additionally, students can engage in faculty-supervised independent studies for academic credit that examine and analyze contemporary issues and practice trends in social work.
All social work practice courses are taught by faculty with excellent academic credentials, years of social work practice experience, and extensive ongoing connections to the field. The quantitative analysis and research courses in the program are taught by faculty with extensive backgrounds as researchers and statisticians.
Learn more about ESU and Social Work.
Professional Licensure Disclosures and Distance Learning State Authorization: Applicants who are applying to programs that may lead to licensure in states other than Pennsylvania must be aware of the various state professional licensure requirements. Please see ESU's professional licensure disclosures, Evaluation of Conduct Record, and check licensure requirements by occupation and state at CareerOneStop.