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About Social Work

The Profession of Social Work

Social work is devoted to helping individuals, families, groups and organizations function the best they can in their environments. The phrase "in their environment" points to a unique characteristic of social work, one that sets it apart from other helping professions. Social workers are as concerned with helping clients enhance their social functioning as they are with helping systems meet the needs of clients in an effective and humane manner.​ ​

The social work profession has its own body of knowledge, code of ethics, practice standards, credentials, state certification, and accreditation of education programs. ​

Accreditation makes it possible for social work graduates to qualify for state certification and/or licensing in states where credentialing is mandated and eligible to apply for advanced standing graduate social work programs. For more information related to state-by-state certification/licensure guidelines, see Resources.

Signature Pedagogy

Through the Jesuit tradition we prepare students for social work practice by guiding their development from student to professional through the collective efforts of the social work program, the field practicum agency, the student and the university.