Quick Facts

Social work is a profession with a long history of commitment to improving the well-being of people in society, particularly the disadvantaged.

Social workers understand the complex interaction between individuals and their environment.
Social workers are committed to:
  • the intrinsic worth and dignity of every human being
  • the values of acceptance
  • the respect for individuality
  • the belief in the client's capacity for growth
Social workers are professionally trained at the university level and employed in a wide variety of areas that include:
  • Direct work with individuals, families and groups
  • Community development
  • Human resources development
  • Social policy
  • Program planning
  • Teaching
  • Research
  • Social workers reach every part of the community including:
  • Corporations
  • Hospitals
  • Mental health clinics
  • Military
  • Prisons
  • Public social agencies
  • Schools
  • Senior centers and nursing facilities
  • Social workers help people in all stages of life; from children to the elderly and from all situations; from adoption to hospice
  • Social workers are the nation's largest provider of mental health services
  • Social workers use a variety of strategies to bring about change in persons, situations and institutions
  • Social workers strive to empower clients, assisting them to identify their problems and find meaningful solutions, building on their existing strengths
  • Social workers are strong advocates for individual rights and social justice.

To learn more about the social work profession, go online to www.helpstartshere.org 

Social Work Career Options

A social work degree from Mercyhurst University is a professional degree that prepares students to work in any number of fields upon graduation. Examples of employment opportunities include:

  • Children's Services
  • Health Care
  • Social Welfare Research
  • Community Development
  • Mental Health
  • Residential Treatment
  • Social Welfare Policy
  • Aging Services
  • School Systems
  • Public Welfare
  • Substance Abuse
  • Developmental Disabilities
  • Consumer advocate

Employment of social workers is expected to increase by 22 percent during the 2006-2016 decade, which is much faster than the average for all occupations. For information on the nature of social work, training, advancement, job outlook and earnings visit the U.S. Department of Labor.

Sociology Career Options

Graduates holding a degree in sociology will be well prepared to continue their sociology education at the graduate level, should they want to become professors, researchers, or applied sociologists. The degree also provides a strong liberal arts foundation for entry-level positions in business, social service, and government, as well as for professions that require further study, such as law, education, medicine, social work, and counseling. Specific career paths may include:

  • Consumer advocate
  • Environment protection analyst
  • Regional crime prevention coordinator
  • Drug policy advisor
  • Law reform researcher
  • Customs/Immigration Analyst
  • Community corrections coordinator
  • Lobbyist/Civil Liberties Advocate
  • Paralegal/Legal Assistant
  • Victim Service Worker
  • Youth Justice Worker
  • Research Assistant/Analyst
  • Family Court Counselor
Social Work Program

Learn about Social Work at Mercyhurst

MU Course Catalog